What Should You Know When Installing Hardwood Flooring
So, you have finally decided to take up a massive home renovation project and flooring is among your top priorities? You keep browsing through specialised websites, you buy magazines and carefully consider the advantages and disadvantages of each and every flooring material. However, the variety of flooring options is so diverse that the more time you spend in evaluating the flooring materials, the more confused you become. Well, have you ever thought of installing hardwood flooring? That’s the all-time classic and you may rest assured you will save yourself a lot of unnecessary troubles.
Of course, hardwood flooring is not the universal solution that is appropriate for any premises. There is a number of factors to consider before you make your final decision.
- You don’t install hardwood flooring every day, do you? Hardwood floors are known for their durability and if maintained properly, they can preserve their fantastic condition for the years to come. In this respect, you should not try to save up from professional flooring installation. Take your time to find an experienced, dedicated flooring expert who would do a good job. Arranging an amateur can be the more cost-effective option, however, in the long run, you will see that the cheap always comes out expensive. On the other hand, professionals know the characteristics of the different types of wood and would do their best to keep the dirt and waste to the minimum. (If you have ever had a construction crew/ an installer at home, you must know how messy the property can be when they finish the project).
- Arranging a professional installer does not mean you cannot take an active part in the project, though. It goes without saying that the majority of people who deliver any kind of professional services get irritated when the client is trying to supervise them and gives useless pieces of advice. If you want the job well done, you’d better refrain yourself from giving too many recommendations. However, you can prepare the room in advance, remove any furniture or items that would be a bother for the proper flooring installation. If possible, arrange a visit prior to the start of the flooring project. The installer would be able to provide you with an adequate price estimate and even give you a list of the tools and materials necessary for the completion of the installation.
- The next important thing you should take into account is the condition of the subfloors. Their stability is essential for the prolonged lifespan of your hardwood flooring. That’s why it is important to have them dry, flat and clean. Ask your flooring installer whether you will need a new subfloor. You can also ask about the best practices for protecting your hardwood floor from excessive moisture and minimise eventual noises.
- The next thing you need to know is that the natural wood materials can either expand or contract depending on the room temperature and the humidity levels. That’s why your installer should open the flooring cartons in order to allow the acclimation process to take place prior to the installation.
- Next, comes the actual installation procedure. In general, the most common hardwood flooring installation approaches are staple-down, nail-down, glue-down. Your installer can also opt for “floating” or glueless installation. The right installation technique should correspond to manufacturer’s instructions.
- The installation of blending boards ensures the even shade and color blending. As you know, there are no two identical pieces of wood in nature, so you should expect variations in appearance. Yet, if you hire an experienced installer, he would preselect the right boards and do his best to achieve the desired seamless look.
- If you settle for installing unfinished hardwood, you should know that the sanding and finishing procedures would affect your privacy. In other words, these two procedures are a bit noisy, but neglecting them would not lead to anything good. If you or a member of your family suffers from an allergy, you need to ensure proper ventilation when the sanding and finishing procedures are taking place.
- Last but not least, you should know how to maintain your hardwood floors. First, be careful when dragging the vacuum cleaner across the room as you may cause scratches. Second, avoid acid-based cleaning solutions and do not use excessive quantities of water when mopping. Don`t rely on homemade solutions that involve vinegar as it may damage the sleek looks!
Hardwood floor installation is a bit time-consuming but rewarding process. Needless to say, hardwood is a way more expensive than installing vinyl, for example, but its durability and beauty can hardly be denied. To sum up, hardwood flooring is a nice investment in a long term, but you’d better arrange a professional for the job if you want to save yourself future problems triggered from improper installation.