How To Make Wood Floor Installation a Breeze

The time to install your beautiful hardwood floors has come, and if you’ve never done this type of improvement, it’s natural for you to have some nervous energy about the process. You want your floors to look perfect, and you also want to ensure that you don’t do them any harm by installing them improperly. To help you sleep better and give you the confidence that you need to get the job done correctly, here are a few tips from the professionals to get you on your way.

laminate wood floors truffle select surfaces

Laminate woof floors from Select Surfaces in Truffle.

 Prep your flooring subsurface

Before you lay your first plank of wood, make sure that your subfloors are good to go. The type of subfloor that you have may determine if you can lay a hardwood floor. A traditional plywood subfloor should be fine for installation as long as it is free from any debris. Concrete is a bit trickier, and you may be better off installing laminate floors. The same goes for floors that have electric radiant heat.

Choose the right wood for certain areas in your home

There are certain areas of your home that will benefit from a harder variety of wood. These are normally high-traffic areas like the kitchen or living room. Good varieties of wood for these areas are oak or ash. You can also use a harder type in your home’s kitchen. Bedrooms can have a softer type of wood since they have less foot traffic. A pinewood floor is a fine choice for most bedrooms. And laminate wood floors will work nicely in bedrooms and living rooms as well at a fraction of the cost. Many manufacturer’s also have helpful calculators that will assist you in choosing the amount of flooring you will need for your space.

engineered hardwood floor

Read the instructions twice before you start

Even if you’ve read a ton of articles about hardwood floor installation, you need to make sure that you read the manufacturer’s instructions before you even think about starting the job. Flooring manufacturers will let you know whether you need to cure your floor in a room before installation, and the instructions will also let you know if there are any limitations to use. You may even need to expose your hardwood to the room’s most prominent light source in order to determine which direction to run your boards. Many manufacturer’s also have installation videos you can watch.

rustic hardwood floors

Finishing your floors

Once the flooring is installed and sanded, you will need to finish your hardwood. While oil finishes may be more durable, you also expose yourself to chemicals that may be harmful to you and your family. Glossier finishes hold up better to foot traffic, so be sure to use extra glossy finishes in the dining room and the family room. You should also remember that polyurethane finishes cannot be touched up invisibly in the event that you have a scuff. If you are installing laminate wood floors you can skip this step as they come pre-finished and ready to go.

Following the tips and ideas above should help take some of the pain out of your hardwood installation. While it requires a fair amount of work to complete the task, the beauty of your new floor will definitely be worth the effort.

13 Responses

  1. Dean

    Great tips. I’m actually installing our hardwood floors over the weekend, so I’m glad I ran across this post. Lots of great suggestions. I will be bookmarking this page for future reference. Thanks!

    • Lauren Pezzullo

      What perfect timing, Dean! We’re very glad to know that this post helped you.

  2. Olivia Sherwin

    This is some great information, and I appreciate your point that different kinds of hardwood flooring do better in different areas of the house. I didn’t realize that some parts would have different requirements! My husband and I are going to be installing hardwood floor in several different rooms, so we’ll be sure to pick the right kind for each area. Thanks for the great post!

  3. Annie Marks

    I didn’t realize that you should consider the purpose of the room in selecting the right type of hardwood flooring. I am glad to know that you need to finish your hardwood flooring to protect it and make it last. I know someone that is looking at installing hardwood floors, I’ll have to share this post with them! Thank you for sharing!

    • Lauren Pezzullo

      Thanks, Annie! We’re glad it could help you.

  4. Violette Wise

    We have just started planning our first kitchen renovation. We’ll be replacing the counters, cabinets, and flooring. Wood will be such a nice change from the old linoleum. I will definitely look into oak or ash.

    • Lauren Pezzullo

      That’s a great choice, Violette, since those harder woods are ideal for high-traffic areas such as the kitchen. Good luck on your installation!

  5. Lauren Pezzullo

    Yes, oak and ash are perfect examples of a harder wood that will work better in a high-traffic kitchen like yours, Vicky. We’re so glad this post helped you. Good luck with your installation!

  6. Hazel Adams

    I agree a lot with the idea of finishing your floors and refinishing them every few years really helps with floor installation. I think that it is important to learn how to do floor installation so you can fix problems at home. I am glad that I ran across this article to help me understand the process of floor installation more.

  7. Kyler Brown

    My wife and I are trying to put in new wood flooring for our kitchen area. I liked your tip that even if you’ve read a ton of articles about hardwood floor installation, you need to make sure that you read the manufacturer’s instructions before you even think about starting the job. I can see how this would be beneficial so thanks for sharing this post.

  8. Katie Anderson

    When it comes to getting your floors installed, you want to make sure the process is done right the first time so that you don’t have to worry about it in the future. My husband and I are going to put wood floors in our new home, and he wanted to install him, but I don’t know it that would be the best idea. I think getting the professionals who do this kind of thing all the times is the best way to make sure things are done correctly.

  9. Nathan Johnson

    My wife and I are planning a house renovation for later this year. Installing new hardwood floors in the kitchen and living space it part of that plan. I really liked your section about choosing the right type of wood for the area. Like you said, high traffic areas should have a harder variety of wood. This should help us when we are choosing the type of wood. Thanks for sharing!

  10. Jeff Evans

    I want to swap out my tile for hardwood flooring next year, but worry that i will make a bad decision along the way. It’s wise, as you say in the article, to find a harder wood if the area will be higher in traffic. This is something I will definitely have to keep in mind to avoid any unnecessary repairs. Thanks for the tips.

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