Extension Flooring advice

22 Oct 2011
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United Kingdom

I'm working on my extension my self and just after a bit of advice on the floor make-up.

So far I've put down (in this order) hardcore, sand, damp proof, concrete slab and 70mm Celotex. I'm looking to do the screed next. Do i need (or should I) put anything on the celotex or just lay the screed directly on it?

Would you advise mesh/fibers in the screed (the area is 12sq meters and screed to be 70mm ish)

Once the screed is done, i'm going to lay and engineered wood floor - what should this be laid on?

Any help/advice would be great.

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70mm is enough to not worry about mesh but I would personally go with fibres anyway - just because they are cheap enough. You should put a vapour barrier between the insulation and screed. 1000g poly is suitable. Are you laying this screed yourself? 12sqm isn't a lot but if you're not used to it, it will still be a challenge. And I wouldn't even think about mixing on site. Get it delivered.

Thanks for the reply, much appreciated.

I was thinking of mixing it on site as it is a terraced house, so if i have it delivered it will all have to be barrowed through the house - but i might think again on this one!

Also one the screed is down and dry, would you recommend a levelling compound prior to the wood flooring?


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I've done a fair bit myself in the past and seen a lot of screeding on jobs I've managed but if I was doing a project for myself now it's one of the jobs I would definitely get somebody in for. Good screeders are just so quick and leave such a good finish. I say readymix rather than mix yourself because the price difference isn't that great and consistency is important to a good finish. Whether you need a latex depends on the finish?
agreed screeding is one of those jobs that looks easy , it is not , you only get one chance to get it right , I would use a proper screeder who will have it delivered anyway .
Regarding the finished floor surface, you say 'engineered wood flooring'.
If by this you mean a length of 'real wood veneer' with blocks/strips underneath to give it rigidity I would advise you to avoid it like the plague!
I paid over £30 per metre for this stuff, was told I could sand it and re-stain when it needed it and that it would take hard knocks like children running/playing on it etc.

Fitted it strictly according to the instructions and really took my time to make a professional job of it. Got lots of favourable comments from floor layers/carpet fitters etc and was very pleased with it.

Then my granddaughter knocked over a glass of plain water which was little more than a quarter of an inch full. Went into the kitchen to get a mop and 30 seconds later walked back in to find 4 lengths had lifted along the edge. These boards were tongue and grooved with interlocking ridges on the tongue and also glued with the glue supplied from the manufacturer.
The shop I bought it from, (a local DIY shop with emphasis on DIY), sent their salesman/surveyor round to have a look. His opinion was whilst it had been laid correctly it was not a job for a DIY enthusiast and as such he would not recommend a refund. Got an independent flooring specialist in to have a look and he said the boards were not constructed to withstand every day living in a family home. In his opinion these type of 'engineered' boards were nothing more than a piece of veneer with some random backing strips glued on and he wouldn't use them in a childs play house, never mind a normal family home. It took over 3 months, the threat of legal action and then a report from the independent surveyor on headed note paper before they gave me a full refund.

Either, use real wood which has been seasoned and treated to be used as flooring or go for a good quality laminate floor. With the laminate type ask for a test sample. Take it home and immerse it in a bowl of hot water for 30 mins. Take it out and let it dry on top of a radiator over night, if it is still in good shape the following morning go ahead and buy it. If not move on to the next one that takes your fancy. I did this, paid £16.99 per metre and its still down and looking good about 9 years later.
I strongly suspect that your advice to prefer laminate over engineered is complete b*ll*cks.

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