Floor covering installations bring unique challenges to the construction process, including timing, unforeseen extras, taking over the floor space, requiring dry, warm conditions and flat, properly prepared surfaces. There are many obstacles. For this reason, NFCA is focused on improving project specifications and creating a general understanding, across all construction parties, of what minimum floor covering industry standards are and why they are important.
To help tackle these and other issues, NFCA promotes best practices and industry standards through a variety of educational channels – speaking at trade shows, hosting regular sessions, social media and talking to people…one-to-one, to teams, and organizations. In addition, by working with our growing community of partners who are experts in their field across Canada and internationally, we continue to create new paths of understanding that can lead to better outcomes as they relate to floor covering installations in Canada’s construction industry. For example:
In partnership with a committee of industry professionals, including structural engineers, concrete contractors, manufacturers, and specification writers, NFCA developed a new concrete specification that is offered free of charge to the construction industry. The Federal government’s National Research Council added NFCA’s Resilient (09 65 00) spec to their ‘National Master Specification’ (NMS), which is used by architects across Canada.You can access it here (https://www.nfca.ca/education-calendar/concrete-specification/).
NFCA participated on a CSA (Canadian Standards Association) annex committee to bring the flooring installers’ surface needs to the forefront for their ‘concrete placement and finishing spec’ (CSA A 23.1). This committee was attended by structural engineers, concrete trades, consultants from across the country and was chaired by Lloyd Keller, Construction Sciences with EllisDon . An update is expected to be published in 2023.
Substrate flatness (surface undulation) has always been a source of dispute between the Constructor and the Floor Covering installer. To address this, NFCA formed a committee of industry experts to review why and how a floor coverer performs this test and ultimately help all those in the construction team understand its purpose.
We also work to support the industry by offering a third-party floor covering inspections program – the Quality Assurance Program (QAP). The program places an independent inspector on a project to represent NFCA standards and issue a series of reports before, during and after floor covering installation to help guide the construction team to flooring success. The program is growing in leaps and bounds since its inception in 2011. From doing one project at a time to now inspecting millions of dollars worth of floor covering installations a year in numerous construction projects across Canada.
Since NFCA’s reformation in 2015, we’ve worked with and presented to many architectural firms and organizations, including Construction Specification Canada (CSC), Canadian Standards Association (CSA), National Research Council (NRC), Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) and Interior Designer Institute of Canada (IDIC) and we plan to continue spreading the message and sharing good information with the support our Board of Directors, our esteemed members and partners across the world.