In 2000, Kahrs launches the first glueless floor joint – Woodloc. Today, it is the most up-to-date technology of laying the wood floors. To demonstrate all the advantages of this innovation, let’s examine the other methods of wood floors’ installation that existed before.
Traditional methods of laying wood floors
Laying on the concrete floor
The first wood floors were installed like wood blocks: the boards were glued directly to the concrete floor.
It is clear that the wood flooring was as good as the subfloor allows, because the boards are not jointed together. If the sub-surface is not even and level, a wood floor installed in this way will inevitably suffer from such shortcomings as gaps and level drops.
In addition, it is a rather long procedure: it takes many hours to glue the boards to the foundation. Besides that, the floor is set to foot traffic only after the adhesive dries out.
Laying on the floor joists
This method of floor installation appears as an alternative of the previous one. The concrete lining is difficult and thus expensive. Among the other ways of the foundation leveling is the installation of wood floors on the joists.
A floor joist is a dry wood rectangular beam (50-55 mm x 70-100 mm), with a moisture level lower than 12%.
The rows of wood beams are laid perpendicularly to the virtual wood flooring and screwed to the floor at the distance of 15-23 cm, and then leveled: planed or heightened with a wedge.
Today, a new improved system of adjustable joists becomes widespread. The beams have special threaded holes where plastic adjusting screws are driven in. It is enough to turn them to regulate the height of the joists.
A wood floor is glued to a special intermediate sheeting of damp-proof plywood that is screwed to the beams after their installation and leveling.
Laying on the old wood flooring
If you have an old wood floor as the subfloor, a new floor can be laid over it, on condition that the old floor is even and level. Lay a damp-proof plywood sheet as an intermediate layer between two wood floors. The sheet is screwed to the old flooring, and the new floor is screwed and glued to plywood.
As you can see, traditional methods of floor installation are very reliable, but expensive and difficult for non-professional floor layers. However, everyone can install the floor floating. This is a simple technology that results in a beautiful and stable wood floor.
Before installation, it is important to check that the subfloor is flat and level over measured length of 2 m. If any unevenness exceeds 3 mm over 2 m, the floor must be leveled first.
It is rather easy to install the floor floating. This technology means that the boards are not glued to the foundation, but fitted together with a "tongue and groove" joint. As the floor moves depending on the ambient air humidity and temperature, it is necessary to allow a 10 mm movement joint (or expansion gap) next to walls all round the floor. In fact, floating installation was called so because of the wood floor's natural movements.
Floating installation is much quicker and easier than the traditional methods, and at the same time it is more accessible for non-specialists.
Tongue and groove is a strong, but a glued joint, so a floor installed floating can not be lifted at a later date and re-laid elsewhere. This also means that you can not change a damaged board if necessary. Besides that, the floor is not set to foot traffic until the glue dries off. If only the floor boards could be jointed otherwise…
It is possible that the same (or similar) thoughts had already crossed the minds of the engineers from Kahrs, when, in 1995, they invented a new glueless floor joint Woodloc®. This mechanical joint locks boards together, without the need for gluing.
While installing a wood floor with the Woodloc® joint, you even need not to remove all the furniture from the room. After you have finished a half of the floor, move the furniture there and continue the installation.
One of the most important advantages of this unique joint is its strength. The Woodloc® joint is much stronger than a glued one. To compare: the tensile strength of Woodloc® is 1400 kg per meter, while the strength of the glued joint is 700-1000 kg / m. The Woodloc® joint gives perfect results that withstand tough use and last throughout the floor's lifetime. But above all it means that gaps never appear between the boards.
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