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I recently bought some very nice vinyl planks for reflooring our kitchen.

It was only when I got home that I noticed it said they have to be installed on 'flat, smooth' surfaces. Our kitchen is currently tiled, and wavy in places.

I don't really want to go the route of self-leveling compound - for one thing I'm not entirely bothered about the floor being level, I just need it to be relatively flat.

What I need advice on is what kind of product can I use for filling in the fairly shallow 'dips' in the floor (i.e. about 1-2ft (50cm) wide and 3/16" (5mm) deep).

After that, I can just prime it and go... I hope

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It's not usually a good idea to install one floor covering over another, rip up the tile and install the vinyl on the sub-floor.</obligatory comment> – Tester101 Jan 11 '12 at 16:19
I think vinyl plank flooring is a floating floor and is fine to put over any solid surface – shirlock homes Jan 11 '12 at 21:30
up vote 6 down vote accepted

I have used this product myself: DAP floor leveling compound

enter image description here

It is thick enough that it does not actually seek self-level, but it can be used with a good straight scrim to get to "TRUE" which means "flat not necessarily level/plum".

This should be perfect for you. Follow up with a 1/8" layer of plywood if you like.

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Guess I'm just cheap. but a 10 pound bag of leveling compound that you can mix with a little water right on the floor is only a couple of bucks. If you have a lot to do, the dry mix is much cheaper, but I admit premix is easy and convenient, but expensive. – shirlock homes Jan 11 '12 at 21:35
Thanks, I'll try and find something like that (or the dry mix suggested by @shirlock) at the hardware store here. – Benjol Jan 12 '12 at 6:05
Agreed, Shirlock, if you do this a lot, dry mix is the way to go. But for a single room one time job, the pre mixed makes sense. – The Evil Greebo Jan 14 '12 at 11:13

Just for fun, this is what the floor looked like half way through: in the background a finished 'flat' bit, in the foreground, freshly-laid (spilt?) 'self-leveling' compound.

enter image description here

And some anecdotal photos: cutting vinyl planks with a hooked blade can be risky...

enter image description here

enter image description here

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