How to Prep for New Floor Installation

How to Prep for New Floor InstallationYou’ve selected a new flooring type that will add value and beauty to your home and be highly functional. But now what? Many homeowners are unsure about how to best prepare for their new floors. To help, we at Carolina Flooring Services have created a simple guide to removing your old floor and readying your home for new floor installation.

 General Preparation

Taking out old flooring is a dusty process, so remove any wall hangings and window treatments as well as all furniture. If your home has floor vents, cover the registers with painter’s plastic to avoid spreading dust to other rooms. Place a mat at the entrance to the room so that you don’t track debris around the house with your shoes. Finally, vacuuming the floor prior to removal will help eliminate some of the dust.

Ensure that you have sturdy shoes and gloves to protect yourself from nails. You may also want to invest in knee pads as the removal process can require a lot of crawling.

Removing Old Flooring

  1. Carpet. Starting in the corner of the room, lift the carpet from the tack strip. Then, use a utility knife to cut the carpet into manageable strips (3-4 feet wide) and roll the carpet up tightly. To ensure that the carpet doesn’t unroll during disposal, wrap heavy duty tape around the roll a few times. The carpet pad below is uninstalled in the same manner. Remove the tack strip from the subfloor with a pry bar.
  2. Hardwood and Laminate. Begin by using a pry bar to take off the toe boards from the bottom of the base board. Then, starting from the corner of the room, pry up the  floorboards. Be sure to sweep up and remove any loose nails.
  3. Tile. Removing tile is a hefty job and isn’t necessary in prepping for new floor installation. Instead, a self-leveling mortar can be used to fill in grout lines and create a flat surface for a new floor. Carpet can be installed over tile by gluing the tack strips down and hardwood can be placed as a “floating floor” – that is, one that isn’t attached to the subfloor below.
  4. Vinyl and Linoleum. Like tile, vinyl and linoleum do not need to be removed before a new floor is installed. In fact, these flooring types provide an excellent moisture barrier when left underneath a new floor! Simply glue down any loose ends and seams to create a smooth surface.

Prepping the Subfloor

The final step in prepping for new floor installation is making repairs to the subfloor. If the subfloor is concrete, smooth out any lumps of putty with sandpaper. If the subfloor is made of boards, take the opportunity eradicate any creaky boards by nailing them down more tightly.

Once your old flooring is removed and subfloor is repaired, your home is ready for its new floor. At Carolina Flooring Services, we are prepared to help you with every stage of the flooring process – selecting a new flooring style, measuring and calculating how much flooring is necessary, and installation! Contact us today to learn more about our services and products.

Photo courtesy of: Hans Peter Meyers

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