Wood Flooring Installation Mistakes

Moisture Meter

Check Moisture

Moisture is the number one cause of problems when it comes to installing wooden flooring. With this in mind it need not be, take the proper procedure to handle it and it will not be a problem. The problem is that a lot of flooring installers do not take this into consideration, and check moisture levels.

What quite often happens is that wood flooring is delivered straight to the job site in the winter. The flooring came from a reputable supplier and the wood was stored in a climate-controlled warehouse. After arriving at the job site delays happen and the wood ends up sitting around for a while. Not knowing the affects on solid wood flooring the temperature is increased by the heating in the building. The flooring is fitted and everything is fine, the next winter the customer rings to say that the flooring has gaps between the boards.

The cause of the problem is that the flooring acclimated to the conditions of winter when it first arrived, when it then acclimated to the hot summer humidity it swelled up and the edges of the board was damaged, the next winter the swelling reduced and the gaps were much larger than they should be.


The best way to avoid this happening is to install the flooring when the moisture content is at a good medium, between the two seasons. The other way to solve the problem would be to not nail the flooring as tight as you normally would and leave “washer rows” to allow some swelling in the winter months without damaging the flooring.

  • Make sure any controllable moisture affective work on the house has been completed such as installation of windows and doors.
  • Measure the temperature at the job site. It should be at what is considered as normal living conditions.
  • Make sure that gutters are in place and correctly installed so that all water drainage is going to go away from the house and not to the foundations as this will increase the moisture.
  • Use a good moisture retarder for your wood flooring. If moisture is of real concern to you an engineered wood flooring may be of better suit to you as it is a lot more tolerant to heat and moisture changes.

Prepare the Subfloor

Subfloors should be clean, flat and dry. Not doing so can lead to many problems with the flooring its self. These problems can be seen as loose flooring, squeaky joints, deflection and uneven surface.

The dry part of the Subfloor equations come from the moisture content in the air as discussed in the earlier point “check moisture“. The clean part means that all debris and general dirt from the work site must be clean and cleared away from the subfloor and also that anything that may interfere with the adhesive that is going to be used with the flooring is cleaned off. The floor must be flat to industry standards, subfloors that are not flat enough should be flattened before the flooring is installed. Many problems stem from using an inappropriate sub floor for the flooring used, it is crucial to get this right the first time!

Take the time to layout the room properly

The main aim of this point is to get across that you should not jump straight into the job and start laying the flooring straight away. Take the time to plan out the job exactly.

While it may work for some to just start laying the flooring straight away it can cause major cosmetic problems. As you move from room to room angles can change as rooms are never perfectly square this leads to crooked flooring spreading through the rooms, a slight change in angle from the required 90 can have major consequences leading trouble for the fitters having to trim down flooring and as mentioned earlier the cosmetics of the flooring will be harmed.\

Bad Racking

There are many many mistakes that are commonly made when racking flooring here are some common mistakes that are commonly made.

  • End joints being too close together is one of them, the ends of the boards should be at least three times the width of the flooring apart.
  • H-Joints happen when end rows line up with one row between them.
  • Lightning Bolts/Stairsteps are joints that happen in the flooring in even steps for a number of neighboring planks. This often happens when flooring is supplied in even lengths.

A common mistake to make when racking is not to look at the bigger picture of how the floor is panning out and likely to look when it is finished in the current state. This does not just mean the problems described above but it also means observing the wood that is getting laid, for example light and dark planks, after all wood flooring is not going to be perfectly the same since its wood, but who would want it to be anyway.

Since variations can happen between packs it is often a good idea to open up a few packs before you rack and use them at the same time using planks from each box to get some variation.

Not Nailing Enough

Not nailing the floor is a common problem with some floor fitters, often they may only put a few nails in per board or even only nail every other board. Saving cost is most likely their reasoning as the customer can’t exactly see the difference straight away or even see the nails them selves a lot of the time.

The short fall of doing things this way is that the wood flooring will be loose, which will allow them to move around and make a lot of noise when they are walked on.

There is a flip side of this which is of course adding too many nails which can cause cracked tongues and also loose floors this is a problem in oak flooring or any flooring for that matter. The basic rules to nailing is that there should be a minimum of two fasteners per board and that each fastener should be 1 to three inches from the end of the board for. Standard strip flooring the fastening space should be around every 8 to 10 inches and every 4 inches for plank flooring.


What is a Data Logger

What Is a Data Logger? The nature of data loggers leaves a lot of consumers completely confused about what they are, how they are used, and what benefits they bring. For the average consumer a data logger is something that will never actually be used, but for others, a tool that can be extremely helpful in providing important data information for analysis.

In simple terms a data logger is an electronic device that collects and records data or information over a period of time. The information that is recorded could be as simple as a single temperature or humidity measurement, or it could be as complex as the shift in air quality, or a measurement of flow in a liquid. Regardless of exactly what is being logged, a data logger typically gathers information from the source using sensors connected to it.

Data is collected and stored to the data logger’s memory area making data readily available for analysis at a later date or in real time depending on the requirements of the user. Data can be viewed in many ways, in raw form or in graphs and charts format.

There are many types of data logger available, each designed for specific tasks, from large pc based machines to customized bespoke portable data loggers. Typically, in the past larger systems were used most often by laboratories and researchers to carry out extensive testing and data collection of large-scale projects. In general this was an expensive process and data collection was only used in the most important areas of industry.

With new advances in technology such as surface mount components and multi layered circuit boards it is now possible to further reduce the size of complex data loggers into useful portable hand held instruments, giving greater flexibility and lower power consumption, allowing data collection and monitoring to be carried out in even the most inhospitable areas such as Antarctica where instruments may be left logging for many months before collection is required.

What was once a large and expensive piece of equipment which was difficult to transport, time consuming to setup and expensive to retrieve can now be done at a fraction of the cost. Wireless data loggers such as Bluetooth, 802.11b/g and LAN systems have become the norm and an indispensable tool many researchers and industry specialists now use.

Loggers are being used in industry over a broad spectrum of companies such as water-boards, oil refineries, aircraft and aviation, car manufacturers, hospitals, in fact virtually everything we do is being recorded in some form or another.

A data logger maybe required to log as many as 32 channels, each channel able to monitor and store different types of parameter ready for retrieval through LAN or wireless connectivity further reducing downtime and man hours. Other advantages of a wireless data collection system are the ability to change logging periods, parameters to be collected and system calibration. Setting for intelligent logging means only logging when the criteria falls within preset boundaries saving even further expense and memory.

Portable loggers can be connected to mains through small transformers or used with high-energy lithium cells for extended battery duration if remote deployment is required. The average domestic consumer has no real need for a data logger, however many families are starting to see a purpose for them associated with environmental monitoring.

With a greater number of families home schooling their children the amount of scientific equipment that is needed in the home is growing. For families who are conducting extensive science experiments for science class this can be a great investment since it will expose children to tools and resources that are typically neglected in schools which will be used in an ever growing sector of the market.

The use of data loggers has become increasingly popular amongst researchers and with a wide variety of usages, it is apparent that they will remain for a good period of time. Finding the right data logger for the specific needs of the researcher is not always simple, but with new technology almost all applications can be catered for at a realistic price.

It is very important to make it clear that a data logger is a tool and like any machine or computer used in the data acquisition process. It is only as reliable as the user who installs and sets the logging parameters. More information and different types of data loggers.

Data Logger Applications In The Process Engineering Industry

Data loggers are now an everyday use for measurement and data recording of critical parameters in manufacturing facilities and factory processes.

Main data logger applications include: A temperature data logger is also often used to record temperature in drying processes in food production and curing of smoked foods.

Use of data logger units in brick works, kilns and ovens for temperature profiling. Often here the data logger will be fitted inside a thermal barrier to protect from heat damage.

In factory processes a data logger with digital and pulse inputs can be used to record machine run time, down time, and throughput of product which can later be used for statistical analysis of production efficiency.

A data logger with appropriate sensors can also be used to measure compressed air usage, product levels in tanks, and system voltages.

Selecting the right Data Logger:

When selecting the most appropriate data logger for a process measurement job a few key factors should be considered.

Often a data logger needs to be fitted in part of a process plant far from the main production area. In this case a data logger with integral radio modem or network capability will be easier to interface with the main plant data logger system.

Many factory environments are ether dusty, dirty, or have high levels of humidity so the data logger should be well sealed, if possible to IP68. In some processes the ambient temperature can also be very high and many data logger types now will operate up to 85 degrees C.

Pharmaceutical plants, refineries and oil rigs also have many data logger applications in process measurement. A data logger used in these environments not only needs to be rugged and weatherproof, but also intrinsically safe. An intrinsically safe data logger is by design incapable of generating enough energy to be a source of ignition. At the present time only a few data logger types are available with intrinsic safety, mostly for measurement of temperature, humidity and pressure.

In through process applications very little space is available for additional devices in the production line so the data logger should be small and light weight. In addition these processes may produce high temperatures and humidity so the selected data logger should be waterproof and have a high operating temperature.

Many manufacturing processes now use sensors or PLC’s with serial MODBUS outputs. Here a traditional data logger with analogue inputs is useless. However in the last couple of years data logger models with MODBUS inputs have become available to meet this need. Utilizing the MODBUS system additional input modules can be added to this type of data logger to greatly increase the channel I/O count and also network the data logger input and outputs across a manufacturing plant.

With increasing levels of automation and the reduction of man power in manufacturing plants and processes data logger technology will continue to play a vital and expanding role in industrial measurement, data acquisition and statistical analysis.

Data Loggers Becoming Indispensable For Hospitals

Increasingly, in hospitals data logger technology is becoming indispensable for the monitoring and recording a wide range of parameters.

Data logger use for fridge and freezer monitoring: A common application for data logger use is in the monitoring of temperature in fridges and freezers used to store drugs and samples. Many drugs must be stored within a narrow temperature band at around 6 degrees C to be kept in usable condition. Prior to the advent of data logger technology hospital staff would have to frequently check the temperature of the fridge with a traditional thermometer. Not only was this inefficient, but also could not guarantee that the temperature had not gone out of limits in between readings. By placing a small temperature data logger inside the fridge, temperature can be recorded continuously. Also the data logger will usually have a warning LED which blinks if there has been a temperature excursion. Because the data logger has a visual alert, staff generally only need to download the data from the logger on a monthly basis, saving valuable time for other activities.

Data logger use in cold stores: Large walk in cold stores are often used for critical storage of medical supplies. Here a data logger with an SMS text alarm may be used to alert staff out of hours or at weekends if the door has been left open, or if there has been a system failure. The data logger may have an integral GSM modem or an external modem to send the text message.

Data logger use for liquid gas monitoring: A data logger with a very low range temperature probe can be used to monitor liquid nitrogen. Sometimes a dual channel data logger is used to monitor the pressure as well as temperature.

Data logger use in incubators: Incubators are often fitted with a data logger to record temperature an sometimes other parameters such as CO2 and oxygen levels.

Data logger uses in operating room: A data logger is often used to monitor temperature and humidity in operating rooms to ensure the comfort of patients and staff.

Data logger applications in medical research: It is not possible within the scope of this article to list all of the applications for data logger technology in medical research, but here is an interesting example: Recently medical researchers used a data logger fitted with strain gauges to measure the force being applied to an external steel brace on a broken limb. As the bone healed the bending force applied to the brace slowly reduced. The data logger was set to record this force every few seconds so the healing process could be monitored very closely over a period of four weeks, providing invaluable data.

So it can be seen that data logger technology is now used extensively in hospitals to help maintain both the quality and safety of the care that they provide.

How do Non Contact AC Voltage Detectors Work

To Check Fuses and/or Breakers You may check screw-in type cartridge or resettable breaker type fuses with your Tic Tracer. With the circuit energized a good screw in type fuse will create a whistle when the probe is ends.  NOTE that because the Tic Tracers detects the electristatic field it may be necessary to remove the metal fuse panel cover as it may act as a shield.

To Locate Heating Wire within Walls Traces heating wires within plastered walls. A quickened signal indicates an energized wire. If it ceases a break is located.

To Locate Breaks In Insulated Wire and Heating Elements Energize the wire or element and trace along it until the quickened “beep” or siren ceases This indicates the point of break or “open”

Outlets and Switches Place probe tip against an outlet or switch contact. Increased “beeping” indicates voltage.

Safety Check on Power Tools and Appliances While the device is connected to AC voltage touch the probe tip to the metal casing. Test device switched off and on. No increase in beep rate indicates a safely grounded tool or appliance.

High Voltage Applications With the Tic Tracer switched on in the high range the Tic Tracer will detect voltages above 1500V.  Always use a hot stick and insulated gloves during use.

Specification of manufacturing and testing of rubber insulating gloves for protection

This specification covers manufacturing and testing of rubber insulating gloves for protection of workers from electrical shock. Two types of gloves are provided and are designated as Type I, non-resistant to ozone, and Type II, resistant to ozone. Six classes of gloves, differing in electrical characteristics, are provided and are designated as Class 00, Class 0, Class 1, Class 2, Class 3, and Class 4. The following tests shall be performed: ac proof test; ac breakdown test; ac moisture absorption/proof test; dc proof test; dc breakdown test; ozone resistance test; chemical tests; tensile strength; tear resistance test; and puncture resistance test.

1. Scope

  • 1.1 This specification covers manufacturing and testing of rubber insulating gloves for protection of workers from electrical shock.
  • 1.2 Two types of gloves are provided and are designated as Type I, non-resistant to ozone, and Type II, resistant to ozone.
  • 1.3 Six classes of gloves, differing in electrical characteristics, are provided and are designated as Class 00, Class 0, Class 1, Class 2, Class 3, and Class 4.
  • 1.4 The values stated in SI units are to be regarded as the standard. See ASTM SI 10.

2. Referenced Documents

  • D1149 Test Methods for Rubber Deterioration-Cracking in an Ozone Controlled Environment
  • D1415 Test Method for Rubber Property-International Hardness
  • D2240 Test Method for Rubber Property-Durometer Hardness
  • D2865 Practice for Calibration of Standards and Equipment for Electrical Insulating Materials Testing
  • D297 Test Methods for Rubber Products-Chemical Analysis
  • D412 Test Methods for Vulcanized Rubber and Thermoplastic Elastomers-Tension
  • D518 Test Method for Rubber Deterioration-Surface Cracking
  • D573 Test Method for Rubber-Deterioration in an Air Oven
  • D624 Test Method for Tear Strength of Conventional Vulcanized Rubber and Thermoplastic Elastomers
  • F819 Terminology Relating to Electrical Protective Equipment for Workers
  • SI10 Standard for Use of the International System of Units (SI): The Modern Metric System

Best Practices For Thermography Inspection

Infrared cameras have been used to identify problems in electrical systems for many years. Problems in electrical systems manifest themselves by connections and conductors becoming overheated as the result of increased resistance, the result of loose or corroded connections, or load imbalances. An infrared camera can readily identify these problems in a thermal image and is an excellent method for identifying failing or problem components prior to a failure. A failure can disable an electrical system and cause significant lost production, equipment damage and bodily injury. Insurance companies use infrared electrical inspection to help determine risk profiles and rates for industrial customers. More recently, thermographers have found that they can use IR to prevent and predict failures to help further reduce down time equipment failure and increase overall safety.