Installing solid hardwood flooring isn’t for beginners. If you have no previous experience with hardwood flooring installation you should call a professional. Also, hardwood flooring manufacturers include detailed installation instructional materials with their products. All manufacturer instructional materials should be followed exactly and take precedence over this or any installation guide.
That being said, hardwood flooring installation can be an exciting and rewarding project for the experienced DIYer. This series will take a look at the many steps involved in solid flooring installation. This week we will focus on all the preparations you will need to take before you begin your project.
1. Inspect the wood.
Most flooring materials undergo a rigorous inspection process before they ever wind up in your home. So why should you inspect the wood before installation? Good question. Hardwood flooring is a natural product, meaning there are natural color, tone, and grain variations. It also means that products can warp, bend, or change appearance after they leave the factory. Never install defective flooring materials – not only will it be a pain to remove or replace, it may even void certain warranties.
2. Gather the tools.
There are a number of tools you will need to successfully install new hardwood flooring. They include:
• Blue tape
• A broom
• Power nailer
• Pry bar
• Table saw
• Tape measure
• Hardwood cleaner
• Hand saw
• Flooring nails (check manufacturer’s instructions for the correct size)
Remember to check with the manufacturer's instructions for a complete list of tools and supplies you will need.
3. Save the best for last.
Construction projects often come in groups. If you find yourself doing other renovations other than new floors, install your flooring last. This ensures that no damage is done to the wood during other construction work. If your flooring is acclimating in the same area as other construction projects, make sure to cover the materials so they don’t get scratched, scraped, or dirty.
That’s it for this segment of our Solid Flooring Installation series. Come back next week when we will discuss proper acclimation techniques, crawl space vapor barriers, and securing wood sub-floors. If you just can't wait, visit our website for more information on solid hardwood flooring installation.