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Last-minute DIY bathroom floor

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Flyover

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We were supposed to get the floor in our (very small, <35ft^2) master bathroom installed today. It will be vinyl planks (or laminate? not sure), cork-backed. Advertised as waterproof, for use in bathrooms. I know some of you here don't like the cork-backed stuff, but we've already purchased them under the advisement of our contractor so that's what we're installing.

Our contractor just said he had a family emergency and won't be coming and will be unavailable for 2 weeks. I've already demo'ed the sink and cabinet so right now our bathroom is just a toilet and shower, with our new cabinet queued up in the garage. Therefore I'm considering doing this floor job myself.

I know I need to remove the toilet, and I guess I'm up for that; I will buy a new wax seal for when I replace it. What I'm not sure about is what else I need. Here's what the contractor said he was going to do:

Our existing floor is one big laminate sheet. He said he was going to lay the new planks right on top of it. And he wasn't going to remove the baseboard, but he advised me to install quarter-round at the bottom after he was done, to hide the edge.

Is that it? I've seen videos in which people lay something additional underneath the planks. I've seen ones where they actually caulk all the way around the floor at the end. Our contractor didn't mention doing any of this, but he might have planned on it. I know he said he was going to replace the threshold/transition thing, which I'm happy to worry about on some other day.
 

joecaption

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The install directions for whatever brand flooring you bought should be able to be seen on line and need to be followed to the letter.
The types of flooring your suggesting often have to have a small gap around the outside edges so it can expand and contract so caulking should not be used.
We have no pictures to see what your going to have to work around so I'll mention a few general rules.
In most cases it would be best to remove that threshold before installing the flooring.
I always try and start the flooring along the bathtub to make sure there's a full width piece there.
You never want to have short pieces at the end of a run, a simple way to test it is to just lay the pieces out in a row and see how it ends up, you want it to be at least 6".
If it's less just take some off the first piece on the end that meets the wall, whatever you take off will increase the length of the last piece.
You do not want the seams of each row to line up with the row before it, you do not just take the same amount off the next rows or it will do what's called stair stepping.
If you use a laminate your going to need a Jig Saw or at Least a coping saw to make the curved cut around the toilet flange.
 

Flyover

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Update: nevermind, we're having someone else over to do it next week.
 

slownsteady

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Too bad. You missed an opportunity to do a somewhat easy project in a small area....a good test for larger rooms in the future.
 

Flyover

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@slownsteady: I hear ya. That, plus saving a few hundred bucks and the satisfaction of ownership, is what I've got in the "do it myself" column as well. Unfortunately there's a long list of stuff in the other column this time around. But who knows, I'll run the idea past my wife again. I'm already going to have to do the toilet removal/reinstall myself, and that's the part I was most deterred by.
 

slownsteady

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Make sure the water is turned off ( and the valve doesn't leak) and that the toilet is empty. After that, the hardest part is the lifting.
 

Flyover

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Update #2: I am going to do the floor myself after all. The kicker was thinking about strangers parading in and out of my house during a pandemic.

Question: I'm going to put quarter-round down along the baseboard after the floor is installed. Currently there's no baseboard along the front of the shower stall (see photo). Do I need to put quarter-round there too? And if not, should I instead just caulk that one area?0904200846-00.jpg
 
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bud16415

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I put a piece of PVC baseboard in front of mine and i think it looks ok. Stuck it up with Gorilla Glue.
 

Flyover

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Did you seal it to prevent water from going in behind it?
 

Johnboy555

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I put a piece of PVC baseboard in front of mine and i think it looks ok. Stuck it up with Gorilla Glue.
I've had really good luck with Locktite Power Grab. It comes in white or clear. Grabs tightly and holds great. I've installed 12' baseboard with 1 nail.
Haven't tried Gorilla Glue construction adhesive.
 

bud16415

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I have a garage that the owner built and he covered it in mismatched vinyl siding he had as leftovers mostly short pieces. It looked like heck and to make matters worse lots of it had holes in the pieces here and there. I just wanted to make it look better and was going to paint it all white and to patch the holes I cut patches from other old siding and glued it to the face with the Gorilla Glue in the caulking tube. I tried a test first of both the glue and the paint I was going to use on some scraps. That glue held good after a few minutes and after 24 hours it was the best bond I ever saw on vinyl. I really tried to twist and make it fail and it held strong.



I just cut away everything but the two faces and the lip between them and glued them up. Once it got painted it is even hard to find where the patch is.



It is still a crappy job but looks ok for something behind the garage that no one looks at, and the price was right.



Jeff is right you don’t want to get it outside of where it is gluing it will make a real mess.

I have used the power grab and it also works well.
 

Johnboy555

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The liquid Gorilla Glue in the bottle is a polyurethane that uses moisture to activate. You moisten the joint and clamp the parts together. It holds VERY well but can be messy if you don't take the expansion into consideration. I'm sure that the construction adhesive doesn't work on activation. But it's made by the same company so they are using the "Gorilla Glue" name, to show how strong it is. They do hold themselves to "a higher standard" and also a higher price!
 

bud16415

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I bought the caulking tube Gorilla Glue product and yes it was double the price, but it was the only one that listed vinyl in the listing of what it would glue to what. I stood there in the hardware store for quite a while reading labels before I bought it. it has a tip that screws off and I cleaned it out after using what I used and then when I went to use it a month later it had a rubbery plug that went about a half inch into the tube. I was able to pull that out and it worked like new again. Regular construction glue I toss the tube because I can never get them to work again.

The only experience I had before that was their duct tape. That is also some tough stuff compared to other similar products.
 

slownsteady

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Gorilla Glue also makes a "construction" adhesive. Haven't tried it yet.
Gorilla construction adhesive is awesome. I used for a project a while back, had some leftover and used it on a lightweight wood framing around some pipe. It has held up really well. Since then I've used it on several projects in places where nailing would be awkward. it works.
Lately, I've been getting the squeeze tube of construction adhesive instead of the tube for the caulking gun. It seals well with a cap, has the screw-on tip (which is reusable) and if I don't use it all, I'm throwing less away. I can always pick up a caulk gun tube if I have a bigger project.
 
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slownsteady

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But back to the flooring......

You can use silicone as a water seal where the vinyl planks meet the wall. You want something there that will allow expansion and contraction, so the silicone meets the need. Then you can cover that with a quarter-round fastened to the wall or the base of the tub/shower. Don't use the silicone as an adhesive and don't use the adhesive as a moisture blocker.
 

Flyover

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So, silicone between the flooring and shower base, and gorilla glue between the quarter round and the shower base?
 
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