Individuals planning to install their own home flooring should ensure their subfloor surface is level and install floorboards perpendicular to the floor joist. This prevents floorboards from warping or separating over time. They should also test their stain before applying it to the entire floor, following the stain application with a protective coating to ensure the longevity of the flooring.
Before installing wood flooring, homeowners should ensure the surface below their floor is level in order to prevent squeaking. If it is uneven, they should fill in any voids with sand and top with a rubber underlayment. If homeowners intend to nail down their flooring, they must lay a plywood subfloor, ensuring that the total thickness of the flooring plus the plywood is enough to accommodate the length of the nails.
Before applying stain to an entire area of flooring, homeowners should test the stain on a sample piece of wood or in an inconspicuous area. They should also apply another layer of protective coating or polyurethane, as this ensures the longevity of the stain finish and the flooring itself.
Homeowners may also consider installing floating floors. Floating floors are an inexpensive, easy to install flooring option, particularly for homeowners whose old flooring may have asbestos in it. The boards can be installed on top of the old floors, saving homeowners the cost of asbestos removal.