1. Job Site Conditions and Preparation
Tecply® Underlayment provides a clean, smooth surface for installing sheet vinyl flooring. Tecply® Underlayment will not correct structural problems. Subfloors that are double-layered construction, a minimum one inch (1") thick, provide the best support for Tecply® Underlayment. In any event, make sure that the subfloor meets the standards for local building codes. Any decayed, rotted, delaminated or substandard subfloor should be removed and replaced with new wood that provides adequate structural support and meets the local building requirements. All uneven joints, cupped floor boards or ridges must be sanded until level and smooth before the installation of Tecply® Underlayment. Warped or buckled subfloors must be securely fastened. Replace wood that has voids, correct squeaks and check for nails or screws that are protruding above the subfloor. The subfloor should be dry and free of oil, dirt, debris and deposits of paint, caulk, drywall compound, etc. before installing Tecply® Underlayment. Do not use Tecply® Underlayment over strip wood floors with floor boards greater than three inches (3") wide.
Important: Tecply® Underlayment is manufactured to stringent quality standards, however, final inspection of each panel is the responsibility of the installer prior to installation. Make sure that each panel is free of defects that may cause or contribute to underlayment or floor covering failure.
2. Underlayment Layout
Offset Tecply® Underlayment joints a minimum of six inches (6") from the end and side joint of existing plywood subfloor. Tecply® Underlayment's end seams should be installed in Ashlar fashion (staggered). The end seams should offset by at least eighteen inches (18"). Use full sheets of underlayment when possible and for best results, butt factory edge to factory edge.
3. Cutting and Fitting
Cutting and Fitting of Tecply® Underlayment can best be achieved using a jig saw or circular saw. Often, scoring with a knife before cutting will minimize splintering. Careful cutting from the underside of the underlayment with power saws will assure a clean cut on the face of the Tecply® Underlayment. Boring or drilling Tecply® Underlayment should be done from the face. Allow for a 1/8" minimum to 1/4" maximum expansion at walls, cabinets and stationary vertical surfaces. If possible, undercut door casings, door jams or stationary vertical surfaces that require a net fit. Lightly butt plywood seams in the field. A square layout of underlayment can be accomplished by aligning three (3) full sheets (if possible) before securing and fastening. The stair-stepped configuration of the three panels will ensure quick and accurate positioning of subsequent sheets.
4. Securing and Fastening Underlayment Panels
Use only narrow crowned galvanized (chisel point or divergent) staples or ring shanked nails. The fasteners' length must not exceed the total thickness of subfloor and underlayment combined. The fastener should not penetrate the underside of the subfloor. If using nails, make sure the nail head is no larger than a "pencil" eraser. The nail's head should be driven flush with the surface of the underlayment. If using staples, the crown (outside dimension of the legs of the staple) should not exceed one quarter inch (1/4"). The underlayment should be fastened every two inches (2") at the plywood seams and no further than four inches (4") in the field. When stapling or nailing, seam fasteners should be at least one half inch (1/2") from the edge of the panel, and no further than one inch (1"). Stapling or nailing should begin by securing one end and one side of the panel. After the two (2) edges have been properly fastened, work diagonally from the fastened corner to the opposite unfastened corner, placing fasteners in random fashion in the field. The random placement will eliminate a straight, regimented row of fasteners that could be noticeable after vinyl installation. Finally, secure the remaining two (2) edges.
5. Patching and Leveling
Sanding underlayment joints before patching will ensure that all seams are flush. Patch and level underlayment joints with the recommended patching compound of the sheet vinyl manufacturer. Once the patch has dried, smooth and level by sanding. Set up time for patches will fluctuate depending on type of path, temperature and atmospheric conditions.
6. Floor Covering Installation
Install floor covering according to the manufacturer's recommendations and use only adhesives and patching compounds recommended by the floor covering manufacturer.
7. Ceramic Floor Tile Installation
Tecply® Underlayment is ideal for residential, interior ceramic floor tile installations in dry areas only. Please find the following tips for successful ceramic installations.
Tecply® Underlayment should always be stored flat. Support the panels by stacking on four (4) foot long 2" x 4" runners spaced evenly at least every sixteen inches (16"). Tecply® Underlayment must be stacked squarely on the 2" x 4" runners to avoid warping or distortion of the panels. Tecply® Underlayment should always be stored indoors protected from rain, snow, extreme temperature and humidity.
Expansion and contraction is a natural characteristic of any wood product. Tecply® Underlayment should always be acclimated to avoid severe expansion and contraction after the installation. Delivery of Tecply® Underlayment to the job site, 24 hours prior to installation, in most cases, will allow ample time for the product to acclimate. If possible, stand individual panels on edge, allowing air to flow freely around each panel. Optimum performance of the underlayment is dependent on correct installation and handling procedures. Floor covering should be installed immediately after the underlayment installation to avoid damage or environmental influences to the Tecply® Underlayment. Extended exposure to fluctuating temperature and humidity, construction traffic and/or soil after underlayment installation will impact the vinyl installation and the performance of the underlayment. Careful planning will eliminate unwanted problems.
IMPORTANT: Tecply Underlayment is manufactured to stringent quality standards, however, final inspection of each panel is the responsibility of the installer prior to installation. Make sure that each panel is free of defects that may cause or contribute to underlayment or floor covering failure.
Optimum performance of the underlayment is dependent on correct installation and handling procedures. Floor covering should be installed immediately after the underlayment installation to avoid damage or environmental influences to the Tecply Underlayment. Extended exposure to fluctuating temperature and humidity, construction traffic and/or soil after underlayment installation will impact the vinyl installation and the performance of the underlayment. Careful planning will eliminate unwanted problems.