Researching and tackling do-it-yourself (DIY) flooring projects for your home can be fun, but make no mistake: installing a new floor isn’t for everybody.
Even relatively simple materials like vinyl or laminate require a lot of careful calculations and precision cutting for the patterns to fit and look just right.
In other words, if you’re new to the DIY home renovation world, it might not be the best idea to start with the floor of your dreams. That goes double for doing a tile floor.
Still, if you’re up for a challenge and don’t mind doing your homework, learning how to install floors can pay off. A brave DIY’er who tackles their own home flooring project could save hundreds, even thousands of dollars. And, if you have a helper (maybe the brother-in-law who still hasn’t returned your electric drill?) who has done flooring projects, that is a bonus.
Before you dive into the job, though, make sure to spend plenty of time studying how-to videos and articles and deciding which type of flooring will work best in your home.
And before you go on a tool-buying spree to do the work, determine the type, size and location of the floor you are laying, and research it thoroughly.
Look at online installation videos for the products you select, and talk to suppliers about things like product warranties, as well as tips on how to install your flooring product.
Then, once you have selected your flooring type and assembled the materials and tools, repeat this age-old and proven DIY mantra several times before you start tearing out the old floor: “This job is probably going to take longer than I think.”
In a perfect world, you’d watch a few YouTube videos and then breeze right through your DIY floor installation, but the real DIY world is chock full of surprises, many of them beginning with the word “Whoops!”
As a general rule, the process of installing a new floor can take anywhere from one day to several days, depending on the size of the space. The type of flooring you’re using will also influence the length of time for your project.
If you’ve got a helper and are working with a smaller space, DIY floor installation can be a nice weekend project. But if you’re dealing with a larger, more complicated installation, it can take twice as long. Be prepared, be patient and be confident.
Robbie Benjamin specializes in tile, wood and carpet floors at Rick Bent Flooring on Hilton Head Island. rickbentflooring.com