Luxury vinyl tile (LVT) and luxury vinyl plank flooring (LVP) have gained immense popularity in recent years as versatile and cost-effective flooring options. They’re durable, stylish and easy to maintain, making them a great choice for homes, businesses, and areas with water.
The key to a successful and long-lasting LVT and LVP floor lies in the flooring installation method. Whether you use glue-down installation, floating installation, do it yourself or hire a professional, Shaw Floors has over 50 years of expertise in the flooring industry and can help you make an informed decision as you explore installation methods for luxury vinyl flooring.
Tools and Materials Needed
Before diving into the installation process, you'll need to gather the necessary tools and materials:
Preparing the Subfloor
Ensure your subfloor is clean, dry, and flat. Any imperfections in the subfloor can affect the final result.
Spread adhesive evenly over the subfloor using a trowel. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for the specific adhesive you're using.
Placing the Tiles/Planks
Carefully place the LVT/LVP onto the adhesive, pressing firmly to ensure a secure bond. Make sure to roll the flooring with a 75-100 lbs. Roller during and after installation.
Pros and Cons of Glue-Down Installation
- Pros: Excellent bond, stability, and longevity.
- Cons: Time-consuming, requires the additional step of applying adhesive.
Preparing the Subfloor
Just like with glue-down installation, prepare the subfloor by cleaning, drying and flat. You can also install certain luxury vinyl products over existing hard surface flooring. Be sure to check the specifications of your chosen product before installing.
Some floating installations require or allow additional underlayment for added cushioning and noise reduction. Install the underlayment according to the manufacturer's guidelines.
Most LVPs for floating installation come with a click-and-lock mechanism, making it easy to connect the planks securely.
Placing the Flooring
Start laying the planks from one corner, connecting them using the click-and-lock system. Be sure to stagger the seams for a more natural look.
Pros and Cons of Floating Installation
- Pros: Quick and easy, no adhesive required.
- Cons: Can be less stable in high-moisture areas.
Tips & Best Practices
- Always acclimate your luxury vinyl flooring to the room's temperature and humidity for at least 48 hours before installation.
- Follow the manufacturer's guidelines for subfloor preparation, adhesive application, and seam sealing.
- Take your time to measure and plan the layout to avoid awkward cuts or small pieces at the edges.
- Use a tapping block and rubber mallet to ensure tight seams during floating installation.
- Clean up any adhesive or adhesive residue immediately to prevent damage to the surface.
Maintenance and Cleaning
Maintaining luxury vinyl is both essential and easy. Regularly sweep or vacuum to remove dirt and debris. Mop with a manufacturer-approved cleaner to keep the floor looking pristine.
Luxury vinyl flooring offers a versatile and visually appealing solution for your home. The choice of installation method depends on your preferences, skills, and the specific requirements of your space. Regardless of the method you choose, proper preparation and attention to detail are key to a successful installation. Now that you're equipped with knowledge about vinyl installation methods, you can confidently transform your space with these durable and stylish flooring options.
Is it possible to install LVT/LVP over existing flooring?
Yes, in many cases, you can install LVT/LVP over existing flooring, provided the surface is flat, clean, and in good condition. It's essential to follow the manufacturer's guidelines and recommendations before installing.
Can I install luxury vinyl in water-prone areas like bathrooms or kitchens?
Yes! Be sure to choose a product specifically designed for such environments, such as Shaw Floors’ Floorté Classic Series, and follow the manufacturer's installation instructions meticulously.
How long does the installation process typically take?
The time required for installation depends on the chosen method, room size, and your experience.
Is professional installation recommended for LVT/LVP?
While luxury vinyl is DIY-friendly, professional installation is always an option, especially if you're not confident in your skills or if you have a large or complex area to cover.
Detailed Product Installation Instructions: