How to Prepare for Flooring Installations

Say you just bought a new house and the flooring could use a pick me up. How do you prepare for the installation of new flooring? Are their guidelines to flooring installations that you might not realize?

In order to save time and money before you new flooring is installed you are going to want to prep the room for flooring. Hardwood flooring installers are not going to want to come to your home and have to do all the prep work. This will cost you more money if they have to stay longer to do more work.

For starters, if you are replacing carpet with hardwood flooring, or laminate flooring, do the installation crew a favor and rip up the old carpet. If the flooring installation crew charges by the hour for their labor, you are saving yourself an hour or two of costs (depending on the room size). If you are not installing floors in other rooms, seal them off. Dust is the number one problem with floor installations. Most floor installers will take minimum preparations to contain the dust. If you do not want that dust throughout your home, seal off the rooms that are not getting new flooring with plastic and masking tape on the doorways, wherever possible.

You will want to remove any doors. Most flooring installation companies will do this but that does not mean they will safely store the doors. It is best if the homeowners do this themselves. Separate multiple doors with a blanket to prevent scratching or dings, and move the doors to a room that is not getting new flooring. Once the flooring installation is complete, re-install the doors yourselves to prevent scratching.

Does the room have baseboards? Remove them. Floor installers can cut under your baseboards if you cannot remove them and install the flooring underneath. However, keep in mind if you are paying for labor, this takes added time. It is best to remove any and all baseboards before installing the flooring, and then reinstall them yourself after the flooring is completed.

If the new hardwood or laminate flooring, or even tile flooring is going through doorways into other areas of your home, it is wise to remove the door trim as well. Like with the baseboards, the floor installers can cut under the door trim, but this will take time and thus take more money.  Almost all flooring installation companies do not remove the door trim, so if you are worried about a 100% polished finished, remove the door trim yourself prior to the flooring installation.

You will need to prepare the sub-floor for the new floor installation. What is your substrate? If sub-floor installation is not part of the package, you will want to get the sub-floor solid and tight ahead of time. If the flooring installer has to do it, they will simply steam-roller right over any imperfections and holes in the sub-floor.

Lastly, set up an outdoor cutting area for your flooring installers. This will encourage them to cut their floorboards outside, keeping dust and cleanup to a minimum inside the house. Covered concrete patio or garage works best, with access close to the doorway for easy access to the room the flooring is being installed.