The short answer to this is yes. The slightly longer version tells us that a lot of types of wood flooring come in click-in-place designs that allow for very simple installation. You can handle it yourself with some basic tools and some know-how. Solid wood flooring takes a little more preparation and there are slight variations on the technique, but ultimately, it’s the same process. “Click in place” tells you all you need to know. You can get click vinyl flooring, click laminate flooring, click engineered flooring and click solid wood flooring, so no matter the style, the type, or the temperament of the wood, you will be able to get the home you want with your own hands. Read on to see our guide on how to do it right.
What you’ll need
The essentials for laying your flooring are so basic you’ll probably have most of them in your home already. You need a pencil, a measuring tape, and a hand saw. You’ll also need some underlay, which you can purchase from your floor specialist or from any nearby DIY store.
And of course, you’ll need the click vinyl flooring, laminate, etc. Laminate, solid wood and engineered flooring don’t like the humidity to different degrees, so you’ll have to acclimatize them. This is as simple as leaving the panels unwrapped in the room they are supposed to be laid in overnight. They’ll soon get used to the temperature and humidity.
Our top tips
You can make the whole process a lot easier by investing in some knee pads. You’re going to be crawling around a lot, and your knees will thank you when you put your feet up on your new flooring. You can also make the sawing easier on yourself by switching to an electric chop saw or jig-saw.
If you want to get the best results you can, keep a spirit level nearby and measure as you go. You don’t want to notice a rise in one of the middle pieces once you’re done and have to tear the whole thing apart to solve it.
It’s also suggested that you get some spacers, especially for the laminate flooring option, as you’ll have to keep a 10mm space between the flooring and everything else in the room, including walls, skirting, door frames, stairs, other flooring, radiator pipes and kitchen units.
What are the differences between the floor types?
Some types of flooring are more involved than others to lay. The laminate is the simplest and takes the least amount of tools.
Solid wood flooring takes wood to concrete glue or flooring nailer, depending on what you’re laying your floor on, and because it expands and shrinks in the humidity, the spacing between it and everything else is extended to 10-12mm. There are also different instructions for whether you are installing on concrete or plywood.
Engineered flooring has a few ways to install it. You will also need a nailer if you’re going down the nail installation route; flexible wood flooring glue if you’d rather stick it down; or PVA glue and underlay if you’re going for a floating installation.
LVT flooring isn’t as solid as the other options, so you can forgo the saw for a Stanley knife, and the spacing is reduced to 7-10mm. But you will need underlay and a rubber mallet. The LVT underlay is what makes vinyl wood panels waterproof, so it’s important that you get that laid down well before you put in your next panel. You’ll have to do the two in succession, and when you’re done, you’ll be left with a beautiful, maintainable floor that you have laid with your own hands. Well done.