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Modular Screed

Application and Function Materia Properties Installation Maintenance Technical Data Accessories

Application and Function

Schluter®-BEKOTEC is a modular screed system that produces permanent flooring assemblies that are free from internal stresses. The basis for this system is the Schluter BEKOTEC-EN/US/P, a studded polystyrene screed panel that is placed directly over any load-bearing substrate and optional common sound- and/or heat-insulating layers. The studs effectively divide the screed into smaller, 4-1/4" (108 mm) square modules, thereby confining shrinkage and curing stresses to control deformations such as curling and continuous cracks that can be common in a traditional screed. The BEKOTEC modular screed system allows the installation of continuous screed surfaces without any control joints or wire reinforcement. The elimination of control joints allows surface movement joints to be placed to match the joint layout in the tile layer.


The cross-section of the Schluter® BEKOTEC assembly reveals a minimum screed thickness of 1-1/4" (32 mm) between the studs and 5/16" (8 mm) above the studs. This results in significant material and weight savings over traditional screeds. For example, a 1-1/4" (32 mm) -thick traditional mortar bed weighs approximately 15.1-lb/ft2 (0.72 kPa), while a BEKOTEC mortar screed weighs only 11.9-lb/ft2 (0.57 kPa), representing over a 20% decrease. Material and weight savings compared to a 2" (51 mm) -thick mortar bed amount to over 50%.


The studs form a grid pattern, with a distance of 3" (76 mm) between studs to accept hydronic heating tubes 3/8" (10 mm) to 5/8" (16 mm) O.D. if a heating screed is to be installed. Since the screed mass to be heated is relatively small, the floor heating can be well regulated and operated at a low temperature range.
The BEKOTEC modular screed system reduces impact sound transmission. Since it is a floating screed system, it is also possible to incorporate a variety of sound attenuation materials below the panel, allowing for even greater impact sound reduction.


Ceramic and stone tile is installed over the BEKOTEC screed using the Schluter® DITRA uncoupling membrane. Please refer to the Schluter® DITRA Installation Handbook (detail D-C-TS for Portland cement-based screeds and detail D-G-TS for gypsum-based screeds) for installation requirements, including but not limited to setting and grouting materials, setting and grouting specifications, and movement joint placement. Surface coverings not sensitive to cracking, such as parquet or carpet, can be placed directly over the screed as soon as the residual moisture has reached an appropriate level.

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Materia Properties and Areas of Application

Schluter® BEKOTEC-EN/US/P is manufactured using closed-cell expanded polystyrene and is suitable for use with conventional mortar and poured screeds. BEKOTEC-EN/US/P requires no special disposal and can be recycled. No CFCs or HCFCs are present in either the material or the manufacturing process.
The expanded polystyrene foam used to manufacture Schluter® BEKOTEC-EN/ US/P is treated with a flame-retarding agent. The foam is self-extinguishing and achieves an HF-1 rating according to UL 94. Expanded polystyrene should not be exposed to hydrocarbons, esters, amines, and aldehydes. Common examples include solvent-based adhesives and diluting agents, oil-based paints and stains, and petroleum fuels such as gasoline and kerosene. All will deteriorate foam. Exposure to ultraviolet rays (sunlight) for long periods of time will result in partial degradation (dusting) at the surface.

Schluter®-BEKOTEC-EN/US/P (Physical Properties)
Property Value
Density 2.0 lb/ft3 (32 kg/m3)
Compressive Strength1 31.1 psi (214 kPa)
R-Value2 2.1
R-Value w/Mortar Screed 2.6
Maximum Service Temperature 175° F (79° C)
Weight w/Mortar Screed3 11.9 lb/ft2 (0.57 kPa)
Weight w/Gypsum Screed3 9.5 lb/ft2 (0.45 kPa)
Screed Material Volume4 (per 100 ft2) 8.2 ft3 (0.23 m3)

Notes:
1. Compressive strength measured at 10% deformation.

2. Calculated based on material R-value of 4.25 per inch and 1/2" average panel thickness.

3. Assuming material unit weights of 145-lb/ft3 (2,320 kg/m3) for mortar and 115-lb/ft3 (1,840 kg/m3) for gypsum

4. Approximate value for estimating purposes

Note on Sound Control:
When using BEKOTEC in combination with other sound attenuating materials over a 6" (150 mm) bare concrete slab with an IIC of 28, an overall IIC of 50 or greater can be achieved.

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Installation

1. Schluter®-BEKOTEC-EN/US/P is installed over an even and sufficiently load-bearing substrate. If additional insulation is required, place a layer of expanded or extruded polystyrene foam panels over the substrate and cover with a sheet of polyethylene. Over existing conduit or piping, sound insulation should be placed over the entire surface, above a leveling layer that is flush with the top of the conduit or piping.


2. At the perimeter, where the covering meets walls or restraining surfaces, place the 5/16" (8 mm) -thick edge strip, Schluter®-BEKOTEC-BRS or -BRSK. The edge strips feature an integrated foil that must be carried over the separating layer covering the insulation. If a poured screed is to be applied, the Schluter®-BEKOTEC -BRS/KF or -BRS/KSF edge strip with adhesive leg is used. The -BRS/KF edge strip is attached to the wall using the adhesive strip on its backside, while the -BRS/KSF edge strip is self-supporting. The screed panel is placed onto the self-adhesive foam leg of either the -BRS/KF or -BRS/KSF to prevent back-flow of the screed under the panel.


3. The modular screed panel, Schluter® BEKOTEC-EN/US/P, is cut to fit accurately at the edge area.


4. To produce radiant-heated floors, suitable heating tubes, 3/8" - 5/8" (10 - 16 mm) O.D., can be wedged between the cut-back studs. The distance between tubes is determined based on desired heat output


5. Fill the modular screed panel with a mortar screed or poured gypsum screed in such a way to ensure minimum screed coverage of 5/16" (8 mm) above the studs. If leveling is required, the mortar thickness can be increased up to 1" (25 mm) above the studs. The screed is cut at the doorsill using the Schluter® BEKOTEC -DFP movement joint profile to prevent sound bridges.
Note on steps 6 and 7: Ceramic and stone tile is installed over the BEKOTEC screed using the Schluter® DITRA uncoupling membrane. Please refer to the Schluter® DITRA Installation Handbook (detail D-C-TS for Portland cement-based screeds and detail D-G-TS for gypsum-based screeds) for installation requirements, including but not limited to setting and grouting materials, setting and grouting specifications, and movement joint placement.


6. As soon as the screed can be walked upon, the Schluter® DITRA uncoupling membrane can be applied. With respect to poured gypsum screeds, maximum residual moisture of 2.0 percent by volume shall be observed. Ceramic tile or stone coverings can be installed on top of the Schluter® DITRA using the thin-set method.


7. The surface covering on top of Schluter® DITRA is divided into fields with movement joints according to the DITRA Installation Handbook and industry standard guidelines. The family of Schluter®-DILEX prefabricated movement joint profiles includes a variety of shapes, sizes, and materials to suit different applications. When installing a Schluter® DILEX perimeter or cove-shaped profile at the floor/wall transition, the protruding sections of the edge strip should first be trimmed.


8. When using the Schluter® BEKOTEC for radiant heating, the completed floor covering can be heated after 7 days. Beginning at 77 °F (25 °C), start-up temperature shall be increased daily by 9 °F (5 °C) maximum, until the desired working temperature is reached.


9. Covering materials that are not subject to cracking (for example, parquet, carpet, or resilient flooring) can be placed directly on the Schluter® BEKOTEC modular screed; no uncoupling is necessary. In addition to the specific installation instructions, the allowable residual moisture for the selected covering must be observed.

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Maintenance
Schluter®-BEKOTEC products do not rot and require no special maintenance. Before and during the application of the poured screed, the studded polystyrene must be protected in a suitable manner, (i.e., running boards should be used to protect against mechanical damage).

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Technical Data

1. Stud diameter: 2-19/32" (66 mm)
Grid spacing for heating tubes : 3" (76 mm)
Diameter of heating tubes to be used: 3/8" - 5/8 " (10 - 16 mm) O.D. The studs feature an all-around cut-back design, which assures that the heating tubes are held securely without clamps. Clamps may be necessary where the tubes are turned into a relatively tight radius.

2. Connections: The studded panels are equipped with a mortise-and-tenon-type edge design for interconnection.

3. Panel size: 24" x 48" = 8 ft2 (61 cm x 122 cm = 0.74 m2). The short, top edge of the modular BEKOTEC panel can also be connected to the longer, side edge. This minimizes waste during installation.

4. Packaging: 12 sheets/box = 96 ft2 (8.9 m2)
The carton measures approx. 49-1/8" x 8" x 11-1/2" (125 x 71 x 29 cm).
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BEKOTEC: Modular Screed Principle

The screed surface is divided into 4-1/4" (108 mm) modules. This allows the installation of continuous screed surfaces without any control joints or wire reinforcement.

BEKOTEC: Radiant Heat Function

The cutback design ensures that heating tubes from 3/8" to 5/8" (10 to 16 mm) O.D. are securely held without clamps in straight runs. Clamps may be necessary where the tubes are turned into a relatively tight radius.

System Accessories

Edge Strips for Conventional Screeds
Schluter®-BEKOTEC-BRS
is an edge strip made of closed-cell polyethylene foam with an integrated foil leg. The edge strip is positioned at floor/wall transitions or fixed building elements, with the foil leg placed onto the substrate below the BEKOTEC panel or over the polyethylene covering sheet.
Schluter® BEKOTEC-BRSK is similar to BEKOTEC-BRS, but features an adhesive strip that allows the foam to be bonded to walls or other fixed building elements for ease of installation.

Roll: 4" x 164' (10 cm x 50 m)
Thickness: 5/16" (8 mm)

Edging Strip for Poured Screeds
Schluter® BEKOTEC-BRS/KF
is an edge strip made of closed-cell polyethylene foam, with an adhesive strip on the backside for fastening it to the wall and an adhesive leg for adjoining the studded panel. Placing the BEKOTEC studded panel onto the adhesive leg creates a connection that prevents poured screeds from flowing beneath the board. Schluter® BEKOTEC-BRS/KSF is similar to BEKOTEC-BRS/KF, but is designed to be self-supporting, rather than to be bonded to walls or other fixed building elements.

Roll: 3-1/8" x 82' (8 cm x 25 m)
Thickness: 5/16" (8 mm)

Movement Joint Profiles Schluter® BEKOTEC-DFP is a movement joint profile for installation at door areas or to divide screed surfaces.

Height: 2-3/8" (6 cm)
  3-1/8" (8 cm)
  4" (10 cm)




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