Fitting Karndean vinyl flooring ?

14 Sep 2004
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United Kingdom
Hello, i`m about to fit some Karndean flooring in my kitchen & bathroom.
It`s going down on top of a concrete floor which is flat, but has some adhesive residue left from the previous tiles. Karndean ask for a neoprene or PVA primer to be used to prime the concrete then apply a smoothing underlayment.
My questions are : Do i have to use the smoothing underlayment ?
Does anybody have any advice for installing this type of floor ?
Anybody got any tips for removing stubborn floor tile adhesive ?

Thanks in advance.
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Yes, you will certainly need to use an underlayment either a latex screed (eg. Balls' green bag) or a water based screed (Balls' Stopgap 300). The water based screed is stronger and tends to have a better levelling capacity. If you do not use an underlayment then the imperfections in the sub floor will "shadow" through on the surface of the vinyl and you will probably have problems with the adhesive. If any remaining residue on the sub floor is minimal then the screed (minimum 3mm.) should take care of this.
You would need to be more specific on the type (plank or tile) and style(layout) of floor then I may be able to give advice.
The tiles are planks 36"x3" and squares 12"x12". The only problem is that the kitchen has had new cabinets fitted so it`s going to be difficult to spread the underlayment between the feet ? I was reading another topic on this forum and "jbonding" suggests mixing PVA with cement & sand and laying it with a roller, removing the need for a underlayment. Does this sound like a good idea ?
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I think the advice given by jbonding was to isolate bitumen or some other such residue but I very much doubt if this method will give a smooth enough finish to take Karndean flooring.

I presume that you are not putting kickboards along the bottom of the kitchen units but even so the screed should be free-flowing enough to run underneath the units.

What style of layout are you using to utilise both tile and plank?

Karndean do an excellent website (sorry I don't know how to do one of those blue things that takes you straight there) and you can download a file thingy (who said I'm not a computer wizard with all the right terminology) that will give an idea on various layouts.

Hope this helps - let me know if you need anymore info.

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