How to Install Laminate Flooring
Redoing your floors can seem like a massive undertaking. In reality, it’s not actually that difficult, time-consuming, or expensive. Installing laminate flooring is an excellent way to quickly and cheaply switch up your home’s look. This project should not take more than a day, should not cost very much money, and requires only basic home improvement skills. For this project, you will need:
- Rubber mallet
- Tape measure
- Table saw
- Laminate flooring of choice
- Flexible, 100% silicone sealant
Remember: try to have your flooring supplies delivered to your home at least one week prior to installation. This will allow the material to acclimate to the room’s temperature and climate. Additionally, before laying down the material, be sure to prep the floor by thoroughly cleaning the surface and removing any excess glue from previous flooring.
Step 1: To begin, inspect each plank. For the first row along straight walls, remove the tongue on all long side joints and the short side of the first plank using a table saw.
Step 2: Trace and cut your laminate flooring. For uneven walls, trace contour with a compass on the tongue side of the plank, then cut with a jigsaw.
Step 3: Assemble your first row. Place the flooring with the tongue side away from the wall. Insert the end tongue into the end groove and rotate downward to assemble. Remember to keep your planks aligned and the joints closed. Additionally, provide a half of an inch of space for expansion on all sides of your room—wooden spacers will do the trick.
Step 4: Cut for new rows. Start these new rows using pieces trimmed from the previous row, ensuring at least a 12″ end joint offset. Then, assemble your second row by inserting the tongue of the second-row plank into the groove of the first-row plank at a slight angle. Continue this process until the installation is complete.
Step 5: Check your work by looking for gaps. Apply the sealant to the entire perimeter to create a watertight seal.