Our teams of professionals have long experience in installing hardwood floors. While solid wood floors look beautiful and are relatively uncomplicated to install, having a perfect floor means you might want to leave wood floor installation to professionals with the necessary skills and knowledge, experience, equipment and materials.
It is not rocket science, but you must have patience, get the proper materials and machines and prepare accordingly. It is of crucial importance that you control humidity level throughout the rooms and before you get the flooring delivered, make sure the floors are dry and the relative humidity is optimal for solid wood - between 50% and 60% and the temperature is about 18 degrees.
Remember that you should let the planks acclimatise within the rooms where the wood floor installation is going to be for at least 7-8 days, never store your flooring outdoors and all doors, windows etc. should be closed. Finally, you should check the pipes throughout the property and make sure it is in good condition. So, here are some tips:
- Make sure you are about to use materials of good quality
- Make sure the subfloor is ready and is getting the proper underlayment (floating floor installation)
- Make sure you have all the equipment and tooling ready and at hand
- Make sure the floorboards have been allowed enough time to acclimatise
- Make sure all the furniture has been cleared out of the room
How we Install Solid Wood Flooring
Solid wood can be installed over a dry, concrete subfloor, but the latter should be covered with an underlay. If you have a chipboard or plywood subfloor, planks can be fitted on top of them. Floorboards can also be installed directly to joists, but these should be treated with moisture barrier prior to installation. Proper subfloor preparation is essential, failing on it in most cases means squeaky joints, warped and buckled floor, loose blocks etc.
What does subfloor preparation involve? Its surface must be level, dry and clean. On the other hand, the manufacturer's instructions will tell you about all relevant floorboard tolerances and installation requirements. Remember to check, fix in necessary and test all pipework and think about applying a damp proof membrane (in the case of concrete floors) prior to installation, no matter the installation method of your choice - floating, glueing down, nailing down, fitting on joists etc.
Wood is a natural material which means that it is prone to expanding and contracting as the temperature and relative humidity change. If it nails you are going to use, the floorboards should be laid by secret nailing to the wooden subfloor, plywood or battens. In the case of plywood, it's recommended that you use a strong adhesive to ensure proper holding strength of the floor.
Leave at least a 4-inch gap around the perimeter and do not worry, it gets covered by skirting boards. Remember that the first row of floorboards must be perfectly straight from one end of the room to the other and use the best planks for the first three rows. Once they have been installed, allow for the recommended drying time before going on with the installation.
Generally speaking, there several methods of wood floor installation - floating floor installation, nailing down and glueing down. Opting for one of these is often a matter of a personal preference, although more often than not your existing flooring, subfloor etc. disallows some of these methods. At FlooringFirst we know everything about wooden floors, wood floor sanding etc. so why not save yourself all the hassle and give us a ring? We will advise you on all relevant aspects, use the appropriate professional tools, proper materials and above all, our wood floor fitting experts have extensive experience, so you can rest assured you are in safe hands.