Solving issues with installation

RetroGrip® and de-bonding issues

The adhesive we recommend with RetroGrip® is extremely powerful, however there are other factors that can sometimes cause a small problem with installations.

Excessive decking movement in the timber itself or a poor bond between the adhesive and the timber, can over time lead to the ends of your RetroGrip® de-bonding slightly.

Problems with decking movement

Timber decking expands or contracts depending on temperature changes and changes in humidity – particularly after periods of heavy rain or intense sun. This is perfectly natural. When the timber moves and twists by even a few millimeters, it can squeeze the RetroGrip® insert and on rare occasions encourage it to de-bond from its adhesive. If your decking is not fixed down well, it will be allowed to expand and contract more than normal, which can result in the ends of the RetroGrip® becoming detached from the decking.

The following factors can influence decking movement:

  • Tangential shrinkage rate of the species
  • Annual cycle of weather
  • Level of exposure to sun/weather
  • Size of the area
  • Waterproofing and water runoff
  • Weather protection in construction
  • Spacing of the substructure support beams
  • Spacing of the fixings to the substructure

To minimise the effects of movement, ensure your deck boards and its substructure are fitted in accordance with Timber Decking Association guidelines. Be aware that different timber species have different rates of movement.

Problems with the adhesive

The adhesive we recommend for installing RetroGrip® can be weakened if any of the follow events have taken place.

  • Decking not cleaned before using the adhesive, resulting in a poor bond due to dirt and grease in the decking groove.
  • Decking excessively wet during installation.
  • Not enough adhesive used during installation. A thick line of adhesive is required.
  • Adhesive used below 5 degrees celcius.
  • More than 1m of adhesive applied before installing 1 x RetroGrip®, resulting in the adhesive starting to cure before each RetroGrip® is installed.

How to solve the problem of de-bonding

If you have a problem with RetroGrip® de-bonding from your timber decking, there are a few simple steps that can be taken to resolve this. It is important that when re-applying adhesive you clean off as much of the old adhesive as possible and ensure that there is no frost or dirt on the timber decking or RetroGrip®. Also be aware that your adhesive will only bond above 5 degrees celsius.

Add new adhesive

  • Without bending the RetroGrip® , where possible cut out or scrape off the old adhesive and clean out the groove
  • Apply a generous line of recommended adhesive
  • Drop down the RetroGrip and stand on it for 2 minutes to hold it down in place

Secure with RetroGrip® screws

  • For an extra bond, use RetroGrip® screws to secure the inserts.
  • If the ends are lifting, use 1 RetroGrip® screw 10-15mm in from the lifting end
  • If using more than one screw per RetroGrip®, start securing from the centre of the RetroGrip® insert and work your way out, adding screws evenly spaced, until you reach the end of the insert. DO NOT add screws at either end first and then work your way to the centre, this may encourage a ripple in the RetroGrip®
  • Tap the screw lightly to help it bite on the antislip
  • Use a powered screw driver on a very low torque setting and slow speed to screw in gently
  • DO NOT over tighten as this will damage the RetroGrip

See the fitting instructions for uneven decking for more information.

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