Julie Lord en Lifestyle, Home Decor, Professions, Workers, Careers 15/5/2018 · 2 min de lectura · +400

Floating Floors: Everything You Need To Know

Floating floors are a low cost and effective way to add flooring to your property. Here we look at the different aspects of floating floors.

Floating Floors: Everything You Need To Know

Floating floors are a modern way to install flooring for a low-cost and incredibly fast installation. Floating floors are not flooring types, but a way to install a floor. Instead of the floor tiles, or boards being attached to the floor, the tiles or board attach to each other either by mechanism or with a special glue.

Different Types of Floating Floors

You may think you haven't seen a floating floor before, but they are actually very common. Laminate flooring for example, is a common floating floor type. Laminate will almost never be found attached to the floor underneath. Luxury Vinyl is the same, and usually uses a special locking in mechanism to attach the pieces together. Engineered floor tiles can also be found in a floating floor capacity. Non slip tiles can also be used.

Floors That Are Not Floating

Some floors are not usually found to be floating floors such as hardwood which always has to be fastened to the original flooring. Ceramic tile is the same, although there are perhaps one or two floating types out there. Carpet is another non-floating floor type of flooring.

How Floating Floors Work

Floating floors can be compared to jigsaws because the pieces connect together to make a full picture. Floating floors connect together to make a full flooring effect only they connect to each other and not the floor underneath.

Floating Floors & Slippage

Traditional flooring sticks to the floor underneath, making it secure underfoot and unlikely or impossible to slip. A concern for some is that a floating floor may slip because it isn't attached to anything. It is important to understand that there are lots of factors stopping a floating floor from slipping. High quality floating floor tiles (especially large floor tiles) are often quite weighty so they are hard to shift. The friction between the flooring and the underlay will also stop the top floor tiles from shifting. The connection mechanism between the flooring will also stop slippage occurring. These factors combine to make it very hard to move a floating floor.

The Pros & Cons of Floating Floors

If you are considering having a floating floor fitted, you should consider the pros and cons as you would with any other floor type.


- Movement - Floating floors can freely expand and contract with the temperature without becoming damaged.

- Speed - It is very quick to add a floating floor to a property, much quicker than with an attached floor.

- Ease - It is easier to install a floating floor, so easy in fact most people could do it DIY.

- Price - It is cheaper to have a floating floor, at the very least because you don't have to pay anyone to fit it.


- Reduced thickness - The product will not be as thick as an attached floor which can mean it is less durable, doesn't last as long and it may not be as comfortable underfoot.

- Choice - Although there are lots of floating floor choices, there aren't as many as standard flooring.

- Quality - The quality of floating flooring is still not as high quality as a traditional floor. Although the quality is improving as demand increases, it isn't at the same standard as a traditional floor just yet.

Floating floors can be a fantastic option for homeowners who want to save money and time on floor installation. Do be sure to buy the best you can afford so it is as high-quality, and durable as possible as frequent needs for replacement may undermine your initial saving.

Phil Friedman 19/5/2018 · #1

@Julie - I've installed more than 10,000 s.f. of floating hardwood-faced engineered flooring. And I believe it is the most sensible approach to use, even when installing new flooring over new sub-flooring. However, your description of why a floating floor doesn't slip or shift is just plain wrong. Friction is not and cannot be a factor because proper installations involve the placement of a moisture-impermeable barrier under the floating floor, usually polyethylene sheeting or some form of thin sheet plastic foam, which actually makes the contact faces more slippery than otherwise. Neither does shift-resistance have to do with weight.

No, shifting of a floating is resisted by the walls of the room which form a bounding perimeter within which the floating floor sits with a perimeter gap of about 1/8" all around. The gap is hidden by the attachment of baseboards to the walls AFTER the flooring has been laid. The result is that the floor can expand and contract without buckling because of the hidden perimeter expansion joint and, yes, the floor can shift (although it tends not to once its loaded down with furniture), but only the maximum distance of the perimeter gap. Since closing that gap brings the floor hard against the bounding wall(s). Cheers!