Hardwood Flooring Installation Methods

A big benefit of choosing engineered hardwood flooring for your home is that more often than not you can do the wood floor installation one of three ways: with glue, with nails, or by floating the planks along the subfloor.

In many cases, solid wood flooring is installed using nails, which allow for expansion and contraction of the planks. However, with engineered wood, its layered construction provides a more stable plank, thus reducing natural expansion and contraction. Because of this, engineered wood planks can be installed with glue or by floating – both methods are not typically used with solid wood.

Not all manufacturers approve of installing hardwood floors with all of these install methods. So it’s important you confirm whether or not the engineered floor you want has installation variety.

Nail Installation Wood Flooring

2mm nail installation wood floorsUsing nails is the most common way of installing hardwood floors. Nailing down a wood floor requires each individual plank to be nailed to a plywood subfloor through the tongue of the plank.

While this is the most common wood floor installation method, it’s also a method that requires precision and is best left to certified installers.

Learn more about a nail installation here.

Float Installation Wood Flooring

Oak float installation wood floorsGrowing in popularity is an installation method referred to as a floating floor method. This install method consists of inserting the tongue of one plank into the groove of another and laying flat on the subfloor and/or underlayment. This install method is one of the easiest and does not limit you to one type of subfloor.

A floating installation does require use of some glue in order to secure planks in place. The tongue of each plank will require beads of tongue and groove-specific adhesive down the length before being inserted into the groove of the other plank. Planks stay in place with the beads of glue, the weight of the planks, and from the pressure created from all of the surrounding planks.

Learn more about a floating installation here.

Glue Installation Wood Flooring

2mm glue installation wood floorsAs with the floating floor method, you need to confirm with the manufacturer if the engineered floor you buy is approved for glue installation. This is something that should be stated in the warranty.

The process of gluing the floor in place begins with spreading a workable area of the subfloor with water resistant glue, connecting the tongue and groove of planks together and pressing firmly into the adhesive.

Learn more about a glue installation here.

Installation Checklist

The most important part of a great floor that lasts is proper installation. Whether you plan to have GoHaus wood flooring nailed down, glued down or floated, go through this checklist and the complete installation instructions. Have you…

  • Found a professional installer?
  • Asked your installer to test the moisture content of your subfloor?
  • Properly measured the square footage of the installation area?
  • Calculated and added at least 7% extra flooring material?
  • Ordered wood transitions for areas where two different floor materials meet, where the floor meets a fireplace, or where it meets exit doors such as sliders?
  • Inspected your subfloor to ensure stability and smoothness?
  • Allowed the flooring to acclimate to the climate-controlled job site for at least 3-5 days?
  • Decided on a finishing wall base or base shoe to complete the installation?

Complete wood installation instructions can be found here.

No one knows how to install hardwood floors better than a professional flooring installer. We highly recommend consulting with an installer before starting a flooring project. GoHaus hardwood flooring Installation Instructions are intended to offer general guidance as it relates to hardwood floors, and are NOT a replacement for a professional, certified installer. GoHaus hardwood floors MUST be installed according to the National Wood Flooring Association’s (NWFA) installation guidelines in order for the GoHaus Hardwood Flooring Limited Warranty to be valid. The most current publication of the NWFA guidelines is available to all NWFA members, and can be found at www.nwfa.org.

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