What is Telegraphing and How Can it be Avoided?

The term ‘telegraphing’ describes visible raised areas on the surface of a resilient floor, like sheet vinyl or luxury vinyl tile. These areas generally appear as waves or ridges. Telegraphing is caused by irregularities in the subfloor that transmit through the material, distorting the finish and creating an undulating appearance. Moisture in the subfloor can also be a contributing factor. It’s particularly noticeable on thin sheet vinyl, which has a lot of drape, as well as light coloured and polished surfaces.

An uneven subfloor can also cause traditional vinyl to shorten, as it tracks the high and low areas. This can result in the floor finish gapping and lifting. As well as compromising the finished look, all of these issues can also cause trip hazards.

To minimise the effects of telegraphing, good surface preparation is essential. Residue and debris should always be removed from the subfloor, and it should be correctly skimmed or levelled. Once prepared, the floor should be installed using the recommended adhesive, applied in the correct manner.

In terms of floor specification, choosing a thicker floor finish can minimise the risk of telegraphing, whilst it can be avoided – and installation time and costs reduced - by choosing PRO-TEK™ WPC engineered vinyl flooring.

PRO-TEK™ WPC has a traditional LVT-type surface finish but with two further key layers below – a waterproof WPC (wood plastic composite) core with a jointed edge and premium IXPE foam underlay base. These additional layers make the product more robust, as well as waterproof. The jointed edge allows the boards to be locked together, without glue, which eliminates gapping and the underlay minimises subfloor preparation. The surface created also provides acoustic impact sound performance up to 24db.

To find out more please contact Paul Heatley, General Manager UK, Ireland & Europe on mob. 07470 876 026, email , or tel. 020 3917 5550