Adding a laminate floor to your home is one surefire way of breathing new life into an old flooring. Laminate wood looks great in any room, and can be easy to maintain. The laminate will protect the wood from dust and moisture, and will make it look always shiny. You can even install laminate wood flooring over existing floor, such as linoleum, wood, concrete and virtually anything except carpet.
Installing laminate wood flooring will require some cutting, though, especially if you have unevenly measured floors or if you have walls that are shaped unevenly.
What you need
- Jig saw, circular saw, or table saw
- Painter’s tape
- Carbide blade with titanium tip
- Miter saw
- Safety equipment
Lay out your wood flooring. You will usually need to make cuts on your laminate wood flooring for boards situated in parts near uneven walls, or if you need to reduce the width to fit. Installation of wood flooring would usually involve these steps:
- Acclimatize your laminate wood flooring at least 48 hours within the room you will be installing it. This will allow for expansion or contraction depending on the room conditions.
- Clear all furniture and baseboard trim, such that you have a bare, accessible floor.
- Lay out your boards to determine placement and alignment. This will give you a chance to adjust the width, and also to determine which pieces need to be cut. You will need to place a ¼ inch block to provide distance from the sides to the wall. This will give an allowance for the baseboard trim.
- Remember to start laying boards at a corner of the house or room farthest from the door.
When you have determined which boards to cut, you will need to prepare your marking and cutting tools.
Measure the cuts required. You will usually need to cut if you have walls that are not situated at right angles, or if the last rows require thinner or shorter boards. Mark these with a pencil at the rear side of the board.
Make a cut. Depending on the size of the cut, you will need to use different types of saws. For small, straight cuts, you can use a miter saw. For irregular shapes, use a jigsaw. For bigger cuts, such as an entire length of the board, you will need a table saw. A circular saw can be useful for cutting across widths.
When cutting, you can place painter’s tape on the laminated side to prevent this from chipping. When using a hand saw, cut the boards with the decorative side up. If you are using a power saw, cut with the underside up.
Install the boards. When you are ready to install the boards, you will need to start gluing boards at the corner farthest from the wall. You will then need to align the boards using the first row as a guide.
Some safety tips:
Remember to use safety equipment when working with power tools and with saws. Wear safety goggles and masks to prevent dust from getting into your eyes and lungs. Wear safety gloves to avoid nicks and cuts.