OKOFLOOOR INSTALLATION GUIDE
Okofloor looks best when laid on a beautifully smooth sub-floor, which is easily achieved with the right preparation work. (No underlay required!) If you are looking for an experienced fitter, we can help – just email us your postcode. We have a list of fitters who have done a lot of work for our customers and who we have found to be reliable – though please note these are independent tradespeople and as such we cannot take responsibility for their work or any arrangement you make with them. See the Conditions of Use page for more details.
Below are guidelines for laying our Okofloor. Every endeavour has been made to ensure the information given here is true and reliable. It is given only for the guidance of our customers and for use with our recommended tools/adhesives. The company cannot accept any responsibility for loss or damage that may result from the use of this information, due to the possibility of variations of processing or working conditions and/or workmanship beyond our control. Users are advised to conduct their own tests for a particular application.
On delivery of your Okofloor, please remove it from its packaging and store it loosely rolled and set upright in the room that it is due to be laid in for at least 24 hours before installation. This will allow your flooring to acclimatize to the temperature of its new home. IMPORTANT Okofloor cannot be laid in cold temperatures. It is essential that prior to laying, the floor, subfloor and adhesive should have acclimatised to a temperature of 18°C to 27°C (in winter months this may take considerably more than 24 hours). The relative humidity should not exceed 65 %. Low temperatures cause the flooring to become rigid and make cutting harder, also increasing the risk of cracking while the floor is being cut.
Before cutting or installing your Okofloor, inspect it to ensure there are no visible defects and that all rolls are the colour and size you want, as we can't take items back once they have been used or fitted (see Conditions of Use and Sale). As with all flooring, there are small variations in colour between manufacturing batches. Therefore, it is essential that all the material required for each installation is ordered in one batch to ensure a perfect colour match between rolls. Make sure the floor on to which your Okofloor is being laid is smooth, flat and rigid. Ensure there are no cracks or gaps and that it is free of dust, grease, wax, paint and any other dirt, stains or contaminants. Obviously the cleaner and smoother your sub-floor, the better your vinyl flooring will look. There is no need to use an underlay with our Okofloor. If your sub floor is uneven we recommend you use a good-quality latex self-levelling compound, alternatively smaller uneven spots of more than 3mm can be filled with a rapid-drying deep-fill compound. For all subfloors, we recommend a final skim of Ardex Feather Finish to ensure the smoothest possible finish. The total build-up of the floor is approximately 3mm of latex self-levelling compound, a negligible skim of Ardex Feather Finish and 1mm of adhesive.
If you are laying on wood, for best results we recommend you remove all existing floor coverings, secure all loose boards and hammer down any protruding nails. Cover the floor area with either a 4mm or 6mm plywood - the thickness selected should be determined by the quality of the surface being covered. Ply should be of suitable quality, eg SP101. Wood should be fixed using screws, twisted shank or ring shank nails, serrated or divergent staples. All fixings should be countersunk and finished flush with the surface. Panels should be acclimatised to the site conditions before fixing as recommended by the supplier. Sand down any high spots. We recommend the use of an appropriate smoothing compound such as Ardex Feather Finish to level out depressions and fill gaps between boards. If your wooden subfloor is particularly uneven, apply a layer of self-levelling underlayment before the Feather Finish.
Chipboard may be used instead of ply if there is no movement between boards and extra care is taken in smoothing the surface.
On existing tiles
For best results with our Okofloorwe recommend removing all existing floorcoverings. If this is impractical, however, it is possible to install on top of existing tiles, so long as they are securely fixed and in a good state of repair. Thoroughly clean and prime first, fill any holes and gaps with a suitable repair compound and then use an appropriate self-levelling compound according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Skim with Ardex Feather Finish.
If you are laying on a concrete floor, the moisture level should not exceed 75%RH when tested with a hygrometer in compliance with BS8203-4; 2001. If readings above 75%RH are recorded, it must contain an effective damp proof membrane. Please bear in mind that if you are laying on new concrete it can take up to six months to dry out completely. If in doubt, consult your builder. Do not lay over expansion joints.
We recommend you then use a good-quality latex self-levelling compound, and a final skim of Ardex Feather Finish to ensure the smoothest possible finish.
Over underfloor heating
Your Okofloor is suitable for use with underfloor heating, as long as the temperature of the subfloor does not exceed 27°C. Check with your underfloor heating manufacturer for the recommended subfloor for use with resilient sheet flooring. The heating elements will need to be fully embedded in a well-bonded and appropriate levelling compound. Underfloor heating should ideally be switched on for at least four days before fitting and then switched off 24 hours before commencement of the work. Wait 48 hours after laying your new Okofloor before switching it on again and raise the temperature steadily until it reaches its normal temperature again over approximately 5 days. During this period, an alternative heating source should be provided, if required, to ensure that the area of installation is kept at a constant temperature of 18°C to 27°C.
CUTTING AND LAYING
For normal cutting a Dolphin knife with straight blade and a hooked blade can be used. The surface of the flooring should be scored with the straight blade, and then cut with the hooked blade along the scoreline. Use the hooked blade for cutting by doors and walls.
Note: the floor’s factory edges must be trimmed prior to installation. This can be achieved with an edge trimmer and then cut with the hooked blade. Or, in the case of an overlapping seam edge, using a seam edge trimmer, for instance Wolff Lino Cut, after placing the flooring into the adhesive bed.
For irregular-shaped rooms the easiest cutting technique may be to create a paper template of the floor and cut the Okofloor to fit the shape of the room before you lay it in place.
Otherwise, lay the material roughly cut, with an excess of around 10cm lapped up the walls so you can trim to fit exactly once the floor is fully in place. Also allow an overlap of approximately 3-5cm between pieces to account for cutting the seams later on.
Always work with your shoes off to avoid treading any grit into the underside of your new flooring. Starting against the longest continuous wall, roll out the flooring face up and lay it in the space it’s going to cover, taking care not to twist or damage the surface by folding back too sharply.
If necessary, make small relief cuts at right angles to the corners and alcoves to relieve tension and allow the material to lie flat on the floor. Avoid cutting in too tightly as this could stop the material lying flat - a gap of 1mm, the thickness of a credit card, between the edge of the floor and the skirting board is recommended to allow for buckling due to normal room expansion and contraction.
Fit the flooring one sheet at a time, moving the knife carefully and removing waste every so often to help you see that you are making an accurate cut. Take your time on this phase. Small mistakes along edges can be covered but a major blunder can be costly.
After trimming the seam edge, draw a pencil line on the substrate lengthwise along the trimmed edge. This line will serve as a spread line when applying the adhesive.
GLUING AND SEAM-CUTTING
The open time and working time of adhesives will vary depending on site conditions such as air temperature, humidity, the porosity of the subfloor and ventilation. It is the installer’s responsibility to adjust installation procedures according to site conditions and adhesive manufacturer’s instructions. All the recommended adhesives and tools in this section are available to purchase here.
We recommend that you fully adhere the entire floorcovering to the sub floor using our own Colour Flooring Vinyl Adhesive applied evenly according to the instructions on the tub with a 1.5mm Groove Trowel. Important: to avoid bubbling, please ensure you allow the glue to dry to a firm tack before laying in the Okofloor.
Use the appropriate trowel to spread the glue evenly and sheet by sheet according to the adhesive label instructions. Carefully work the ﬂoor into the adhesive using a suitable smoothing device.
Straight after installation and smoothing the floor covering, double cut the seam with a suitable seam cutter (e.g. “Linocut) to form a tight join.
Subsequent rolling of the ﬂoor covering using a segmented roller weighing at least 45 kg should take place 20 to 30 minutes after the floor covering has been smoothed down, across the width of the sheet and then along the length. Avoid shifting the adhesive bed - making concentrated pressure on the floor during the installation could lead to permanent indents.
It is not usually necessary to seal seams as a double-cut will result in a tight, barely visible seam.
In settings where hygiene is a priority (medical clinics etc), or where frequent water spills occur, hot welding my be the best option. Please contact us for matched welds.
Hot welding may be performed no sooner than 24 hours after installation or once the adhesive has set completely (see manufacturer’s instructions).
Groove the ﬂoor covering at least 2 mm deep and a maximum 3.5 mm wide along the joint. Set the hot- welding gun to about 450 °C. Use a 5 mm speed welding nozzle to introduce the welding rod. While the welding rod is still hot, use the spacing plate on the skiving knife to trim away half of the welding rod. Allow the remaining excess welding rod to cool off completely, then use the skiving knife without spacing plate to trim it down evenly to the wear layer of the ﬂoor covering.
After installing your Okofloor, we recommend cleaning it to remove any loose dirt or debris that may result from the installation process. Any small gaps at the edges of the room, especially around baths and toilets etc can be carefully filled with a silicon mastic. For the long life of your floor, it is important to ensure that its underside remains completely dry. Try not to walk on your floor for around 24 hours after installation (see adhesive manufacturer’s instructions). In areas of extremely heavy footfall, such as household entrances, we recommend using a doormat or other protective covering.