IF a subfloor fails, by cracking, warping, or becoming wet, the floorcovering and any adhesives used will not be able to compensate, leading to an overall installation failure.
This is a disaster for any contractor and is an especially expensive failure if an LVT floorcovering is involved. The common rule-of-thumb for costing a job repair, excluding loss of reputation, is around three times the original cost.
As LVT is an increasingly popular flooring choice for contractors, retailers and consumers alike, it’s more important than ever to be knowledgeable about best-practice subfloor preparation techniques and products. This includes flooring grade ply.
CFA Plywood Guidance
The CFA recognised the need for a flooring industry standard for plywood and worked on a program of consultation with timber and panel experts to produce a Plywood Guidance Note which was subsequently issued in July 2013. The Guidance was very successful and became widely adopted throughout the industry.
Further work by the CFA, its manufacturing committee and BSi representatives was undertaken to introduce the guidance into British Standards.
As a result, the normative Annex A, defining guidelines that should be followed, is now included in BS 8203 thus providing a performance specification for plywood.
This significant development for the industry ensures manufacturers and installers have a clear reference on the specification of plywood that must be used for a successful and reliable installation. Trained fitters that are working to BS 8203 now need to ensure they’re using the correct specification of plywood.
Manufacturers of LVT, adhesives and all other allied products have welcomed this addition to BS 8203 standard as it now ensures their products are used alongside plywood which is tested, approved and fit for purpose.
Flooring grade ply specification
Flooring grade ply is guaranteed fit for purpose for use in flooring installations. Not using flooring grade ply will mean flooring manufacturers cannot be held responsible for installation failures, including Lifestyle Floors – who specifies that contractors MUST use ply compliant with BS8203.
For example, Hanson’s flooring grade ply SP101 has a consistent moisture content as it is precision dried during manufacturing. This results in a fully stable and conditioned panel.
There are no core overlaps or gaps, and each face is a thickness of a minimum 0.7mm. All of which creates a smooth, high quality surface finish. SP101 has very strictly controlled and accurate dimensional tolerances.
Lifestyle Floors recommends the use of flooring grade ply such as SP101 in ALL installations requiring ply. It could be too expensive not to.
To find out more about Lifestyle Floors’ range of LVT, including Dryback, 5G Clic and PEC formats available with up to 10-year contract and 25-year domestic wear warranties, visit www.lifestyle-floors.co.uk, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01827 831445.