Installing Laminate Hardwood Flooring

In order to easily install laminate flooring, all you have to do is follow a few simple steps to get the job done right. Installing laminate flooring will cause some of the flooring to be lost, so make sure that you buy at least 10% more square footage than you originally needed. Then, upon the arrival of the flooring, ensure that you unwrap it and leave it in the room for at least three days before the install. By letting the flooring get used to the rooms, it will adjust to the humidity and temperature. If you don’t allow the flooring to acclimate to the temp and humidity it will shrink and expand, contributing to ruining the floor.

Cleaning the sub-floor before the start of the project will ensure your laminate flooring turns out right. You have to clean this sub-floor or the flooring won’t lay flat against it. Also, check to make sure that anything that is attached to the walls can be removed if the flooring can’t slide underneath it. If the laminate flooring is being laid over a concrete sub-floor, the concrete needs to be cured before the laminate is brought into the room to acclimate.

After cleaning the sub-floor, you’ll want to install a vapor barrier before beginning the installation of the laminate floor. This vapor barrier will protect the flooring from moisture changes, especially useful in homes with damp crawl spaces. Read the manufacturer’s installation process for the official method of installation, but you’ll find that most vapor barriers overlap or butt right up against each other.

If the door jams have molding on them, trim the jams so that the new flooring will slide underneath. Then, you’re going to want to place the manufacturer’s suggested width of spacers up against the starting wall, ensuring that the first row of laminate is with the grooved side against the spacers. The spacers allow the floor to expand and contract without fault, and will be covered with base molding upon completion of the project.

Now you’ll want to install the rest of the laminate, row by row, ensuring that each flooring groove is tapped snugly to the tongue of each preceding piece. Also, make sure that each plank flooring end is offset 6 to 8 inches from each neighboring piece. When finished laying the floor, install door thresholds and baseboard molding to finish the project.

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This post was written by editor on May 6, 2011

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