installationEasy and quick
Unlike most wood flooring, installing IMA laminated flooring is simple and fast. The only requirement is some familiarity with performing DIY jobs and a set of simple tools. However, some installation recommendations should be followed in order to avoid problems in the future use of the flooring.
The following shows the basic tools and steps to follow in the installation of your wood flooring.
• Fine tooth handsaw
• Wooden Hammer
• Crowbar for wall copings
• Tape measure and square
• Foam / Polyethylene sheet
First of all, we need a clean, level floor, with an appropriate degree of moisture for installation.
In the case of a renovation, the old wooden floor can be left in place..
Lay the 1mm-thick polyethylene foam on top of the base. Place the foam strips parallel to the direction of the slats. If you think there is a change that damp patches might appear in the future or if the house is going to remain empty for extended periods of time, it is advisable to lay first a polyethylene plastic sheet (0.15 mm). Then lay the foam on top of it.
Start placing the boards at one corner of the room – generally in a direction parallel to the longest side thereof, with the grooved edge (female) facing the wall and the tongue (male) facing the middle of the room. Please remember to apply glue to the edge tongue-and-grooves of the slats as well.
When you are done with the first course, use the cuttings which are usually generated to begin the second course (provided their length is shorter than 30cm). Otherwise, keep them to finish off other spots. Thus, you will be able to stagger the edge joints of adjacent slats too. It is advisable to leave a minimum separation of 50cm between joints. Place wedges along the wall joint spaced 8 to 10mm.
Lay the second course and glue it to the first one by means of the tongue-and-groove. Apply glue to both the tongue of the new boards and the groove of the first course boards.
Successively proceed with the rest of courses in the same manner. Secure the boards to each other using the wooden template/chock and the mallet/hammer.
Clean the excess glue that might come up through the joints with a moist cloth.
There is usually no room left for a full board when the last course is laid. If this is the case, cut the boards lengthwise. It might be easier to cut the last boards with the help of another slat. Leave some room for the perimeter joint.
Remove the wedges and leave the expansion joint unobstructed. Once you have removed the wedges, install the skirting board, which will cover the expansion joint. After this, the installation is complete. In those places where the laminate floor meets other floors, install decorative elements in the intervening space.
Installation over underfloor heating
The IMA laminate flooring is perfectly compatible with the most common systems of underfloor heating (radiating thread or hot water pipe). In this case, for the heating system to work at full capacity, it is necessary that the laminate flooring is in close or “intimate” contact with the heated surface.
The temperature of the floor should not exceed 25° C or 26° C, which means a temperature at the surface of the floorboards of 24° C. Before starting the installation, the heating tests should be conducted at 2/3 the power in order to help with the setting and drying of the floor.
Attention to the pipe distribution fittings which could produce concentrations of heat which may be harmful to the laminate flooring.
Additional installation recommendations
In the protruding areas, such as corners, pillars, etc., the laminate flooring boards must be cut while maintaining the expansion joint. For the execution of the pipe passage holes, use an electric drill with a special bit to create large diameter holes. Cutting the laminate flooring boards in the area of the heating pipe passage holes can be made using a jigsaw. The diameter of these holes should be 20 mm greater than that of the pipe traversing the hole. It may be necessary to adjust doors and trims in order to install the laminate flooring below these. A minimum clearance of 5 mm between the door leaf and the floor is recommended.