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Best Adhesive For Sheet Vinyl Flooring

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At the stage where I'm going to install my sheet vinyl over my Baltic Birch subfloor. Baltic Birch was painted with Zinsser mold killing paint. My sheet vinyl is not "felt backed", it's a vinyl/rubber/plasticky material on the backside.

Faroutride used a pressure sensitive vinyl flooring adhesive, similar to this one: https://www.lowes.com/pd/TEC-TEC-Sh...-_-c-_-prd-_-mdv-_-gdy-_-all-_-promasterforum

The pros to this are if you apply it correctly, it technically allows you to remove the vinyl flooring if you ever want to replace it, without damaging the subfloor. Downside is I don't think it will really allow you to reposition the vinyl sheet as you lay it or once it's down, as it's tacky and doesn't allow you to slide the sheet at all. Would make for a harder installation keeping everything straight and flat. You can also install the flooring while it's still wet for a permanent bond, which I think would also let you reposition a bit.

Alternatively, there are more traditional floor adhesives like this: Roberts 7350 1 Gal. Universal Flooring Adhesive-7350-1 - The Home Depot
Which might work better to let me reposition the floor as I go. I'm doing one continuous piece of sheet vinyl front to back in my HR extended, so its big.

Final option would be something like this Lonseal 650 epoxy adhesive, probably the best for a vehicle application where the temperatures will swing a lot (far outside what most normal floor adhesives are designed for). This is very permanent though.



Regardless of adhesive, I'm planning on doing 1 section at a time, by laying some adhesive (~3ft sections), then rolling the sheet out to the edge of the adhesive patch, then lay a few more feet of adhesive, and repeat.


Anyways, anyone have any recommendations for an adhesive to use for sheet vinyl?
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Discussion Starter · #21 · (Edited)
I’ll maybe give him a shout. I’m not sure how much help flooring guys will be, Epoxy is pretty much only used in vans to glue down vinyl I imagine (not in buildings). But he may have some insight.

the bubbleswent away last night when it got cold (40-50 degrees). Returned today when the van got warm (80 degrees out?), even with the floor out of direct sunlight

half the bubbles are going to be hidden by cabinets, so not sweat there. For the other ones, I think I’m going to try pricking a needle in and injecting adhesive, then rolling it flat and putting a bunch of weights on it

I”m currently running a test with a trowel that has a thin coating of hardened epoxy on it. I cut small strips of scrap sheet vinyl, and glued each one down to the epoxy surface onto the trowel.

I’m trying:

silicone RTY clear silicone adhesive/Sealant
GE advanced silicone
Dicor self leaving sealant
Loctite premium 3x construction adhesive
3M Windo-Weld Urethane sealant/adhesive
3M 5200

all of these will have to bond to two non-porous ~smooth materials, which isn’t ideal. InhVe high homes for them though, we’ll see which adheres the best. I’m hoping it’s one of the less viscous ones (Loctite 3x, Dicor, silicone)
 

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You might try injecting epoxy. I've not found silicone to be useful as an adhesive. 5200 will bond it but it's about as messy as it could be. West systems has syringes that are silicone free plastic to avoid compatibility issues.

You may find that slicing the vinyl is necessary to get adhesive under it. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Epoxy doesn’t bond too well to dried epoxy unless you can rough the surface up, which I can’t. And it appears to not have bonded too well the vinyl backing itself.

I am considering cutting slits to let me distribute enough adhesive for the whole bubbled area
 
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I would say nix the silicone. Unless it works perfectly forever it could become a real headache down the line. Nothing else will ever stick. Ever. It's really hard to get rid of that contamination. (I also don't feel like it would work very well anyway.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 · (Edited)
Noted, thanks. I just used the adhesives I had in my garage haha.

I'm open to other options too (preferably thin/runny adhesives so they spread better. I might look at Loctite 9x premium construction adhesive, I think that and the 3x both work on non porous surfaces.
 

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So do you think the epoxy is sticking to the foam but the foam is pulling away from the vinyl? Or maybe the epoxy is not sticking to the foam (which I wouldn't totally expect it to).

One thing about polyurethanes (4200, 5200, etc.) is that they are moisture-cured. I think I remember you are in Arizona. I have had polyurethanes take FOR-E-VER to cure in dry air (and even then I was misting them with water occassionally. I'm not saying that would be a problem for sure as I haven't used it in your exact situation.

I wonder about using something like WEST G-Flex. It's still epoxy, but it does stick to some things that typical epoxy has a hard time with (aluminum boat rivet repair, for example). It's more flexible (relatively) when cured. Not that you want flex, but I wonder if that would allow it to stay "grabbed" to the foam backing you have?

Ugh, I'd probably rip it all out and start over with Lonseal (but then no-one should necessarily follow my example on projects 🤣 ).
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
I love the vinyl I have, it looks much better than any of the lonseals IMO. It has a cool texture. However it is definitely thinner and less durable, and I’m now paying the price for the choice because I had no confirmation the epoxy would bond well the the backing on the tarkett vinyl

I’ve thought about ripping it up, but then I’d have a floor covered in smooth epoxy (assuming I can even get the sheet vinyl up, it seems well adhered in most places). I probably installed it too well, the edges are all sealed now with silicone.

I’m in California (bay) so it’s decently humid here

If I could do it again I’d use lonseal though.

Automotive tire Wood Road surface Asphalt Sky
 

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It looks really sharp!

I have tried different foam applicators with epoxy, but noted some will decay. The other thought is air simply got caught in a bubble and wouldn't roll out to the edge once the epoxy started to kick off.
 

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Sorry, I think I got you confused with Van Gogh 😌

The floor does look really nice.

Thinking it over I think I would try some WEST G-flex on a spare bit of the flooring to see how it worked with the foam backing. It has some properties that might help for those small areas vs. regular old 105 resin/hardener.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
The bubbles weren't there before, but I can feel some bumps/rough spot in the epoxy underneath the vinyl there, so its possible there just wasn't a good bond due to clumps in those areas.

G-flex is a good idea, I'll buy some and do a test on my trowel with that too.
 
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Might be a dumb idea and depending on how big the sections are that are coming up, but what about CA glue? Its mainly listed for woodworking, but its pretty solid stuff joining to different kinds materials. The thin stuff is very much a liquid, and comes with some little needle spouts. Might be able to poke a small hole in a bubble to get it to seal back down. Might be worth a try?

Amazon.com: Starbond 2 oz. Thin CA Glue, 2 oz. Medium CA Glue, 2 oz. Thick CA Glue, 6 oz. Aerosol Accelerator Bundle, Cyanoacrylate Adhesive Super Glues for Woodworking, Woodturning, Guitar, Hobby : Industrial & Scientific
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
It's not. I'll add CA to the list.

Here's what I'm going to test in total:

First batch (probably won't end up using any of these)
silicone RTY clear silicone adhesive/Sealant
GE advanced silicone
Dicor self leaving sealant
Loctite premium 3x construction adhesive
3M Windo-Weld Urethane sealant/adhesive
3M 5200

Second Batch
Gorilla Glue (Original) - Would probably be ideal, but expands 4x so might not work here
Gorilla Glue (Clear) - Doesn't expand, but isn't waterproof
Gorilla Max Strength Clear Construction Adhesive: Waterproof and doesn't expand, but thick
Starbond Thin CA (will spread easily, but hard to say how durable the bodn will be over time)
Starbond Medium CA (still spreads easily, but a little more subtance
Starbond Rubberized Medium-Thick CA (Rubber additive might help keep it flexible)
G-Flex Epoxy

All of these second batch can bond to glass, so I'm hoping they work well with the thin, smooth epoxy underneath the vinyl.
 

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If there was any doubt about using sheet vinyl that can be floated without glue.... This situation means one cannot go over the top with a new sheet years down the road as I did with my TT, because the the flaws below will show in the new piece of vinyl.

If it were me I would consult with a Pro on what to do before any build gets going to make it harder later to remove if that indeed is the best option.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Well the good news is both the Loctite premium 3x adhesive and the 5200 worked excellent on my test samples. The vinyl backing itself ripped before the adhesive bond broke.

the 3x adhesive is easier to spread/inject, so I’d go with that over 5200.

I may try a couple of the others and see how they do

In hindsight, I definitely should have tested the bare wood floor to vinyl bond with the west systems epoxy before using it for the whole floor. I think it could have just troweled the 3x adhesive the same way as the epoxy over the whole floor and installed it that way originally. Would have worked great

Half tempted to rip the vinyl UL and do that for the whole floor, but I’m still not sure I can get it all to release easily from the epoxy
 

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I've been wondering how you were making out with that "repair." Glad to hear your tests gave you two good options (y) Always sucks when something you thought you finished and came out great..... turns out you have to go back.

So yeah, now.... do you let sleeping dogs lie on the theoretically bonded sections? Try to rip them up? Or....
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
I think the “easy” choice is try to fix the bubbles. If I’m happy with how it turns out, I have a few weeks while I do other things that it won’t be terrible to tear the floor out of it fails somehow, then I’ll rip everything up
 
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Careful w/ your vinyl choice and adhesive.

I used a combination of lonseal vinyl and gfloor coin dot and, if I were to do it over again, I would go fully lonseal. I say that because the lonseal just feels like a better product and the fact that it has a mesh backing allows you a larger set of options when it comes to adhesive choice. For the gfloor vinyl, the only adhesive that worked for me was the adhesive that gfloor sells.

For the lonseal vinyl, I used Roberts 2350 but wound up having delamination issues if the vinyl got too hot in scenarios such as direct sunlight. Not a huge issue for the floor but a big issue for some vertical surfaces such as my steps. For vertical surfaces I wound up using West System epoxy w/ colloidal fiber additive. Worked amazingly well and it's what I would use for both horizontal as well as vertical surfaces in the future. Just absolutely bomber, no worries about temp changes.
Would that be west systems 105 and 406?
 

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Gonna say it again: the best adhesive is NO adhesive. Get a good grade of Commercial vinyl that is rated to be installed without adhesive. Occam's Razor.
 

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Gonna say it again: the best adhesive is NO adhesive. Get a good grade of Commercial vinyl that is rated to be installed without adhesive. Occam's Razor.
Do you have any names or manufactures of this vinyl flooring?
 
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