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Shopping for Flooring

Laminate flooring is a popular choice among homebuyers for its ease of installation, affordability and low maintenance. Whether you’re looking to decorate your kitchen or bathroom, this type of flooring is an ideal choice for your Kelowna home, as laminate floors are built to last for years in high traffic spaces. If you have children or pets, they are easy to clean in case of any spills and stains.

In this article, we have laid out four simple steps on how to install laminate flooring:

Choose the Right Laminate Floor for Your Style and Needs

Nowadays, there are so many laminate flooring types on the market. From Rugged and heavy-textured to sophisticated and glossy… the options are endless! When you’re at the store, make sure to take laminate samples home to picture how it would look with your surroundings.

Another factor you should pay attention to is the thickness and Abrasion Class rating of the floor. Thickness ranges from 7 mm to 12 mm, and generally, the thicker the flooring, the better. This is because thicker laminate floors are more rigid, and as a result, easier to lay against uneven subfloors during installation.

The AC rating represents the durability of your laminate flooring. A flooring with an AC rating of at least 3 will be tough and resistant to scratches, stains and foot traffic.

Preparing the Area

Before you lay down the laminate flooring, ensure your subfloor is dry and clean. Remove your baseboards and pull up your carpet. Be very careful when tearing out tack strips with nails around the perimeter of the room. You can opt to wear knee pads during this removal process to avoid any aches and pains later.

Pick Out and Install an Underlayment Layer

An underlayment is a layer of material that is placed below your laminate floors. Whenever you install any type of flooring, you must place an underlayment layer to help smoothen any imperfections.

Lay the underlayment flat over your subfloor, covering it completely without any overlap. Remove the sticky tape strip on the side, and press down to secure it on the floor.

Install Your Laminate Floor

Check your manufacturer’s instructions before beginning. Some may recommend to leave your laminate flooring package in the room so that your planks acclimate to humidity and room temperature. This will help you avoid gaps in your flooring.

First, pick out planks from more than one package at a time. This will even out unsightly colour variations in your flooring. Add spacers against the wall to create a small gap, allowing for expansion. Build and lay out your first few rows, and place them against the spacers.

Each laminate flooring plank has a tongue and groove planks that snap together above the subfloor. Try to lay them out at least 12 inches at a time. You will need a saw to cut some pieces at a certain length.

With one final row to go, measure the distance between the wall and the last row, minus the expansion gap to get the width measurement. When marking the cut line on your plank, don’t measure from the tongue. Instead, cut the plank along the line, and if needed, insert the last row with a pull bar.

Continue the process by following the manufacturer’s instructions for installing floor moulding and transition strips. Finish by attaching your baseboard moulding to the wall.

If you need help with your laminate flooring project at any time, please make sure to visit our store and speak to one of our friendly team members.