Install wooden floors without hiring professionals with this easy tutorial.
With so many flooring options these days it is hard to know what the best option is for a modern kitchen. From ceramic tiles to laminate flooring, chances are you can find a good idea to fit right in with your kitchen designs. Hardwood floors are a popular choice for kitchen flooring because of their easy install, durability and gorgeous aesthetics.
With an open floor plan in our new house, I opted for carpet free flooring. Having torn carpet out so many times and seen what is under there, wood planks seemed to be a good choice for our wood kitchen flooring.
We chose engineered hardwood in Vintage Beige in 7.5 inch wide planks from ADM Flooring. The hardwood is wire brushed which creates a beautiful rustic look in our kitchen space and walk-in pantry.
Easy Installation Wood Floor in Your Kitchen
Having previously installed other solid wood flooring, this engineered wooden flooring was easier than anticipated!
- Broom / Shop Vac
- Vapor barrier
- Hammer stapler
- Brad nailer
- Air compressor
- Floor stapler
- Tape measure
- Miter saw
- Table saw
- Jigsaw - for small cuts around doors
- Knee pads
YouTube Video: How We Installed Our Wood Floor
Prep Work for Your New Floor
When laying any type of hardwood flooring whether it is solid hardwood or engineered, there will be a fair amount of prep work before you can install.
- Allow time for wood to acclimate
- Clean your subfloor really well
- Use a vapor barrier
Allow Time for Acclimation
Solid hardwood flooring needs to sit in your home for 2 weeks before you begin installation. It may feel like a long time of doing nothing. But in fact, this allows the wood to acclimate to its environment so there is less expanding and contracting after it is installed. Make sure to allot for enough time to do this.
Clean the Subfloor
Begin with a clean base layer. Sweep or vacuum any and all debris and dirt off of your subfloor. You want your surface to be completely smooth so your new floor will lay flat.
Add a Vapor Barrier
For proper care of your wood flooring, use a hammer stapler to secure a vapor barrier sheets to the subfloor. Because moisture can destroy hardwood floors, vapor barriers are highly recommended to help prevent moisture from wicking up and absorbing into the natural wood.
Laying the Floor
After you have done all of the prep work to set the stage for your beautiful flooring, you can begin laying the floor.
- First row must be straight
- Use spacers and a level
- Nail down your first row with a brad nailer
- Use a floor stapler to finish the additional wood planks
The First Row Must Be Straight
It is incredibly important for this design style that your very first row be laid straight. This is NOT optional. If you want the best flooring, you need to do that hard work and get it straight from the beginning. If it is off even the tiniest bit you will be able to tell in the next row that follows with gaps in your wood planks.
Use Spacers and a Level
Use spacers and a level to space your first piece of wood ¼" from the wall. This gives the wood room to expand and contract over time. Use a level to make sure the board is straight. Do not rely on your wall being straight.
Use a Brad Nailer for the First Row
Once your first wooden plank is spaced and straight, use a brad nailer to face nail it down.
PRO TIP: Face nailing is when you nail on the top of the board. You can see these nail holes, so it is better to strategically place them in areas that are less noticeable to maintain an elegant look.
Continue face nailing the first row of wood. After the first board is nailed down, you can also use a chalkline to ensure the rest of your boards are straight. Again, your first row MUST be straight.
Finish Wood Planks with a Floor Stapler
Begin your second row using a floor stapler. A floor stapler will put the staples right on top of the tongue of the wood so they will be hidden. Also make sure that your wood seams line up at different spots on each row so the rows are not identical.
PRO TIP: Continue to lay boards down and hit them gently into place. It's a great option to use a scrap of wood to hit the planks. Hitting the wood planks directly can damage the real wood.
Continue to staple your wood planks every 3 to 5 inches. You will want them nailed down nice and tight. Repeat these steps until you have laid down all of your pieces.
From our experience, a popular option for flooring like this can take some time to install. But we did have great help from time to time for our kitchen wood floor. Acquiring a few extra sets of hands is one of the best ways to cut down on how long it takes to install.
A Kitchen Wood Floor is Durable
A quality wood floor is an excellent choice for your kitchen, living room and other high-traffic areas because of its durability and low maintenance. While it may not be the ideal choice for a basement because of moisture content, it is a good option for other living spaces.
Hardwood flooring is less likely to be damaged, as long as you don't go pouring buckets of water on it. But if something does happen, it can easily be sanded down slightly and fixed. Hardwood has great longevity.
Our engineered hardwood has an oil finish to help prevent scratching from pets. The wire brushed wood texturing also is very resistant to wear and tear.
A Wood Floor in Your Kitchen is Aesthetically Appealing
While tile flooring is often used in kitchen renovation, hardwood floors have a classic look of natural beauty that is visually appealing to everyone. Wood floors provide a soft warmth to a room that you don't get with tile or concrete flooring.
I also love that wooden floors come in so many options. In recent years especially, there is a large variety in coloring and finishes to fit your specific style of home and decor. Our floor is wire brushed hardwood, which is a finishing technique that creates a rustic looking, slightly distressed surface.
Sometimes the finish you choose can also be useful for maintenance purposes and hiding dirt. Not having a floor that looks dirty all the time is always aesthetically pleasing.
So Why Pick Wooden Floors for Your Kitchen?
- They are durable
- Last for a long time with low maintenance
- Easy to refinish and stain if you choose another color
- Go with a wide variety of styles
- You can install yourself
- Beautiful aesthetics
There are many different types of kitchen flooring that fit great in a modern home, but hardwood flooring is definitely a favorite for its aesthetics and longevity.
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