How Cork floors are installed depends partly on the type of floor and also the subfloor. However, in any instance it is important to ensure that you follow the maker's instructions to carry out the task smoothly.
Our cork flooring products are all made by Florence, but these come in two types, stick-down tiles and engineered tiles with click system installation.
Stick-down tiles are user-friendly because they have the flooring adhesive already attached to the back of the product. This means that you do not have to buy any new glue or try to apply it to the floor. Instead, the tile will stick to the subfloor when you peel off the backing cover on the adhesive strip. When doing this, it is an important common-sense move to ensure you have the tile correctly aligned before sticking it down, as it will be hard to pull up afterwards if it is in place at a crooked angle.
Engineered cork floors use a click system installation method that is very user-friendly and requires no experience of laying floors or adhesive. Instead, the pieces simply fasten together like pieces of a jigsaw. Engineered floors are ideal for rooms with underfloor heating like the bathroom as they are more stable than solid floors.
Each installation must also include the right flooring underlay, which depends on the subfloor below. A wooden subfloor may not require an underlay with a moisture barrier, but a concrete one will. Also, an underlay is important with a floating (engineered) floor to prevent direct contact between it and the subfloor, while acting as both a moisture barrier and insulation.
For rooms with underfloor heating, we recommend you use Tuplex underlay, as this has both a unique moisture prevention system that soaks up and dissipates water rather than acting as a barrier and this structure allows heat to pass through, ensuring your new engineered floor does not block off the heating.
When installing cork floor tiles, it is important to measure the area of the floor and then buy a number of tiles accordingly. However, in most cases the area of the floor will not correspond exactly to that of a given number of cork tiles and you will have to cut some tiles with a sharp knife to make them fit. You should also ensure the number of tiles you get includes a few spares in case of any mishaps.
Because cork is a kind of wood, you should make allowances for expansion. This means there should be a ten mm gap at the doorway and the walls to prevent the floor buckling when the temperature changes significantly. You can buy scotia beading or skirting boards for the walls and ramp or end profiles for your doorways to cover up this gap, as well as giving the edge of your floor a neat finish.
By following the instructions carefully, taking your time and using the right underlays and allowing for a little expansion, you should find that the installation of your cork floor is a fairly straightforward affair. More importantly, once it is in place the product should give you many years of trouble-free service.