Subfloor Preparation Tips for Carpet Installation
July 28, 2009
1. ALWAYS follow the manufacturer’s guidelines.
2. For a fee, subfloors must be properly prepared. All cracks, holes, joints and protrusions must be adequately addressed to ensure a smooth, finished appearance.
3. There is usually a minimum of 18" of air space under wood subfloors – refer to local codes.
4. On-site temperature required 48 hours prior to & during installation is usually between 65-95 degrees. It is maintained for at least 72 hours following installation. The slab temperature shall never be less than 65 degrees. Inside temperature is NEVER to fall below 50 degrees to ensure quality of installation.
5. Alkalinity = A pH reading above 9 requires corrective measures for direct-glue installation.
6. Moisture tests should be performed before installing over existing resilient tile or concrete – use ASTM Standards.
7. It is recommended that the owner or general contractor submit to flooring contractor a written report on moisture and alkalinity ratings of the slab to determine if substrate is suitable PRIOR to installation, according to the industry-accepted white paper.
8. If a powdery or overly porous surface is present, use a primer compatible with the adhesive to provide acceptable surface for a direct-glue/double-glue installation.
9. Mix floor patch and apply according to manufacturer's recommendations.
10. Do NOT apply adhesive over existing sheet vinyl, solid vinyl tile and certain rubber products. Consult manufacturer for correct installation procedures.
11. The use of liquid adhesive removers may void applicable warranties. CHECK!
12. Minimum of 90-120 days is required for curing of concrete slab to reach acceptable dryness for installation of carpet.
13. Generally, for adhesive installations, a moisture emission rate above 5 pounds in 1000 square feet in 24 hours is considered unacceptable. Consult the manufacturer for specific details.
1. ACID – Displays a pH below 7 – Neutral is 7
2. ALKALINITY – A base or salt. Property of water substances with a pH greater than 7
3. AMBIENT AIR – Surrounding air
4. BOND TEST – 24-hour test to determine if flooring will stay adhered with adhesive to substrate
5. CALCIUM CHLORIDE TEST – 24 hr. test for concrete moisture emissions
6. CONDENSATION - The conversion of the moisture in the air to water
7. DEW POINT – Temperature at which vapor begins to condense and form water
8. LITMUS PAPER – A material used to measure alkalinity of concrete or water
9. MAT TEST – Method used to check for water or moisture through substrate by taping section of plastic to floor with duct tape
10. pH – Acceptable range of concrete is between 5-9 pH. Indicates relative acidity or alkalinity of concrete.
11. POROSITY – Ratio of volume of air within the boundaries of a solid matter. The substrate’s ability to absorb liquid
12. rH – relative humidity – moisture in vapor form in the air
13. RMA Test – Method used to assess moisture emissions through concrete. (Rubber Manufacturers Association Test)
14. SLAB TEMPERATURE – Concrete substrate temperature no less than 65-degrees
15. 5 lbs. – Amount of moisture allowed to emit from concrete substrate per 1000 square feet
16. VAPOR EMISSION – Water emission from the substrate in vapor form