- Installation of a wooden floor log
- Logs on floor beams
- Lags on the ground
- Lags on reinforced concrete
- Doing boardwalk
- Soundproofing wood floor
- Wood floor ventilation
- Wood flooring processing
At one time, natural wood floors were undeservedly forgotten. Now, with the development of new advanced technologies for production, protection and installation, they are increasingly used in the construction of private housing. This is not surprising, because there is no more noble, “rich” and solid material for the manufacture of flooring. Needless to say about the natural warmth of natural wood, its absolute environmental friendliness.
Competently assembled solid plank floors have reliability and durability, excellent hygiene and soundproofing, they have no equal in aesthetic characteristics; the technology of their laying has been significantly improved and facilitated. Such floors can be made without any problems yourself..
Installation of a wooden floor log
Lags are the main element of the timber floor frame. The service life and reliability of the floor depend on their correct selection and installation. Errors made at this stage are very difficult to correct later, since the structure will be completely covered with a finishing coating, which is very difficult to disassemble without damage.
For the manufacture of logs, a dry flat bar is used, as a rule, of conifers, with a thickness of 50 mm. The height of the log is selected based on the distance between the supports, the expected load, the type of coating, sometimes the thickness of the sound insulation layer, etc. Usually this figure ranges from 50 to 100 mm. Between themselves, the logs are located at a distance of 300 to 500 mm, which also depends on the type of finished floor.
It is believed that it is better if the longitudinal joints of the floorboard are located in the direction of the prevailing light – most often to the window, so the logs must be placed perpendicularly. Sometimes difficulties arise with this, due to the direction of the floor beams or the length of the finishing material and the developer’s desire to get away from unnecessary end connections of the board.
Before starting the installation of the floor, using a hydrolevel on the walls, put marks in the corners of the room at a convenient height (for example, 1.5 meters) and connect them with a chopping cord, thus obtaining a solid control line. Now, using a tape measure, firstly, you can accurately measure the horizontality of the base of the floor against the walls, and secondly, precisely set all the logs, maintaining one given distance. Pulling a strong nylon thread between the walls from the control line, check the level of the dirty floor in the back of the room.
If in all rooms on the same floor the floors are planned to be made on the same level, if the interior doors do not have thresholds, then it is imperative to measure the floor level in different places of each room, making notes on the plan. So you can determine the highest point of the dirty floor of the floor, from which further calculations will be made..
The first to install on several substrates is the extreme lag, located 20 – 30 mm from the wall. The distance from the control line to the upper edge of the first log is measured with a tape measure, after which the second one is placed at the same mark at the opposite wall. Now, with the help of a cord stretched over the tops of the extreme logs, or a long rule, you can set intermediate bars. Deviation on a correctly aligned plane should not exceed 1 mm per 1 linear meter in any direction.
Dense elastic materials should be used as gaskets, which are not subject to rotting and deformation from dynamic loads. It is very convenient to work with the so-called “euro-ruberoid”, rubber, pieces of conveyor belt … It’s great when you have pads of various thicknesses at hand. In order to avoid displacement of the pads, they should be fastened with self-tapping screws or staple brackets to the logs.
When installing logs, it is recommended to fasten them together with auxiliary rails, which will help to avoid their displacement before installing the finishing flooring.
Particular attention is paid to doorways, as the places subject to the highest loads due to the high traffic. Usually, a double-width reinforced log is placed here, protruding on both sides of the door leaf, so that the coverings of adjacent rooms rest on it..
If the logs need to be joined along the length, then this must be done in a checkerboard pattern with technological gaps between the ends of the bars from 15 to 20 mm.
To eliminate local irregularities in wood, already installed logs sometimes have to be planed locally with a plane.
These are, in fact, the basic steps for assembling wooden floors, but depending on the type of base on which they are mounted, the technology for constructing their frame will be slightly different. The first type is an option when the load-bearing basis for the floor is the floor beams of a house with several floors or a large basement. Often, frame wooden floors are made on top of a pre-prepared concrete base – this is the second type. The third type is a wooden structure made on the ground. It is used for arranging the floor of the first floor.
As a rule, during repair and reconstruction, you do not have to choose from these options, they are due to the type of building and its design features. However, when building a new house, you can take into account all the pros / cons of each option and design in advance the necessary basis for a specific floor structure.
Logs on floor beams
This is the case when one cannot do without flooring on the logs at all. Basically, such floors are made in wooden houses, but more and more often in individual construction, wooden floors are also finding a place for the construction of walls from mineral materials. In this case, load-bearing beams are installed not only between levels, but also on the first floor (basement floor). This design eliminates the contact of wooden elements with the ground, which allows for high-quality thermal insulation, ventilation and naturally guarantees the durability and reliability of the floor..
It is not recommended to arrange a fine flooring directly along the floor beams, since during operation very serious sound vibrations will occur, transmitted to the walls of the house. Such a design, of course, is very inexpensive and the least labor-intensive, but it has a very high noise level. That is why it is necessary to use logs and various vibration damping pads..
Most often, the logs are installed perpendicular to the beams, placing gaskets of various noise-absorbing materials under them. A very interesting option is when the logs are screwed to the beams from the side with some protrusion above the floor plane. Powerful galvanized self-tapping screws with a diameter of 6 mm or more or a threaded connection using bolts or studs are used as fasteners. It is quite simple to set the plane with this method, but it is also required to clamp elastic gaskets between the lags and beams..
Working on floor beams, double floors are often made, consisting of two floorings – a log (final floor) and a selection (rough floor). The sub-floor is made of non-commercial low-grade wood – slabs, unedged boards or cut sheet materials – OSB, chipboard, plywood, etc. The selection is placed between the beams on “cranial” bars, after which sound and heat insulation materials are laid / poured on it.
Lags on the ground
The floors of the first floor can be arranged on independent supports that are not connected with the wall structure, which significantly reduces the level of vibration and sound vibrations. The posts for the installation of the lag are made of annealed red brick, they are installed on concrete foundations or crushed stone rammed into the ground. Also, screw piles can be used as support pillars..
The columns are installed with a distance of 500 – 100 mm between themselves and 300 – 500 mm along the axes between the rows, which will correspond to the intervals between the lags. Possible lag joints must be on the posts. The height of the posts is made such that the distance between the back of the floorboard and the base, the underlying layer does not exceed 250 mm. To ensure reliable waterproofing, sheets of durable roofing material and rubber are laid under the logs. Also, between the logs and brick posts, well-treated with an antiseptic gaskets are used from scraps of boards with a thickness of at least 25 mm.
Lags on reinforced concrete
Lags on a concrete base are installed through elastic pads with a thickness of at least 10 mm. They are located in the places where the logs are attached to the main floor. It is convenient to mount logs to reinforced concrete slabs by means of direct suspensions, which are used in drywall works. They need to be fastened with high-quality dowels with a mushroom stopper through rubber gaskets. “Pashka” is not a rigid load-bearing element, you cannot do without a set of gaskets of various thicknesses even on the most even screed – they are the ones that take the entire load. The “pawn” is quite mobile and elastic, and therefore does not transmit vibrations to the floor, with its help it is very convenient to set and fix the logs in the floor plane.
If the slab has serious irregularities, it is not necessary to mount the logs, using a large number of substrates, it is better to pre-level it with a cement screed..
There is also a technology for installing floors on adjustable joists. It is based on a system of fast and accurate leveling of the floor plane using special threaded polymer racks. In this way, you can easily raise the logs above the base up to 300 mm, which is very convenient when building multi-level floors and leveling very uneven subfloors. The adjustable bar design is lightweight and has good sound insulation performance as the uprights are made of plastic.
Some experts recommend not to attach the logs to the base at all in order to avoid the transmission of sound vibrations to the plate, however, in order to get a high-quality horizontal frame, you must have at your disposal perfectly flat and geometrically precisely made logs, as well as a well-prepared base.
For the device of the flooring, a board of both deciduous and coniferous species is used, the humidity of which does not exceed 12%. The thickness of the floorboard is calculated on the basis of the expected loads, but it is not less than 25 mm. The board can be connected along the length, but only the joints should be located with an offset of at least 500 mm and always on the same lag. Decking boards can be cut in the form of a quarter or tongue, or assembled end-to-end. The tongue-and-groove, groove-ridge connection provides the most tight fit of the boards to each other, and, accordingly, solid moisture resistance, thermal insulation of the floor as a whole. On the lower faces of the board, as a rule, several longitudinal grooves are made for air ventilation.
Before starting work, the floorboard should be brought inside the room for acclimatization at least 3-4 days in advance. By this time, all rough wet works must be completed in advance, the surfaces must be dried. The relative humidity in the room can be in the range of 40-60%, no more.
The board must be carefully sorted, selecting curved, knotty, damaged strips, this will greatly facilitate further work and ensure a flawless appearance of the finished product.
Most often, the floorboards are placed perpendicular to the wall with the window so that the longitudinal joints coincide with the direction of the prevailing light. However, if the floors are assembled on floor beams, then, in fact, there is no choice.
The first board is installed at a distance of 10-15 mm from the wall and fixed through the body so that the fastening elements are subsequently covered with a plinth. Inside the room, the board can be turned both with a ridge and a groove, it all depends on the method of fastening. Using a cord or a long rule attached to the side, it is necessary to check the accuracy of the installation of the first board in order to avoid arcing.
For the installation of the floorboard, strong galvanized self-tapping screws are used with a head for a sweep, at least twice the length of the flooring thickness. A hole for a self-tapping screw is drilled through a groove or ridge at an angle of 45-50 degrees, so that its head is covered by the next board. Self-tapping screws very reliably fix the flooring on the logs, preventing backlash and movement during operation, nails in this regard are somewhat inferior, although it is more convenient to work with them. Nails are also driven at an angle into a groove or ridge only without preliminary drilling, their heads are sunk into the wood using a doboiner. When installing the floorboard “end-to-end”, nails are hit through the face plate and sunk, after which they are closed with a dowel.
Each subsequent board is pushed onto the groove or crest of the previous one using a hammer and a wooden guide. If it is not possible to tightly squeeze the two strips, they resort to the help of a bracket hammered into the log, and two wedges with which the boards are pulled together. The gap between two adjacent boards can be no more than 1 mm.
Boards with their ends should not reach the walls by 8-15 mm, which will provide the necessary deformation gap and ventilation.
The last board is cut in width so that there is a gap near the wall. Install it using a wedge driven into a spacer with a wall, or with a special Z-shaped bracket. Like the starting strip, the last board is fixed through the front face with self-tapping screws, which will overlap with a plinth.
The diagonal arrangement of the floorboard looks very nice, in which the space visually expands, the interior gets features of novelty and dynamism. Note that for this option, the step between the lags must be done less than with traditional mounting methods. The unique effect of a deck floor is achieved by a combination of floorboards of different widths, especially since some manufacturers offer strips of several standard sizes.
Soundproofing wood floor
The problem of soundproofing is especially relevant when installing floors in multi-level buildings. One of the options for its solution is the installation of a “floating floor”, the main feature of which is the absence of rigid connections of its structure with the enclosing structures, which significantly reduces the level of impact noise. Hence the idea of using loose or “semi-fixed” lags (on straight suspensions, polymer stands) appears. It is to ensure sound insulation that all structural elements of the wooden floor are connected through gaskets made of elastic elastic materials..
Leave a gap of at least 10 mm between the floorboard and the walls, avoiding direct contact. Sometimes in these places a foamed perimeter tape is glued, which is cut off after installing the flooring.
Soundproofing material should not be laid close to the clean flooring, a gap of about 10 mm should be left for air circulation in the subfloor.
In addition to the floating floor, the issue of dealing with impact noise is solved by the use of sound-insulating materials, which are placed between the logs or in the space between the rough and final flooring of the double floor. If earlier expanded clay, dry coarse sand, slag were used for these purposes, now fibrous soundproofing materials, for example, basalt wool, which have excellent performance characteristics, are taking the lead. To soundproof the floor, you will need to lay a layer of wool of at least 50 mm, naturally, the mats should be well fitted to the logs, filling all the voids. It is recommended to cut the sound insulation boards 10-20 mm larger than the required size.
Wood floor ventilation
Properly arranged ventilation of a wooden floor allows you to quickly and fully remove moisture from the underground space, which prolongs the life of wooden structures and protects logs from decay. For good ventilation of the floor, a number of measures are taken at the stage of installation of the frame and flooring device.
As we have already said, the logs are placed on “point” pads, so free air movement is possible under them. A 10 mm gap is left between the flooring and the walls, which is covered with a baseboard. Samples are made on the inner faces of the floorboard. In two opposite corners of the room, “air vents” are arranged – a number of nearby small holes (about 10-15 mm in diameter) or a square or rectangular window in the flooring, covered with a decorative grill.
It is very good if the air is placed under the heater, this will provide additional air circulation.
The floors of the first floor of a private house are often made insulated over the basement. This makes it possible to organize ventilation of the “cold” subfloor. For this, in the basement part of the foundation, at the stage of its construction, air vents are arranged – holes of about 100×150 mm, closed from rodents with a fine metal mesh. The number and location of such vents is dictated by the design features of the building, the topography of the site, the direction of the prevailing winds, climatic conditions, etc..
Sometimes, to ventilate the subfloor of the first floor, as the most vulnerable, in addition to natural air circulation through the vents, forced ventilation is arranged. This is especially true when identifying errors in the design of ventilation and suspicion of moisture accumulation in the subfield. Duct fans and various ventilation ducts come to the rescue.
Wood flooring processing
In order for wooden floors to fully reveal their natural beauty, so that they become truly practical and durable, it is imperative that you take a set of measures for their decorative and protective treatment.
The initial stage of such work is the antiseptic treatment of logs and floorboards, which will protect the wood from the adverse effects of fungi and insects. Often such impregnation has properties not only biological, but also fire, as well as moisture protection of wooden structures. As a rule, the processing of the floor elements is carried out before they are installed in their places, covering the wood several times until the fibers are completely saturated. Particular attention should be paid to the ends of the lumber. The finished floorboard is opened completely, including the locks and bottom faces.
Once the floors are assembled, it is sometimes necessary to gouge and sand them. It must be said that a modern floorboard, due to its high manufacturability in its manufacture, has a very high quality of surfaces, an exact geometric shape of the section, which practically eliminates the complex work associated with the use of planers and grinders, you only need to accurately assemble the frame.
If you still need to plan and grind, then first check that there are no heads of nails and screw heads on the floor surface that can damage the working parts of the power tool. If necessary, fasteners must be upset to a suitable depth, the hole should be closed with a dowel (wooden plug). Local irregularities are putty with special elastic compounds matching the color to a certain type of wood. Planing is carried out on a slightly damp floor, all movements are done in the direction of the fibers, in places where a large machine is not suitable for processing (corners, edges of the floor against the walls …), you must use a hand tool.
The floor is sanded from a solid board in several stages, starting with large abrasives, gradually reducing the graininess. The first movements are done at an angle of 45 degrees relative to the floorboards, then – 90 degrees relative to the first pass, they complete sanding in the direction of the wood grain.
Grinding work is associated with the formation of a large amount of fine dust, therefore it is recommended to isolate adjacent rooms from contamination, provide ventilation, use personal protective equipment – glasses, respirator, headphones.
Often, wooden floors are made of light soft wood species, therefore, to imitate expensive hardwood, tonal stains are used, which significantly diversify the available color range of the finished product, and allow the floors to harmoniously combine with the general interior of the room. Stains are applied along the fibers with a brush, roller or spray in a continuous layer. To evenly distribute the pigment, the floors must first be cleaned of dust, oil contamination and thoroughly primed.
After the last coat of stain has dried, the protective varnish can be applied. A special, abrasion-resistant varnish is applied at least two times, and the more layers, the more reliable the coating will be. Each layer except the last one is sanded with fine-grain abrasives.
According to many criteria, the best compositions for protecting a solid wood floor are paints and varnishes made on the basis of vegetable oils and hard waxes, which penetrate deeply into the structure of the tree, but at the same time do not close its pores, which makes the floors “breathable” – very environmentally friendly and durable. Noteworthy are alkyd-urethane and water-based varnishes, they also have excellent performance characteristics. Features of the technology of applying protective and decorative compositions, as, in fact, the type of compositions themselves largely depends on the characteristics of the wood from which the floorboard is made.
Currently, it is not a problem to choose a suitable varnish for absolutely any conditions, the main thing is to apply it with high quality, this circumstance will determine the durability of the coating and how spectacular in beauty your wooden floor will turn out.