How to Install Floating Wood Flooring

What You'll Need
Moisture barrier (if installed on concrete)
Tapping block
Rubber mallet
Claw hammer
Broom and dust pan

Floating wood flooring is one of the most popular types of flooring available in the market today. With a floating floor, you can overcome many of the problems that you run into with other types of flooring. You can install a floating wood floor over the top of any sub floor and it is one of the easiest methods of installation available. Here are the basics of how to install floating hardwood flooring.

Step 1- Allow the Wood to Acclimate

One of the most important steps to remember before installation is that you allow the wood to acclimate. Once you get the wood, let it sit in the house for 24 to 48 hours so that it can properly acclimate in the new environment. If you skip this step, you might run into some buckling where the wood joins together with other boards.

Step 2- Prepare the Floor

Make sure that the floor is clean and free of debris. You can sweep the floor if there is a lot of dust in the room. If you are working with a concrete sub floor, you will first need to lay a moisture barrier. This will prevent moisture from getting up into the wood floor and causing it to buckle. Lay the pad down and tape it to the floor. The thicker and more dense of a pad you have, the better off you will be. A thicker pad is going to mask more sound than a thinner one. It will also feel more solid when you walk on the floating floor as a result. 

Step 3- Start Laying the Wood

Once the pad is in place across the room, you can begin to lay the wood. Start in the corner of the room and work your way out. Lay down one of the boards and then attach another board to the narrow end on top. If the floating wood has a locking mechanism, you should be able to tap it together and it will hold. If it is just a tongue and groove wood, you will have to use adhesive to hold the wood together. It works best to do a vertical row of wood first and then add a row to the side.

Step 4- Stagger the Wood

When you get to the next row, move the starting point down a few inches. You will want to stagger the wood so that all of the end joints do not match up. This will give it a very professional look once the floor is completed. Place a bead of glue in the side joint and attach a new board to the side of it. You will use the tapping block and rubber mallet to tap the wood together. When you get to the end of the row, use your saw to cut the board to fit. You can then use the small piece that was left over to fill in the gap from where you staggered the beginning of the row.

Use the dust pan and broom to clean up any saw dust from the project. Your floor should now be ready to use.