Leveling the floor under the laminateSeptember 8, 2011
Before you lay a new floor, you must carefully level the floor under the laminate. This will ensure easy laying of the material and increase its performance and service life. For those who make repairs for the first time, leveling the floors seems to be difficult, and they immediately call in specialists, preferring not to do the dirty and laborious work with their own hands. In fact, the process of leveling the floors is not so complicated, just follow some rules and be careful. It is better to carry out these works together, because it is difficult for one person to level the floor under the laminate.
Alignment of small irregularities
First you need to check how the floor in the room deviates from the ideal state. If the skew in it is not large (no more than 1-2 cm), then it is possible to fill in the old screed with self-extracting compound, which will spread evenly on the floor and level it. These mixtures are only suitable for removing minor irregularities, or when it is necessary to seal cavities and grooves in the floor.Despite the high cost of such mixtures, they are the best option for leveling small irregularities on the floor for the laminate.
If a laminating method is chosen for the laminate between the boards, and the differences on the floor are less than 5 mm, then you can not specifically level the floors, but do with a vapor barrier and a special soft substrate that will smooth out minor irregularities.
Leveling the floor with significant irregularities
If, after checking the floor with a building level, you find that the floor has significant irregularities (often wooden floors have a hole in the middle of the room and ascend to the walls), then more radical methods are used to level the floor. Before starting work, remove the old coating and thoroughly clean the surface from dirt, dust and debris. If the apartment has a wooden floor, then before disassembling it is worth considering whether it is advisable. A simpler option would be to lay linoleum, which is not so demanding on the evenness of the sexes. It should also be borne in mind that after dismantling wooden floors all the doors will be above the floor level and will have to be reinstalled or replaced at all.
Then take the laser level (it is useful for leveling the walls or ceiling) and put it on the highest point of the floor. After switching on, a red line appears along the perimeter of the room, along which the floor should be leveled. This laser line is marked with a pencil or construction chalk.
If there is no laser level available, then another method can be used. Also find the highest point of the floor near the wall, measure from it upwards 5-6 cm and put a mark. Then take a long straight rail or guide and apply it parallel to the floor along the wall. Using a building level align this rail and put a mark on the opposite side of the room. So do around the perimeter of the room. After that, stretch the rope or cord from one tag to another on the opposite side, it is better to do it crosswise. If done correctly, the rope should not be in contact with the floor, and the line for leveling the floor is ready. Otherwise, all tags must be raised a couple of centimeters.
After determining the alignment line, you can install the beacons, which will be leveled floor.As these beacons, you can use guides for hypocardboard, which can be purchased at any hardware store at an affordable price. These guides are initially perfectly smooth. They are laid on the floor at a distance of 60-80 cm from each other, and so that all of them clearly coincide in level with the marked alignment line on the walls of the room. To control the coincidence of the line and beacons use a flat board, narrow plywood or building level. That is, you need to lay out the guides, put them across the board and see if its edges coincide with the alignment line on the walls. It is also necessary to use to check the building level. If you need to correct the position of the guides, then lay out the pieces of plywood, boards or giprok under them.
After aligning the guides, attach them to the floor for greater reliability with long screws. To do this, drill holes in the floor with a perforator and plug dowels into them.
The final part is the alignment of the floor itself, for this make a coupler. Between the guides pour the mortar (sand and cement with water).It should be poured with a uniform layer, and then a rule is taken (a special device for leveling different surfaces) or a flat plasterboard guide (the same one used as a beacon) and the mixture is level with a uniform layer. Now it remains only to wait for the mixture to dry and you can lay the laminate.
Leveling the floor with cement-bonded particle boards
When leveling the floor, you can avoid pouring mortar, that is, not to do the screed, and use special cement-bonded particle boards (DSP). Preparation for leveling the floor is done the same way as in the previous case - a line is drawn for alignment around the perimeter of the room, but beacons should not be installed. Instead of these guides, use the base for the floor, which can serve as construction boards, which must be carefully aligned to level across and along. If the boards lie unevenly, pieces of the boards and plywood are also placed under them and check their position with a building level. Then the boards are fixed to the base of the floor for greater stability, and then the DSP plates are laid on them.They are cut to the size of the room and fastened to the boards with screws. The slots cover the rotband and check the resulting basement under the laminate level.
When our floor is leveled, you can start laying laminate. And do not forget to care for him, like any floor, laminate requires care.