When you are fixing any product to your floor, you need to ensure any variations are corrected first. If you don’t, then any imperfections can follow through to your choice of finished floor.
Many factors can affect if your floor is flat and even enough to add flooring or whether levelling is required?
- What type of flooring will you be laying on top?
- Do you have high spots?
- Are your floors running out?
- Have you knocked out a wall and have different heights between floors?
- Or is just a bit of a pigs ear and all over the place?
Obviously, the better the base floor, the easier it is to fit your flooring and the better it will look.
Differences between floor finishes and levelling requirements
Cushioned Vinyl Flooring and Luxury Vinyl Tiles (LVT) will both follow the floor and show up any bumps, indentations, grooves etc. A smooth surface is essential for a good finish.
Similarly, laminate flooring may seem a little bouncy once fitted if the floor underneath is not level and extra underlay has been used to try to level off the floor. So levelling may be recommended to improve the fit.
Fitting tiles allows a small amount of unevenness to be taken out with tile adhesive, but only a small variation. For larger differences it is simpler to use a self levelling compound. Plus the advent of larger format tiles makes the flatness of the floor doubly important to prevent lipping and mismatched tile edges.
How do you check if you floor is uneven?
To check the floors suitability, lay a 2 metre straight edge and rotate it gradually through 360 degrees. Then constantly check at floor level to see if any gaps appear beneath the bottom edge of the level which exceed 3mm.
How do I do the levelling?
Any gaps greater than 3mm can be corrected using Ultra Level IT One, a single part concrete levelling compound. Level IT One can correct a depth of between 3mm and 50mm.
It is simple to use. But remember you must shutter or seal off any areas where you do not want the levelling compound to run into. Otherwise it will find its own level in these places or gaps.
Simply follow the easy to use instructions on the bag before applying.
How long does it take to dry?
This does depend upon the thickness applied, environment, temperature etc., but generally it should be foot dry in about 3 hours. However, self levelling compound doesn’t have the nicest smell in the world. So if you were to ask me, I would suggest shutting off any doors where it is being used and leave it overnight.
How should the floor look once levelled?
Basically it should look like a skating rink. That smooth and that even.
What happens if your levelled floor still looks uneven?
Generally, if your floors still remain uneven after levelling, it is either because the product used is of inferior quality or an insufficient quantity of levelling compound has been used. If you skimp on the quantity of bags applied, your floor may still be uneven.
Bags of self levelling compound aren’t cheap so it is easy to understand why you may want to skimp on the quantity. But do this at your peril.