Luxury vinyl plank (LVP) flooring offers a stylish and durable option for any room in your home. With its multitude of design options, ease of installation, and resistance to moisture and scratches, it has gained popularity among homeowners. If you’re planning on installing luxury vinyl plank flooring yourself, follow these steps to achieve professional-looking results.
1. Prepare the Subfloor:
Before starting the installation, ensure that the subfloor is clean, level, and dry. Remove any existing flooring, nails, or debris. Smooth out uneven surfaces and fill any gaps or cracks with a suitable filler. It’s essential to have a solid and smooth subfloor to prevent any damage to the vinyl planks.
2. Acclimate the Flooring:
After purchasing the luxury vinyl plank flooring, allow it to acclimate to the room’s temperature and humidity for at least 48 hours. This step allows the planks to adjust to the conditions of the room, reducing the chances of expansion or contraction after installation.
3. Measure and Plan:
Before installing the planks, measure the room’s dimensions to determine the quantity and layout of the flooring. Consider starting the installation from the longest wall and work your way towards the exit or doorway. Plan accordingly to avoid small pieces at the edges or awkward cuts in the main visible areas of the room.
4. Lay the First Row:
Starting in one corner of the room, lay the first row of vinyl planks against the wall. Ensure that the tongue side is facing the room and the grooved side is against the wall. Leave a small expansion gap, usually around ¼ inch, between the planks and the walls to allow for natural movement.
5. Install the Remaining Planks:
Continue installing the remaining planks in the first row, connecting them firmly together using the adhesive tongue and groove system. Use a tapping block or rubber mallet to ensure a tight fit. Remember to stagger the end joints between planks in each row to create a more natural and visually appealing look.
6. Cut and Fit the Planks:
As you progress, you will likely encounter areas that require trimmed planks to fit around corners, doorways, or obstacles. Measure and mark the planks accurately before cutting them using a utility knife or a vinyl cutting tool. Take your time to ensure precise cuts for a seamless finish.
7. Install Transition Moldings:
If your vinyl plank flooring connects to another type of flooring or transitions between different rooms, you’ll need to install transition moldings. These moldings can bridge the gap between different floor heights or cover expansion gaps. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to secure them in place.
8. Trim the Door Jambs:
For a polished look, the vinyl planks should slide beneath the door jambs. If needed, carefully trim the bottom of the door jambs using a handsaw or a jamb saw. This step allows the planks to fit neatly underneath, while still maintaining the necessary expansion gap.
9. Install Baseboards:
Once all the luxury vinyl planks are installed, you can reinstall or install new baseboards to cover the expansion gap left around the perimeter of the room. Use finishing nails or an appropriate adhesive to secure the baseboards to the wall, making sure they are level with the floor for a polished finish.
By following these steps, you can successfully install luxury vinyl plank flooring in your home. However, it’s important to read and follow the manufacturer’s installation guidelines specific to the product you are using, as they may have unique recommendations. Enjoy your new beautiful, durable, and low-maintenance flooring!