Laminate flooring installation is not a difficult project to undertake once you understand the process of installation.
Because laminate flooring is a great alternative to wood, it has become very popular. It has a wood look and termites are not attracted to it.
The easiest laminate flooring to install is the click and lock type.
If you’ve just secured your first set of laminate flooring from one of the sales on laminate flooring, it will definitely be worth having a read to see how you can effectively install it into your home.
The Preparation Of Laminate Flooring Installation
The packages of laminate should be placed in the room to be installed unopened, for 48 to 72 hours prier to installation.
This allows the laminate to climatize to room temperature minimising shrinkage when cool and expansion when hot.
Clean floor by sweeping and check for any nails or imperfections sticking out of the floor.
Lay down a moisture barrier. If installing laminate on concrete, you must install a moisture barrier. Over lap the plastic barrier and tape joints with moisture resistant tape.
Lay down the underlay padding. Most laminate flooring require an underlay padding which is a foam padding. This is required to compensate for any imperfections in the floor. This also provides a cushion affect.
Do not overlap the foam and staple or tape the joints together.
Laying Down The Planks
- Place the 1st board down at the left top corner, finished side up with the ridge side towards the wall.
- Install spacers between the wall and the end of the plank as well as the length of the plank and wall (you can buy spacers or make your own). If you choose to make spacers, they should be 5/16 – 3/8 thick to allow for expansion of the laminate.
- Place the next plank end to end of the 1st and click into place. For best results, do the entire 1st row parallel to the longest wall in the room.
- Starting the second row, stagger the joints so as to have a minimum of 6″ between joints.
- Use a taping block to tap the 2nd row into the 1st row. Continue tapping till the gap is tight.
- Continue from row to row in the same manner making sure the gaps are all tight.
- Usually the last plank in the row will have to be cut to fit the remaining space minus the 1/4″ expansion space. This can be done with a miter saw or a table saw.
Completing The Laminate Flooring Installation
After completing the floor, make sure to remove all spacers that were placed around the room for expansion.
Finish the floor by installing baseboards, thresholds or any other finishing.
Any holes or scuffs can be treated with special colored crayon from your lumber yard.
Tips On Laminate Flooring Installation
- Start each row with the other half of the plank from the previous row to eliminate wastage
- Don’t hammer directly on the laminate plank as they will break
- If a difficult cut arises, it may best be cut by hand
- A miter saw results in faster, safer and more accurate cuts
- A pull bar is very handy to install the last rows to pull them into place
- Always cut on the back side of the laminate to prevent chipping