Re: enginered wood flooring
Ok, let's try to break this down a little bit.
The manner in which you install your flooring will be dictated by the manufacturers instructions. It doesn't matter what anyone else tells you, it is the manufacturer that has the final say.
A vapor barrier usually is little more than a 6mil plastic sheet, overlapped and taped at seams and turned up the walls a few inches, which will be hidden behind the baseboard.
The boards will usually have a tongue and groove joint between pieces. Newer designs this is an interlocking joint, older styles it is a simple slip fit that is typically glued.
You will maintain a gap between the edge of the flooring and any solid object, e.g., perimeter walls, intermediate walls, doorways, etc. Door jambs are usually under cut so that the flooring goes under the jamb rather than leaving a visible gap. Final note on removing baseboards. It is a personal preference whether you pull the base and install the floor under it, or to install against the base and cover the gap with a shoe molding. I prefer pulling the base.
Padding, if the individual boards have padding on the back of them, then it is unlikely that you will need additional padding, again, refer to the manufacturer's recommendations on all matters of installation.
The crack in the kitchen floor, you should be able to fill it with floor leveling compound (dry mix powder, you add water ) or similar floor rated filler. Over that you can then install your flooring. I personally prefer sheet good vinyl, aka linoleum, to peel and stick tile or VCT tile. The reason is that the crack between each tile will allow moisture and dirt to get under the tile and loosen it over time. You don't have that problem with sheet goods. If you have your heart set on vinyl tile, I would recommend VCT over peel and stick type tile because it is far more durable.
To send me a PM, you likely need to go into your own profile first and set your settings to accept/send PM messages, once you do that, all you have to do is click on my name and you can send me a message. I personally prefer to keep questions on the forum, however, because I am but one of many highly qualified people here that can offer assistance, you lose out on all that knowledge by going to private messages (PM's )
I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!