Several months back, I wrote an article on Floor Adhesive: What to Buy and How to Apply It. That was a pretty high-level article to help give you a general idea of glue down installation for vinyl flooring. Let’s take a moment to dive into a few more basics that are important.


Plywood Subfloor

With any subfloor, you must inspect it. Inspect the subfloor for:

  • Cracks in the wood
  • Gaps between sheets of plywood
  • Sagging between support beams
  • Strength of the subfloor to be able to hold entire weight of new flooring

Concrete Subfloor

Again, Concrete subfloors are usually the most common subfloors with newer homes and also the easiest to install flooring over. Inspect the subfloor for:

  • Cracks in the concrete
  • Moisture absorption
  • Levelness



  • Spread adhesive in small, workable sections. This ensures the adhesive won’t completely dry up before you’re able to lay all of your planks down.
  • Allow adhesive to tack up for 5 min prior to installing planks.
  • Trowel size can affect the outcome of the flooring.  The different sizes in trowels allow more or less adhesive to be spread.  For example you would want a larger trowel for wood to ensure the each section of the rigid plank is touching adhesive.  You would want to use a smaller trowel for vinyl due to the pliability of vinyl forming to the subfloor and adhesive when installing.
  • Read recommended use of adhesive and trowel size from the adhesive supplier.
  • Never cut short on things in regards to subfloors.  It’s better to fix problems than over look them.



Glue down installation is not a complicated process; a DIY-er can do the job if you prefer to go that route. As I mentioned in my last article:

Tools required for proper adhesive application for vinyl flooring are:
– trowel (refer to the adhesive manufacturer’s recommendations on size)
– vinyl glue
– utility knife
– 100-lb. floor roller
– hand-held seam roller

1) Ensure that subfloor is as level as possible and free of debris that may show imperfections in the vinyl once installed.

2) Pre-lay out vinyl planks to ensure you get the right positioning that you prefer for the space and that eliminates the least amount of plank waste.

3) Trowel adhesive in small areas waiting for the adhesive to tack up before laying vinyl planks over the top.  You want to ensure the adhesive is level without any clumps. (Use of the 100 pounds roller will help with this step)

4) Install vinyl plank over area troweled with adhesive making sure you apply pressure to ensure vinyl is touching adhesive on all parts of the plank.

5) Continue to spread adhesive with trowel and lay vinyl planks throughout the rest of the area making sure each plank is placed tightly next to each other.

6) Once entire space is completed let set for an hour or two before you use the 100-pound roller to smooth adhesive under vinyl planks for evenness.

7) Don’t move any furniture or have heavy foot traffic on planks for 2-3 days to ensure adhesive sets and planks don’t shift or move.

8) Clean up any residual adhesive that might have seeped through the planks cracks with any solution that doesn’t contain alcohol or any substance that will react badly with vinyl and cause damage or discoloration to the planks.

For further information on glue down vinyl installation please call our flooring specialists at 1-844-334-2877


Featured Image: “Helmut spreads adhesive on the floor” by mlevisay is licensed under CC by 2.0 / Cropped from original