Can I Float A Solid Oak Floor?
As suppliers of oak flooring, we are often asked advice on how to best fit your oak flooring. A common question we get asked is whether or not you can float a solid oak floor.
Although engineered oak floors are often fitted using the floating floor method, we do not recommend floating a traditional oak floor. The main reason this is not a recommended method is because solid oak boards are very susceptible to movement, caused by changing humidity levels, as temperatures rise and fall. This makes it important to have a solid floor fixed to the subfloor. An engineered oak floor on the other hand is much less susceptible to movement, meaning engineered boards can be fitted using the floating floor method.
Traditionally oak boards were not tongue and grooved, so therefore would have been fitted by nailing through the top surface, at even spacing, into the floor joists below. Nowadays secret nailing or screwing is a preferred method of fitting solid oak flooring. This process involves using a nail gun or power driver to drive the fixing through the tongue of each oak board into the subfloor or joist. The tongues are kept hidden by the groove of the next board, ensuring the fixings are hidden. This leaves a fixing free finish to the laid floor.
A further way of fixing your solid oak floor is to use an adhesive to stick the boards to a sub-floor. The glue chosen should be made specifically for the job, such as the Rewmar MS Polymer Adhesive. Any adhesive used should be extremely strong, yet flexible enough to allow for some natural movement in the wood. If you use a glue which is too rigid, it is likely to result in your oak flooring splitting, buckling or even causing structural damage to your home. For solid oak boards which are over 120mm wide, it is recommended that an alternative method to gluing down the boards is used. This is because wider solid oak boards are much more prone to movement than thinner boards.
If you would like any further information on fitting your solid oak floor, then please give us a call on 01538 304584.