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Homeowners choose laminate flooring for its dependability and affordability. However, just like any other type of flooring, it can present difficulties when installing.

Whether you are a DIY enthusiast or a professional installer, it is important to be aware of and knowledgeable about the issues that typically arise when installing laminate flooring. At The Reno Superstore, we encourage you to hire professional installers for the best results.

In this article, we’ll go over the most typical issues that arise when installing laminate flooring, like creaking and buckling, and offer fixes.

Let’s get started!

Common Problems (and Their Fixes) When Laying Laminate Flooring

The installation process determines how long any flooring material will last, as improper or poor installation can lead to severe flooring problems for homeowners. If you don’t have prior knowledge or experience when it comes to flooring installation, make sure to hire professionals via The Reno Superstore.

Here are some things to watch out for.

1. Buckling and Warping

Buckling and warping are two of the most frequent issues homeowners experience after installing laminate flooring. This happens when temperature and humidity changes cause the planks to expand and contract. The result is that the planks bump into one another, which causes them to buckle or warp.

  • How to prevent it:

It is crucial to acclimatize laminate flooring to the temperature and humidity of the room before installation in order to prevent buckling and warping. A minimum of 48 hours should pass for the planks to acclimatize to the space. Make sure the subfloor is dry, level, and moisture-free.

  • How to fix it:

If you notice any buckling or warping, it is crucial to identify the source of the problem. If it is because of high humidity, use a dehumidifier to get rid of excess moisture in the space. Another option is to try to take out the damaged planks and reinstall them, leaving a tiny space between each to allow for expansion.

2. Creaking and Squeaking

Is your newly-installed laminate flooring creaking and squeaking? This frequent issue happens when the planks scuff up against the subfloor or each other, creating friction and noise.

  • How to prevent it:

It is crucial to install underlayment between the subfloor and laminate flooring to stop creaking and squeaking. As a result, there will be a softer landing and less rubbing between the planks and the subfloor. A sound-absorbing underlayment is another option for reducing noise.

  • How to fix it:

Try to locate the source of the creaking or squeaking. If the problem is caused by sagging or uneven subflooring, you may need to remove the affected planks and repair the subfloor before reinstalling them. Applying a lubricant between the planks may also help to lessen friction.

3. Gapping and Separation

When installing laminate flooring, gaps and separation between the planks are other frequent issues. This happens when the gaps between the planks widen as a result of them contracting from the low humidity.

If you are facing any such issue, it is a good idea to seek help from The Reno Superstore.

  • How to prevent it:

Maintaining a consistent temperature and humidity in the room is critical to prevent gapping and separation. During the winter, use a humidifier to keep the humidity level in the room between 30% and 50%. (Do not exceed 55%.) Allow for expansion by leaving a small gap between the planks during installation.

  • How to fix it:

You can use a laminate flooring repair kit to plug any gaps or separations between the planks. Alternatively, take out the damaged planks and reinstall them. Just make sure to leave a little space between each to allow for expansion.

4. Uneven Surface

Installing laminate flooring on an uneven surface can be challenging and lead to gaps, buckling, and other problems. Before installing laminate flooring, it is crucial to make sure that the subfloor is level and devoid of any peaks or valleys.

  • How to prevent it:

Prior to installation, the subfloor must be inspected to avoid an uneven surface. Make any necessary repairs after using a straight edge to look for any dips or bumps. If the subfloor is noticeably uneven, you may want to install a self-leveling underlayment to create a smooth surface for the installation of the laminate flooring.

  • How to fix it:

After installing the flooring, you may need to remove the impacted planks and fix the subfloor before reinstalling them. To give the new installation a smooth surface, use self-leveling underlayment.

5. Damaged Planks

Damaged Planks

Planks that have been damaged during installation or use can present a safety hazard as well as look unsightly. They must be carefully inspected prior to installation and handled with care to avoid damage.

  • How to prevent it:

The planks should be handled delicately during installation, and heavy objects should not be dragged over them. Before installation, inspect the planks and take out any that are broken or defective.

  • How to fix it:

After installation, if any damaged planks are discovered, you may need to replace the damaged planks with new ones. To ensure a seamless appearance, fill any gaps or scratches on the neighbouring planks using a laminate flooring repair kit.

6. Unfinished Installation

Leaving the job unfinished is perhaps one of the most common DIY mistakes. Not only does the place look untidy and messy, but it also leads to flooring problems. Getting the job done in a hurry is not a good idea, either, as it can also lead to flooring issues.

  • How to prevent it:

Planning is key here. Select the flooring you want and order it in advance. Don’t forget to order matching moulding and transitions for a finished look. Once your consignment arrives, check it for issues and return or exchange it if needed. Let your laminate flooring acclimatize for at least 48 hours before installing it. Acclimatization isn’t just for hardwood flooring; it applies to laminates as well. Learn how to do it here.

If you plan to install the floors yourself, make sure you have cleared your schedule for 3 or 4 days, depending on the size of the project. Ensure that you have all the equipment and tools before you start.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can I install laminate flooring myself?

A: Yes, if you have the right equipment and experience, but it is crucial to understand the typical issues that might occur and be able to handle them.

Hire a professional if you are not sure about completing it yourself or simply do not have the time. At The Reno Superstore, we offer affordable and flawless installation in and around the GTA.

Q: How long does it take to install laminate flooring?

A: This depends on the size of the room, the state of the subfloor, and the installer’s level of expertise. Laminate flooring installation typically takes one to three days in a room of average size.

Q: Can I put laminate flooring over already installed flooring?

A: Yes, as long as the current flooring is level and free of damage or moisture. However, prior to installation, all padding and carpeting must be removed.

Q: Is the manufacturer’s instructions all that important?

A: Absolutely! Ignoring them is a grave mistake that many people make when installing their flooring. Each manufacturer may have a few different sets of instructions when it comes to their product and how to install it. Not reading them may lead to improper installation and void the warranty. So make sure you read it carefully.

Although laminate flooring is a long-lasting and cost-effective option for homeowners, installation can be difficult at times. You can make sure that the installation goes smoothly and successfully by being aware of the typical issues that arise when installing laminate flooring and knowing how to fix them. To prevent damage, don’t forget to acclimatize the planks, lay down an underlayment, maintain a stable temperature and humidity level, check the subfloor, and handle the planks carefully. You can enjoy your gorgeous new laminate flooring for many years to come if you keep these suggestions in mind! Have questions? Get in touch with us.

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