Suppose you're looking to cut out the hassle of traditional flooring adhesives. In that case, it's time to turn to self-adhesive carpet tiles. We're sharing the pros and cons of self-adhesive floor tiles from sticky backed carpet squares to friction-based coatings to see how they stack up compared to conventional adhesives.
1) Traditional Adhesive for Carpet Squares
Most flooring installations use specialized adhesives to keep the square carpet tiles firmly in place, typically applied by either rolling or spraying the glue directly onto the subfloor. The bond is then allowed to "dry" until it's tacky and ready to accept flooring.
When applied according to the manufacturer's guidelines, floor tile adhesives offer a tough, durable bond - but problems arise when those installation guidelines are unrealistic or difficult to follow. Many modern adhesives are also water-based. While solving the health problems posed by solvent-based adhesives it makes them liable to break-down and loses adhesion in high moisture environments.
Pros of Traditional Carpet Tile Adhesives
- Floor tile adhesive offers a robust and reliable bond.
- Specialized high-moisture adhesives can secure carpet tile in challenging environments.
- Requires extra time to spread the adhesive and allow it to dry.
Cons of Traditional Carpet Square Adhesives
- Application incurs additional time and labor costs.
- Can contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are detrimental to indoor air quality.
- Often require expensive floor prep to reduce the risk of chemical incompatibility.
2) Carpet Tile Adhesive Tape, Dots, and Tabs
As an alternative solution to the problems posed by traditional carpet tile
adhesives, some manufacturers have created self-adhesive carpet tiles that rely
on a combination of sticky tape, tabs, or dots. Instead of applying glue
directly to the subfloor, it's the carpet's backing, or additional adhesive
tabs, that do the job of sticking the carpet squares in place.
This approach's major downside is its time and labor cost. Each piece of
adhesive backing or tape needs to be peeled off and stuck down. Peel and stick
floor tile often amounts to thousands of individual pieces of adhesive that need
to be arduously installed - generating a lot of excess waste in the process.
Pros Peel and Stick Floor Tile
- Peel and stick carpet tiles don't require the use of additional adhesives.
Cons Peel and Sstick Carpet tiles
- Applying thousands of adhesive tape/dots to carpet squares necessitates high time and labor costs.
- High waste can result from peeling off protective backings on the floor carpet tiles.
- Many peel and stick carpet squares will still fail in high-moisture environments.
3) High-friction Coatings For Carpet Squares
Instead of relying on additional chemicals or a peel and stick backing system, high-friction backing systems offer a third approach to the problem of flooring adhesion. Carpet tiles are held in place by a specialized high-friction coating, allowing each carpet square to adhere to the floor on its own accord.
This approach offers a reliable, secure bond, without the need for hours of laborious floor prep. By relying on friction instead of chemical adhesion, it's possible to spot-replace any carpet tiles that need cleaning or replacement. It's as easy as vertically lifting an individual carpet square and reapplying without the need for extra adhesives. High-friction backing systems are a perfect fit for busy office environments that want to minimize their employees' disruption.
Pros High-friction Carpet Squares
- High-friction carpet tile can tackle high moisture environments without any additional expenditure.
- Ready to install, out of the box.
- Bio-based coating helps to improve indoor air quality.
- Little-to-no needed to prime and seal the subfloor.
- Easy to re-lift and re-lay when required.
Cons High-friction Carpet Tiles
- Not all flooring products are available with high-friction coatings.
Choosing Self Adhesive Carpet Tiles
Self-adhesive carpet tiles are a great solution to many of the problems associated with traditional adhesives. Carpet squares offer improved indoor air quality, significantly lower installation costs, and easier maintenance and replacement.
For many companies, adhesive dots and tabs are a viable option - but from our experience across thousands of projects, it's hard to beat friction-based coatings. If you'd like to learn more about Milliken's approach to self-adhesive carpet tile, visit the Tractionback page to learn more.