If you have decided to spruce up your home with laminate flooring throughout, the advantages are floors which are easier to clean, more hygienic, hardwearing, easy to lay and cheap. The first step is to decide what kind of laminate floors you like. Laminate flooring can be bought in packs of planks or as strips with grooves on the side for glue-less flooring. Glue less laminate flooring is not waterproof so I would strongly advise against using it in the kitchen or bathroom; I would use vinyl laminate flooring instead. By using glue with laminate flooring this makes it impervious to water so this might be an option if using in the kitchen or bathroom. If glue less laminate flooring gets water in between the grooves, it will swell up and eventually rot the wood so keep this in mind if you are laminating a bathroom or kitchen.
There are a few things that you will need before you lay your new laminate flooring. Once you have calculated how many square metres you require, you will also need to buy the same amount of underlay for laminate flooring. Here are some tips and materials you will need:
- Underlay for laminate will help noise reduction and smooth out any lumps and bumps before laying the floor
- You will also require scotia also known as edging to cover the edges where the flooring meets the wall
- If you have radiators in the room you may also want to purchase pipe surrounds
- A knocking block will also prove useful
- Flooring pull bar can help as well
- Flooring repair kit that will cover scratches and indentations on laminate flooring may be required
- Flooring spacers is essential
- Flooring adhesive could be required in some cases
- A laminate flooring kit will work out cheaper than buying the items individually. The kit includes a knocking block, spacers and a flooring pull bar. Individually is can cost £20 but as a kit can cost under £10.
- Flooring cover strip
- Coloured flooring sealant
DIY laminate flooring is simple – although instructions are provided with all laminate flooring packs, here’s a rough guide to get it done quicker.
- Make sure you have enough laminate packs before you start
- Remove planks and lay them in the room for 24-48 hours before starting, this will make sure the planks don’t swell and are used to the room temperature
- Place underlay first before slotting laminate floor boards
- Place spacers around the skirting board to remind you to place them when slotting planks together
- Remember to cut planks in half as you will need to create and aggravated look then slot them together (like brickwork)
After the floor has been laid you can then start cutting the scotia and covering the radiator pipe surrounds. If there are any gaps remember to fill using coloured flooring sealant. It is important that you lay the laminate floors in zigzag to make the flooring stronger, otherwise it can break easily.