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Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??



"Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??," in the Hardwood and Laminates Q&A forum, begins: "Hi. Newbie here. Planning to get solid bamboo from DuroDesign.com (they make bamboo in many colors). Their product can be ..."

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Old November 28, 2007, 10:27 PM   #1
Turnip
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Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


Hi. Newbie here.

Planning to get solid bamboo from DuroDesign.com (they make bamboo in many colors).

Their product can be glue down or nail down.

My co-op board alteration package states that we're supposed to have some kind of underlayment for acoustic between the concrete slab and a hardwood.

Many people do "floating floor" but I don't want to (Duro makes an engineered version of the bamboo but it's wider).

So my question is, can you do a glue down installation and still ahve some kind of underlayment?

THanks.

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Old November 28, 2007, 10:39 PM   #2
Jim McClain
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlaymount??


Welcome, Turnip. I just wanted to add a link to your supplier so our members can provide you with the best possible information.

Bamboo, Cork, Oak & Eucalyptus Flooring That Lasts a Lifetime | DuroDesign

Best Regards,

TFP Admin

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Old November 29, 2007, 01:51 AM   #3
Jerry Thomas
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


I went to their website to read up on it a little. Seems like they talk out of both sides of their mouth on some mighty important issues.


A. Examine substrates upon which bamboo flooring will be installed.
1. Verify that subfloor is structurally sound, clean, dry, and free of contaminates that would interfere with bonding of the flooring adhesive (such as concrete curing compounds, waxes or oils).
2. In wood frame structures, do not begin installation of bamboo flooring until structure has been dried out, with moisture content of wood subfloors between 6 and 10 percent
Underlayment-grade Plywood and Man-made Board Substrates must be clean, level, dry, and free of contaminations. Optimum results will be achieved through use of ¾” CDX plywood substrate. Fill any low spots with appropriate filler and sand any high spots. For buildings with a raised foundation, install ground cover of 6 mil polyethylene over the earth in crawl space. The moisture content of the sub-floor, as measured by a moisture meter, must not exceed 14% and no more than 4% above or below the moisture content of the flooring.
NOTE: Any wood flooring, including bamboo, will expand and contract in response to changes in temperature and humidity. There should be no more than a 2% maximum difference in moisture content between the subfloor and surface flooring material.
Can you point us to where you are reading about using an underlayment with glue down?

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Old November 29, 2007, 03:07 AM   #4
Jim McClain
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


Jerry,

I also read the documentation for the solid bamboo products. I notice this company is a member of the National Wood Flooring Association, which makes it hopeful that they try to let that organization guide them in the specifications of their products and the installation.

Your first quote, specifically this...
2. In wood frame structures, do not begin installation of bamboo flooring until structure has been dried out, with moisture content of wood subfloors between 6 and 10 percent...
That comes from the product specifications document and refers to wood substrates, not concrete. Turnip's substrate is concrete. Very likely it is acoustical concrete. I gather that because of the "co-op board" (assuming that means home owners association board of directors) insisting on a sound barrier, prob'ly to protect residents who live on lower floors. If that is the case, then the part of that document that applies here would be...
Following three paragraphs apply only to bamboo flooring installed over concrete substrates.
3. Test concrete floors for moisture vapour emission using a Calcium Chloride test. Do not install bamboo flooring if vapor pressure exceeds 3 lbs per 1,000 square feet (15 g per m2) in 24 hours.
4. Test alkalinity of the concrete slab to confirm it is within adhesive manufacturer’s acceptable range.
5. Document test results and mark all test location(s) on As-Built Drawings.
Of course, that still leaves some questions. I looked at the installation guidelines as you did. Your second quote...
Underlayment-grade Plywood and Man-made Board Substrates must be clean, level, dry, and free of contaminations. Optimum results will be achieved through use of ¾” CDX plywood substrate. Fill any low spots with appropriate filler and sand any high spots. For buildings with a raised foundation, install ground cover of 6 mil polyethylene over the earth in crawl space. The moisture content of the sub-floor, as measured by a moisture meter, must not exceed 14% and no more than 4% above or below the moisture content of the flooring.
That also deals with wood substrate. The concrete portion of that document reads...
Concrete Substrate must be properly cured and tested for moisture content. Concrete is required to be sound, smooth, level and flat with a maximum variation of 1/8” in 10’. Fill any low spots with appropriate filler and scrape any high spots. Slab must be cured a minimum of 28 days. Flooring must not be installed if vapor pressure exceeds 3 lbs. per 1000 square feet in 24 hours as tested according to ASTM F 1869 (calcium chloride test method). Preferably the slab should be tested according to ASTM F 2170 (Standard Test Method for Determining Relative Humidity in Concrete Floor Slabs Using In Situ Probes) Flooring must not be installed if the relative humidity inside of the concrete slab exceeds 75%.
Again, it leaves more questions about acceptable moisture levels than it answers. But it is less ambiguous than you suggest because the moisture levels you are referring to are for wood subfloors.

Unfortunately, there is no mention of conditions or installation procedures for adding a layer of wood product underlayment to a concrete subfloor. I also believe there may be some confusion about what kind of underlayment Turnip's co-op board is referring to. I have a stinking feeling they are talking about a product similar to the underlayment used in floating floor installations.

So, what we really have is a dilemma for Turnip that really isn't covered specifically in the home owner directives or the specifications and installation instructions for the bamboo manufacturer. Adding plywood, OSB or some other approved (by the product manuf.) wood type panel underlayment to the existing concrete subfloor may very well meet the associations acoustical requirements.

This method may also satisfy the bamboo manufacturer's recommendations to install bamboo over a wood floor...
DuroDesign Bamboo flooring is best installed over a wood subfloor using a flooring nailer or glue.
But because this will be a mixture of concrete subfloor with a wood underlayment, what would be the acceptable moisture levels for this installation?

I see where there might be some confusion over the recommendations for MC differences between subfloor and product. However, your third quote...
NOTE: Any wood flooring, including bamboo, will expand and contract in response to changes in temperature and humidity. There should be no more than a 2% maximum difference in moisture content between the subfloor and surface flooring material.
This continues with...
The amount of movement varies dependant upon temperature, dimensional stability of the materials involved, and moisture content of both the surface flooring and subfloor. Visible gaps at seems and joints will vary seasonally. By controlling the environment, maintaining an even temperature and relative humidity of about 50%, you will minimize the effects of contraction and expansion of your floor.
These statements are referring to the finished job, not the pre-installation requirements. Of course, that is my interpretation, but I am pretty sure that's what they are referring to. It may be that this is one of the guidelines they use to access flooring that has problems after the installation.

I can't say with certainty that this company isn't talking out of both sides of their mouth, but the indication I get from perusing their website is that they are concerned enough about the manufacturing of their products to be a NWFA member, as well as efforts to improve the environment by their association with the U.S. Green Building Council. They do have complete and detailed, downloadable specifications and installation instructions documentation. They offer good contact information and it appears they can be reached - and they want (at least they say so) people to call if there are any questions or concerns. I just don't get the same kind of feeling with them that I do with so many other internet retailers.

But beyond all that, there likely is some guidance we can offer Turnip concerning the installation of an underlayment panel on concrete and the bamboo flooring on that. I wish I had the experience in both those areas to add my suggestions, but in my neck of the woods, I didn't install very much bamboo and very seldom covered a concrete slab with a wood type underlayment (and never dealt with acoustical concrete at all). Maybe you or others can give us all a better idea of what to expect in the line of moisture content levels for this particular situation.

Best R'gards,

Jim

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Old November 29, 2007, 04:57 AM   #5
Nick Arrera
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


If you want to nail it or glue it , you can float 3/4 " plywood over the floor if height is not a problem ..
Can post directions if that is the way you want to go ..

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Old November 29, 2007, 05:43 AM   #6
Chris Mha
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


In high rises here they are using 1/4" rolled cork as a sound deadener. It is required by the building authorities (condo associations) for sound suppression.

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Old November 29, 2007, 06:11 AM   #7
Jerry Thomas
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


My apologies Turnip, I was thinking your info packet came from the manufacturer... now i re-read that it was from your co-op. Cork is widely use but you will have to go back to the co-op and get their input on what product to use.

Jim, I do realize that the substrate is concrete, but the other info I read while also perusing their website is conflicting.

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Old November 29, 2007, 08:08 AM   #8
Turnip
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


First, thank you all for your detailed replies!!!

I should've given you more complete background but I was posting late at night.

I live in Manhattan in NYC in a 1929 high-rise which is a co-op (meaning I own shares in the company, not the actual apt, which is governed by a board.... it's a weird NY thing).

I live on the 4th floor. The original construction has a concrete slab (though I doubt it's acoustic, given it was built in 1929 and i hear my upstairs neighbors!) and origial cork flooring was put on top of that. When I bought my unit, the previous owner put that cheap, wood parquet tile that goes for like $0.97 a sq ft at Home Depot down which I hate over 90% of the place,.and large ceramic tile in the entry hallway/kitchen.

I want to rip all that out. No one is 100% sure but we believe the parquet is over the cork, and that it would probably be impossible to rip off the parquet tile without also ripping out the cork. We assume the ceramic is directly on the concrete.

My contractor from day 1 kept putting in his estimate a "floating floor" and I kept saying "No i dont' want a floating floor, I want to use this bamboo which is glue down". He was like "OK we can do that too".

The coop requires you submit an "alteration package" if you do new floors. Now it's not clear everyone adheres to this...... because i'm going through a drama now where my contractor, who is doing 3 other units right now and is on the Board's recommended list, is NOT licensed electriction or plumber even though the packet says you must be. But I digress. The pacakage says something like "if it all possible, preserve the original cork flooring. otherwise, lay a certain type of underlayent for acoustic padding". I don't have the packet in front of me here at work, but from others told me, it sounds like the type you'd use for a floating floor.

Before I go to the board and say outright: "Hey can i rip out my cork and just put down this bamboo and glue it to the concrete?"..... i wanted ot see if there is some type of acoustic underlayment you can use in a typical hardwood/bamboo glue down to concrete scenario.

One neighbor did a very high end engineered wood floor (Like $35 a sq foot) and i'm assuming that was not "floating"... i think it's was glue down, so I should find out what she did but she doesn't live there anymore.

I'm not even sure why i'm so against a floating floor.....Duro Design does say they make an engineered version of what I want in a wider plank, which might be my plan B, but was I wanted to see if there was a way to due glue down to concrete and still have something for acoustic. I know they recommen Bostik sealant if that means anything.

Thanks again!

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Old November 29, 2007, 10:06 AM   #9
Peter Kodner
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


Thanks for the clarifications Turnip, and welcome aboard. My experiences form high rise work in Chicago is most boards are looking for a sound transmission rating. Far too many had old specifications which detailed one avenue of doing this without giving the rating they actually need. Since cork was the sole sound transmission product many years ago, a lot of documents were never updated.

Bud and Bill V. can most assuredly provide some info on Mapei Kerasonic (I am not sure if this is still made tho) which is a cementitous toweled/poured acoustical underlayment. Very expensive but very effective.

Cork is still a very viable option but you are correct in assuming the removal of the old flooring will destroy the cork that is down now.

Plywood will not act as a sound deadener and will require something between it and the concrete subfloor (and I am sure you do have concrete and not acoustical or lightwieght conrete based on the age of your building).

From a cost standpoint, I believe cork with a plywood on top is your best route. This would allow you to nail your bamboo down. You may be able to use a 1/2 or 5/8 thickness- Check with the manufacturer first!

The last thought that occurs to me came from one of Jim's post where they recommend maintaining a steady temperature and a relative humidity of 50%. In a 78 year old building will you be to keep Rh anywhere near 50% in the winter? I suspect this would not be possible without creating some serious problems.

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Old November 29, 2007, 10:36 AM   #10
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


Since the floor you really want is bamboo glued down with Bostik Best i would recommend you look at using Bostik's MVP4 membrane. This would be trowled on over the bare concrete first. It is very good sound deadener according to Bostik.

Bostik -

But, you should also know that the concrete has to be very clean to apply this, but probably no different than gluing down new cork underlayment. Either way the concrete has to be cleaned off good.

You need to be sure too that you have concrete and not gypcrete... whole nother deal there .

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Old November 29, 2007, 11:55 AM   #11
Turnip
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


Jerry said View Post
Since the floor you really want is bamboo glued down with Bostik Best i would recommend you look at using Bostik's MVP4 membrane. This would be trowled on over the bare concrete first. It is very good sound deadener according to Bostik.

Bostik -

But, you should also know that the concrete has to be very clean to apply this, but probably no different than gluing down new cork underlayment. Either way the concrete has to be cleaned off good.

You need to be sure too that you have concrete and not gypcrete... whole nother deal there .

Thanks! It seems like this is what I need..... put this on the concrete, then glue the bamboo to this using Bostik Best.

I just hope my contractor knows what he's doing. The floor is from 1929 so who knows if it's clean or gyprete or whatever?!

I'm having someone else look at my place tonight we'll see if he is any more knowledeable (and still affordable).

BTW, am I weird to be opposed to just getting the floating floor equivalent? (Duro makes a version) I have this gut reaction against it.

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Old November 29, 2007, 04:12 PM   #12
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


I'll read Bostick's data on impact noise reduction which I see s posted on Jerry's link. There are some membrane systems out there that are extremely effective. Be nice to have one that you know will be compatible with the flooring adhesive

Turnip, this link may be helpful: Controlling the Transmission of Impact Sound through Floors - NRC-IRC

http://www.mapei.it/Referenze/Multim...icSM_TD_EA.pdf

You will know if the subfloor is gypsum by how soft it is. With most gypsum admixes,you will be able to gouge it with a finger nail.

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Old November 30, 2007, 01:03 AM   #13
Jerry Thomas
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


Turnip said View Post
BTW, am I weird to be opposed to just getting the floating floor equivalent? (Duro makes a version) I have this gut reaction against it.
No, I would say thats pretty normal. I suspect you think all floating floors feel spongy and hollow sounding when we walk on them... sort of a bouncy feeling.

In the majority of cases you are dead on right. But, given the right flooring product, underlayment and an anal installer you can have a floating floor that will look and feel very solid underfoot.

Three main criteria to achieve this...
1- the substrate has to be made very flat, you cannot get concrete too flat. That is without a doubt the biggest hurdle to overcome In my brief experience.

2- Use a superior underlayment that will offer full solid support and also has good sound deadening qualities built in. The best underlayment I have used to date is called Sound Solutions. Healthier Choice

3- Choose a quality floor product that has been engineered to float, has precise milling and a tight joinery system. Weight is a consideration too... imo the thicker the floor the better.

It is possible to have a floating floor that is both quiet and has a pretty solid feel to it.


Last edited by Jerry Thomas; November 30, 2007 at 01:09 AM.
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Old November 30, 2007, 07:47 AM   #14
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Re: Can you do glue-down AND underlayment??


Jerry said View Post
In my brief experience.
Turnip, Jerry is being far too modest. He does know what he is talking about here. He is a conscientious, skilled craftsman that I wouldn't hesitate for a second to insist on doing work for me personally!

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