April 19, 2022

pexels kelly l 4263067

Are you the type to enjoy the aesthetics of hardwood flooring but are intimidated or worried about the maintenance and cost? Look no further for laminate flooring is  your next best alternative. Laminate flooring comes in a variety of colours and textures where you can purchase and cut them to your liking. An ideal choice for DIY-ers and homeowners alike.

What is a ‘Laminate Floor’?

To put it simply, laminate floors are made from wood composite being compressed together. They are much easier to maintain while having the same look and feel like natural wood. Unlike vinyl flooring, laminate mimics the closest to natural wood. Most laminate floorings now are highly durable that can withstand high traffic areas with light and moisture exposure.  

What type of laminate flooring do you have? 

To simply put it, flooring laminate is a synthetic flooring fused together through a lamination process. It can come in forms of laminated floorboards or laminated planks.  There are two types of laminate flooring: Engineered Wood and Plastic Laminate. It is important to understand which laminate you are going for and is suited for your space. 

  • Engineered Wood

    Engineered wood comes in the form of planks. Multiple layers of materials are compressed together such as fibreboard, plywood or unfinished hardwood. What makes it successfully recreate the texture of real wood would be the veneer. This is due to it consisting of a very thin layer of natural wood. However, do note that with wooden laminate floors, they may be susceptible to moisture damage over time.
  • Plastic Made

    Unlike Engineered Wood, Plastic Made is completely man-made with multiple layers of materials. It is a composite material made from kraft paper, resins and adhesives. Multiple kraft papers are first soaked in resin which will then be pressed together at a high temperature to form a single sheet. Instead of having a veneer finish, Plastic Made finishes with a melamine top layer.

    Both types of laminate flooring will have a protective topcoat to ensure durability and strength.

    Be it Engineered Wood laminate flooring or Plastic Made flooring, both laminated flooring types utilise a floating system. Due to its snap-and-lock method, it eliminates the need for adhesives or nails. Each plank should be measured and shaped prior to installation to fit your flooring space. 

Is laminate flooring easy to install?

Yes! However, this home project of laminate flooring with installation can seem a little daunting for newcomers out there. Let us break this down for you, and you’d be surprised how easy this actually looks. 

What do you need to know before laying your floor?

Important! Please note this article is here to act as a simple guide for those who may be experienced with flooring work. We highly recommend seeking professional advice if you’re uncertain about the process. Anyway, let’s continue! 

  • Survey your floor space

    Although laminate flooring can be installed onto nearly any surface, it can still be susceptible to damages over time. Due to its wood properties, laminate floorboards or laminated planks are still susceptible to moisture damage. Additionally, no matter how little sunlight it is exposed to, laminate flooring can still fade. Modern solutions such as having a UV-resistant layer on the surface of every board do help slow the process but this is still a factor to consider when surveying your floor space.
  • Measure your floor space

    This is not just about getting an accurate floor area, but rather allowing room for waste and mistakes when it comes to installation. Remember to leave a gap of about 1/4 inch to 3/8 inch around your space to allow the flooring to expand due to the changes in humidity. Not to worry as these gaps will later on be restored as you reinstall the baseboard.
  • Acclimate your flooring

    Bring your newly bought laminate flooring into its designated space 48 hours prior to installation. This is so that it can acclimatise to the humidity of the space. It is best to distribute them loosely around the space and inspect their condition over time.
  • Prep the surface

    Start by removing the moulding and baseboards. Then, make sure the floor is now cleaned and levelled. You do not want to install your new laminate flooring on uneven surfaces as it can severely damage your flooring. Furthermore, it is just disruptive when you walk on it. High points of your floor should be sanded down while low points can be filled with levelling compounds. 

How should laminate flooring be installed for beginners?

Now that you have prepared your floor surface and have a better understanding of the process, the fun part begins! Here are the essential tools you would need before starting: 

  1. Pry bar 
  2. Tape measurer
  3. Pencil 
  4. Handsaw 
  5. Space chips or spacers
  6. Hammer
  7. Utility knife
  8. Nails

Where do you start when laying laminate flooring?

While installing laminate flooring can seem like an easy job to some, it is normal to feel intimidated and unsure no matter how experienced you are. Not to fret as we are here to help guide you every step of the way on how to lay laminate flooring. 


1. Test the flooring layout

Loosely place the laminate flooring on your space to help visualise the overall outlook. This will help you gauge the sizing of each wooden laminate floor plank.

2. Remove baseboards

Use the pry bar to remove the existing baseboards from the walls and set those pieces aside. They will be reinstalled once the floor is completed.

3. Install an underlay

Now you are probably wondering, “Do you need to put anything under laminate flooring?”. Yes!

Laminate flooring should be installed over a smooth surface. Hence, make sure the floor is clean of debris or dirt. If the existing floor is damaged, remove that to reveal the subfloor.

Once that is done, roll out the underlay and use the utility knife to cut according to the length that you need. Apart from cushioning, the underlay will also help absorb sound.

4. Use spacers

Spacers or space chips are usually provided alongside the laminate flooring. Wedge them between the wall and the planks, leaving an expansion gap of 1/4 inch. The baseboards will conceal them once they are reinstalled later on.

5. Install the first row

Start laying the first few boards down. Install the tongue side of the planks towards the wall. Then, connect one plank to the other by connecting the tongue and grooves. You may click them into place using your hand but using a hammer with a tapping motion would help secure it further.

6. Install the second row

Halfway through the second row, you might need to start cutting your laminate planks. Using a handsaw, cut the plank accordingly once you have measured using the tape measurer and marked with a pencil.

7. Continue laying more rows

Repeat the process as you go along. With the extra length of laminate planks, you can use them to start the next rows.

8. Install the last row

For the last few rows of installation, you will need to install these at an angle and pry them into place using a pry bar. Like before, you would need to leave an extension gap of 1/4 inches.

9. Reinstall baseboards

Once the planks are in placed and secured, reinstall the baseboard using a hammer and finishing nails. Next, place the show moulding over the expansion joints. Connect the adjoining surface to the laminate planks using transition strips.

With your newly installed laminate flooring, you will find that your space has now completely transformed to your ideal style. However, newly installed laminate flooring has several maintenance upkeep for it to stay in tip-top condition as long as possible. Sweeping with a soft broom and occasional mopping using gentle detergents will help remove excess dirt and dust. These simple habits can be easily incorporated into your daily routine.

Who can you ask for help?

Here at Jumps, our friendly flooring experts are only a call away at (+08) 6253 8143  or contact us here to help clarify any of your concerns regarding laminate flooring installations. Better yet, why not drop by at our showroom and take a look at the different varieties of wood laminate for your space!