Installing Floating Laminate Floor: How to Work Around Obstacles
A floating laminate floor looks very good in a room, and in most cases is quite easy to install. The problem comes when there are obstacles such as pipes or poles in the room. There are ways around this that are quite simple. It’s a matter of knowing the correct technique and putting it into practice. Do it each time and your floor will look perfect when you finish.
Step 1 - Measuring
Begin by taking the tape measure and measuring the obstacle’s size or diameter, whether it’s a post or pipes. In other instances, you’ll need to measure the size if it's a partition wall extending at a different angle from the main wall. Having done this, transfer those measurements on the piece of the floating laminate floor as they should appear on the floor. This will tell you where you have to drill and cut.
Step 2 - Pipes
If the obstacle is a pipe or multiple pipes, you’ll need to drill out holes in the floating laminate floor where the pipes will sit. The hole needs to be 5/16 inches larger than the pipe to permit the flooring to be slid back onto the locking clip of the previous piece of flooring.
Step 3 - Cutting
Pipes coming through the floor will normally be located close to the walls, within a few inches. So after drilling the hole to accommodate the pipe, you can cut a slot just the same width as the whole obstruction with the opening towards the wall to fit the floor so the flooring can fit around the pipe or pipes on the inside of the room.
This will result in an extra piece that can be reinserted in place and cover (or patch) the opening and glued in position. If the hole you’ve drilled is in the middle of the flooring, the cuts need to be straight, that is 90 degrees. Again, be certain that the cuts you make will allow you to fit the flooring around the pipe. What you’re doing is creating two pieces of flooring to put properly around the pipe.
Step 4 - Larger Obstacles
Where you have larger obstacles, such as pillars, you might need to cut on two adjacent pieces of flooring. After measuring, put the two pieces together to mark out how much and where you’ll need to cut. Again, allow for the extra 5/16 inch around each obstacle for expansion. In this case, you’ll be cutting instead of drilling.
Step 5 - Fitting
To fit the pieces in place, begin by fitting the piece of floating laminate floor that butts up to the obstacle. Use the pull bar, then the rubber mallet, and the block to tap it firmly into place.
Now you’ll have a small piece of wood flooring to fit around the obstacle. To secure it in place, apply adhesive to the edges where it meets the rest of the flooring. Push completely into place by either using your hands or a pull bar. Allow drying before putting in the next piece of flooring. If the obstacle is a door jamb, the best looking solution is to cut out a small section at the bottom of the jamb and put the flooring under it.