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One inspection today was a new manufactured home. The kitchen and bathrooms had cheap (imagine that) vinyl flooring that wasn't glued down. Normally, I may not have noticed this, but the hall bathroom flooring rose up about an inch in the center when the HVAC was on due to air leakage around the floor register. I told the client it would be more likely that moisture damage would occur to the subfloor in these wet areas and the life of the vinyl would be reduced. Any other ill effects I should mention? Anybody know if this is standard practice in a manufactured home?

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Originally posted by homnspector

One inspection today was a new manufactured home. The kitchen and bathrooms had cheap (imagine that) vinyl flooring that wasn't glued down. Normally, I may not have noticed this, but the hall bathroom flooring rose up about an inch in the center when the HVAC was on due to air leakage around the floor register. I told the client it would be more likely that moisture damage would occur to the subfloor in these wet areas and the life of the vinyl would be reduced. Any other ill effects I should mention? Anybody know if this is standard practice in a manufactured home?

It's standard practice in any home that has perimeter bond vinyl .

Certain kinds of vinyl are designed to be cemented down only at the perimeter. You've got to work fast with this stuff. As soon as you unroll it, the product starts to shrink very slowly. After it's installed, it tightens up like the head on a drum. The idea behind it was that you didn't need to create a perfectly perfect underlayment. The vinyl would bridge any uneven areas, seams, etc.

When it's installed just right, it works very nicely. When it's installed poorly, it can pull loose from the perimeter and deform.

On your install, they should have cemented it down around the register so that the air couldn't get under it.

It's no more or less likely to be damaged by water than a full-bond vinyl would be.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Originally posted by homnspector

Good info, I have never heard of perimeter bond.

I did unscrew a couple of registers and saw the glue but it was completely loose, no bond at all.

Sounds like they had a few too many brewskies down at the manufactured home factory that day.

This kind of vinyl installation is very installer-dependent. If they guy uses the wrong adhesive, too much adhesive, too little adhesive, or if he waits too long to stick it down or if he sticks it down but doesn't weight it, the bond will fail.

If the sheet goods haven't shrunk away from the register, it should be pretty easy to add adhesive and stick it back down so that air can't blow under it.

Seems like in a bathroom, water would be more likely to get between the vinyl and subfloor if it isn't glued down.

Nope. The water can only get in at the edges and they're glued down just like on regular vinyl.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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