Unfortunately, installing hardwood floors is not as easy as taking a staple gun and connecting boards together. The process is much more complicated. And in certain conditions and climates, it can add an extra layer of difficulty.
So, before you decide to Youtube a bunch of videos that lay out exactly how to install your new hardwood floors, here are a few things to consider first and foremost.
Why We Recommend Against Installing Hardwood Floors Yourself
1. The raw materials are not as easy to replace in case you make a mistake.
Unlike painting a wall, or replacing your kitchen cabinets, the raw materials of hardwood floors are expensive. This means that if you decide to take the task upon yourself and run into a mistake along the way requiring you to use another board, you’ll be making costly mistakes.
2. Special tools are required.
You’re going to need a lot more than just a hammer and nail to get the job done. Many power and hand tools are required for a successful installation of hardwood floors. Just to give you an idea, here’s a list of tools required on the job:
• Saws of all types (i.e. Circular, Table, Jig, Miter, etc) for getting the right dimensions of boards and planks
• Hygrometers for testing moisture levels – very important
• Glue adhesives
• Floor leveling tools
• Air compressors
• Nail guns
• Adhesive removers & glue adhesives
• Knee pads to prevent wear and tear on your knees
Many other tools are required; this is just a basic list of what’s needed. Chances are, you won’t really be saving much money in the long run if you decide to install hardwood floors yourself, but lack all of the necessary tools.
3. Extra working knowledge is required.
If you’re literally working from scratch without having any prior knowledge of either hardwood floors or installation projects in general, then the likelihood of making a costly mistake along the way will be very high. We don’t recommend this be a project you decide to challenge yourself on, unless you truly know what you are doing.
You’ll need to know information such as how to center rooms, how much space should be left for gaps, how do I work around closets, fireplaces, staircases, etc.
The Safest Bet is to Hire a Professional & May Save You Money As Well
By leaving the entire job to a professional, you’ll be certain to have the job done well & correctly from the start. If any mistakes happen, it’s on the professional to correct them on their own dime.
Is it hard to install hardwood floors yourself? ›
Unfortunately, installing hardwood floors is not as easy as taking a staple gun and connecting boards together. The process is much more complicated. And in certain conditions and climates, it can add an extra layer of difficulty.Is it hard to do your own floors? ›
Looking up DIY flooring ideas can be fun, but make no mistake: Installing a new floor isn't easy. “Even relatively simple materials, like vinyl or laminate, require a lot of careful calculations and precision cutting for the patterns to be just right,” said Dan DiClerico, an expert at HomeAdvisor.How much does it cost to install hardwood flooring by yourself? ›
How Much Does It Cost to Install Hardwood Flooring Yourself? The majority of the hardwood installation comes from materials rather than labor. Wood panels can be anywhere from $6 to $25 per square foot, whereas installation costs will be only $3 to $6 per square foot.What is the easiest flooring to install by yourself? ›
- Peel-and-Stick Vinyl Tile Flooring. Self-adhesive vinyl tiles can be installed quickly and easily. ...
- Carpet Tile Flooring. ...
- Floating Vinyl Sheet Flooring. ...
- Laminate Plank Flooring. ...
- Engineered Wood Flooring. ...
- Painted Wood Flooring. ...
- Stained Concrete Flooring.
Engineered Hardwood: Often The Easiest Wood Flooring to Install.Is it cheaper to install flooring yourself? ›
Saving Money – Since you won't have to pay for the cost of labor, shipping materials, and other charges related to a professional installation, you can cut the cost of the project significantly by handling the labor yourself.Is installing flooring hard on your body? ›
Floor layers experience prolonged awkward postures and high force physical exposures in multiple body parts, which probably contribute to their high rates of musculoskeletal disorders.Is it better to nail or glue hardwood flooring? ›
If you have a concrete subfloor, then you should glue your hardwood down, if you have a wooden subfloor then you can choose either method of installation. However, if you are planning on fitting your hardwood floor to joists, then you will need to secret nail them into place.What direction should wood flooring be laid? ›
The most common way to lay hardwood flooring is by aligning the planks parallel to the longest wall. Apart from a few exceptions like sagging joists, this is the preferred direction to lay wood floors because it aesthetically provides the best result.Do you have to remove all furniture to install hardwood floors? ›
Furniture and belongings must be out of the way for your new floors to be installed.
Is it cheaper to install hardwood or laminate? ›
On the plus side, laminate is easy to clean, scratch-resistant, and can be installed in places where natural wood can't go. And though it doesn't last as long as hardwood, it costs 50% less on average to buy and install.How many square feet of hardwood can you lay in a day? ›
The Hardwood Floor Installation Process
On average, a two-person crew can lay 800 to 1,000 square feet of flooring per day. Depending on the size of the planks and size of the room, the project can take one to three days to complete.
Solid hardwood flooring is the most difficult of all to install. It's usually attached with a special flooring nailer then sanded with a drum type floor sander and finished.What is the cheapest flooring to to buy and install? ›
1. Sheet Vinyl. Sheet vinyl costs, on average, between $0.50 to $2 per square foot, making it a great affordable option. Sheet vinyl is a popular flooring choice among homeowners because it's comfortable, durable and cost-effective.What flooring is easiest on your feet? ›
- Vinyl: Vinyl is softer than many hard-surface floors and easy to clean. ...
- Laminate: Laminate is softer and has more “give” compared to wood and tile. ...
- Carpet: Carpet is soft and plush underfoot, especially if you choose a thicker type that allows your feet to sink in.
Many installers and manufacturers prefer the glue-down method because of its superior stability. Gluing down your floor leads to less shifting and creaking, making the engineered hardwood feel and sound more secure. You can also glue down floors on any type of subfloor, even if it's uneven.When should you not install hardwood floors? ›
Replacing your flooring in the winter may be tempting. However, winter is one of the worst times of year to install hardwood floors. No matter which part of the United States you call home, winter is the driest time of year. The air naturally has less moisture during the winter than in other seasons.How much does it cost to install 1000 square feet of hardwood floors? ›
Installing hardwood flooring costs between $6 and $12 per square foot. That averages out to $3 and $7 per square foot for materials and $3 to $5 per square foot for labor. An estimate for 1,000 square feet of hardwood flooring runs between $6,000 and $12,000.How much should I pay for someone to put in flooring? ›
Average cost range:
On average, flooring installation can cost between $1,000 and $10,000 for a 500 square foot room, or $2 to $20 per square foot. The national average flooring installation cost is $7 per square foot, or $3,500 for a 500 square foot room.
The average cost of new flooring installation is $6 to $10 per square foot with some homeowners spending as little as $3 or as high as $18 per square foot depending on the materials chosen. For a medium-sized living room of 330 square feet, you can expect to pay between $1,660–$4,620 for installation and materials.
How much do most contractors charge to lay flooring? ›
Flooring can cost between $1,500 and $4,500 with an average price of about $3,000 to cover a 500-square-foot space. Your project cost will vary widely depending on several different factors, including the location of your home, the type of flooring you choose and even which flooring contractor you hire.What is the most popular flooring in homes today? ›
Tile. Tile is the most obvious choice for kitchens and bathrooms, as it is naturally waterproof and fairly indestructible. Some tile trends include realistic stone or wood looks. New homes tend to include timeless looks like marble, limestone, or slate.What is the most durable wood look flooring? ›
Luxury vinyl is also highly durable and affordable, making it one of the best wood-look alternatives on the market. LVP floors come in a variety of colors, with expansive selections ranging from light to dark.Is carpet cheaper than hardwood? ›
When comparing the cost of installing hardwood floors over carpet, quality hardwood flooring will almost always be a larger investment compared to carpet. Installing hardwood floors can cost between $12 and $20 per square foot installed, while carpet often cost about $6 to $12 per square foot installed.Do hardwood floors hurt your back? ›
Hardwood or tile floors may intensify your back pain. Move slowly and steadily as you stretch. Sudden movements or bouncing motions can actually tear muscles. Keep in mind that stretching should never feel painful.Is installing wood floors messy? ›
Installing new hardwood can be just as messy as it can involve several steps including removing or preparing the existing floor and cutting the planks of the hardwood to the proper size. While the saw will usually be set up outside of your house, even that can't prevent some dust from collecting inside.When laying flooring where do you start? ›
We recommend starting in the left corner of the longest wall in the room and to install the planks in the same direction as the main light source (e.g. the main window). Planks are always installed from left to right.How much does it cost to install 1000 square feet of hardwood floors DIY? ›
Installing hardwood flooring costs between $6 and $12 per square foot. That averages out to $3 and $7 per square foot for materials and $3 to $5 per square foot for labor. An estimate for 1,000 square feet of hardwood flooring runs between $6,000 and $12,000.What is the cheapest way to install flooring? ›
If you're looking to save money, sheet vinyl is an especially great option because it's generally easy enough for most homeowners to install on their own, so it's possible to skip the cost of installation.What flooring is most expensive to install? ›
In general, hardwood flooring is the most expensive material when it comes to flooring installation cost per square foot. Many national providers' websites show price ranges from less than $1 per square foot for laminate flooring to more than $10 per square foot for premium, hand-scraped hardwood brands.
Do hardwood floors increase home value? ›
Hardwood floors are one of the best flooring options for homeowners looking to increase the resale value of their home, with hardwood typically yielding around a 75% return on investment.How long does it take to install 500 square feet of hardwood floors? ›
The Hardwood Floor Installation Process
On average, a two-person crew can lay 800 to 1,000 square feet of flooring per day. Depending on the size of the planks and size of the room, the project can take one to three days to complete. However, you need to account for removal as well as any prep work that may be needed.