Underlayment Preparation For Installation of Resilient Floors

  1. A wood floor to be covered with a new resilient floor must first be properly prepared.
  2. Check panels for sources of discoloration such as contamination from paint, varnish, stain overspray or spills, plumbing sealers, asphalt, heater fuel, markers or potential staining agents such as wood or bark not visible on the surface, edge sealers, logo markings, printed nail patterns and synthetic patches.
  3. Remove old adhesive*
  4. Cover adhesive, oil or wax residue with an appropriate underlayment. If the residue is tacky, place a layer of felt or polyethylene sheeting over it to prevent a cracking sound when walking on the floor.
  5. Remove all paint, varnish, oil and wax from all subfloors. Many buildings constructed before 1978 contain lead-based paint, which can pose a health hazard if not handled properly. State and federal regulations govern activities that disturb lead-based painted surfaces and may also require notice to building occupants. Do not remove or sand lead-based paint without consulting a qualified lead professional for guidance on lead-based paint testing and safety precautions. AHF Products does not recommend the use of solvents to remove paint, varnish, oil, wax or old adhesive residues because the solvents can remain in the subfloor and negatively affect the new installation. Whenever sanding, be certain the work site is well ventilated and avoid breathing dust. If high dust levels are anticipated, use appropriate National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) designated dust respirator. All power sanding tools must be equipped with dust collectors. Avoid contact with skin or eyes. Wear gloves, eye protection and long-sleeve, loose fitting clothes.

NOTE: For additional information on the installation and preparation of wood and board-type underlayments see ASTM F 1482, “Standard Practice for Installation and Preparation of Panel Type Underlayments to Receive Resilient Flooring.”

*Some previously manufactured asphaltic “cutback” adhesives contained asbestos. For removal instructions, refer to the Resilient Floor Covering Institute’s publication Recommended Work Practices for Removal of Resilient Floor Coverings.

Additional Note:

Regardless of the type of underlayment used under resilient flooring, the responsibility for warranties and/or performance guarantees for the underlayment rests solely with the underlayment manufacturer and/or supplier and not with AHF Products. The types of subfloors and underlayment panels described here are intended only as a guide and should not be construed as a warranty for these products.

AHF Products cannot be responsible for:

  • joint or texture show-through
  • tunneling and ridging over underlayment joints
  • discoloration from stain sources in the panel, regardless of the type of underlayment panel used
  • underlayment panel problems caused by local climate conditions, basement wall and subfloor construction or improper installation

We strongly suggest that you secure a written guarantee and installation instructions from the supplier or manufacturer of the underlayment board being used.

Updated on September 20, 2022