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Which angle grinder blade to use for cutting Laminate flooring?

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  • Which angle grinder blade to use for cutting Laminate flooring?

    What had happend was that a friend in the neighbourhood helped install laminate flooring in the basement. He assured me that there was sufficient gap between the laminate flooring and the wall (I didn't think so). So now areas of the floor have buckled and instead of removing all the pieces I just want to remove the trim/molding and trim off the laminate flooring.

    The only tool I have right now that would give me access is an 4.5" angle grinder. I have 2 diamond blades, one for cutting ceramic tiles and the other one is for marble/concrete. Could I use either of them or do I get a different blade? I am also concerned since the the material in laminate flooring could damage the blades. These blades don't come cheap (bosch $35 CDN).

    I have a jigsaw but there is no way I will remove the flooring just to cut a few pieces.

    Any help would be appreciated.
    Thanks
    Last edited by dieselgg; 10-17-2006, 08:28 AM. Reason: spelling

  • #2
    If you have a circular saw my idea would be to place a board under the saw that will allow the saw blade just enough clearance to cut the laminate. You could probably use an angle cut as well if your saw doesnt allow you to get close enough to the wall. If you dont want to remove boards it could do the trick for you. I am sure there are other ideas out there though.


    You may also think about buying a cheap cutting wheel for your grinder if you are worried about damage.

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    • #3
      Thanks for your suggestion Maverick. I don't have a circular saw but I should be able to get in there using a jigsaw. I'll take a look and see how feasible it is.

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      • #4
        First-did you install the proper vapor barrier padding underneath ?(you are below grade) If not your going to continue to have big problems. Most homeowners fail to use it as it costs alot more to use than the standard underlayment padding.
        Second-If the laminant goes from one room into another ,through a doorway at that door way you NEED to use a threshold strip in the doorway Most homeowners dont as it adds a strip that sits on top on the flooring , and gives a sure sign it is a laminate and not the real thing.(and they dont like the look of one there either, but its Critical to have it there)
        The floor will act as one and bind in doorways with expansion and contraction, if you have this situation you will need to cut out a strip wide enough to add the track strip to tap the threshold strip in, to the seperate the rooms to relieve the stress and the buckle.
        Third -You MUST have at least 1/4 inch gap around the perimiter ,even at the doorway jambs.
        Check with your floorings manufacturers specs. each one is a little different.
        Try using a "ROTO-ZIP" tool with a carbide tile cutting bit you will break a few of these and burn them it goes slow laminate floors are hard on the bits . You should be able to use the angle grinder with either blade, try both on some scrap pieces to see how they cut, but be CAREFUL using it . Remember kickback can BITE you !
        I'm a Union Flooring Installer and repair MANY homeowners attempts to install these laminates.(great sidejob cash for me lol)
        Remember ,where the laminate goes from one room through a doorway into another room you MUST seperate the floor and use a transistion strip! or it WILL bind and buckle.
        You CANNOT cut corners installing these floors follow the manufacturers specs to a "T" or else you will be looking for trouble down the road. Hope that helps you out, good luck.
        Originally posted by dieselgg
        What had happend was that a friend in the neighbourhood helped install laminate flooring in the basement. He assured me that there was sufficient gap between the laminate flooring and the wall (I didn't think so). So now areas of the floor have buckled and instead of removing all the pieces I just want to remove the trim/molding and trim off the laminate flooring.

        The only tool I have right now that would give me access is an 4.5" angle grinder. I have 2 diamond blades, one for cutting ceramic tiles and the other one is for marble/concrete. Could I use either of them or do I get a different blade? I am also concerned since the the material in laminate flooring could damage the blades. These blades don't come cheap (bosch $35 CDN).

        I have a jigsaw but there is no way I will remove the flooring just to cut a few pieces.

        Any help would be appreciated.
        Thanks

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks for your advice and help. Only the main area of the basement had laminate flooring installed, so no rooms to worry about. The kitchen, cold room, and laundry area were left alone. I don't know what type of vapour barrier was intalled. The basement has a door that leads outside to the backyard. The vapour barrier was placed over vinyl tiles. Underneath the vinyl tiles is plywood and then cement. The buckling occurs only during the summer. With autumn here, the buckling disappears. We figured with all those layers that we would not have any problems with buckling.

          I am hoping that by increasing the gap that it should take care of the problem. I'll give it a try with the angle grinder.

          Comment


          • #6
            I wonder if maybe a jamb saw from Home Depots rental dept would help. It is basically a circular saw but it lets you get the blade right to the edge of the saw, meaning you can run the saw on edge against the wall (usually it is run off the floor) and set your cut to 1/4" to the far side of the blade.

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            • #7
              Do you have any leftover flooring to try the angle grinder on?
              .........may be worth buying one piece at a homestore just to see how well the grinder blade cuts that material so you don't have to damage your existing floor.

              ......ceramic tile, marble, concrete.......if your blades can cut that I doubt there would be a problem cutting the laminate.
              Last edited by Speedball; 10-29-2006, 12:24 AM.

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              • #8
                Dieselgg,
                If you have a heavy duty utility knife, you can cut the laminate with that also. I would take a commercial straight edge, tack glue it in sections, and score away along the material you wish to remove. It might take a while, but you will have a nice straight edge. It is very hard to cut a straight line with an angle grinder, unless you put the wheel attachment on it. After you cut your line, you can always cover it up with quarter round molding at the base.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I will take a look around to see if I have a scrap piece left and just see what works best. Thanks for all the help guys!

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