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Tips on how to lay laminate flooring

How to install glueless click together floors

This section is all about how to lay laminate flooring easily and to a high standard. Including:

  • How I calculate how much flooring I need (and how much to allow for wasteage)
  • Which tools I use to easily cut and click together flooring
  • How I choose the right underlayment for a laminate floor, depending on the sub-floor
  • A step by step comprehensive installation guide
  • My advice on choosing the best type of flooring
  • How I finish the floor neatly around pipes
  • How I lay laminate boards neatly through an awkward doorway, without leaving any unsightly gaps

    Hugely popular over the last few years, Glueless click together floors are marketed as something anybody can install as a simple DIY project. This is true to a certain extent. However, it is not quite as easy as many people think and I've seen some serious bodge jobs!

    There are a few simple steps that get missed at the beginning that ruin what could be a nice addition to a home.

    Like anything, it's 'easy when you know how' .

    Laid properly, a cheap wooden floor can actually still look pretty smart. The opposite is true also, spend loads on a laminated floor and lay it badly and not only have you wasted a lot of money on a floor that won't last as long as it could, but it looks rubbish too.

    How do you calculate how much laminate flooring and work out the amount of beading required?

    It's easy to calculate the amount of flooring and underlay required in a square or rectangle room.

    Multiply the length in metres by the width in metres to get the number of square metres needed (swap metres for feet and inches if you work in imperial). When calculating how much underlay is required, I don't normally add anything for wastage because the off cuts can be re-used.

    When calculating how much flooring is required, I add between 5 and 7% to allow for wasteage (multiply the total by 1.05, or 1.07 to add 5 or 7 %). If you've never laid a floor, it might be worth adding 10% for waste :-) .

    If you want to work out the amount of flooring required in an L shaped room, treat it as two seperate square/rectangle areas and use the method described above for each. Then, simply add the two answers together before calculating and adding on

    the waste.

    If you/the customer has a budget to stick to, once you know how many square metres you need you can divide the budget by the number of metres required to calculate how much you can afford to spend per metre on floor boards and underlay. Some floors are available with the underlay attached to the underside which may be the best option if working on a tight budget.

    Most types of flooring are supplied in packs that contain between 2 and 3 square metres. Divide the amount of flooring required by the contents supplied per pack.

    Whatever the answer, round it up to work out how many packs of laminate flooring are required.

    Calculate how much Beading is needed

    For beading or skirting to cover the expansion gap around the perimeter measure every wall of the room. That is all the way round the walls where the beading or skirting will be required (exclude doorways), then add all the lengths together. Add 10% for wastage this time, by multiplying the answer by 1.1

    When you install this, cut all the long walls first and then do the short bits last, using all the offcuts.

    Laminate flooring tools to use:

    It doesn't matter if you know how to lay laminate flooring if you don't have the right tools it will be impossible to get it right.

    Click here for a full list of the tools I use to install laminate flooring.

    Below is a picture of my tool setup when laying floors. Protect the floor with underlay and cardboard whilst you are working on it. I already cut the skirting round and removed it so all I need to do is fix it back in place once the floor is down.

    Laminate flooring underlay

    The underlay is important, there are several different factors and types of underlay to consider. Because of that, I've written a whole page about laminate flooring underlay here .

    Install laminate floor

    Once you have all the tools, beading, flooring and underlay click here to go to the step by step laminate flooring installation guide .

    How to lay laminate flooring through awkward doorways

    One of the most common areas people get wrong with installations is at the door ways. Instead of leaving a 10mm expansion gap you cut the thickness of the flooring off of the bottom of the architrave and frame. Click here to see how to lay laminate flooring through doorways

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