ONE of the most important parts of installing a new floor is ensuring the subfloor is in a fit state to receive the covering. It should be sound, dry, clean, and smooth or the finished flooring will have problems which can vary from problems with the appearance to debonding and complete failure. The way to avoid such issues is to properly prepare the surface.
Screeds should be checked for humidity and a damp proof membrane (DPM) applied where it is found to be more than 75% RH. Tilemaster says its Tilemaster FAST One Coat DPM is suitable for use on a wide range of substrates including concrete, sand/ cement screeds and calcium sulphate screeds.
‘It’s fast-curing and ready to receive smoothing compounds in between four to five hours. Where the substrate is rough or uneven, it should be pre-smoothed before applying the DPM. Tilemaster Super Flow 30 or Pro Flow are both perfect for this, and can also be used without priming over Tilemaster FAST One Coat DPM once it has cured,’ says the company.
It continues: ‘On dry screeds which simply need to be smoothed or levelled, a smoothing compound should be applied after priming. Priming is considered best practice even where it’s not strictly necessary, for example Tilemaster Pro Flow can be used without priming on most substrates.
‘Priming, however, minimises the risk of pinholes forming, allows for the best flow properties and prolongs the working time of the smoothing compound. Tilemaster Primeplus is designed to prime, stabilise and seal substrates prior to the application of self-levelling compounds and Prime+ Grip is a ready mixed, ready to use, rapid drying primer that can be used on both absorbent and non-absorbent substrates and provides a textured ‘+ Grip’ surface.’
The company says Tilemaster Super Flow 30, Pro Flow or multi-purpose Trade Flow are all excellent smoothing compounds which work on most substrates. Super Flow 30 is a double component, ultra-rapid setting smoothing compound that is ready for tiling after 45-60 minutes and laying impervious flooring after 90 minutes, says Tilemaster.
‘Alternatively, Tilemaster Pro Flow is a self-levelling and smoothing compound with excellent flow and adhesion properties which can be used on most substrates. It has a waiting time before laying of three hours for ceramic, porcelain and natural stone tiles and four hours for decorative flooring. Tilemaster Trade Flow offers excellent flow properties; it can be walked on two hours after application and floorcoverings can be laid after 12 hours.’
More information and technical advice on Tilemaster Adhesives’ range of flooring products, including levelling and smoothing compounds, DPM, primers, adhesives, and sealants, is available on the website or by contacting the flooring sales team. Products are manufactured and stocked in Leyland, Lancashire.