Should Floating Floors Move When Walking On Them?
Floating floors are a popular choice for homeowners due to their ease of installation, versatility, and cost-effectiveness. However, a common concern that arises with floating floors is whether they should move when walked upon. This article aims to address this concern, explaining the reasons behind the movement and providing answers to frequently asked questions related to this issue.
Floating floors, as the name suggests, are not attached to the subfloor but instead “float” on top of it. They typically consist of interlocking planks or tiles that are not glued or nailed down. This design allows for some movement when weight is applied to the surface, which can be disconcerting for some homeowners. However, it is essential to understand that this movement is a natural characteristic of floating floors and does not necessarily indicate a problem with the installation.
The primary reason behind the movement of floating floors is their installation method. Floating floors rely on an interlocking system that enables the planks or tiles to expand and contract with changes in temperature and humidity. This flexibility is necessary to prevent the boards from warping or buckling over time. Therefore, when weight is applied to the floor, it may slightly shift or move, accommodating the pressure and preventing damage.
To further clarify the concerns surrounding floating floors and their movement, here are seven frequently asked questions and their answers:
1. Why does my floating floor move more in certain areas?
Floating floors may move more in areas with higher foot traffic or where there is a lack of proper underlayment. Adding an underlayment can help reduce movement and provide more stability.
2. Is movement in a floating floor a sign of poor installation?
Not necessarily. Some movement is normal and expected in a floating floor. However, excessive movement, such as large gaps or noticeable shifting, may indicate an installation issue.
3. Can I prevent movement in my floating floor?
While you cannot entirely eliminate movement, you can minimize it by ensuring the subfloor is level, using a quality underlayment, and following proper installation guidelines.
4. Will furniture and heavy objects cause more movement in a floating floor?
Yes, placing heavy furniture or objects on a floating floor can cause more noticeable movement. To prevent this, consider using furniture pads or coasters to distribute the weight evenly.
5. How can I reduce the sound of movement in my floating floor?
Adding an acoustic underlayment can help reduce the sound of footsteps and movement in a floating floor.
6. Can I install a floating floor over an existing floor?
In many cases, yes. Floating floors can be installed over various existing flooring materials, such as vinyl, tile, or hardwood, as long as the subfloor is in good condition.
7. Can I install a floating floor in a bathroom or kitchen?
Yes, floating floors can be installed in bathrooms and kitchens. However, it is crucial to choose a floating floor that is moisture-resistant and follow proper installation guidelines to prevent water damage.
In conclusion, the movement experienced in floating floors when walking on them is normal and expected. It is a result of their design and installation method, allowing for expansion and contraction. While some homeowners may find the movement disconcerting, it is essential to understand that it does not necessarily indicate a problem with the floor’s installation. By following proper installation guidelines, using an appropriate underlayment, and taking necessary precautions, homeowners can ensure their floating floors provide long-lasting beauty and functionality in their homes.