Laying vinyl flooring

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Old 08-07-16, 06:04 PM
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Laying vinyl flooring

I have a small bathroom that I want to put vinyl flooring in. It's basically an L shape. Originally I didn't want to do it myself because I was afraid of getting wrinkles in it as I was gluing it down. But now I'm wondering how it even goes down.

So what's the process for installing sheet vinyl? Could I attempt it myself?
 
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Old 08-07-16, 06:38 PM
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It's fairly easy. There is floating floor and glue down. Floating is easier, but I have mostly done glue down. With both types, you just need to know how to measure and not make a mistake...

You always want to pull up the toilet and also any base shoe... if no base shoe, you might want to remove the baseboard. Since your bath is L-shaped be aware that your piece will want to tear at the inside corner as you test fit it and take it in and out. It helps to cut a radius corner rather than a square one and reinforcing the corner with duct tape until you have it laid down can help. And gently roll up one half, taking care not to stress that notch on the inside corner.

You need to get the right glue and right notch trowel. You need to have the proper subfloor prep... usually a new layer of smooth underlayment and putty the seams and nails/screws so they don't telegraph through the vinyl. You sometimes also find out that the toilet needs a new flange, new bolts at this time.

You need a nice tight fit against the tub, and that edge will generally need to be caulked once you're done. Baseboard, if removed, goes back dow after the vinyl is in, and you usually want to add a baseshoe moulding to cover up any gap between the new floor and the baseboard.

I like to cut the vinyl to fit, lay it in place, kind of roll half of it back (starting with the half that has a critical measurement... like against the tub) and trowel the glue on that half of the floor. Lay the vinyl down into it, and then get on that half... and fold the other half back to glue it.

You need to be aware that if you lay out the vinyl on carpet, or cardboard or something soft in order to cut it to size... that walking on it or kneeling on it will tear the backing. So work around the piece, not on top of it.

That's about the only tips I can give you. To do vinyl you kind of have to be a plumber and carpenter too. Once it's down, you are supposed to roll it to get the air out from under it. I've had pretty good success by just being careful to work the air out as I lay it... I do try and roll it, but if you pay attention and try not to flop the edges down and instead kind of gently roll it down into the glue gradually, trapped air pockets have never been a problem for me.
 
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Old 08-07-16, 06:59 PM
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X has provided a good description. I will add that I always make a full size template out of rosin paper or posterboard. You don't need to template the whole space, just all the edges, which you can do by taping strips together. Then I lay the template on the vinyl, mark the outline, and then cut the vinyl a little shy of the line.

It's a little more work (not much), but minimizes handling of the stiff vinyl and chance of tearing it or other mistakes.
 
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Old 08-07-16, 07:22 PM
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Forgot to mention you will need a new wax seal when you set the toilet, but you probably already knew that. If your toilet doesn't already have a shutoff (it should), this is the ideal time to put one in.
 
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Old 08-08-16, 02:30 PM
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On the inside corner of the "L" where it tends to tear, put several pieces of masking tape on the top of the vinyl, it will make it stronger. Or use something like Flexitec vinyl, it is almost impossible to tear.
 
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Old 08-08-16, 04:59 PM
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Thanks for the tips everyone. It doesn't sound as bad as I originally thought. We may yet do a floating floor, but I think I would prefer it was glued down securely.
 
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