Floating Floor or Cabinets first? or alternatives?

We are thinking of installing a cork floating floor in our kitchen and hallway, we have already purchased the flooring. Our cabinets are assembled but not yet installed in our kitchen. I have some questions:
1. Should be installing the flooring so it goes slightly under the front of the cabinets? and then cut the toekick shorter to fit over the flooring? 2. or should we install the toekicks first, then run the flooring up to the toekick? 3. Would we just use a moulding at the side of the cabinets where the floor meets the cabinet? 4. do we have to leave the same gap between the cabinets and the flooring as we do between the flooring and the wall?
We thought this was going to be simple click together flooring but in our instructions it says if used in high traffic areas (like our kitchen and hallway), that we should glue the long ends of the joints AND that in the kitchen we should give it an extra layer of water-based Verathane after installation. We've been 5 months without a kitchen while renovating the rest of the house, working, etc. and would really like to not eat out for Christmas, and this flooring is sounding like a pain in the butt now!
Anyone have an alternate, easier to deal with, flooring suggestion? Alternatives we have considered (for hallway and kitchen) and won't be using are:
- ceramic tile (have it in 2 other rooms and since we can't afford under floor heating right now, don't want the coldness or hardness) - hardwood (we have refinished the original, very narrow, maple hardwood from 1952 in 2 adjoining rooms and new hardwood would look really out of place next to the old stuff) - real linoleum (wouldn't be able to do this on our own, with install was several hundred dollars more than our cork for Marmorette which we didn't like the colours and we can't find someone with Marmoleum samples here) - vinyl flooring (don't want the glue, hate the shine, nice stuff is more expensive than our cork)
Thanks for any advice/suggestions!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
We are about to install cork from Natural Cork throughout our house. I did install Pergo in the kitchen about 6 years ago and the installation, at that time was simply tongue and groove glue together. After you get started it's not too difficult. Don't think it to death, get in and get dirty, it will work out fine.
As for gluing the ends, I don't think it will make the job much more difficult, my only concern is in keeping the cork clean. With the Pergo I didn't care if I was messy. Pergo is plastic, and the glue simply scraped off. I don't know about the cork.
I would install all of the cabinets first. Treat the toe kick as if it were your wall, same gap, etc., and after the floor is done place quarter rounds where the cork meets the toe kick - you can caulk as well I suppose. This will conceal the gap and make the floor look "finished." For the other walls we will be using a 3" molding.
Cork is supposed to be a very durable, quiet, warm floor. My Aunt installed cork in her kitchen about 2 years ago - still looks like new! My wife is from Portugal, and the fact that cork comes from there was a nice bonus! And it is even more eco-friendly than bamboo! The cork is simply shaved off of the cork-oak trees, which continue to grow for years and years.
Sorry for the long reply, but I'm excited about our new floor!

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks for the reply Larry. I am glad you are excited about your floor, this is helping me to remember how excited I was when I ordered ours! Are you also installing click together cork flooring? Ours is Natur by QuickStyle and has several layers of urethane (or verethane, can't remember which right now) on it already. I would hope that the glue would just scrape off a urethane suface? Heh, or maybe it'll just stick to it and never come off. :-) They said we should glue the long sides but can ignore the short sides so hopefully that will speed things up, I was just hoping no glue. That'll teach me for installing in a high traffic area.
We'll probably be installing ours in a couple of weeks so if you do yours first, email me and let me know how it went and anything I need t to look out for along the way!
Larry Davick wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

snip...
If you want to minimize the overall pain, consider flooring the entire area and set the cabinets OVER the flooring. That way you don't need to make any extra cuts. Just leave whatever expansion room around the edges the manufacturer calls for. An added benefit of doing it this way is that your dishwasher will be an easy slide-in slide-out job since there will be no lip to fight with. I did my laminate floor this way after stripping the kitchen/greatroom (24'X12-1/2') bare to the walls and the flooring became an incredibly easy job. And should I decide to move or change a cabinet I won't have to figure out how to patch/change the flooring to accomodate.
--
John McGaw
[Knoxville, TN, USA]
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yes
No
you could

probably NOT

Sure is a pain in the butt. that's why I like to call it crap!

an Ash floor would be a nice contrast.

do NOT place cabinets on pre-finished flooring the weight of the cabinets and countertops will make it compress. it does NOT make a good shim, especially if you use granite for the tops and there are seams.
If it were me I would install the cork flooring. very comfortable and warm.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Great info 3GCPO, thanks. Now I have another questions for you with regards to what you said. At one point you said "Sure is a pain in the butt. that's why I like to call it crap!" But, then later on you said you'd install the cork because it's warm and comfortable. So you confused me. :-) Are you suggesting, that even though it's a pain in the butt, install it? I just got worried with the "crap" statement, and am not sure if I should go through all this work if it is honestly crap. :-)
Thanks.
3GCPO wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

and
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 3 Dec 2003 11:43:09 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@shaw.ca (blue) wrote:

Yes.

No. It will show.

Yes. Usually something that matches the baseboard, but use your artistic abilities to decide if something that matches the toe kicks works better for your installation.

Just a little gap. Cover it with the toe kick.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
blue wrote:

You usually set your cabinets first on the subfloor and then run your flooring up close to but not tight with the cabinets, leave 1/8" or so gap that is hidden by the toekicks and optionally some shoe molding if desired.
Michael.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks for all the suggestions everyone. Looks like we are going to install and level the cabinets first, then run the flooring up about 1/8" away from the side of the cabinets and on the front run the flooring slightly underneath. On the sides we will use some moulding that will possibly match the baseboards to cover the gap and in the front we will trim the toe kick to go over the floor. Manufacturer's recommended gap along the wall will obviously be covered by baseboards.
Any suggestions on how to trim the height of a toe kick made of veneer covered fibreboard? They made them rather cheaply compared to the rest of the cabinets, probably because they are not very visible. My dad might already know how to trim them without wrecking them, but I haven't had a chance to ask him yet. I am scared that the veneer will get all hacked up or split.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

If you are installing the cabinets first, you really should shim the cabinets up to the hight of the finished fooring. The reason is that a dishwasher might have a hard time fitting into the space because if the floor is to thick there will not be enough room for it.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
PAUL100 wrote:

That's a good point. I think our current plan was to not put the flooring under the dishwasher (just enough under the front so it would appear to be under), but then there would be a lip to shove it over which could be just enough to make it difficult to squeeze in. Just when I thought I had it all planned out. :-) *sigh*
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

cabinets
dishwasher might

there
always install finished flooring under all appliances especially if there is water attached to it
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

cabinets
dishwasher might

there
spend the extra bucks, and put some flooring underneath so its all level.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks 3GCPO and SoCalMike. We have enough flooring to go under the dishwasher so we'll make sure do that.
SoCalMike wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
blue wrote:

Won't this throw your cabinets out of level ? I don't understand why you would want to do this... isn't your toekick material thick enough to cover a 1/8" gap between the floor and you cabinets in the front?
Michael
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Michael Burr wrote:

I don't think it will make them unlevel, here is a picture off the web site from the company who makes our cabinets: http://www.millspride.com/mills/installationguide/kit_basic_base_b.htm
When I meant underneath the front was underneath the overhang of the front, up to about 1/8" away from the 2 sides under the overhang (see step 6 on this url). The problem with the toekick (at least what I perceive to be the problem, perhaps I'm missing something!) is that the height of it is exactly the height from the underside of that overhang to the bottom side of the cabinet. This means that if I have flooring there which is 7/16" thick, my toe kick won't fit and I'd have to chop off 7/16" off the toe kick. Am I missing something?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I am finishing a kitchen right now with laminate flooring. The cabinets should go in first, if you put the flooring under the cabinets and you have a problem down the road and have to remove flooring you will figure out why in about 2 seconds. There should be a " cap between toe kick and flooring, this is to allow for expansion and also makes the install easier the cap will be covered by base board installed on toe kicks (the " cap dose not have to be dead nuts plus or minus a little won't hurt long as base board will cover cap. This is pretty much a guideline to install a floor (Vinyl flooring they usually cut tight to the wall)
As for other types of flooring you can go to any store and see what's out there. I putting the refinished laminate floor in the house I'm working on. Snap together easy to install (I do have all the tools and have 30 years experience swing a harmer) My personal opinion if it 's a wood floor or even the laminate (wood product core) and you in any area with water, Kitchen, Bathroom you asking for trouble. It dose look good but if you get a bad spill and water gets in the seams it will swell. The house I'm doing right now I am doing the kitchen but as soon as I'm done, it's for sale, cost about $400 for floor can't beat that.
Anyway any Floor you put in takes some basic Knowledge and skill but if you like to do that kind of stuff go for it there is no better teacher than experience. Buy some books ask some Questions. In my own kitchen I put in Designer solarium vinyl cost a lot but very hard not that cheap soft junk. But I did have it installed .

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Hey Sacrameto Dave,
Baseboards along the toekicks? To the best of my knowledge I have never seen this. In houses I've been in the flooring simply goes right up to the toe kick. I was thinking moulding might be the answer, then no cutting up toe kick, but it coveres the gap.
Our cork floor does have an HDF core but the manufacturer recommends an extra coat of water-based Verethane in a kitchen to aid in prevention of water in the seams. We are following this recommendation.
Thanks for the info on the gap.
Sacrameto Dave wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
The one thing I really like about laminated flooring is how easily it comes up once you suffer a major water leak. I installed a Wilsonart laminate in the kitchen and diningroom of my old house. About a month later I came home from taking the kids to school and running an errand and walked in the front door only to hear this great rush of water. I looked down to see the spreading puddle taking over the rug in the living room. Entering the kitchen, I found one of the hoses underneath the sink had busted a hole and the gush of water had pushed the cabinet door of the sink open. The $1000 floor as well as all the insulation and a few hundred books in the basement was destroyed. All together about $8000 in damage was done.
But the flooring came up nice.
snipped-for-privacy@sbcglobal.net says...

--
Bait for spammers:
root@localhost
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.