The Wood Doctor | Are You Using Proper Adhesives For Your Engineered Hardwood Floors?



It is extremely important to do your homework when it comes to finding a professional installer who will install your engineered hardwood floors properly. A professional install means he or she is using the right kind of adhesive. In the past, I have seen cases where people tried to save money by doing the installation themselves and unknowingly used the wrong adhesive, or hired a “cheap” installer, who did the same.

So what is the wrong kind of adhesive for engineered hardwood floors? Water-based adhesives cause the wood to expand and unfortunately destroy more hardwood floors in the long term than they do in securing them for lifetime performance. I always say that water and wood DO NOT mix which is why you want an adhesive that will prevent damages caused by subfloor moisture.

Today, we recommend urethane-based adhesives. These adhesives enable us to use hardwood floors in applications that just a few years ago would have been prohibitive. As a result, these adhesives have contributed greatly to the increased use of hardwood flooring in all types of new construction and remodeling projects. The ease of application and use of these adhesives opened up new horizons for designers and installers, who previously would not have attempted to install hardwood floors with adhesives. We suggest that you use a name brand adhesive, like Bostik’s BEST on your engineered hardwood floors. This adhesive has low moisture vapor permeability and it not adversely affected by moisture vapor.


Bostik’s BEST is a high performance adhesive and moisture-control membrane. Its superior properties provide a tough, flexible, tenacious bond to a variety of surfaces. In addition, its high-tacking formula exhibits exceptional green grab immediately after troweling, making installation easier and more secure.

Don’t get yourself in a sticky situation…save yourself the headache, not to mention time and money, and install your engineered hardwood floor right the first time with water-based adhesive.

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