TrafficMaster Rigid Core Vinyl Plank Flooring is a popular choice for homeowners due to its durability, affordable price, and ease of installation. Whether you are a seasoned DIY enthusiast or a first-time installer, this step-by-step guide will walk you through the process of installing TrafficMaster Rigid Core Vinyl Plank Flooring in your home.
1. Prepare the Subfloor: Before you begin the installation process, it is essential to ensure that your subfloor is clean, dry, and level. Start by removing any existing flooring materials, such as carpet or tiles. Repair any cracks or imperfections on the subfloor using a suitable product, and allow it to dry completely. It is vital to have a stable and even subfloor to guarantee the longevity and performance of your vinyl plank flooring.
2. Acclimate the Flooring: Open the boxes of TrafficMaster Rigid Core Vinyl Plank Flooring and let them acclimate in the room where you plan to install the flooring for at least 48 hours. This process allows the planks to adjust to the temperature and humidity levels of the room, ensuring a proper installation. Make sure the room temperature is between 65 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit and the humidity level is between 30% to 50%.
3. Install Underlayment: If you are installing the vinyl plank flooring over concrete, it is recommended to use a vapor barrier or underlayment to prevent any moisture issues. Lay the underlayment in rows, ensuring there is no overlap. Secure it to the subfloor using duct tape or staples. If you are installing the flooring over a wood subfloor, you can skip this step.
4. Plan the Layout: Start planning the layout of your vinyl plank flooring. It is advisable to lay the planks parallel to the longest wall in the room for a more visually pleasing result. Measure the width of the room and divide it by the width of one plank, including the expansion gap. This calculation will help you determine the number of full planks you can fit in the first row. If the remaining space is less than half the width of a plank, cut the first plank lengthwise accordingly for a balanced look.
5. Install the First Row: Begin installation by placing the first plank in one corner of the room. Remember to leave the recommended expansion gap (usually 1/4 inch) between the plank and the wall. Insert shims or spacers along the wall to maintain this gap consistently throughout the installation. Secure the first row of planks using a suitable adhesive or click-lock mechanism, depending on the type of TrafficMaster Rigid Core Vinyl Plank Flooring you have chosen.
6. Continue Installation: Lay the subsequent rows of vinyl planks, interlocking or adhering them as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Stagger the end joints of the planks in adjacent rows, ensuring that they are at least 6 inches apart. This staggered pattern prevents weak spots and creates a more visually appealing finished look. Use a tapping block or rubber mallet to ensure a snug fit between the planks.
7. Cut and Trim: During the installation process, you will inevitably encounter areas that require custom cuts or trim. Measure the required dimensions accurately and use a utility knife, vinyl plank cutter, or saw to make precise cuts. For irregular shapes, create a template using cardboard or paper and transfer it onto the plank before cutting.
8. Install Transition Molding: To complete the installation, install transition molding at the doorways or any other areas where the vinyl plank flooring meets another type of flooring. Transition molding not only provides a smooth transition between the two surfaces but also helps conceal the expansion gap. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to install the appropriate transition molding, whether it is T-molding, reducer molding, or a quarter round.
By following these eight steps, you can successfully install TrafficMaster Rigid Core Vinyl Plank Flooring in your home. Remember to read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions specific to the product you have chosen to ensure a professional-looking and long-lasting result. Enjoy your new flooring and the beauty and functionality it brings to your space!