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Engineered wood floor?

I am installing a radiant slab in a home that's getting an engineered wood floor.  Apparently it will be a 1/2" thick alder base with a 1/4" white oak skin on top.  I thought engineered wood floors were a type of plywood with 1/8" skins or thinner on top.  Anyhow, I believe it was mentioned that the floor installer will be glueing the boards to the floor.  This doesn't sound right to me.  Am I right to think that it's better to glue the tongues to the grooves and have the whole floor 'floating' on a thin pad of some sort?  I have also installed radiant slabs with a double layer of plywood on top and then the hardwood floor.


  • Gordan
    Gordan Member Posts: 891
    Sounds like good flooring

    The thick wear layer is a good thing; it'll give you the ability to refinish the floor in the future, should you need to. As for floating versus glue-down, you should contact the manufacturer and see what method they would recommend. Anything you put between the flooring and the slab (be it some sort of pad or plywood) will have an impact on the heat output that's commensurate to its R-value (and to its tendency to create air gaps.) With glue-down, one might be concerned with shear that would result from different thermal (or moisture-related, for wood) expansion of the slab and the floor, but I'm not a flooring expert so, again, check with the flooring manufacturer.
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