DIY Network

How to Install New Flooring

Host Karl Champley installs new flooring in a utility room.

More in Remodeling

  • Time

    Day

  • Price Range

    $500 - $1,000

  • Difficulty

    Moderate

Highlights:

Step 1: Remove the Old Flooring

Remove the old flooring from the room by using a pry bar to pull up the carpet’s tacking strips and any other transition pieces. Remove the baseboard molding and set aside. Make sure the floor is level with the adjoining floor in the other room. Secure the plywood in place with wood glue and nails.

Step 2: Place the Foam Layer

Position a layer of foam padding on the subfloor. Use the foam padding recommended for the type of laminate floor used. Since this is a "floating" floor – not directly attached to the subfloor – the padding will dampen sound and compensate for any irregularities in the floor.

Tip: These are typical installation instructions for laminate flooring. Make sure to carefully read and follow the specific manufacturer’s instructions for the laminate being installed. There may be slight differences in the installation.

Step 3: Install the Laminate Flooring

To install the laminate flooring, remove any baseboard molding and position the first row against the wall with the grooved sides of the boards to the outside. Place spacers between the first row of boards and the wall to allow for the wood’s natural expansion.

Step 4: Fit the Boards

Position the first board for the next row and tap into place. Use a hammer and tapping block to ensure a tight fit and prevent damage to the flooring. Continue fitting boards and tapping them into place until the floor is installed. Use a circular saw or table saw to cut the boards as needed.

Step 5: Cover the Gaps

Once the entire floor is in place, remove the spacers. Re-install the baseboard molding to cover the gaps between the floor and the walls.

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Projects

Resources

  • Hand tools from Klein Tools
  • Sinks and fixtures from Kohler
  • Wire shelving from Closetmaid

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