This Article is About
hardwood floors
shock absorber
foot traffic
energy bills
hardwood floor
A Guide To Flooring Underlays For Hardwood Floors For The Uk Market
Join 1000's of Authors at StreetArticles Today!

Why use an underlay?

Installing an underlay has a number of benefits:

• Its primary purpose is to preserve the condition of the hardwood floor by acting as a shock absorber. It helps the floor covering to sit strongly and evenly and stand up well to excessive use, which means it ultimately protects your investment in the longer term!

• It cushions the impact of footsteps on the floor, making it feel much more comfortable.

• It’s a great insulator and will help keep your home warm and snug during the harsh winter months. According to retailer John Lewis, recent studies have suggested you can save up to 15% on your energy bills simply by installing an underlay.

• It reduces the noise created when you or your house guests walk across the floor boards, making it perfect for busy homes with lots of foot traffic. An underlay will almost always be installed in a block of flats because it will effectively help sound-proof each room from the other.

Assessing your options:

Sub floors

Before you can begin to narrow down your options, you’ll need to find out whether you’re going to be working with a concrete or wooden sub-floor. If the base is made of concrete, most suppliers would recommend installing an underlay that has a protective moisture barrier (otherwise known by those in the industry as a damp proof membrane, or DPM). This will help to eliminate water damage. In contrast, most common underlays are suitable for use on a wooden sub-floor.

Flooring types

Once you’ve determined which sub-floor you are dealing with, you need to consider the type of flooring you are going to lay, as this decision will impact on the choices that are available to you. As previously mentioned, you will not need to buy underlay if you’re choosing to install a vinyl floor, but most suppliers would recommend installing an underlay if you’re installing laminate, engineered wood flooring or solid wood flooring.

Underlays for laminate and engineered wood flooring

As a general rule, most underlays are suitable for laminate, engineered or solid wood floor coverings, as long as they are sitting on top of a wooden sub-floor. If you’re dealing with a concrete-sub floor, you will need to ensure the underlay has its own built-in moisture barrier or DPM – if this isn’t the case, you can buy moisture barriers that can be installed separately.

Underlays for solid wood flooring

Solid wood flooring is slightly different in that it will require a pre-glued underlay. This is because real wood flooring is permanently glued to the sub-floor, whereas laminate and engineered planks are installed using a ‘floating’ system.

Underlay materials

Underlays are available in a variety of materials. Each offers its own features and benefits:

Thin and versatile, polyfoam underlays are arguably the cheapest option, but don’t let the price tag fool you – they can be used with wooden sub-floors and a wide range of floor coverings and will usually perform just as well as the more expensive products.

Fibre board underlays will provide the thickest cushioning and will improve the performance of a sub-floor that is particularly uneven or irregular. Fibre board boasts great insulating properties and will help reduce noise from foot traffic.

If you’re looking for an underlay that offers heightened sound-proofing and insulation and have a little more cash to spend, rubber underlays may be the best option for you. These are considerably more durable and are often considered the ‘greener’ option due to the fact they’re often developed using recycled car tyres.

Both polyfoam and rubber underlays can be bought with an added vapour barrier to limit the floor’s expansion and movement in damp conditions.

When not to install an underlay

Though most installers would generally recommend investing in an underlay for your hardwood floor, there are some exceptions. For example, vinyl floors are typically a lot softer and provide you with a lot more cushioning, so will rarely need to be accompanied by an underlay.

This article will have provided you with a brief introduction to flooring underlays, but we would always suggest getting in touch with a local professional flooring company for expert advice and recommendations.


Street Talk

No comments present
You May Also Like
Madly In Love With My Bona Mop for Hardwood Floors
I’ve found true love at last...with my Bona mop! It makes cleaning my hardwood floors so easy and they have never looked better. How my Bona mop captured my heart I'd never heard of Bona mops until my neighbor started raving about hers. It was weird. Who brings up a…
By: Jane Eyre in  Home Improvement  >  Cleaning Tips and Tools   Mar 17, 2012  
2
  Likes: 1

Why Would You Want Hardwood Floors?
You’ve decided to change from carpeting to a hardwood floor. You have friends that have beautiful hardwood floors but you do not know that much about them. How do you choose the right hardwood floor for your home? First, you must decide on how much you want to spend for…
By: David Silver in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jul 13, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

Maintaining Your Hardwood Floors
Take a good close look at your hardwood floors and see what condition they’re in. If they are newly laid and finished, then you can start right now taking proper care of them so that they don’t look worn, scratched or faded. Be sure to follow the instructions given to…
By: David Silver in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jul 18, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

Proper Care Of Your Solid Hardwood Floors
Beautiful solid hardwood floors give you a lifetime of value in exchange for a little tender loving care you give to them. A hardwood floor gives you a sense of luxury, richness and natural beauty. Each hardwood floor has its own distinct personality and visual harmony. The traces of history…
By: David Silver in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jul 18, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

Hardwood Floors Marysville
Hardwood floors exude a warmth and richness that can’t be obtained with any other type of flooring. From traditional classics to contemporary selections, there is a hardwood floor for anyone’s budget. There are many brands of hardwood available, as well as a variety of finishes to suit any style. The…
By: David Silver in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 15, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

My Likes And Dislikes About Walking On The Beach
As you probably know by now, I recently started walking on the beach after one of my friends advised me that the sand is better for my knees than the asphalt or the concrete surfaces. I was experiencing some discomfort in my knees and sometimes my feet and ankles after…
By: Des Forbes in  Health and Fitness  >  Exercise   Aug 29, 2013  
10
  Likes: 3

Engineered Flooring is A Good Option for Your Home
If you possess been looking that you need to put speculate and warmth in your property, nothing at all is available even near real solid wood floor coverings. You'll get significant types in their total design, although created and reliable hardwood flooring tend to be created from completely hardwood. Made…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

Searching for the Right Flooring Contractor In Toronto Doesn't Have to Be Hard
Nothing at all comes even in close proximity to legitimate solid wood floor coverings if you will certainly be looking you should add more speculate and warmth to the house. You'll get significant models within their all round development, despite the fact that designed and strong hardwood flooring are often…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

Selecting the Flooring Surface for Your Home
Nothing at all will come even close to legitimate hardwood flooring surfaces if you are generally seeking that you should add more ambiance and ponder to your house. Created and solid hardwood flooring are often created from completely wood, but you'll find considerable types within their all round development. Made…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

How to Choose the Right Hardwood Flooring Company In Toronto
If you are looking you should add more warmth and wonder to the house, nothing comes even close to real hard wood flooring surfaces. You'll get considerable variations in their all round design, even though designed and sound hardwood flooring tend to be made from 100% timber. Developed wood made…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

How to Find the Right Contractor for Floor Installation Work
If you may be looking that you ought to add more warmness and wonder for your house, absolutely nothing will come even close to authentic hard wood flooring surfaces. Developed and solid hardwood floors tend to be made from completely wood, but you'll discover considerable models in their overall building.…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

Choosing An Engineered Flooring Service In Toronto Can Be Difficult
If you will end up hunting you should include question and ambiance to the home, practically nothing will come even in close proximity to real hardwood floors. Developed and reliable hardwood flooring are generally made from completely hardwood, but you'll locate significant variations in their all round design. Designed wood…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

On the Search for A Contractor Specializing In Flooring
Practically nothing arrives even near real hard wood flooring surfaces if you're gonna be searching that you need to put ponder and warmness in your property. You'll discover important variations in their total development, though developed and sound hardwood flooring are often produced from 100% wood. Created wood flooring surfaces…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

Choosing the Right Hardwood Floor Option for Your Home
Practically nothing comes even near genuine solid wood floors if you happen to be looking that you need to add ponder and warmth in your residence. You'll discover considerable versions within their total construction, even though created and reliable hardwood flooring are usually made from completely wood. Created wood flooring…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

Finding A Laminate Flooring Service In Toronto
If you will end up searching that you should put warmness and question to your property, nothing will come even near to real hardwood flooring surfaces. You'll discover substantial versions in their overall development, despite the fact that created and solid hardwood flooring are often made from completely hardwood. Designed…
By: Edward McNealy in  Home Improvement  >  Flooring   Jun 01, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

Article Views: 1023    Report this Article