|When it comes to floor installation, the natural beauty and durability of hardwood is the material of choice for floors. In living rooms, dining rooms, family rooms, and more, wood flooring is both beautiful and practical. Because wood expands and contracts with moisture—and can rot if left in contact with water for a long period of time—many homeowners shy away from choosing wood flooring for bathrooms and kitchens. Actually, wood can be a warm, beautiful flooring option for these rooms as long as it’s given a sturdy, protective finish and is dutifully maintained. Traditional strip or plank wood flooring is fastened to sub-flooring and then sanded and finished. Newer pre-finished wood flooring’s are fastened the same way but do not require finishing.|
|Installation Procedure:First, choose the wood species and board widths for the room installation. Unless you’re experienced in sanding and finishing wood floors, you”l do well to hire a qualified local hardwood flooring installer for installation or, if you want to do it yourself, choose the pre-finished type. Floor sanding is incredibly dusty work, and a drum sander, in the hands of an amateur, can leave visible marks and ridges on the floor. Furthermore during installation the advanced option of dust free sanding systems is a huge benefit during the installation procedure. New wood flooring should be laid on a clean, smooth, level, structurally sound flooring base for proper installation.
First stack it indoors for a few days to allow the wood time to adjust to your home’s humidity level prior to installation. When the material’s have been properly acclimated, it’s time to lay the first few hardwood boards. The first board in an installation sets the tone for the remainder of the installation. If installed properly, the rest of the floor will practically lay itself. If installed unevenly, gaps will develop as you lay subsequent boards and you will be frustrated with the result. Remove the shoe molding, and snap a chalk line 3/8″ out from the baseboard (this allows for expansion in the hot, humid weather and contraction in the colder, drier weather of the wood flooring). Start the installation at the longest unobstructed wall. While the bulk of the installation is tedious but uncomplicated, there are a few areas that can be challenging during the installation.
|For the next part of the installation, plan to install the flooring perpendicular to the floor joists. Then mark the positions of the floor joists along a wall for reference, cover the sub-floor with a layer of 15-pound asphalt felt to provide some moisture protection and minimize squeaks. Mark the center line of the room using a measuring tape and chalk line. If the room is seriously out of square, position the tongue of the first row parallel to the center line and rip (cut lengthwise) the groove side at an angle parallel to the wall. Finally, to rip the hardwood flooring, you will need a power saw that has a fence, such as a job saw (portable table saw). For crosscuts, you can use a power circular saw with a carbide-tipped 40-tooth blade or, better yet, a power miter (“chop”) saw with the same type of blade.|
|During installation, you’ll find it’s helpful to lay out several rows of boards, staggering them so no end joint is closer than 6 inches to an end joint in the next row. As you install the strips, cut pieces (at least 8 inches long) to fit at the end of each row; allow for a 1/2-inch gap at the wall. When blind-nailing with a hammer and finishing nails, don’t try to drive the nails flush or the indentations will show. Instead, leave each nail head projecting up about 1/8 inch and then place a nail set sideways over it along the upper edge of the tongue and drive the nail home by tapping the nail set with a hammer. Finally, use the tip of the nail set to recess the nail’s head flush with the hardwood.|
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