Conventional flooring is usually attached to the subfloor with glue or nails. In contrast floating flooring is not attached to the ground (the subfloor). Instead the planks or tiles are attached to each other and rest on top of an underlay. The individual pieces attach to each other with a locking mechanism (glueless floating floors) or with glue.
You might wonder what keeps the floor from moving if it is not attached to anything? Flooring is heavy and when its connected to each other, the weight is dispersed along a wide area. After they are interlocked the panels act as one big, heavy flat object.
Floating floors can be usually installed on, above or below grade and on many types of subfloors including concrete and plywood. What's more, floating floors can be installed on top of existing hard flooring such as stone, ceramic tile, sheet vinyl and vinyl tile so long as the existing flooring is flat and stable.
These floors tend to sound a bit more hollow than glued or nailed flooring, most notably when walked on with hard sole dress shoes. Whether this sound is a negative or positive is completely subjective. If you dislike the more hollow sound, an upgrade sound control underlay will help.
Floating floors are relatively easy to install and have gained tremendous popularity with do-it-yourself homeowners. This popularity was fueled in part by the introduction of laminate floors to America in the mid 90's. Since then interlocking floating floors have expanded into hardwood, bamboo, cork, vinyl and leather. We are big fans of locking floating floors and believe they are the best choice for do-it-yourself. As such, we only sell interlocking floating floors.