Anyone who has done the same task a number of times knows tips and tricks they didn’t know the first time. Here are a few to make laying new flooring easier:
1. How much flooring do I need?
Waste is inevitable from short ends to ripped boards in the last row of each room. One solution is to round every measurement up and order an extra pack. On average 5% extra should be enough. ProFlooring will let you return unopened packs so order one extra or keep it for future mishaps, but being 3 boards short is worth avoiding!
2. Why leave a gap around the edge?
Floating floors will expand and contract in response to moisture in the air. A 10mm gap all around will ensure the flooring can move unnoticed. Most movement is in the width of the boards. Cover the gap with 19mm skirting (which looks the best) or scotia (Quad). A second layer of kick boards in the kitchen as an alternative to scotia. (Call My Kitchen Star)
3. What underlay should I use?
Underlay negates small imperfections like screw heads. It provides a moisture barrier below your floor and can add an acoustic barrier. A 2mm combilay is adequate. Lay it one width at a time before coving with flooring. High density underlay will reduce noise transfer if laying upstairs.
4. When do I need to level the sub-floor?
Manufacturers’ recommend installation on a subfloor with variation in levelness no greater than 3mm over a 3m span.
Check all areas with a straight edge and fill those areas outside the tolerance. (eg: a 2m2 ‘depression’; 5mm deep in the centre, but diminishing to 0 at the edge needs filling)
You can plane and sand the high spots of a timber subfloor to reduce the need for levelling.
5. Where can I learn more?
QuickStep have produced an excellent “How To” video that is worth watching before you start: See: https://www.quick-step.com.au/en-au/flooring/how-to-install-your-floor