Underlayments: New formulations tout enhanced performance

Home Featured Post Underlayments: New formulations tout enhanced performance

Underlayments are valuable to the flooring retailer for several reasons—not the least of which being a satisfied customer. From comfort underfoot to sound absorption and even waterproofing capabilities, underlayments provide a variety of performance attributes many consumers demand today. Plus, flooring dealers can offer underlayments as an add-on to not only grow their bottom line but to help the consumer complete the installation successfully.

Following is a sampling of some of the latest innovations in underlayments from today’s top underlayment providers.

Foam Productsunderlayments
Eco SilencerInfinity

Eco Silencer Infinity is a premium acoustical underlayment designed, approved and warranted for use with pad attached flooring. The product provides support, moisture protection and sound absorption for a variety of both hard and soft surfaces, including floating LVT, WPC, SPC, laminates as well as glue-down LVT, carpet tiles and engineered wood.

Derived from rapidly renewable resources, Eco Silencer Infinity is made with high-density polyurethane foam, which reduces impact and ambient floor noise by providing exceptional sound absorption. CrushPruf technology resists indentation, which enables the floors to perform for a lifetime. What’s more, Eco Silencer Infinity features an innovative new moisture barrier film designed to provide optimal moisture protection, bond strength and durability.

K 40 Rapid

Ardex K 40 Rapid is a high-flow, self-leveling underlayment that can be used to level and smooth a large variety of substrates. The new and unique feature, however, is its rapid dry technology, which allows customers to install flooring after just two hours. Another benefit of this product is it’s approved for use with Ardex P 4 Primer and the fast-track adhesive Henry 647 PlumPro. These products used together form the Rapid Flooring Installation System.

underlaymentsFuture Foam
My Name Is Best

Available to The Dixie Group’s Premier Flooring Center (PFC) partners, My Name Is Best cushion from the Future Foam brand is a unique and exclusive formulation made from high-density virgin memory foam with extreme grind for comfort, conformity and long-lasting performance. Proprietary Nylon film is used for impermeability to avoid spills soaking into cushion. What’s more, it includes PetSolutions technology with moisture barrier that protects against pet accidents, prevents spills from reaching the subfloor, reduces odors and inhibits mold and mildew in the carpet cushion.

“I am pleased to endorse the PFC My Name Is Best cushion,” said Barry Wert, executive vice president, merchandising, McSwain Carpets & Floors, with multiple locations across Ohio and Kentucky. “We have positioned the My Name Is Best cushion to be branded as a Platinum choice, providing enhanced margins and profit dollars.”


Sika/DriTac underlayments include the Sika AcouBond System, which incorporates direct bond technology with acoustic performance. Consisting of SikaLayer-03—a 3mm-thick proprietary specially slotted foam mat—and SikaBond-T53, a unique, permanently elastic, sound-dampening adhesive, the Sika AcouBond System is used to bond wood flooring over plywood subfloors, concrete and other common subfloor materials.

“The Sika AcouBond System provides a system solution alternative to customers who seek a fully warranted flooring system from a trusted, single-source supplier,” said John Lio, director of marketing, interior finishing, Sika Corp. “The Sika AcouBond System can reduce overall installation costs up to 30% and helps cut down on the number of SKUs retailers are forced to stock.”


GenieMat RST is an acoustic underlayment made from 94% recycled rubber content, engineered to be used directly under any hard surface floor finish—tile, stone, wood, vinyl and more. Backed by over 1,000 ASTM acoustical laboratory tests, the GenieMat RST is used when optimal sound control is required in multi-family housing, high-rises or commercial buildings. Pliteq offers complete floor covering system warranties with GenieMat RST and the finished floor. Also, GenieMat RST meets requirements for VOC emissions and is FloorScore certified.

“GenieMat RST is a high-performing acoustical underlayment that architects trust,” said Will Thrall, director, west region.

MP Global

QuietBoard, a recycled fiber sheet underlayment, provides improved support for multiple flooring types with great acoustic and waterproof benefits and an added bonus to correct flooring gaps and imperfections. The underlayment’s recycled fibers absorb sound and keep it from traveling to other rooms, providing a solid sound underfoot. What’s more, it is proven to reduce stress underfoot.

“What QuietBoard actually does is it reduces the amount of energy in the form of sound waves and adds comfort underneath the floor,” said Deanna Summers, marketing director. “We went to a biomechanics lab and had that clinically proven—under any vinyl plank with pad attached, QuietBoard reduces about 4 pounds of pressure. It relieves that much stress per step on your lower limb joints.”

Combined with MP Global’s exclusive Eco-Wick System, the underlayment is designed to hold up to 5x its weight in moisture, allowing the board to maintain its structural integrity, shape and functionality.

underlaymentsLeggett & Platt

Whisper Step acoustical underlayment is designed to make hard surface flooring more enjoyable. It features extreme density, which is designed to not only resist compression but perform for the life of the floor, and Noise Guard, which helps reduce impact and airborne noise in-room and between floors. In addition, the product includes Block-Out Moisture Guard to prevent spills from getting into the subfloor and allows some moisture vapor to escape from beneath; Mold & Mildew Guard, which is an antimicrobial that works to inhibit the growth of mold, mildew and odor-causing bacteria.

“Its best when presenting hard surface flooring to discuss the importance of a quality underlayment and selling a premium underlayment is the perfect way to round out the new flooring sell,” said Chris Palmer, vice president, sales. “It provides the consumer with a great product that will last the life of the new flooring while offering protection and performance to ensure a happy and repeat customer.”

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March 20, 2023

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