Lay a Vinyl Floor

In This Article:

Page 2

Step 2: Making the Template

The key step in vinyl flooring is the template. Normally it's made from a wide roll of Kraft paper, but there are ways to improvise if you need to do so.

When making a paper template, follow these hints:

  • Make triangular cutouts in the template. Place tape over the cutouts to hold the template to the subfloor as you work with it.

  • Press the paper into the corners and cut with a utility knife.

  • To work around irregular objects, like plumbing or built-ins, build up your pattern from pieces of paper. Tape them together to make the template.

Step 3: Cut and Fasten the Underlayment

The hard work is over once the template is cut. In the tight entryway we photographed, it was impossible to position a whole sheet of underlayment and cut it to fit. (You'll run across the same problem in bathrooms.) Instead, Ken chose to use the template to mark the underlayment—more testimony to the value of thinking on your feet.

Saw the underlayment to size, making it about 14" short in each dimension. If you try to get it just so, it might wedge into position, and I guarantee you'll have to monkey with it more than any piece of underlayment deserves!

Fasten the underlayment with power-driven staples, or 1 14" ring-shank underlayment nails. Place a nail about every 6". No matter how you do this, make sure the fasteners don't stick up! A bit of carpenter's or construction glue underneath helps prevent squeaks.

Step 4: Sticking It Down

With all the preparation out of the way, it's time to get the flooring in place.

Cut the Flooring

If you make a paper template, unroll the flooring in a clean location and tape the template right-side up on top. Place a carpenter's square along the lines and cut without marking. Always make these cuts with a sharp utility knife. Place scrap wood underneath and try to cut all the way through on the first stroke of the knife.

Apply the Adhesive

Bring the flooring into the room, rolled up in a way that makes it easy to unroll. Spread adhesive across the floor with a notched trowel.

Smear an even coat of adhesive on a large section—say one half—of the floor. Work quickly so you can position the flooring before the glue sets.

Gently lay the first side into the adhesive and immediately shift it into its final location, tight to the walls. Press the floor down with your hands, and then move to a roller.

Roll the floor, with either a rented floor roller or a kitchen rolling pin. Look closely for bulges and concentrate on them. Let the floor set as indicated on the adhesive label.

Replace the base trim as described, and you're done!

<< Previous: Page 1

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Simple Home Improvements © 2004 by David J. Tenenbaum. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit Amazon's web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


8 Epic Emoji-Themed Crafts, Activities & Recipes
Check out the best emoji crafts, activities, and recipes! They're perfect for an emoji-themed birthday party or anytime you need DIY (and screen-free!) summer activities for kids, tweens, and teens.

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme!

10 Free Summer Learning Worksheets
Print these free printables for preschoolers and kindergarteners to help your child's mind stay sharp until September!

Ready for Kindergarten?
Try our award-winning Kindergarten Readiness app! This easy-to-use checklist comes with games and activities to help your child build essential skills for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Facebook icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks