A reducer is designed to smooth the gap specifically when the floors are not level with each other, when one is higher than the other. A reducer will be installed in the space where two different floors meet. Unlike the 90 degree drop of an end cap, its top is sloped, and the bottom is cut to rest on two different levels. The final look is of the installed floor sloping or angling down to the next level of your floor. Reducers can connect with the locking mechanism of the outer plank of flooring, or the locking mechanisms can be cut off each and they can be laid flush with each other. You’ll use these when going from a thick tile down to a laminate, or laminate down to vinyl, or vinyl down to concrete.
In addition to transitioning between floors, a reducer can be a good choice to use when a floor just ends, not meeting up with anything else. It can be installed at doorways, fireplaces, and sliding glass doors where no track sticks up above the floor level. Here, the reducer will protect what would otherwise be exposed flooring edges from damage.
Laminate reducers are grooved on the bottom. This is for installation. Each trim piece will come with a piece of track. This track is adhered to the subfloor, never to the top flooring, and then the reducer is connected to the track to hold it into place.
Reducers for hardwood are a completely different shape, your basic slope. The taller end will have a groove to lock with your hardwood floor board. Hardwood reducers are almost always 3 1/2 inches wide. They bring the height of your floor from the width of the board down to nothing.
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David is a Writer at Floors To Your Home (.com), as well as the PPC Manager, a Marketing Strategy Team member, a Researcher, Videographer, Social Strategist, Photographer and all around Resource Jitō. In my spare time I shoot and edit video, explore film history, mix music (as in ‘play with Beatles multi-tracks’) and write non-fiction for my friends. Connect with me on W. David Lichty’s Google+