Laminate flooring has become a very popular option for homeowners. These floors are relatively inexpensive and can be installed without hiring a professional. It is not very difficult to lay laminate floors.
Remove the Old Flooring
First, one must remove the old flooring in the room. If the room is carpeted, pull up the carpet, padding, and tack strips. If there is any padding or carpet adhesive stuck to the floor, scrap it off.
Preparing the Surface
Usually this type of flooring is installed on a concrete slab. Sweep the concrete then check to make sure that it is flat. One may use a straight edge to check the slab for dips and high spots. High spots can be smoothed with a surface grinder. Dips that are one-eighth of an inch or deeper must be filled in. This can be done with a self-leveling compound. This compound must be allowed to dry before installing the laminate. If the flooring is being placed on wooden flooring, make sure that the floor is swept and that there is no damage to the wood. If the wooden flooring is damaged, it will have to be repaired or replaced before one can lay the laminate.
Preparing the Room
One must trim the bottoms of the door frames and doors to make sure that the new flooring will fit underneath. Deciding how much to cut can be made easier if one has a sample of the flooring and underlay. This can help measure how much space is needed under the doors and frames. There are door trimming tools made specifically for this purpose.
Installing the Underlay
The underlay is the part of the floor that provides cushion. One should choose an underlay that suits the surface it will be installed on. It is important to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when installing both the laminate and the underlay. The pieces of underlay are typically connected using clear packing tape. The underlay should run the same direction as the laminate.
Installing the Laminate
There are many different kinds of laminate flooring and most will come with instructions specific to that type and brand. Most laminate flooring comes in pieces that snap together. Many types use glue to make sure the flooring stays tightly connected. All one has to do is press them together at an angle until they click into place. This is convenient and ensures that there are no gaps between the pieces of the laminate. Quarter inch spacers should be used for the first plank. This makes sure that there is an expansion gap. The flooring usually can then be built off of the first plank. A puller tool is sometimes necessary to make sure that the last plank fits tightly into place.
This type of flooring is an excellent choice for those that prefer to install things themselves. This household project does not typically require a professional. When one chooses to lay his own laminate floors, he saves himself the cost of installation.
For more information about laying laminate floors, you can check out the youtube video below:
Suite101: Installing Laminate Flooring
Flooring And Carpets: Installing Laminate Flooring
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