There comes a time in your life that having to partake in some home improvement activities becomes unavoidable. Believe me when I say that I really have tried my best to avoid it, beacause I have. When friends and family have needed help with little jobs around the house I always try to avoid it. Occasionally I of course have helped out, after all I have manners, but as a rule I try to wait to see if anyone else can help before I offer. Well it is time for me to step up and tackle a big job. My budget does not allow for me to get someone into do the job so I will have to try myself. I am trying to get myself as prepared as possible by putting some how to notes done on paper.

Hopefully if I follow the tips I have found by searching Google. Maybe if you too are looking to install laminate flooring then this little guide may prove useful. Just so you know I am about to attempt to install standard laminate flooring on top of a concrete floor.

Preparation

Now as every good home improvement enthusiast should know, preparation is the key to success. I read this on a number of blogs so I think it is definitely a major factor. So it must be pretty essential. What I asked myself was how to do prepare a concrete floor?

It turns out that by ‘prepare’ the DIY enthusiast often means give the area you about to start work on. I would have done this anyway but I guess some people lack basic common sense. So I think that I need say no more on the subject of ‘preparation’.

One thing I did notice on the various forums is the importance of leaving the laminate floor packets in the room you are going to lay them in for 24 hours. Apparently this helps the boards adjust to the room’s humidity etc. I have no idea what happens if you don’t obey this rule. Maybe the boards will warp horrendously to spite you!

If you want your flooring to last and not sound cheap then you will need a good underlay. This will absorb the some of the noise and keep any harsh abrasive material away for the boards. It looked all the same to me in the shop so to play it safe I bought the middle priced one. Hopefully my investment will pay off on the long run. Laying the underlay is really easy you roll it out and then you try it with scissors. Easy.

Glue vs Glueless

This was a simple decision for me, glueless I just could not be dealing with getting glue all over myself. To be honest I didn’t even consider the boards that required glue. Certainly for a beginner adding in another step to the process seemed illogical.

Time for the fun

Okay now the area is clean and you have left your boards in the room for a day it is time to get your hands dirty. First tip is to work backwards from the wall furthest way from the entrance/exit.

Before I get any further and forget I just want to make sure you have the correct equipment:

  1. New sharp saw
  2. Spacing blocks
  3. Hammer
  4. Knee pads
  5. Pencil

So pick a corner you want to start with, for me it was the top left hand corner of the room. Lay the first board down remembering to use the spacer blocks. Then if you are like me and using the click together boards you simply need to angle the second board on the edge of the first and lay it down. The clever system should click together and secure the boards.

Continue like this all the way along the all until you reach the point when you have to cut a board. I fell bad even writing this as it is so obvious but just in case some of you don’t know how to measure a board. Place an uncut board on top of the gap lining it up with the edge, mark it, lift it off and cut it. If you want straight line then the use a saw, if you place the handle on the board and draw straight up the flat of the blade you will have a perfect 90 degree line.

Keep it up

Well that is all you need to do, just reaper again and again until you reach your door. At regular intervals stops and tap the edges of the boards to ensure they are tightly packed. It will take hours to finish the average size room; well it certainly will if you work at my pace.

I am really pleased with the laminate flooring that I installed, it looks like a more expensive wood floors. It is a project that is suitable for a home improvement beginner and as long as your take your time you will love the results.

Colin McDonald is writing on regarding installing a laminate floor on behalf of Floors-2-Go