Contract Flooring Journal (CFJ) the latest news for flooring contractors

Home> FITA <The importance of training in LVT

The importance of training in LVT

In this article, Shaun Wadsworth discusses the importance of LVT training and the components he believes deliver best practice.

FITA has two training centres, one in Loughborough and one in Kirkcaldy Scotland, that offer a range of flooring courses to all levels of the flooring industry. Amongst those courses consistently delivered is LVT training, with some of the training driven towards newcomers to LVT installation and other training courses specifically aimed at upskilling floor layers who may be experienced but require additional expertise in the more complicated skills required for working with LVT. This has become particularly important considering the amount of installers seeking to add LVT installation to other flooring types they already fit. LVT is after all still the fastest growing sector in the industry … or so I am told.

Training for LVT flooring reaches much further than just how to cut the tiles and stick them down. There is a lot more to consider when advising and guiding on installation to ensure a successful end result for learners. When training newcomers to the trade, apprentices, career changers and experienced fitters, the guidance given should be aimed at the entire process from subfloor preparation upwards. This is essential to ensure a correct end product and a long-lasting floor. This is not to say that other flooring types do not require the same care and attention, but LVT is particularly sensitive to good subfloor preparation.

Within our own training arm, FITA, all courses include structured training on subfloor recognition, preparation and moisture prevention at the appropriate skill level. Failing to understand and check moisture in particular so that precautionary or preventative measures could be taken, is the biggest cause of problems with resilient flooring. Subfloors should be in a suitable condition for the end product to be installed on and even at the most basic level of teaching this should be key.

Providing information on acclimatisation, British Standards BS8203 and manufacturer guidance for installation is vital. Acclimatising the product before installation at the agreed temperatures and ensuring it is maintained throughout the period of installation is something CFA have and continue to promote through their ‘Winter Warning’ campaign with a toolkit available to members, aimed at helping educate clients and main contractors to ensure that temperatures on site are appropriate for floorcovering installations particularly with non-operational sites and newbuilds in winter.

Alongside British Standard, training should also make delegates familiar with the specific installation guidelines provided by the manufacturers and through the CFA’s own guidance document – The Guide to Contract Flooring, especially in terms of acclimatisation. One piece of advice given is that, ideally, LVT should be stored in the area in which it is to be fitted. Storing it in a cold lockup or in the back of a van overnight and then fitting it on a commercial or domestic site, is potentially asking for trouble.

BS8203 is not regulatory (guidance only), and therefore manufacturers also expect their specifications and instructions to be followed, with most of the guidance usually still derived from said British Standard. But they may have a specific requirement or innovation that needs to be considered. Should a problem arise on a job and a manufacturer investigates how the flooring was installed, if it was not completed according to their recommendations, and there was no obvious issue with the product or the structure of the building, then it probably becomes an installer issue in their eyes and could be left with the contractor to resolve at their own expense.

A correctly trained workforce is the ultimate control measure for mitigating risk of flooring failure and safeguarding a quality installation, resulting in a higher level of success. Lots of manufacturers run their own brand-specific training courses and the CFA signposts a substantial proportion of manufacturer training opportunities and contact details through our dedicated contract flooring training guide, available for free in print, as a download or to be read online. See www.cfa.org.uk and the downloads section.

For the installer, training will give them the confidence to install LVT correctly and efficiently, increasing earning potential without compromising quality. Training is not only for installers, FITA and other training centres often deliver to manufacturers’ sales forces, technical reps, distributors and retailers’ staff as well. The person in charge of estimating and planning the job needs to understand the installation requirements and processes, so the fitter does not arrive to discover the surface is not suitable for laying LVT directly onto it and the original quote has to be amended.

Through FITA, CFA and NICF members along with the wider flooring sector have access to a 3-day basic course aimed at both domestic and commercial installations. The course teaches installers how to correctly identify subfloor types and moisture, prepare the subfloor, see what might affect the product and make sure they use the correct type of flooring and adhesives. Delegates learn the fundamentals – how to correctly prepare and how to install in line with British Standard and manufacturer guidelines. Just the basics – no angles or curves, no borders, no designs – just the correct approach to basic LVT fitting; marking out, laying patterns, how to deal with skirting, doorways, etc, and which adhesives to use where and when.

The FITA 3-Day intermediate LVT course deals with more complicated fits and is designed to improve on already gained skills of a design floor installer including approaches to more complex installation techniques such as border work, 45-degree fitting, feature strips and herringbone work.

Finally, FITA also provides a 3-Day advanced LVT course too. This course is purely aimed at those looking to incorporate advanced techniques into their LVT installations. Focusing on complex herringbone installation with/without borders, stairs, and motifs/inset designs. We think it is necessary for any installer looking to enhance their range of skills, allowing them to truly stand out from the crowd.

Ultimately, there are courses for everyone depending on the skills required or the budget available within the sector ranging from manufacturer led courses to independent training opportunities from the various training locations in the UK. You could be just starting out on the road, having recently completed your apprenticeship, and would like a bit more training to advance even further. You could be an old hand in the trade – a good installer wanting to improve your skills to enable you to access another avenue of work – giving the business competitive edge and maximising profits.

Training is not something that suggests you are not a quality installer, it is a continuing development in most cases, and it is an indication that you are actively trying to improve your knowledge, skills and behaviours toward working more efficiently and competently. You cannot teach experience, but you can give individuals the tools to tackle a wider range of jobs with greater confidence.

This all boils back down to being aware of existing knowledge and realising when an update to skills and techniques is required. It is too easy to think ‘I can’t learn something new’ or ‘I haven’t got time’ but development is like all things in life – the more effort you put in, the better rewards you will gain as a result. A multi-skilled workforce is important now, more than ever, with an ever-growing skills and labour shortage affecting the flooring industry.
The CFA is firmly focused on promoting industry training in textile, timber, and resilient flooring, primarily through the benefits of CFA membership and CFA publications such as the CFA Training Guide, But also through their dedicated training arm Flooring Industry Training Association (FITA). See www.fita.co.uk

LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tile) Installation – Basic (3-day Course)
Essential for those new to installing LVT and those wanting to adopt best practice. Learn correct subfloor preparation and gain knowledge and skills to be able to work efficiently. Increase additional skill sets and profitability on jobs. Learn best practice techniques and how to correctly prepare a subfloor and install LVT.

  • 3rd – 5th April 2024 Loughborough
  • 1st – 3rd July 2024 Kirkcaldy
  • 8th – 9th July 2024 Loughborough

LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tile) Installation – Intermediate (3-day course)
This course is designed to improve on already gained skills of a design floor. LVT installer including approaches to more complex installations and fitting techniques such as installing on angles, creating field and borders and also straightforward herringbone work. A ‘must do’ course for those wanting to add to their skills, revenue and range of work they can undertake with LVT.


  • 8th – 10th April 2024 Kirkcaldy
  • 22nd – 24th April 2024 Loughborough
  • 17th – 19th July 2024 Loughborough
  • 22nd – 24th July 2024 Kirkcaldy

LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tile) Installation – Advanced
This course is aimed at those looking to incorporate advanced techniques into their LVT installations. Learn how to successfully install complex herringbone designs around obstacles with a border, bending planks, Installing LVT to staircases and motifs/inset designs. This 3-day course is a must for any installer looking to enhance their range of skills, allowing them to truly stand out from the crowd.


  • 19th – 21st June 2024 Kirkcaldy
  • 17th – 19th July 2024 Loughborough

For more information on The Contract Flooring Training Guide, Contract Flooring Association, FITA training courses or anything else please do not hesitate to get in touch.
0115 9506836
Shaun Wadsworth
CFA and FITA Training Manager

Please click to view more articles about

Stay Connected




Popular articles