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Black Forest Laminate Flooring Installation Instructions
Attention: Without a recorded measurement of the residual moisture a claim in the case of consequential damage cannot be accepted.
Black Forest Laminate Flooring is not suitable for installation on the following sub-floors: Carpeting (this must be removed first), Composition screeds made of wood shavings, magnesium oxides or chlorides (Residual moisture too high) and existing Parquet block wooden flooring and any “stuck down” wooden strip flooring.
Black Forest Laminate Flooring is not recommended for wet or damp rooms (Saunas, Bathrooms etc.)
Black Forest Floor should be installed/laid in the direction of the main source of natural light, or if light source is equal in the longest length.
Black Forest Laminate flooring must only be installed on floors that are level, clean and firm. Unlevelled areas greater than 3mm in a metre must be first levelled.
Black Forest Laminate flooring is generally laid as a floating floor, but is also suitable for direct stick applications (Contact your supplier for further information).
As a natural product, wood works so that the planks must be allowed to expand and contract in all directions. For this reason it is necessary to include an expansion gap of at least 10mm at the walls, conduits, thresholds etc.
In rooms that measure more than 8 metres in the direction of the plank length and 5 metres in the direction of the plank width, an additional expansion profile must be inserted. This also applies to door openings, room passages and corridor corners. For larger rooms the expansion gap will need to be increased. The required gap can be calculated using the formula 1.5mm per running metre, e.g. 9.000m = 14mm expansion gap. Maximum allowable coverage without an expansion gap is 8 x 8.
The laying instructions should be followed exactly. Claims are void if installation is carried out in the incorrect manner. If problems arise, stop fitting immediately and consult your specialist supplier.
It is important to measure out the room. Using the plank dimension information, calculate the length and width of the planks at the ends and in the last row. The length of any plank should not be less than 400mm and the width of any plank should not be cut narrower than 50mm. It may be necessary to reduce the length of the first plank and the width of the plank to be laid in the first row. Ensure you have enough spacers to create a minimum 10mm expansion gap at the walls, pipes and thresholds. For larger rooms the expansion gap may need to be increased. The required gap can be calculated using the formula 1.5mm of expansion per running metre of flooring.
Lay the polythene membrane as a moisture barrier. Overlap the strips by at least 200mm and seal them down with the tape provided on the Finlay. Run the membrane up the wall and later cover with skirting or beading. For footfall, sound and thermal insulation use the premium quality Finlay Underlay (Please note a separate polythene membrane may not be required as the Finlay Underlay has a built in moisture barrier). Lay the underlay with the edged butted and seal the edges of the underlay with a waterproof tape.
Installing the first row
There are two alternative methods for fitting the short ends: (a) Angle method – Lay the first plank with the tongue on the long length towards the wall. Holding the second plank with the tongue on the long length towards the wall, angle the tongue on the short length into the groove on the short side of the first plank, drop and click into place.
(b) Tap method - Lay the planks flat lying next to each other, with the tongue on the long length towards the wall. Align the short ends and locate the tongue up to the groove and using a hammer and tapping block carefully tap the planks together.
Connect the third plank to the side of the preceding plank and all further planks in this row in the same way by using the method that suits you best. The planks will follow the run of the wall. If the wall is not straight, the line of the wall must be marked/scribed onto the first row and cut accordingly (Remember to leave the minimum 10mm expansion gap).
To cut the plank to the correct length at the end of the row, rotate the final plank 180° and lay it next to, and partly on top of, the row that has been laid (Tongue to tongue). Mark the length with a pencil, remembering the 10mm expansion gap, and cut. Note the length of the last plank should not be less than 400 mm (See section on preparation). Using a fine-toothed saw cut the topside of the plank, decorative side up to avoid splintering the plank.
It is important to note that a straight alignment of the planks in the first row is essential if the planks in the subsequent rows are to fit exactly.
Installing the following rows
Begin fitting the second row with a half plank or with the remains of the first row (But only if it is longer than 400mm). Position the plank, tongue facing the groove, with the long side parallel to the first row. Insert the tongue into the groove at an angle of 20°-30° and whilst applying light forward pressure, push the plank downwards until it lies flush with the floor.
Then depending on fitting method:
(a) Angle method – With the tongue on the long length towards the wall, angle the tongue on the short length into the groove on the short side of the first plank just short of the long length groove. Angle both boards and slide the second plank down so that it is full into the groove of the long length. Then ease both planks down and click into position so they are fully flush with the floor.
(b) Tap Method - The following plank is again inserted with the long sides first as described above. Whilst at an angle slide the plank along so that it is close, but not right up to, the adjoining plank. Ease the plank downward so the tongue and groove align and again using a hammer and tapping block carefully tap the planks together.
Ideally the planks should be staggered by at least 400 mm and placed in steps. In this way an improved connection of the entire area is obtained.
Installing the final row
First, determine the exact required width of the planks for the final row. To do this rotate each plank by 180° and place them on top of the planks, tongue to tongue, on the last but one row. Using another plank as a straight edge, place it up to the wall, remembering the minimum 10mm clearance, and mark the overlap along the length of the rotated plank. Cut the entire length along the marked line.
The short ends on the final row can be fitted using either the Angle or the Tap Method. The final piece can be angled into position down the long length, and then pulled/levered into position on the short edge by using a pulling iron/lever.
If the planks are to go right up to a doorframe it is advisable to cut under the frame allowing the planks to fit under. Please note an expansion gap of 10 mm is still required. To cut away the doorframe, lay one plank (with decorative side down) against the frame. Cut away at the level of the plank with a hand or undercut saw.
The plank can then be fitted, decorative side up, by sliding it under the doorframe. The plank should then be laid flat with the tongue located next to the groove of the preceding row. Then using a hammer and tapping block, carefully tap the plank along the long length, so that the tongue goes into the groove and the desired expansion gap is left under the door frame/architrave.