How to Lay Hardwood Flooring


Types of Hardwood Flooring Options

  •     Bamboo: Sourced sustainably, bamboo is an increasingly popular option.
  •     Engineered hardwood: Engineered hardwood is a composite of layers of veneer. The uppermost layer is wood. 
  •     Hickory hardwood: One of the toughest woods available for hardwood floor installation.
  •     Maple hardwood: Maple is strong and lends itself to many different ways to lay hardwood flooring, thanks to its consistent pattern. Light in color, it makes the space seem more open. 
  •     Oak hardwood: With its distinctive grain pattern, utility, and durability, you’re bound to see oak in an article on how to lay hardwood flooring.
  •     Walnut hardwood: Walnut is another popular option, thanks to its rich, warm color. 

install a hardwood floor

Process of Installing Hardwood Flooring

Step 1: Check the Moisture Levels

Before you learn how to lay hardwood flooring, you must prepare the area. If you’re applying the wood over concrete, check the moisture levels just above the slab. Then check the humidity levels in the room. 

 These should be lower than 4% and 60%, respectively. If they are not, you must set a moisture barrier over the subfloor to prevent the wood from absorbing water and swelling. 

Step 2: Get the Boards Ready

To do this:

  1.     Lay the boxes in your room of choice.
  2.     Open up the ends, exposing the wood to the humidity in the area.
  3.     Leave them in situ for three to four days so that the moisture has a chance to trickle through. 

 This is an essential step in how to lay hardwood flooring because it can prevent warping. 

Step 3: How to Lay Hardwood Flooring on Concrete

There are four primary methods to secure the boards. You could: 

  •     Nail: Use this method with thin slats. Just know that you may have to drill holes into the concrete far enough down so that the nail head is inset into the plank.   
  •     Staple: You’ll need a specialty staple gun that you use in conjunction with a rubber mallet. It takes some getting used to because the staples run at a 45° angle.
  •     Glue: Using an adhesive may be the simplest option but makes the floor inflexible. This can increase the risk of warping. Many people use it in conjunction with staples or nails. 
  •     Floating:  Floating provides the most straightforward answer for how to lay hardwood flooring in a hallway. With this technique, you simply pad the subfloor with underlayment and lay the boards over it. The fabric absorbs moisture and noise, and the weight of the planks keeps them in place.
  •     Tongue and groove: These systems use engineered or laminate woods that are cut to lock together. You simply clip each adjacent block into place and, if necessary, glue it together.


hardwood floor installation

Tools To Use in Installing Hardwood Flooring

The tools depend on the type of flooring. Tongue and groove flooring fit together securely without the need for nails or adhesives. For other types: 

  •     Nail punch
  •     Nails
  •     Hammer
  •     Glue
  •     Gun or applicator for glue
  •     Post-adhesive cleanup products
  •     Extension cord
  •     Hammer drill with a masonry bit
  •     Saw
  •     Stanley knife to trim underlayment

How To Lay Hardwood Flooring the Professional Way

Call Remnant King Carpets at 206-789-7553 to install a hardware floor perfectly the first time. Our experienced team understands how to lay hardwood flooring on stairs and a range of surfaces. 

Get your free quote by calling or reaching out through our website today!