Taping up a Rug

I could have sworn I wrote about getting some Flor tiles for the bedroom a while ago, but I can't find the relevant post. Now I have to dig through my drafts folder and see if I just didn't get around to posting it.

Anyway, a couple years ago, after sanding the bedroom floor resulted in huge slivers of wood trying to kill us, and a continuing sliver problem that was getting uncomfortable, we got some Flor tiles on clearance and made a couple little rugs on either side of the bed. That plus some other rugs we had stored worked to cover the floor enough to be safe.

The tiles go together with these adhesive dots that stick pretty well to the tiles, making several tiles stick together to make one cohesive rug. It works OK as a way of assembling an area rug.

Unfortunately, over time the adhesive patches that held the rug together did a less than perfect job of holding the rug together, and the tiles slid apart leaving big gaps. And where the adhesive was exposed, it of course gunked up with animal hair.

Charming.

So today we took the rugs out of the bedroom (to get some space to work on them) and removed the old tape, then retaped them with a portion of our massive collection of gaffer tape.

Retaping the Flor rugs

The gaffer tape is not more sticky than the little patches that came with the tiles, but there's quite a bit more of it. And I put big cross-pieces in to try to fight the tendency of the rug to slide apart under pressure.

You wouldn't think that rugs that get a minimal amount of attention would fall apart so fast, but in addition to us getting into and out of bed, there is morning wiggling by the dogs (they come to wake us up if we sleep past their breakfast time or past an hour when they think we should all shift to sleeping downstairs), plus regular vacuuming.

Retaped rug in place

You may notice that there are parts of this rug that are nearly white with fur. I saved you the sight of the rug on Noel's side, where the dogs spend the most time, which is heavily coated with dog fur. It's only been a week since the rugs were vacuumed and it looks... dire.

So my feelings about Flor after this? Well, I'm not crazy about this working as an area rug. I've seen them used to great effect in larger areas, or with less fur where they do not need to be regularly vacuumed within an inch of their lives. I do still like the design on these tiles. They've worked fine so far as area rugs, and my hope is that they last until we have nicer area rugs for the bedroom. That may mean retaping the rugs is an annual event, I'm not sure.

posted by ayse on 08/11/13

3 Comments

Did you ever try a more aggressive method (i.e drum sander) on the floor? The old pictures look like either that would take care of the problem or the wood is completely shot (some grain defect like ring shake).

The salvaged oak floor I installed last year looked almost as bad in spots but sanded down fine starting with 36 grit (I'd have used 24, but the rental place didn't have any).

We didn't try a more aggressive method, I think because renting the drum sander was going to be too complicated. But that's good to know; we still have some details to follow up on in the bedroom, anyway.

If you have one you could always try a belt sander, let's say under the bed or in some other inconsicuous spot. If that takes care of the problem you know what to do if you ever want to refinish the whole floor.

I'm not really sure what happened to our floor, but I suspect it was scrubbed with water and sand every week for a loooong time and really soaked with water for extended periods of time.

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