Understand Wood Adhesives Before Using Them

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When looking to install engineered wood flooring on concrete surfaces, you’ll most likely be using wood floor adhesive. Solid wood flooring on the other hand is better fixed with other fixing methods and not adhesives – like traditional hard wood nails and/or staples using a hardwood nailer/stapler.  This is because such flooring is subjected to shrinking and warping which may cause the floor adhesive to leave its bond with the concrete.

Use the Right Adhesive

wood adhesiveIt is best to use the wood floor adhesive recommended by the manufacturers of the wood product, as they will be the best informed about the properties of the wood that they use and the way various adhesives react to it. Adhesives work by creating a bond between the wood flooring and the surface through chemical reactions. These products normally come in a consistency that is like thick liquid and are allowed some air exposure that converts the product into a flexible solid that creates bond between the surfaces of the tiles and the substrate. This flash time, as it is called varies from product to product and can be around a quarter of an hour. So when you are laying the tiles, you should layout as much adhesive in an area that you can cover with tiles. Some adhesives recommend rolling over to ensure the bond.

Composition of Adhesives

Most wood floor adhesives work on the same principle, where they convert from liquid to solid states. However they will differ on the base in which they are carried and the catalyst that activates their change of state. You can find adhesives that are water based, solvent based or others that use urethanes and polymers for the drying process. Water based adhesives are the cheapest and easy to keep clean.  They are not recommended for all types of wood. Adhesives that use urethanes can be cleaned with solvents and be used for any sort of flooring. Solvent based adhesives can be cleaned up easily, but do pose problems because they are flammable.

Proper Preparation Is a Must

Any wood floor adhesive can only become effective if proper preparation is made of the surfaces to be glued together. Cleaning the surfaces and ensuring the absence of any loose material is of paramount importance. Most “how to concrete” enthusiasts will be aware of different ways to clear such material, but most cleaning agents for this can be found at your local home store. New slabs must have gone through their curing period and free of moisture. Floors need to be even, as larger thickness of the adhesive can fracture when subject to load.