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What does screeding a floor do?

When people talk about laying flooring you may have heard of the term screeding. What does
screeding a floor do? Let’s take a look.


Screed is the thin layer that is applied on top of a concrete subfloor. If helps to provide a much
better surface for the adhesive. It can help to protect from damage from things such as mould and
moisture damage.


It makes for a much more even surface. Whilst you can technically go without screeding a concrete
subfloor doesn’t always make the best surface and can have holes and cracks over time.


Screed and concrete are made from a cement mixture whereas concrete is courser and stronger
than screed, screed gives a smooth finish. Screed is also more expensive than concrete.


When the screed is applied you can then finish with a material of your choice whether this is carpet,
vinyl or tiles. Industrial screed is used when you need a very tough, resistant floor to scratches and
scuffs.

There are three main types of screed these are;

Bonded – This is where the screed is bonded with an adhesive. It is applied straight onto the
concrete slab. It is used where there is continuous construction and heavy loading. It is used
to case in pipes for under floor heating.

Unbonded – Unbonded screed is not placed directly onto the concrete subbase it is used
with a damp proof membrane between the screed and the concrete called builders plastic. It
helps to reduce shrinkage and moisture. It can also be used to case in under floor heating
pipes. It doesn’t require an adhesive as it is thicker than bonded screed.

Floating – You can apply screed as a floating later for insulation on its own or with another
layer of insulation. This helps to eliminate drafts, keeps pipes from freezing and create a
moisture barrier. Floating screed is the thickest screed of the three.

To lay the screed you will need to ensure your concrete base is clean and mix the screed. If the
screed is unbonded you will need to lay your builders sheet. The floor needs to then be divided into
three sections with timber battens about 3-4 metres in width is the ideal divide. The screed is then
applied from the farthest section and levelled. Each section is screeded and the battens removed,
The area the battens were is then screeded. The screed is then bull floated. The screed is then cured
and you will need to wait before installing your flooring. This can take between a few days to three
weeks. We can advise you on this.

If you required screeding or have any questions please do not hesitate to contact the experts here
and we will be happy to help.

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