Go Pro or Do-It-Yourself (DIY) with Laminate Flooring?

In an age of DIY television, professionals and “house flippers” make floor installation look easy in 30 minute shows. In reality, it’s a lot harder than it looks on TV, and DIY flooring projects can often result in improper installation. You’re all excited to enjoy new laminate floors, but should you install them yourself or hire a flooring professional? Hiring a professional installer can help reduce the stress of installing your new floors yourself. Pros can move the furniture, properly prepare the subfloor and install your new laminate floors with more accuracy.

If you’re considering a Do-It-Yourself installation for your laminate floors, you should consider some of the following questions before you make your purchase.

Are you prepared for everything that can go wrong?

If installed incorrectly, laminate flooring may not function correctly – it may buckle, warp, or break - shortening the lifespan of your floors. This may also void some manufacturer’s warranties.

Can you level the subfloor?

Laminate flooring requires a level subfloor for installation. Do you have the tools and expertise to ensure that your subfloor is ready to accept new flooring?

Do you have a vehicle large enough to transport all of the product?

For whole house or large rooms, you will need a lot of flooring and a way to transport it home. When you have your floors installed by a professional, they deliver the flooring for you.

Do you have help moving your furniture?

All of the furniture in the room will need to be removed to install your laminate floors and back in once the floors are complete. This usually means moving large pieces like couches, tables, and more – probably not a task that can be completed by one person.

Do you have all of the tools needed to properly install laminate floors, and the experience to use them properly?

You will generally need a wide range of tools, from saws to drills and more. Some of the tools needed for a floor installation are specialized, and may wind up taking up room in your toolbox or shed for years.

Can your body handle the strain of a DIY project?

Installing laminate floors can be detrimental to your knees and back. There is often a lot of bending, kneeling, reaching and carrying involved, so it’s important to consider your health before tackling an installation project.

Are you prepared for the stress?

DIY projects can put a tremendous strain on your relationships and cause you and your loved ones enormous stress! Installing your new laminate floors takes time and can be frustrating.

Are you detail-oriented and patient?

You will need to measure and measure and measure again before you cut, which takes time and patience. You will need to remain focused on the patterns in the laminate to properly place planks and avoid repeated patterns. As you are measuring and cutting, mistakes can happen and this can affect the amount of planks needed.

Do you have a realistic expectation of the time it will take to install your laminate floors properly?

Installing your new laminate floors takes time. Often, this is not a one day DIY project, so make sure you have the time needed to complete the job properly.