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- How to install your new SPC Flooring.
How to install your new SPC Flooring.
How to Install Your SPC Floors
Rigid Vinyl with patented interlocking system is installed as a glue-less floating floor. The Lalegno Rigid Vinyl planks are not designed for outdoor use, in saunas or solariums. Because of their floating installation Lalegno Rigid Vinyl planks can’t be installed in areas into which drainage systems have been incorporated, such as walk-in showers.
Flooring should be transported and stored in a neatly stacked fashion on a smooth flat surface (never store this product outside).
Acclimate the flooring and the rooms to be installed for 48 hours at a constant temperature between 18°C and 29°C before, during, and maintained after installation. If the boxes of flooring were exposed over 2 hours to extreme temperature (under 10°C or over 40°C) within the 12 hours before the installation, acclimation is required. In this case keep the boards in room temperature for at least 12 hours in unopened package before you start the installation. The room temperature must be maintained consistent between 20°C to 25°C before and during installation.
Rigid vinyl planks should be stored flat (never vertically) in their original packages. Stock maximum 5 boxes high.
Rigid vinyl planks should only be installed after other trades have finished and the job-site has been cleaned and cleared of debris that could potentially damage a finished plank installation.
Inspect flooring for damage, defects, or shading issues before installation; claims for visual defects will not be accepted after cutting and/or installed.
Mix and install planks from minimum 4 different cartons during installation to ensure a random appearance. Make sure that you mix up the floor panels sufficiently so that there are not too many identical, lighter or darker panels next to each other. Visual check each board before and during installation. Panels with defects must not be used.
Floating installation only! The floor should be able to expand and contract in every direction. Therefore, at all times, an expansion gap of 6.5mm should be maintained between the floor and the wall or other fixed elements. Never glue or nail the Lalegno Rigid vinyl planks down. When installing around pipes, drill the holes 20mm larger than the diameter of the pipes.
Large surfaces should have an expansion gap every 20m (both in length and in width). Expansion and contraction happens linear: the larger the surface, the larger the expansion gap needs to be. For floor surfaces exceeding 400m2 and or lengths exceeding 20m, use expansion mouldings.
Make sure to keep the room at a minimum of 10°C after installation. Excessively high or low temperatures may cause this product to contract or expand and lead to visual defects. This is not a product failure and will not be warranted.
Measure the area to be installed. The board’s width of the last and first row shall not be less than 50mm wide. Calculate the room surface prior to the installation and take in account a 10% of flooring cutting waste.
Decide the installation direction. It is recommended to install the length direction of the planks parallel to the main light direction.
Rigid vinyl planks come with underlayment installed as a backing. In High moisture areas, such as bathrooms, we recommend applying water-tight foil beneath the planks. Although the planks are water-resistant, water can always seep in between joints causing damage to the underground. (Lalegno Rigid vinyl planks can therefore not be installed in swimming pool areas or saunas) If there is moisture in the subfloor please carry out sealing before installation. Excessive moisture can generate unhealthy mould or Fungus.
Rigid vinyl planks are waterproof but aren’t to be used as a moisture barrier. The subfloor must be dry (less than 2.5% moisture content – CM method).
Due to the speed of sudden temperature changes, which has the potential to negatively affect this flooring, it is not recommended to install over any electrical radiant heating system. Installation over electrical radiant heating systems will not be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty. For radiant heating systems using water provide a constant room temperature of 18°C during the acclimatisation period, installation and 72 hours after installation. 24 hours after installation the underfloor heating must be gradually increased by 5° C per day until it reaches the standard operating temperature conditions, with a maximum operating temperature of 27°C. To ensure the stability of your heating system please consult the manufacturer’s instructions.
Different kind of subfloors needs different preparations. Before installing please check if the subfloor needs to be removed.
In case you‘re subfloor isn’t mentioned or you have any doubts, please contact you’re dealer and don’t commence the installation.
Rigid vinyl floors can be installed over a variety of subfloor surfaces including concrete on all grade levels, wood and many existing hard surface floors (check grid above). The subfloors must be clean, smooth, flat, solid (no movement), and dry. Do not install planks over floors that are sloped for drainage. Inspect your subfloor before you begin and remove all traces of plaster, paint, glue, oil, grease etc.
It must be clean and level to 5mm within a 3 meters span. If the flooring is intended to be installed over an existing wooden floor it is recommended to repair loose boards or squeaks before the installation.
NOTE: Avoid subfloors with excessive vertical movement or deflection because subfloor movement may cause the locking mechanism to wear down, or even break. Indications of excessive deflection are subfloor fastener release, squeaking, compromised or sectional contours such as bowing or dipping in floors and uneven flooring material. Nail or screw subfloor panels to secure boards with excessive vertical movement or deflection prior to installation of the flooring material.
Rigid vinyl planks can be installed over concrete on all grade levels if a proper moisture barrier is used underneath. Newly poured concrete floors must cure for a minimum of 90 days. Please note it is the person installing the floor and/ or the homeowner’s responsibility to ensure any moisture or alkalinity issues are resolved prior to installing the floor. The moisture content of the subfloor must be less than 2.50% CM in case of cement and 0.50% in case of anhydrite. In case of floor heating, results must be respectively 2% CM and 0.30% Anhydrite.
NOTE: Excessive moisture may cause the growth of unhealthy mould or mildew and/or cause staining of the flooring
Rigid Vinyl Planks can be installed over a smooth, flat, level wood subfloor. Remove any existing floor covering on top of the wooden subfloor. Make sure the subfloor is level and nail down any loose parts. If not sufficiently level, it is mandatory to apply an appropriate wooden levelling board flooring grade plywood (Type FG1) is recommended to be installed if the subfloor is not clean and level to 5mm within a 3 meters span.
It is the duty of the person installing the floor to inspect all flooring before installation. If during inspection the installer or buyer feels the floors is the wrong colour, improperly manufactured, is off-grade or is the wrong gloss level, he/she should NOT install the flooring. Please immediately contact the retailer from which the flooring was purchased.
Determine how you want the flooring to run. Typically for plank products, the flooring runs the length of the room. There may be exceptions since it is all a matter of preference.
To avoid narrow plank widths (less 50mm) or short plank lengths near the walls/doors (less 30mm), it is important to do some pre-planning. Using the width of the room, calculate how many full boards will fit into the area and how much space remains that will need to be covered by partial planks.
Start with a whole plank in the left hand corner of the room with the tongue side and end toward the wall. Lay the first row of planks along a chalk line and trim to fit to the wall allowing a 6.50mm expansion space. If starting the first row with a whole width plank it will be necessary to trim the tongues next to the wall, then place the cut ends next to the wall. To trim the planks, use a utility knife and a straight edge to score the top surface of the plank, and then bend it downward to separate the pieces, you can also use a VCT (Vinyl Composition Tile) cutter for end cuts only; a table saw also works well for both end and length cuts.
Align and attach the end joints of the planks in the first row. Insert the tongue into the groove while holding the plank at a 20° to 30° angle to the floor. Apply pressure inward and down until the planks lock together (Diagrams 1a & 1b). Use spacers be- tween the long edge and end of the planks next to the wall to maintain the expansion space.
Start the second row using 1/3rd of a plank. Place the cut end against the wall. Insert the tongue on the long side of the plank into the groove of the plank in the first row. Hold the plank in a 20° to 30° angle while applying pressure inward and down until they lock together. To complete the second and all successive rows, it will be necessary to lock the short end into the previous plank first before locking the long side of the plank. Angle the plank and push the tongue into the groove and adjust it until the tongue locks into place. It may be necessary to lift both planks slightly to lock the joint together. Complete the second row allowing 6.50mm expansion space at the start and end of the row.
After finishing the installation of every row, use scrap pieces and a small hammer or rubber mallet to gently tap the planks into the click of the previous row to make sure they are tightly clicked together and make sure there is no gap between the long sides of the planks installed. Minor Gapping can compromise the whole installation. Never tap directly on the click system.
Start the third row using a 2/3rd length of a plank with the cut end against the wall. Complete each row thereafter using a random layout with end joints off-set by at 30mm. Plan the layout to avoid using small planks (less than 30mm) at the walls. The cut piece at the end of the row can often be used to start the next row provided it achieves a random layout. Always place the cut end against the wall and allow for the expansion space.
Lalegno Rigid vinyl planks are unique in that they can also be installed with a pull bar or tapping block and rubber mallet or hammer in difficult areas, such as the last row, and when fitting under door trim. Use a pull bar and rubber mallet or hammer to lock the joints together in the last row. Always use a pull bar on the cut edge of the plank. Factory edges can be damaged if the pull bar is used directly against them.
When fitting around door trim it will be necessary to slide the plank under the trim. This can be accomplished easily by starting the row on the side of the room with the door trim and then sliding the plank into place once it is attached. The row can be completed by inserting the tongue into the groove or the groove into the tongue depending on the direction. A tapping block and pull bar (Diagrams 2a & 2b) can also be used to lock the joints together while the planks are in a flat position. Use a series of light taps until the joint is gradually locked together.
When SPC planks are installed in a bathroom the flooring can be laid under the toilet only if the floor is separated from adjacent rooms with a doorway threshold, and padding is not used. Otherwise the flooring should be installed around the toilet leaving a 3.50mm expansion space. Use 100% silicone caulking to fill the expansion space at the tub, shower and all wet areas to help prevent surface water seepage under the floor.
In rows where there is a pipe or other vertical object through the subfloor, make sure the object lines up exactly where two boards will meet on the short ends. Take care to measure carefully before cutting, so the two boards end at the middle of the object. Use a drill or hole bit that is the diameter of the pipe or object, plus 20mm for expansion/contraction. Click the two short sides of the boards together, then drill the hole centred on the joint between the boards as shown. Now you can separate the two boards and install as normal. See Diagrams 6A – 6C.
Transitions, mouldings, and wall base:
All transition pieces should be attached to the subfloor with a high quality construction adhesive (Emfi High power), available at most Home Centres and Hardware stores. Place a generous bead of adhesive under the part of the transition that will sit directly on the subfloor, and then press the transition firmly in place. Be sure the transition sits firmly in the adhesive, and take care not to get any adhesive on the flooring. Remove any adhesive from the surface immediately with mineral spirits and buff off any residue with a dry soft cloth. It may be necessary to place heavy weights on the transition until the adhesive dries to ensure it will lay flat. Never attach the transitions directly to the flooring.
Finishing the Job:
Inspect your work, as it will cost you more if you have to come back to do a repair later. Replace original baseboards, or install matching hardwood baseboard. Install matching transitions as needed or recommended by your dealer or installer. It is not recommended or necessary to seal this floor after installation. Protect your floor from scratches by using felt pads on chair legs or furniture feet. Plastic rollers/castors can damage your flooring; if necessary try to replace with softer rubber wheels/ castors. When moving heavy items like refrigerators, use at least two sheets of plywood while moving (sliding the appliance from one sheet to the next) to protect the flooring against scratching and denting.
Frequently moved furniture (chairs) should be equipped with felt pads to avoid scratching the floor and checked regularly. Heavy furniture and appliances should be equipped with non-staining large surface floor protectors. Furniture with castors or wheels must be easy swivelling, large surface non-staining and suitable for resilient floors. Do not use ball type castors as they can damage the floor.
Avoid exposure to extreme temperature fluctuations. The floor may not be installed in areas where it will occasionally be exposed to extremely high temperatures (saunas, verandas, etc.) exceeding 45°C. Avoid exposure to long periods of direct sunlight causing the heat to accumulate on the floor surface exceeding 45°C.
Use walk-off mats at entrances to prevent dirt and grit from being tracked on to the floor. ( Ensure that the mat doesn’t have rubber backing)
Sweep or vacuum the floor regularly to remove loose dirt.
Do not use abrasive cleaners, bleach, wax or oil to maintain the floor. Ask your dealer for our Lalegno Rigid vinyl cleaner. Other cleaning products may contain agents that damage the floor.
Clean up spills immediately.
Do not drag or slide heavy objects across the floor.
Damp mop as needed using clean water and a diluted floor cleaner. Do not use harsh cleaners or chemicals on the floor.
In the unlikely event that a plank is damaged for whatever reason, the simplest method is to disconnect the planks carefully (protecting the tongue and groove edges) until the damaged plank can be removed. Then replace the damaged plank with a new one and re- assemble the disconnected planks. This typically works for planks that are close to the two long perimeters of a room. For damaged planks that are not close to the perimeter, you may have to remove the damaged planks and insert new pieces without the short and long end grooves.
Using a sharp utility knife and a straight edge, cut out the centre of the damaged plank by leaving approximately 1 inch (25.4mm) strip attached to the adjacent planks.
Carefully cut back from the four corners of the plank to the inside edges in space left by the cut out plank.
Remove the plank edges carefully from of the adjacent planks making sure the tongues and grooves of the adjacent planks are not damaged.
Using a sharp utility knife, remove the tongue strip on both the long and short ends of the replacement plank. In addition, remove the groove strip of the short end of the replacement plank.
Place two-sided carpet tape with one half under the sides of the adjacent planks where the tongues and the groove of the replacement plank have been removed. Only the top side release paper of the carpet tape should be removed. Leave the bottom side of the release paper in place, as it should NOT be taped to the subfloor.
Position the replacement plank by engaging the groove of the long side into the tongue of the adjoining plank and pushing down on the other three sides. The carpet tape will hold the replacement plank in place with its adjacent planks. Use a hand roller to further secure the tap