How Can I Fit Engineered Oak Flooring?
How you intend to fit your oak flooring can influence which type of board is most suitable for you. Which method of fitting you choose, and which is most suitable will come down to your own situation. When fitting engineered oak flooring there are a number of options which are available to you.
One way in which engineered oak flooring can be fitted is through the secret nailing or screwing method. This method involves driving a nail or screw through the tongue of each board into the sub-floor or joist. The tongues of each board are hidden by the groove of the next board, meaning the fixings are also hidden. This method is a more discreet method than the traditional method of nailing boards through their top surface into the floor joists. For wider solid oak boards surface fixing may still be required, however with an engineered board it is not.
A more modern method of fitting an oak floor is the glueing method. This method involves the boards being stuck to the sub-floor using a suitable adhesive. This adhesive needs to be extremely strong, whilst also flexible enough to allow for some natural movement in the wood. For this we always recommend a MS Polymer Flexible Flooring Adhesive. These will retain a very strong bond strength, whilst also allowing for some elasticity.
The final method in which an engineered oak floor can be fitted is the floating floor method. This particular method involves laying your engineered boards with no direct fixings to your sub-floor. Instead the tongue and grooves of each board are glued together, to create one complete "floating" floor.
With your method of fitting chosen, it is important that some basic rules of oak flooring are followed.
Firstly the condition of the sub-floor should be checked to ensure it is up to standard. The most important check is whether the moisture content is within an acceptable range. For a concrete sub-floor, the moisture content should be lower than 4%. A sub-floor which has not been properly dried out will only cause problems in the future.
Another point to note with your sub-floor is whether it is reasonably level or not. Generally the level of your room should not vary more than +/- 2mm per metre. The edges should be checked for any rises or dips.
As mentioned above high levels of moisture can cause problems to oak flooring. It is therefore also important that any plastering work has been completed and dry prior to bringing oak flooring into your environment. Laying your oak floor is usually the final job with renovations.
Once the area is suitable, the flooring can be brought inside. Here the boards should be given time to acclimatise to their surroundings. This can be done by leaving the boards in your natural living conditions, with air running in between the boards.