Floating Floors

Written by Patricia Skinner
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Home owners install floating floors for several reasons. One is that they do a good job of sound and heat insulation where it's needed. Also, it can overcome unevenness in the sub-floor. Floating floor coverings can be wood, laminates or even concrete. In case you're wondering what in fact a floating floor actually is, let me give a brief explanation. Basically a floating floor is a layer of flooring material that's not fixed to the floor below (sub-floor), but rather floats above it by means of regularly spaced batons, often made of plywood.

The gaps between the two layers are sometimes filled with polystyrene insulation or some other material. Perlite is also often used as insulation in these cases. It has the advantage of being a substance that won't rot at all, and that will be an effective noise insulation. In addition, perlite won't settle, so it is the perfect choice for concrete floating surfaces.

Floating Floors by Any Other Name

Floating floors are also sometimes referred to as sprung floors or flex floors, a reference to the element of "give" that is naturally built in to a method such as this. Obviously though, this only applies to the kind of floating floor surfaces that gives, such as wood or laminate. Precautions must be taken to ensure that there is no give between the two layers when concrete or some other hard surface is used; again, perlite is perfect.

Experts warn that all laminates should be installed as floating floors to avoid the problem of condensation and moisture. Laminates and other types of floating floor are the structure of choice for any place that needs to be sound proof, such as a sound studio or a place that requires absolute quiet. If your kids are regularly bothering you with unreasonable sound levels, this kind of flooring can help.


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