Laminate Flooring

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Estimating Laminate Flooring Installation

Installation Guide - Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring is more durable than carpet and is manufactured for ease of installation

The tongue and groove planks are installed over foam underlayment which allows for moisture and sound reduction in the room. When properly installed, laminate flooring is very attractive and closely resembles real wood flooring.

Baseboards should be removed, to be replaced after the laminate is installed. If the flooring is to be installed over concrete, lay a 6 mm plastic moisture barrier over the floor, overlapping the strips of plastic. If the subfloor is of any other material, this step is not necessary.

Then, lay a strip of underlayment against the wall you've chosen to start the installation. If your planks already have foam backing this step can be skipped. Lay each strip of underlayment as the installation progresses.

Measure across the room and calculate the width of the planks necessary to cover the floor. If the last row of planks will be less than 2 inches wide, add the width of the final row to the width of a plank, then divide by 2. Trim the first and last rows to this width, less 1/4 inch to allow for spacers, taking into consideration which side of the plank to trim. The tongue side should be trimmed from the first row, and the groove side should be trimmed from the last row.

Before the trimming begins, place the straight edge of a plank against the walls to determine if, at any point, there will be a space that is wider than the molding that will cover it. If there is, the planks will need to be trimmed to fit the contour of the wall.

Trim the planks with a sabre saw fitted with a laminate blade to minimize chipping.

Cut the planks so that each row is staggered. Staggering the rows keeps the ends from aligning in the center of the room and makes the floor stronger. A full length plank should be at least 8 inches longer than its neighbor. The planks should be measured and cut as the installation progresses.

Assemble the first two rows before sliding them against the wall. Lay a full length plank, near the wall, with the groove facing the room. Choose a plank that has been shortened and fit the tongue into the groove in the edge of the first plank, following the manufacturer's directions for interlocking the planks.

Snap the ends of planks three and four into the ends of planks one and two. Fit the tongue of plank four into the groove of plank three and snap them together. Place 1/4 inch spacers against the walls and slide the assembled planks against the spacers. These spacers allow for expansion of the planks without obstruction.

Place a spacer against the wall at each end of the next row. Set the ends of the fifth and sixth planks against the spacers. Lift the other end of each plank and snap the ends together. Then slide the tongue into the groove of the second row.

If at any time there is a gap between the rows, place a block against the side of the plank and tap lightly with a hammer until the gap disappears.

Continue installing the planks across the room in this manner.

Butt the edges of underlayment together without overlapping the strips.

When it is time to install the final row, place spacers against the wall and trim the planks using the previous measurements as a guide, keeping in mind the contours of the wall.

Reattach the baseboards and nail quarter-round molding to the baseboards to cover any gaps.

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

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