What is Floating Flooring?
At first glance, it would seem that floating flooring would be something only seen in science fiction movies, but the term actually refers to a special way to install hardwood floors. Normally, such floors are fixed in place by stapling, nailing or even gluing floorboards to a dwelling’s floor surface.
A floating floor, in contrast, is installed by gluing one floor plank to another in order to create a continuous whole. The individual boards, however, are not affixed to the floor beneath them. This means that the whole floor can shift and move a small amount, which is ideal in many ways because it can mean that when the floor is under stress, it shifts over instead of developing cracks in the boards.
Benefits of Floating Flooring
One significant benefit of a floating floor is the ease of installation. Since regular installations have to be attached to the floor beneath them, that floor must be carefully prepared – only certain kinds of subfloors are appropriate. Should a home’s existing subfloor not meet the requirements, it will have to be fixed first before a traditional hardwood floor can be installed.
Floating floors, however, can be installed on top of practically any kind of existing flooring, including even ceramic tile and linoleum. In addition, floating floors are ideal wherever there are conditions of high humidity – wood tends to swell slightly, but a floating floor has room on the edges to expand, since a proper installation leaves a little bit of room around all edges of the floor.
Floating flooring needs regular care and maintenance, including period wood floor repairs such as floorboard sanding and polishing.