Layout and Expansion of 5" solid maple plank flooring

Old 11-24-15, 01:52 PM
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Layout and Expansion of 5" solid maple plank flooring

House is located in Albany, NY (northeast US).

On the ground floor of my house, I have two 12' x 25'/30' rooms, that are connected together through two 4' wide openings/doorless doorways (the main support beam of the house runs between the two rooms.

On the left side of the house, the kitchen cabinets run about 23' against the exterior wall, and a large island exists. On the other side of the house (the right side), in the 12'x25' living room, there is a chimney and hearth (hearth is to be flush with the maple floor).

I've read that 5" planks expand quite a bit (solid 3/4" maple), and my question is should I:

1) start at the center of the house and run the boards under/toward the exterior wall, thus hiding the face-nailed boards under the kitchen cabinets (I know there is a lot of arguments about placing hardwood or plywood under the cabinets, but I've already bought the extra flooring for under the cabinets); and run the living room floor from the exterior wall (where the chimney is), and toward the center of the house (and hide the face-nailed boards primarily under the couch that will be in the living room/against the interior wall); or

2) start in the center of each room, add a spline, and run the floors toward the exteriors of each room, meeting in the middle of the house, at the doorways.

Here is a link to an image of the ground floor: Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet

The HVAC system is running, and the wooden floor have been in the house for months. I've ordered a humidifier and plan to bring the humidity up to 30%, and maintain that year-round.

With that 30% in mind, do I need to add any spacers (washers/coins) since I'm installing in winter-time conditions?

Also, what about the doorways/openings where the two rooms meet? Should I use a t-Molding there?

Should I also use a reducer moving from the 3/4" hardwood to the hearth?
Thanks for reading
Old 11-24-15, 02:04 PM
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I believe that the majority of the expansion is across the width of the boards so the best place to start is in the center of the rooms and work out is each direction. The spline will be relatively short as it is only at the openings and the long common walls will allow you to place sufficient expansion under the baseboard/shoe moldings to make up for the small connected area at the thresholds.

Is the hearth already installed? You could try to do a picture frame around the hearth for now and if it gives you grief then cut out and add t-moldings after the fact. Other times you use a reducer put in backwards so that the undercut portion sits on the maple and it butts up against the hearth on the other side. That then becomes your picture frame although it would not be flush with the main floor.

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