Hardwood flooring is a favorite amongst homeowners in the greater Libertyville, Gurnee, Mundelein area. Hardwood provides classic styling, great durability, and ease of maintenance. It is certainly a flooring type you should consider. When it comes to hardwood flooring you have many options. You can select from a large variety of wood species, stains, and plank widths. You can also install hardwood in multiple ways. Here are the installation possibilities you should consider.
Traditionally, solid hardwood planks have been nailed down. This method has been in use since the creation of wood flooring, and it provides a reliable, permanent installation. It is important to have a solid, level plywood subflooring in place. Nails will usually be inserted into the tongues of the tongue and groove cutouts so that they are hidden from sight on the majority of the planks. The exceptions will be the edge planks. Small holes created by nails on these planks can be hidden with wood filler.
Stapling is similar to nailing. It also requires a subflooring surface to attach to and it also creates small holes on the edge planks. Stapling is typically reserved for the installation of thinner varieties of hardwood flooring.
Thicker varieties of solid hardwood flooring (typically 5/16” and above) and engineered, tongue and groove hardwood flooring may be glued to the subflooring using manufacturer-approved adhesive. A layer of adhesive is spread onto the subflooring with a trowel, and the planks are glued permanently in place. This method does have the benefit of avoiding all visible holes in the flooring.
With engineered hardwood you also have the option of installing a “floating” floor. In this case, an underlayment pad is installed between the subflooring and the engineered hardwood planks to provide cushioning, a moisture barrier, and help to reduce noise transfer between rooms. The planks are then connected using their tongue and groove design, with a small bead of glue in the groove between planks to connect them. No adhesive or mechanical fasteners are used to connect the planks to the subflooring, so the flooring surface “floats” on top of the subfloor.
More recently, there is also the option of installing hardwood flooring using a click-lock system. With click-lock, no adhesives or mechanical fasteners are used at all. Instead, a special tongue and groove pattern is cut into the planks so that they snap and hold together. Click-lock flooring is also installed as a floating floor, and you will see this option on engineered hardwood and all laminate flooring. It provides easy installation and is a favorite amongst do-it-yourselfers.
Solid plank hardwood flooring is not recommended for installation below grade (underground), so these applications are where you typically find floating or click-lock installations of engineered hardwood. This is convenient since a floating or click-lock floor can be installed on top of a concrete slab, with the addition of a moisture barrier in between and no need for another subflooring layer. For above grade installation, any of the mentioned options will work. Your choice will depend on factors such as the type of flooring you have chosen and whether or not your flooring will be professionally installed.
If you are considering hardwood flooring in your home, or if you just have any questions about hardwood flooring, don’t hesitate to contact us at Floor Coverings International Libertyville to arrange a free in-home design consultation. Our flooring experts will be happy to explain our many available options, and create a flooring system perfect for your specific needs.
Photo Credit: Patryk Kosmider