How do you install laminate floors?


Quick Answer

To install laminate floors, clean the subfloor, remove the baseboards, lay vapor barrier sheets, and cut the door jambs to fit. Next, position the first row of planks against the longest wall, and then install additional rows. Trim the last row to fit, and then install the baseboards and thresholds.

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Full Answer

  1. Prepare the room

    Vacuum up any dirt and debris on the subfloor. If replacing an old floor, remove the baseboards with a hammer and pry bar.

  2. Install a protective layer

    Lay down sheets of vapor barrier, and trim them to fit where necessary.

  3. Cut the base of the door jamb

    Position a laminate plank on the floor next the door jamb, and mark the height of the board. Using a flat or coping saw, trim all of the door jambs to accommodate the height of the flooring.

  4. Lay the first row of planks

    With the groove-side facing the wall, install the first row of planks against the longest wall. Between the planks and the wall, insert 1/2-inch spacers every 12 inches.

  5. Install additional laminate planks

    Trim the planks to stagger the joints in each row. Aligning the tongue to the groove, add another plank to the floor. With a scrap piece of wood, gently hammer the plank into position. Continue adding planks until you reach the last row.

  6. Install the last row of planks

    Trim the last row of planks to match the width of the space. Position 1/2-inch spacers against the wall, and then install the last row.

  7. Add the finishing touches

    Once the flooring is laid, install threshold pieces at the open doorways. Finish by removing the spacers and installing the baseboards.

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