Flooring Tips

Read these 13 Flooring Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Flooring tips and hundreds of other topics.

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What do I use as padding under my new wood flooring? you don't put pad under a wood floor unless you float it [engineered and laminates only]

Wood Flooring - Choose the Right Underlayment

Whether you are putting in laminate wood flooring or hard wood flooring, you will need to put down underlayment to provide cushioning to the floors. This underlayment will provide not only a soften feel, but will also reduce the noise of the floor greatly. If you have pets, good underlayment can keep their nails from keeping you up at night.

First, see if the manufacturer of your laminate or hardwood flooring has any recommended densities or thicknesses for their particular model. If they do not, then shop around for the best price on a well reviewed brand and type.

Choosing the right underlayment for your wood flooring is almost as important as choosing the right wood flooring. Don't skip over this step when you are redoing your floors.

   
How can I give my flooring a new look without starting from scratch?

Tips to Spruce Up Your Flooring

If you have floors that have grown old in your eyes but do not want the expense of completely installing new flooring, here are a few flooring tips on how to liven up what you do have.

• Area Rugs – A good design of area rug can pull your room together and draw your attention away from the flooring underneath. Pick an area rug that matches your décor and you can't go wrong.

• Dye Your Carpet – If you have carpeting for flooring and want a new look, check into dying your carpet rather than replacing it. It is a very low cost alternative that will give you a totally new look.

• Refinish Your Wood – Like dying your carpets, refinishing your wood flooring can give a whole new look to your area without gutting and starting from scratch. If you have a lightwood right now, give it a cherry stain. You can find out more about refinishing wood flooring here at LifeTips.com.

Don't just sit on your current flooring if it isn't what you want. Take these suggestions or come up with some of your own ideas and you will get the new look you want.

   
How can I protect my wood flooring?

Protecting Your Wood Flooring

For people with wood flooring throughout their homes, it is important to do the little things to protect it. First, if you have furniture on the floors, be sure to use felt stickers to ensure the feet of the furniture do not scratch or scuff the floors. Also, if you have specific high traffic areas in your home, think about laying area rugs or track carpets to protect them.

Wood flooring will last for decades if properly maintained. Use a good wood polish and string mop to regularly clean your hardwood floors. Sweep regularly as well to reduce accumulation of dust particles. Proper care of wood flooring is not difficult and takes less time the more often you do it.

   
Should I hire someone to do my new flooring? yes, it's aways best to hire a professional installer.

Flooring Installation - Give it to The Experts

When your car needs some fixing up, do you get under the hood and start picking away? If you are like most people, you probably don't. You take it to a garage or repair shop. So why would you tear up and replace the flooring in your house when there are professionals available to do it for you? Your car is a minor investment compared to your home and your home should be taken care of by professionals.

If you are thinking of replacing your flooring, you should at the very least consult with a flooring expert for their advice on your best options. If, after talking to them, you still think you can do it yourself, then go for it. Keep that phone number handy, however, just in case you find you will need the expert's help after all.

   
How do I epoxy my garage flooring?

Using an Epoxy for Garage Flooring

Using an epoxy for your garage flooring is not all that different from painting it. First, you will want to thoroughly clean the surface of the garage flooring. It is important with epoxy that no moisture or particles get between the coat and the concrete. After cleaning, you will want to put down a layer of epoxy primer. This is used to create a better seal between the concrete and the epoxy that you will add in step three. Now, lay on your first coat of epoxy using a roller or mop. A roller is preferable to get the most even coat across all of your garage flooring.

Epoxy for your garage flooring is an easy project that takes little time and can enhance the look of your garage flooring greatly. Comparison shop for the colors and prices that are available for purchase. Between the Internet and local home improvement centers, you will surely find the right one for you.

   
Can I get samples of tile flooring before I buy? yes, some dealers offer free samples

Getting Tile Flooring Samples

If you are thinking about putting tile flooring into your home, this is a large project. It is definitely not one to leap into before careful planning. Your planning should include comparing samples of tile flooring and grout.

Most manufacturers will provide you with sample pieces of tile flooring along with suggested matching grout colors and textures. Check around local retailers and manufacturers to see about getting many to choose from. Once you have the samples, set them in places where you will be able to judge how they match with your room. Places like corners of the room will give you a good view of the finished project.

Get your hands on sample pieces before beginning a tile flooring project and be secure that you chose the right tile for your taste and setting.

   
Why should I use tile flooring instead of another material? Ceramic and natural stone are much more durable than any other floors.

3 Advantages to Using Tile Flooring

With all of the choices for your flooring, how are you to choose? Well, tile flooring is a great choice for your home, and here are a few flooring tips to give you incentive to choose it over alternatives such as carpet or wood.

1. Durability – There is simply nothing in the price range of tile flooring that compares in durability. Hard tile is resistant to almost any stains, scratches, or chips. It would take a pretty hard fall to crack tile flooring.

2. Value – Ask any realtor and they will tell you that tile flooring will add value to any remodeled home over what it costs to install. Because of the look and durability, home value can be influenced by redoing the floors in tile.

3. Maintenance – As opposed to carpeting or wood that can stain and scuff easily, hard tile flooring is easy to maintain with only a broom and occasional mop.

For these reasons, and many more, you should look into tile if you are interested in refinishing your flooring.

   
How can I make my tile flooring safer?

Reducing Slipping Accidents on Tile Flooring

Too often, people can slip and fall on slick tile flooring. This can make for unnecessary pain for the victim and unnecessary headaches for the homeowner or business proprietor. If you want to reduce the chance of someone slipping on your tile flooring, here are a few ways how.

Keep the floors clean. The most common reason for people slipping on tile flooring is because there was either dry dirt or a wet spill that sent them flying. Dirt on tile flooring does not provide traction, but rather makes the surface even slicker than the finish. Wet spills can obviously make it easier to slip on an already slick surface. Keep your tile flooring clean to be safer.

Another way to help prevent slips on your tile flooring is to apply a thin layer of resin or wax with your mop. Wax and resin can take all the slick out of your tile flooring without making them look worse for the wear – in fact, the effect is one of a very high polish that will make them look better.

Take whatever precautions you can to make you home or office safer for everyone walking on your tile flooring.

   
What do I do if my carpet flooring is flooded? try using a wet/dry vac, but in most cases, the carpet & pad will need to be removed. Mold will start.

Carpet Flooring - What to do When Moisture Hits

If you are faced with water-damaged carpet flooring, your options for salvaging it will depend on the source of flooding. If floodwater consisted of clean water, drying and cleaning your carpet flooring is an easy decision. However, if contaminated floodwater has damaged your carpet flooring, you probably will need to discard and replace it.

Here are a few flooring tips on how to deal with flooded carpet flooring:
• Most carpet flooring, whether wall to wall or large area rugs that are contaminated with floodwater should be discarded.

• Because of the cost of professional cleaning of area rugs, salvage those which are worth the money.

• If you are dead set on saving your carpet flooring flooded with dirty water, use a professional cleaning service with its own cleaning and drying facilities. Steam cleaning is your best option.

• Throw rugs can be cleaned well enough by simply throwing them (no pun intended) into your washing machine.

   
What are the options for types of hard wood flooring? your choices are solid 3/4" and engineered wood floors

Choices in Hard Wood Flooring

If you are trying to choose what style or type of hard wood flooring to use in your home, you should know the most used types of wood to choose from. In general, only a few types of wood flooring are used. Here are the different choices in cuts of wood flooring.

• Solid Hard Wood Flooring – Solid pieces of wood cut into planks that are usually 3/4" thick. Solid hardwood flooring is not recommended for concrete slabs.

• Engineered Hard Wood Flooring – Several different pieces of wood that are glued and laminated together to form a plank. These can range in thickness from 1/4" to just over a half inch. Recommended for concrete slabs.

• Long-strip Hard Wood Flooring – Engineered wood flooring, but with a wider and longer individual piece. This means that each piece covers three times the surface area of a normal flooring plank. Most laminate wood flooring comes in this form.

Those are the different forms in which you can purchase wood flooring. Depending on what style you desire, the cut will vary.

   
How do I paint my garage flooring? with a brush, roller or a paint sprayer

Painting Your Garage Flooring

Want some flooring tips on painting your garage flooring? Painting your garage flooring is simple and a fairly short project. Here is a quick step-by-step guide on how to get the best results when painting your garage flooring.

• Clear Out – If your garage is like mine, this may be the hardest part. Get everything out of your garage so that all floor surfaces are visible and open.

• Clean Up – Now, you will need to do a thorough cleaning of the surface. If you have had a car in the garage, you will need to use a chemical pressure washer to get up the accumulated grease and grime on the floor. A clean surface is essential to a good final product.

• Let it Dry – After pressure washing, you will want to give the floor a day or two to dry out. Concrete holds moisture and if you let any get between the floor and the paint, your paint will be peeling in no time.

• Get Painting – Using a long handled roller that you can use while standing, begin applying a heavy latex paint to the concrete. Specific paints are made for concrete garage flooring. These can provide the best seal and longest life.

• Do It Again – Give about 2 to three coats of paint on the surface, letting each coat dry for an hour or so. Latex dries fairly quickly, but it is important not to rush if you want a great finished product.

That's it. You can apply a layer of sealant if you like, but with a good paint, it is often not necessary. Good luck on your garage flooring project!

   
Should I use paint or an epoxy for my garage flooring?

Paint or Epoxy Resin for Your Garage Flooring?

When finishing your garage flooring, you have two main choices that will last a long time under the harsh conditions that come with a car being parked on top of the surface. You can choose either to put several layers of latex paint or a few layers of an epoxy resin on your garage flooring.

Both paint and epoxy have similar costs, so there is not much to debate there. The only difference would be from the costs of needing more paint than epoxy for the job as paint should have more layers to hold up. The main difference between the two is in the labor involved in each.

Either way, you will want to pressure wash your garage flooring before you begin. It is important to have a clean surface before you begin. Once the project is finished, you will notice that the epoxy finish is a little more resistant to stains and long term abuse because it is a denser material. If you plan on using your garage like a garage, go for the epoxy. If you are looking for a color and aesthetics mean the most, go with paint where you can have a far greater selection of colors for your garage flooring.

   
How can I make my flooring stand out?

Floor Your Neighbors With Your Flooring

Today, so many neighborhoods have homes with similar characteristics. To stand out from your neighbors in your home décor, think about changing your flooring to something that the others will fawn over. Take note of the following flooring tips and make your home stand out:

One of the best ways to get the oohs and aahs of the others is with marble flooring. Marble flooring is fairly expensive, but lasts a lifetime and is a timeless style. Seamless marble flooring is very easy to maintain and only requires an occasional sweep and polish.

Another great flooring alternative that is far cheaper than marble is laminate wood flooring. This project, you can even do on your own and impress them all with your handiwork! Look into installing laminate if you want to stand out but want to keep some change in your pocket.

There are many other flooring options that can make your house stand out. Check for styles that stand out to you, because in the end, you are the one that has to live on top of them.

   
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Guru Spotlight
Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.