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The floor project


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We're starting the new floor project in a few weeks.

We're going with this product: http://www.homedepot.com/p/TrafficMASTER-Allure-12-in-x-36-in-Ashlar-Resilient-Vinyl-Tile-Flooring-24-sq-ft-case-211713/100595258

It's a floating floor. Now I'm getting conflicting opinions regarding the installation. Some folks are telling me to glue the entire floor down, since we will be spending a fair amount of time in southern California, and the heat will cause buckling or cause the seams to separate. If I wanted to glue the floor down, I'd have chosen a sheet vinyl, not the tiles.

So, reassure me would you?

2003 Newmar Dutch Star 3802

'98 Ford Ranger

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I can only tell you that we put a laminate in our 5th wheel that came with its backing attached. We did not glue it down. It never had an issue no matter where we were.

Ron & Linda

Class of 2007
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2005 Honda Element

"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are" Theodore Roosevelt

"We can't control the wind, but we can adjust our sail"

"When man gave up his freedom to roam the earth, he gave up his soul for a conditioned ego that is bound by time and the fear of losing its attachments."

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In most cases buckling only occurs if the floor is too tight to the sides and has no place to expand. Give it space and it should not buckle.

Jack & Danielle Mayer #60376 Lifetime Member
Living on the road since 2000

PLEASE no PM's. Email me. jackdanmayer AT gmail
2016 DRV Houston 44' 5er (we still have it)
2022 New Horizons 43' 5er
2016 Itasca 27N 28' motorhome 
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No truck at the moment - we use one of our demo units
2016 smart Passion, piggyback on the truck
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
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www.jackdanmayer.com
Principal in RVH Lifestyles. RVH-Lifestyles.com

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About 4 years ago we installed this version of the Allure flooring in our TT. It's been exposed to a wide variety of temperatures and humidities over the years and we're still very happy with it. Just make sure you follow the manufacturer's installation instructions very carefully. I've encountered two problems which are both my own fault.

1) There is a slight "bump" under one spot. I tried to be very careful to sand down any "bumps" on the subfloor, make sure there were no screws or nails protruding etc. Also tried to carefully sweep the subfloor prior to laying the flooring but somehow there is something under one spot and after a couple years our foot traffic has worn off the top layer of the vinyl leaving a black spot.

2) I had a couple areas that were a real challenge along the edges. In one spot I didn't leave enough gap between the edge of the vinyl and the edge of the bed frame. Expansion and contraction of the flooring has caused the plank along the edge to pull away from the adjacent plank leaving a gap. At one other spot I had interference with my power panel such that the power panel "clamped" the plank to the subfloor preventing it from moving with expansion and contraction. Again, that plank seperated from the adjacent plank. This flooring really does need to "float" and it's very important that it has both room to expand and that nothing keeps it clamped down preventing it from moving.

 

I would use this product again - like many jobs I learn a lot the first time I do them.

 

---ron

Ron Engelsman

http://www.mytripjournal.com/our_odyssey

Full-Timing since mid 2007

23' Komfort TT

2004 Chevy Avalanche 4x4 8.1L

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They say leave 1/8 gap. along the walls. I was planning on leaving 3/16, just to be on the safe side. I do worry a bit about the slide outs moving the floor though.

We're doing the bedroom in a sheet vinyl for now, we'll go back over it with something else when we don't have as many cats.

That project is slated for this summer / fall while we're in Moro Bay or Santa Maria Ca.

Brad

2003 Newmar Dutch Star 3802

'98 Ford Ranger

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How much gap can be a troubling issue in an RV. In a house you let the flooring season a bit so the moisture level and size stabilizes but in an RV you will often move from very dry to very damp situations. I'd err a bit on too much gap if I was in a dry location, stay with the standard if I was in a more moderate one or a damp situation.

First rule of computer consulting:

Sell a customer a Linux computer and you'll eat for a day.

Sell a customer a Windows computer and you'll eat for a lifetime.

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How much gap can be a troubling issue in an RV. In a house you let the flooring season a bit so the moisture level and size stabilizes but in an RV you will often move from very dry to very damp situations. I'd err a bit on too much gap if I was in a dry location, stay with the standard if I was in a more moderate one or a damp situation.

Yeah, we bounce betwixt The Great NorthWet, and the Mojave.

We planned on leaving a gap and hiding it with a nice moulding. I've this funny feeling I'll be making a whole bunch of Bull Nosed Oak in the near future. She wants a Vera wood trasition between the hall and bedroom, I'll be doing that too.

We installed a golden Teak floor in the stick house just before we sold it. I did the transitions and threshholds then also.

450 sq feet of flooring, 6 transitions and threshholds and 175 lin feet of custom cut 3/4 inch by 4 inch Cherry mouldings. I damn near cried when the new owners ripped it all out. It was less that a year old. I've not done much in the coach, it's all new to me.....

2003 Newmar Dutch Star 3802

'98 Ford Ranger

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Read the instalation manual and on page 5 it says not for use in camper trailers.

 

Denny

Denny & Jami SKP#90175
Most Timing with Mac our Scottie, RIP Jasper our Westie
2013 F350 SC DRW 6.2 V8 4.30 Gears
2003 HH Premier 35FKTG Home Base Nebraska

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A recent YouTube video of someone replacing the carpet in an older Bounder with flooring - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5MgGW9gfYc. She glued it all down.

2004 40' Newmar Dutch Star DP towing an AWD 2020 Ford Escape Hybrid, Fulltimer July 2003 to October 2018, Parttimer now.
Travels through much of 2013 - http://www.sacnoth.com - Bill, Diane and Evita (the cat)
 

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I would guess the reason they say not to use in a "trailer" (probably meaning an RV in general) is because of the instability of the floor environment. Not only is there radical "weather" changes, and exposure to extremes (most RVs are not used year round so are not maintained in typical "house" conditions), but the platform is itself unstable. There is lots of twist in RV floors, and they are not known to be "smooth".

 

If you keep the RV at reasonable temperatures, and make SURE you repair the floor properly, AND leave a little extra space for expansion/contraction I'd say you are probably good. Based on my experience with this type of product (but not that specific one). You have to prep carefully though.

Jack & Danielle Mayer #60376 Lifetime Member
Living on the road since 2000

PLEASE no PM's. Email me. jackdanmayer AT gmail
2016 DRV Houston 44' 5er (we still have it)
2022 New Horizons 43' 5er
2016 Itasca 27N 28' motorhome 
2019 Volvo 860, D13 455/1850, 236" wb, I-Shift, battery-based APU
No truck at the moment - we use one of our demo units
2016 smart Passion, piggyback on the truck
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
See our website for info on New Horizons 5th wheels, HDTs as tow vehicles, communications on the road, and use of solar power
www.jackdanmayer.com
Principal in RVH Lifestyles. RVH-Lifestyles.com

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Prep: Pull the 12 year old carpet (The previous owner had a cat and a couple dogs, the dogs did their due diligence in a few places...) Get the pad out, find and remove all staples, sweep.

Sand the floor, sweep. Fill al the holes from the staples, spot sand, sweep.

Seal the sub floor with a good quality floor sealer and after it's dry, sweep.

Lay down brown paper to locate any screws or staples we may have missed, roll the paper with a heavy roller, anything sticking up will come through the paper (A trick I learned decades ago while installing sheet flooring) sweep. Shop vac.

Cover area not being worked on with paper, pulling it back as I go. This keeps anything that may find it's way in, off the floor, another thing we did 35 years ago.

Plain brown paper, in rolls 36 inches wide is free. I used to work for a place that gives me roll ends , whenever I need them.

2003 Newmar Dutch Star 3802

'98 Ford Ranger

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If leaving more than 1/8 inch on edges be sure to cover with some type of molding to prevent items working into the area. A rock between two hard places is just as bad as a no gap.

 

Rod

White 2000/2010Volvo VNL 770 with 7' Drom box with opposing doors,  JOST slider hitch. 600 HP Cummins Signature 18 Speed three pedal auto shift.

1999 Isuzu VehiCross retired to a sticks and bricks garage. Brought out of storage the summer of 2022

2022 Jeep Wrangler Sport S Two door hard top.

2007 Honda GL 1800

2013 Space Craft Mfg S420 Custom built Toyhauler

The Gold Volvo is still running and being emptied in July. 

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If leaving more than 1/8 inch on edges be sure to cover with some type of molding to prevent items working into the area. A rock between two hard places is just as bad as a no gap.

 

Rod

Yep, I'm going to be making a bunch of bull nosed oak...

2003 Newmar Dutch Star 3802

'98 Ford Ranger

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Hi Bear, do you mean oak shoemolding? Not bullnose. A bullnose is used at the last board when going down to a step down.

Shoemolding is used to cover the expansion gap along the walls.

Also no need to fill staple holes, or seal the floor before installation.

Sealing the floor is not nessary, it won't seal anything, just make it look shiney.

You want to do a floating floor with a good sound deadening pad like floor muffler.

31 years in the hardwood flooring biz.

Good luck!

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We have to update our flooring (22-year-old carpet in surprisingly good shape and it even cleans up well... but....). Want something that the dogs can walk on without slipping too badly. Thinking about cork but this might do even better. Keep us posted. :)

 

WDR

1993 Foretravel U225 with Pacbrake and 5.9 Cummins with Banks

1999 Jeep Wrangler, 4" lift and 33" tires

Raspberry Pi Coach Computer

Ham Radio

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I put cork down in my bathroom. Tiles were 1/8" + thick and 1'x2' outside size. 2 layers or Helmetin water based contact cement on each. Filled in any minor gaps with water based filler and rolled/brushed about 5 layers of water based Varathane or polyurethane.

 

The old tiles and most of the thinset were chiseled off and the rest of the thinset ripped up with my 4x24 Makita sander with a 20 grit belt. A small grinder was used to tackle tuff to get at spots. Tiles and thinset are about 5 lbs sq ft. Did the same with the kitchen, replaced it with 1/4 ply and 1/8" commercial grade tiles to mimic 50's style.

 

I have 250 sq ft of tile left if you like the pattern, just pay for shipping.

 

I wouldn't put cork in an area that has slideouts, the rollers will damage the tiles.

 

Roger

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We're enjoying our Trafficmaster - here's my write up and photos of the project. We did it a few months ago.

No pad as recommended by Tdevery? I'm wavering on it. On the one hand the sound deadening would be nice, on the other, I worry about the floor moving over it as the slides come in and out.

Going out to get the flooring in about two hours....

2003 Newmar Dutch Star 3802

'98 Ford Ranger

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No pad as recommended by Tdevery? I'm wavering on it. On the one hand the sound deadening would be nice, on the other, I worry about the floor moving over it as the slides come in and out.

Going out to get the flooring in about two hours....

 

I don't think Trafficmaster recommends a pad. But our situation is different as we are in a 5ver - so road noise is a non issue for us.

Our "Here and There" Blog

 

2005 Safari Cheetah Motorhome

 

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I don't think Trafficmaster recommends a pad. But our situation is different as we are in a 5ver - so road noise is a non issue for us.

Went with no pad, project starts the 21st. Expect links to pictures and videos. We've brainstormed a work around for our TV stand, which is held in place at the floor end by four screws. The fix will still allow the stand to be screwed down without going through the laminate, thus it will not affect the floors movements with temperature....

As to the noise issue, we figure that with the basement, and floor insulation, noise is pretty much abated anyway.

2003 Newmar Dutch Star 3802

'98 Ford Ranger

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Wife is wondering, how do we deal with the slide out? The carpet is held down along that length by a metal transition strip, which is screwed down to the coach floor, giving the slide out something to ride over as it comes in or out.

I would assume that it also serves a dual purpose of keeping the carpet from bunching up and getting dragged up and into the coach.

My initial thought is to simply notch the plank so it fits around those screws, leaving the floor free to float, and the slide to operate as it was designed.

The floor would not get caught up by the slide.

Looking at the slide out floor, it sits up with about 1/4 inch of space between it and that metal transition piece.

If I let the floor float above the transition, the floor itself will ride over the new floor just fine. It's the rollers that worry both of us.

Any suggestions?

Just over a week to go before we start....

2003 Newmar Dutch Star 3802

'98 Ford Ranger

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  • 4 weeks later...

Project is looking good. Just saw your post, we used the same flooring in our coach, no pad, no glue as you are doing. You will like the result, going on two years and no problems and in Florida, the heat has not been a problem.

Jim

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