Technical FAQs

Find answers to some common technical questions

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Is your flooring linoleum?

We only provide sheet vinyl flooring. Sheet vinyl and linoleum are two different types of flooring. While both are sheet goods, linoleum is actually made with ingredients like linseed oil (from where it derives its name), rosin, mineral fillers, and a burlap or canvas jute backing.

What are the advantages of resilient flooring?

Resilient flooring is an alternative to other hard surface flooring, such as marble, terrazzo, or wood. We provide sheet vinyl flooring, a type of resilient flooring, which has the benefits of comfort under foot, sound absorption properties, and wear resistance.

What does resilient mean?

When referring to flooring, this term is intended to denote the flooring’s ability to recover from a point or dynamic load. Indentations left by these types of loads will recover over time.

What types of indentations can be expected with your flooring?

Sheet vinyl is a resilient flooring, and by its nature will show indentations. The comfort underfoot that it provides comes with this trade-off. The type, depth, and frequency will all depend on the use of the area where the flooring is installed. In most cases, indentations will rebound within a few hours, possibly quicker. However, if the point load is high, it may take longer.

If you are concerned an indentation is permanent, we recommend a “tape test.” This involves putting a piece of painter’s tape at the indentation location and returning to check on it periodically. This is helpful in areas where the source of indentation is moved or re-positioned regularly, such as a chair or patient bed. We would also recommend verifying that all furniture protectors or castors have a minimum 1-1/2 in. diameter contact area or that any castors or wheels used are suitable for vinyl flooring. There is a difference between a castor meant for vinyl flooring and one for carpet.

Lastly, indentations from high heels, especially stiletto heels, can cause permanent indentations in resilient flooring due to the extremely high point loads they create.

How high of a point load can your flooring handle?

Unfortunately, there is no reliable test method to determine this information. Neither ASTM F970 nor ASTM F1914 are meant to determine maximum load, and there is no current standard developed as of yet to determine this information. Our flooring performs well in areas using occupied patient beds and other similar settings, and select flooring is tested per ASTM F2753.  ASTM F2753 is only a qualitative test, and the parameters we have chosen are suggestive of the kind of situation our flooring may encounter.

If you have questions about using our flooring in an area expected to have high dynamic or static loads, please feel free to contact our Technical Department. You could also visit RFCI’s website to review further information on static load limits.

How do you determine the tests performed on your flooring?

The tests performed are based on jurisdictional requirements or industry standards. In some cases, we choose to perform additional tests in order to provide customers with as much information as possible. More information on the tests performed can be found in each of our Product Specifications or reviewing the published test standards.


Can I install your flooring over a radiant heating system?

Yes, but certain conditions will apply. The maximum allowed temperature is 85 °F (28.4 °C). The system must also be checked for hot spots and repaired if any exceed the maximum. If it is an in-slab system and repair is not possible, then we do not recommend installation of our flooring in the affected area. Exposure to substrate temperatures in excess of 85 °F could cause adhesive failure or discoloration of the flooring over time. Additional information may be found in our Interior Flooring Manual.

Can your flooring be used in kitchens?

We do not recommend installation of our flooring in kitchens.  The constant exposure to the high heat from stoves and other appliances can cause discoloration over time.  In addition, exposure to high temperature fat spills could damage the surface of the flooring, cause staining, and create potential slip hazards.  Our flooring is usable in prep areas and other locations outside of the kitchen proper, away from the situations mentioned above.  Note that our flooring is not considered a “safety flooring”, and spills should always be cleaned up immediately to avoid potential slip hazards or damage.

Is your flooring suitable for residential installations?

We only provide commercial-grade sheet vinyl, and it is not intended for residential use.  Should you still choose to install in a residence, please contact your Sales Representative for more information. A warranty waiver will be required for any residential installation.

What does semi-exterior mean?

Our semi-exterior products contain UV inhibitors that allow it to tolerate more UV exposure than typical vinyl flooring before damage or discoloration occurs.  The amount of time before the UV light affects the flooring will vary depending on the installation conditions, location, and exposure limits.  A semi-exterior location is one that is not constantly exposed to direct sunlight and physically covered or protected when not in use.  For full exterior, constant UV exposure, our Londeck products are recommended.

Can I loose lay your flooring?

This is not recommended as sheet vinyl can expand and contract depending on the ambient temperature and its fluctuations. Except for temporary installations, all our flooring must use a full spread of adhesive.

If you have a temporary installation, some adhesion to the substrate is still required and should be done following the instructions in our Exhibits & Show Floors Installation Guide.


Why are both calcium chloride and RH tests required for installations over a concrete slab?

Performing both tests can provide a more detailed “picture” of what is occurring within the slab. Having as much information as possible prior to installation will allow for any appropriate measures to be taken to ensure a successful, long-term installation when moisture issues are present.

My concrete slab is x years old or on the nth floor, do I still need to perform concrete moisture testing?

Absolutely. A slab’s age or location plays little part in whether or not moisture vapor may be present. Only proper testing can determine a slab’s suitably to receive a flooring system.

What are your concrete moisture requirements, and what do I do if mine are higher?

Our moisture requirements will vary by the adhesive. Please refer to each adhesive’s TDS for their requirements. If the results of any one of these tests are above the listed maximum, please contact our Technical Department for recommendations and options.  Further information may also be found in our Interior Flooring Manual.

How do I remove old flooring and its adhesive?

We strongly recommends following RFCI’s “Recommended Work Practices for Removal of Resilient Floor Coverings” available on their website.


Can the #650 Two-Component Solvent-Free Epoxy Adhesive be mixed in small batches?

Unfortunately, this is not recommended. The two parts are not equal in volume, so keeping an accurate ratio would be extremely difficult. Any variation in the ratio of Part A to Part B will affect the overall performance of the adhesive, possibly jeopardizing the installation.

If you are in need of epoxy adhesive that may be mixed in smaller batch sizes, please contact our Technical Department for possible alternate adhesives.

I cannot find the trowel size recommended for your adhesive, can I use a different size?

The trowel size is provided to us by our adhesive manufacturers, based on their adhesive’s design and testing with our flooring. The use of a trowel size other than what is recommended will result in too little or too much adhesive being applied. If too little adhesive is applied there will be insufficient bond to the substrate and the flooring’s performance will be affected. If too much adhesive is applied, the adhesive may never properly cure and the flooring will end up with surface deformities or adhesive displacement issues when a load is applied.

The trowels noted are not typically found at “big box” stores, but can be found at stores specializing in flooring installation tools. One of the necessary trowels may also be purchased from us directly.

What is the difference between open and working time, and what is flashing off?

Open time is the amount of time that is required to pass before placing the flooring into the adhesive. This is also referred to as flash time. This “flashing off” is the time period when the moisture and other components in the adhesive are allowed to evaporate. Sheet vinyl is considered non-porous, so if it is placed into the adhesive too early, the excess moisture or components in the adhesive can become trapped beneath the vinyl and adhesive issues could arise.

Working time is the amount of time after the adhesive is placed that it will accept the flooring. Essentially, the difference between the open time and the working time is the time frame an installer has to actually place the flooring into the adhesive.

Both open and working times are always dependent on job site conditions and some variance could occur. A bond test can help an installer determine optimal open and working times under the specific conditions of their job.

If one of our adhesives list the same amount of time for both open and working time, this means it is a “wet set” adhesive, and the flooring should be placed into the adhesive as soon as possible after it is troweled.

Why is glazing of a heat welded seam required?

Glazing the welding thread after making the final skive will do two things. First, it will re-seal the thread preventing it from collecting any potential soiling. Second, it will ensure correct color matching between the thread and flooring.

Note that our RapidThread has been designed to eliminate the need for glazing. We are in the process of transitioning our welding threads to this new version. Please review the Welding Thread List to see if the thread you are using will require glazing.

Why is a urethane nozzle (Part #ZZ65) required for some floors?

For our factory-applied urethane finishes (high gloss and Topseal products), use of the urethane nozzle prevents damage to the finish by concentrating the heat into the groove. Use of a standard speed nozzle will scorch or blister the urethane finish, causing permanent damage.

Can the urethane nozzle (Part #ZZ65) be used for flooring without a factory-applied urethane finish?

While the urethane nozzle is required for heat welding floors with a factory-applied urethane finish, it may also be used for unfinished floors. The usual requirements of a higher temperature and slower speed will still apply, as this is tied to the design of the nozzle. While its use may increase the time to perform a heat weld, it can greatly reduce or eliminate the usual glossiness that can appear on either side of the seam with some products.

What is the difference between a heat weld and a chemical weld?

A heat weld uses a vinyl welding thread to join two adjacent sheets of vinyl together. While a chemical weld uses a chemical compound to do this. When performed successfully, both types will create one continuous sheet of flooring.

Note that a heat welded seam is recommended when the installation area may be exposed to excessive surface moisture or when a seam is required to be impervious to microbial growth, such as in a healthcare setting. The reason is that a heat weld’s integrity can be verified during the installation process by the installer tugging on the thread to ensure proper fusion. There is no way to verify a chemical weld’s integrity during installation, and an inadvertent error during installation could result in a weak spot or lack of fusion between the sheets. This would result in a gap for moisture or microbes to get into the seam.


Why is there a shine at the sides of my heat welded seam?

This shine is normal when using a standard speed nozzle for heat welding unfinished flooring, and its appearance may be more noticeable on certain products. This gloss will diminish over time or be eliminated once a finish is applied. Using the urethane nozzle (Part #ZZ65) is an option to greatly reduce or eliminate this occurrence.

What is meant by initial maintenance?

This step is most critical for unfinished flooring after it has been installed, since it requires the application of a floor finish. The application of a finish to unfinished flooring gives it extra protection to prolong the life of the flooring. Failure to apply a finish can result in the flooring being exposed directly to soiling. In some cases, certain soiling may permanently stain or damage the surface of the flooring. A finish takes the brunt of the abuse and protects the actual flooring. A damaged or stained finish can be replaced for a lot less than a damaged or stained flooring.

Initial maintenance for our flooring with a factory-applied finish consists of a thorough cleaning with a neutral pH cleaner.

Further details on our initial maintenance requirements may be found in our Maintenance Guides.

Why do I need to wait 48 hours after install to perform the initial maintenance?

This time frame is to ensure the adhesive(s) have had enough time to cure before introducing the amount and type of traffic onto the flooring the procedure requires.

Why is a neutral pH cleaner recommended?

A neutral pH cleaner is used to prevent damage to the finish and flooring underneath. Use of alkaline cleaners like ammonia or bleach can damage the finish. Even when diluted, these types of cleaners could, over time, break down the finish and cause damage or discoloration to the flooring beneath. An acidic cleaner should also not be used for the same reasons.

Always check with the manufacturer of your maintenance products to confirm the suitability of their product for use with vinyl flooring and its acrylic or urethane finish. They will provide all support and hold all warranties for their product’s performance. Please refer to the Recommended Maintenance Products chart for products from manufacturers that have tested and approved their products for used with our flooring.

Can disinfectants be used with your flooring?

We only recommend disinfectants that are suitable for use with vinyl flooring and its acrylic or urethane finish. Always verify the disinfectant’s suitability for use with the product’s manufacturer, as they will not only be able to confirm its use with vinyl flooring and its applied finish, but also if the disinfectant will meet your specific needs. They will provide all support and hold all warranties for their product’s performance. Please refer to the Recommended Maintenance Products chart for products from manufacturers that have tested and approved their products for used with our flooring


Can Londeck be installed as roofing?

At this time Londeck is only classified as a Walking Deck System under ESR-2091 and should not be used as a roofing product. Londeck should only be installed on balconies or decks over non-living spaces. Local codes vary, and the use of Londeck on a balcony or deck over a living space should be confirmed with local officials prior to specifying Londeck for the project, as they will have the final say on its approval.

Why is an overlap weld required?

Chemical and heat welded seams are typical seam treatments for interior sheet vinyl installations, but can be problematic with exterior installs. Exterior sheet vinyl is intended to act as a waterproof system, and the use of an overlap weld helps to ensure the system remains uncompromised for the life of the flooring.

Is a sealant always needed for Londeck installations?

While the adhesives used may vary depending on the installation conditions , a sealant is the one product that will always be required. It is used anywhere there is an exposed edge of Londeck or a termination at the perimeter of the installation area. These two conditions will always exist in any installation of Londeck.  Its use is to provide an extra layer of protection and to help ensure the installation is waterproof.

We recommend and stock Lexel® Clear Sealant for use in Londeck installations.  Silicone sealants can have bonding issues with vinyl, and any sealant used must be compatible with vinyl products.  Lexel® has been tested and approved for use by its manufacturer with our flooring.  We cannot guarantee a waterproof installation of Londeck if an unrecommended sealant is used.

Can Londeck be installed indoors?

Yes. When installed in a fully interior, conditioned space, Londeck is treated like any other interior flooring we offer. Its installation will follow the instructions in the Interior Flooring Manual and will be maintained per the Unfinished Flooring Maintenance Guide.

If installing in a semi-exterior or interior, unconditioned space, such as an enclosed patio or screened porch, it is recommended that the installation be treated as a full exterior installation per the Londeck Manual.

Please contact Lonseal’s Technical Department if you are unsure of the correct installation method to use based on your installation conditions.