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Hardwood flooring adds warmth and beauty to any room. It’s also a great way to increase the value of your home. At Lowe’s, you’ll find a variety of hardwood flooring styles and colors from domestic species, like oak and maple, to exotics, like Brazilian cherry and bamboo. Locking hardwood floors are easy to install and can be installed on any level of your home. These instructions will show you how to install a locking hardwood floor.
Use this checklist when you go to the store and purchase your items.
Bring the flooring into the room so the wood planks can acclimate to the room’s temperature and humidity for at least 72 hours before installation. This reduces problems associated with moisture, such as warping and fit. Stack the flooring in a flat position in the room or rooms where it's to be installed and allow it to acclimate.
Check the moisture level of the subfloor to make sure the floor is within the manufacturer’s recommendations. If your moisture level isn't within manufacturer’s recommendations, stop the installation and call a Lowe’s associate for help.
Once you've prepped the subfloor, carefully sweep and vacuum the surface on which the flooring will be installed.
Check the planks for warping and defects, which typically affect around 5% of the product. These boards are unusable and should be discarded. If you experience more than 5% defects, stop the installation and call a Lowe’s associate for help.
Put on your safety glasses.
Once your subfloor has met the moisture requirements, install a moisture barrier or underlayment.
Using the straightest planks, lay the first row of flooring along the guideline, with the groove side facing the room.
Place spacers between the flooring and the wall for the expansion gap.
Begin by locking the ends of the first row together.
For the second row, lock the sides into the first row and overtop of the end of the adjoining board in the second row.
Place the second row so that the ends are at least 6 inches apart in each row.
When installing the rest of the floor, mix planks of different colors and grain to give the floor a more random pattern.
Continue laying the floor across the room, staggering the ends at least 6 inches apart.
If you have entry areas or columns, cut the planks to fit.
For the last row, you may have to cut the pieces to fit.
Once the last row is attached, install the transition pieces according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
When your transitions are in place, remove the spacers and trim any excess underlayment.
Install the baseboards and shoe moulding.
Keep one to two cartons of your hardwood flooring so you can fix any potential problems in the future, like a damaged board.
You can now enjoy your new hardwood floor, its warmth, beauty and ease of cleaning for decades to come.
*Time and Cost are estimated.