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Glue Down vs Floating Vinyl Plank

Glue Down vs Floating Vinyl Plank

Apr 16,2021
Glue down flooring is considered a permanent type of flooring. It can withstand impacts, scratches and spills. This kind physically attaches to the sub-floor beneath it. It attaches by either a glue on the back of the floor or by double-faced acrylic tape.

Floating vinyl plank flooring simply lays over the sub-floor in a “floating” fashion. They don’t have any adhesive tape or glue on the back of them. This makes this type of flooring much easier to install. It can be a do-it-yourself project.

So which one of the options is better for you, glue down or floating vinyl plank flooring? You can best answer that question by taking a look at the condition of your sub-floor.

It isn’t recommended to install glue down flooring types on top of a high-moisture sub-floor. That includes a below-grade concrete pad, such as might be located in a basement. This type of sub-floor would be a good fit for a floating vinyl plank floor, instead.


The next thing to consider when deciding between glue down versus floating vinyl plank flooring is their durability. It is especially important in this regard to consider the room that your floor will be installed in. How will you use that room?

Since a glue down floor will be physically adhered to the sub-floor, it will be firmly held into place. This makes it an ideal choice if there is going to be heavy traffic in the room.

It is also a good choice if there will be any rolling traffic. That includes moving kitchen islands or even wheelchairs. The adhesive will keep the flooring in place and not lift away from the sub-floor.

A floating vinyl plank floor, on the other hand, isn’t actually adhered to the sub-floor beneath it. It’s still a very durable type of flooring. But it might not be as good as a glue down version in the scenarios above. That’s because it would have a tendency to lift away from the sub-floor with this rolling traffic.

As for cleaning, both types of flooring can be cleaned with a hard-floor friendly vac and a wet mop.

No matter which type of flooring you choose, you will have to replace it at some point in time. Hopefully, this won’t happen until after you have enjoyed many years with your flooring choice. However, when it comes time to replace the floor, which is easier and better, a glue down or floating vinyl plank floor?

Glue down flooring allows for a seamless replacement. It is very easy to either replace the entire floor by laying a completely new floor on top of it or by replacing loose planks and tiles in a singular manner. It is a very simple and pain-free process to do.

A floating vinyl plank floor is easy to replace, too, although it could be slightly more complicated than a glue down floor. That’s because each plank interlocks with another one. So if you have to replace a portion of the floor, you’ll have to remove each flooring tile or plank in the path of the section that you need to replace.

One thing that people may not consider when they’re making a choice of flooring type is how the flooring may affect the acoustics in the room. The fact remains, though, that your floor will either absorb noise or bounce noise off it, causing what’s known as an echo effect. So which is better for noise, glue down or floating vinyl plank flooring?

Both of these types of vinyl flooring can be considered really good for the acoustics of a room. This is especially true when comparing them to other hard flooring choices, because they absorb noise more than the other options. Some types of these floorings also offer added acoustic backings to help with noise reduction even more.

What is more of a determining factor when considering the acoustic effect of your floor is the shape that your sub-floor is in. If it is level and you are able to either adhere the flooring down over it, or lay the floating vinyl planks evenly, then your flooring will have a better outcome when it comes to noise reduction.

Another really important factor to consider when making a choice for flooring type is what room you’ll be installing the floor in. Some of the things you need to consider in this realm are foot traffic, moisture and warmth. So which is better, glue down or floating vinyl plank?

Both types of flooring are great options for bathrooms, kitchen and laundry rooms. That’s because vinyl flooring is waterproof and very durable. These rooms in your house often have the most moisture and take the biggest pounding from not only feet but also laundry baskets, pots and pans and other items.

One thing you may want to consider, though, is that larger rooms will have less joint stability with the click-lock installation of floating vinyl plank flooring. For this reason, it might be better to choose a glue down vinyl floor for larger rooms. The glue down option will actually adhere to the sub-floor, making it less likely that the floor will lift or have vulnerable seams in these larger rooms.

There is another important factor to consider when making your choice in vinyl flooring. That is how you will install it in your house. If you are hoping to save money by installing the floor yourself, you’ll want to know the steps before you start the project. So is there an advantage to choosing a glue down or floating vinyl plank floor in this regard?

Floating vinyl plank flooring is meant to be very easy to install. It is almost the perfect fit for a person who enjoys DIY who wants to do the work themselves. The vinyl plank flooring is very easy to set and click together in a simple way.

While you can put together glue down flooring on a DIY basis as well, it isn’t as easy as a floating vinyl plank. This is because it’s not as easy to handle and deal with the adhesive that this type of flooring requires. So if you don’t have experience in this arena, you may want to hire a professional who can install the floor the right way.

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