Installing your own hardwood floor during renovations saves on labour, but it is a complicated task that requires a great deal of care. A poorly installed hardwood floor inevitably causes problems over time, even though it may look quite fine in the first few months. Here is our hardwood floor installation guide, designed to help you install your floor properly.
Prepare the room for your hardwood floor installation
Before you start installing your new floor, you need to take the exact measurements of your room and plan between 5 to 10% more floor space to prepare for any unforeseen events. We recommend that you place the wooden slats over your entire surface before installing: this will give you an idea of what your floor should look like.
Place the boards perpendicular to the joists for a solid floor that will not warp. In addition, make sure that the first row of floorboards is properly installed: if not, then no subsequent rows will be. Also make sure that your last row is at least 1 inch wide: this will ensure that your boards are secure. Finally, keep a vacuum cleaner handy. It is important to regularly dispose of dust and other debris that interfere with your installation.
Install the subfloor
The subfloor of a hardwood flooring project should generally be made of OSB or Plywood. Make sure that the surface you place it on has a humidity level of less than 12% and is straight. Once you have laid your subfloor, clean it thoroughly and apply a layer of wax paper for additional protection against moisture.
Install your hardwood floor
As you might have guessed, this part is not only the most important, but also the most complex. If you have any doubts about your ability to complete the installation, do not hesitate to work with a professional who has many flooring projects under his belt.
Guideline and installation of the first boards
When initially arranging the slats, make sure that the parallel sides are at equal distance from the walls. Leave a slight gap between the boards and the walls to avoid damage caused by wood expansion. When forming the first line, prioritize the straightest boards.
Nailing rows, baseboards and quarter rounds
To secure the first row, you will need to hammer in the nails since it is impossible to use a nail gun near a wall. Drill guide holes half an inch on one side of the board, then repeat every 10 inches until you finally stop 2 inches from the ends.
To nail the next rows, use a surface nail gun and place nails directly into the stud at a 45 degree angle every 8 inches, while keeping 2 to 3 inches of space at the ends. Make sure that each blade is nailed in two different spots.
Once the boards are installed, you can install the baseboards and quarter-rounds by nailing them into the wall. They should not be nailed to the floor, since floor expansion could cause them to move.
Any questions about hardwood flooring installation? Contact Plancher Metropole
At Plancher Metropole, we specialize in all types of renovation projects and we are well aware of the technicality required to install a floor. Do not hesitate to contact our experienced team for more information about installing your floor. It will be our pleasure to assist you and offer a free quote if you wish!