Where to start laying laminate flooring correctly

Where to start laying laminate flooring correctly How to properly lay the laminate in the apartment - along or across

B recently, laminate has become more and more popular. It is beautiful, inexpensive, quick and easy to fit. How to properly lay the laminate with your own hands, it will be beautiful to be discussed.

How do I install my own laminate? Laminate is good because it can be laid quickly, and the material is also ready for installation, and the process itself does not require expensive materials or tools.

This makes it possible to independently lay the floor finish.

But for the result to really please, you need to know how to properly lay the material. There are controversial circumstances that can greatly influence the final result.

What do you need besides the laminate?

The first thing to remember is that laminate flooring can only be laid on a perfectly flat and dry base. By even, we mean a drop of no more than 0.2 cm for every 2 meters, and the thresholds should not be sharp.

Only in this case the locking connections will not diverge. For this reason, check how even your floors are before installing your laminate flooring. Level the surface, if necessary, to a satisfactory condition. In addition, a backing is required under the laminate.

There are about a dozen types of underlays for laminate, and it is required for two purposes:

  • To compensate for existing irregularities.

  • To reduce the "rumble" of the floor.

We suggest that you consider the table where ++ is excellent, + is good, and is bad.

Type of material

Resistance to load over time Provides indoor sound comfort Smoothing floor unevenness Mold and rot resistant Easy to install Impact on the human body
Expanded polystyrene - - - ++ - -
Cross-linked polyethylene foam (Penolone)







Uncrosslinked polyethylene foam







Cork ++ + ++ - + +

Can I install without a backing? Yes, if the foundation is almost perfect. But keep in mind that living in such conditions is extremely inconvenient, because every step will echo, even if you walk in slippers. The downstairs neighbors won't be happy about this.

Can the substrate be laid in a couple of layers? Better not. Usually this is done for insulation, but it will not get warmer, and the locks are loaded more than usual, because the larger layer will make the floor softer and the floor will sag.Some locks can withstand this, and some cannot, but the risk is definitely not worth it. Ideally, the manufacturer's recommendations should be followed. Under the substrate (that is, straight on the concrete floor) it is also advised to lay a plastic wrap, this will be waterproofing.

It is needed on the recommendation of manufacturers, as well as recommendations based on experience. Such a film will be an excellent protection in case of leakage, and it also prevents the laminate from absorbing all moisture from the base, which is extremely important for the inhabitants of the first floor or a private country house.


Process Features

In order to properly lay the laminate, it is required to bring the packaging into the packaging room, unpack and inspect ...

Sometimes it is not noticeable in packages that the material is swollen and wet. This occurs during transportation, and if it is immediately noticeable, then you should immediately replace it. Unpacked laminate should lie in the room for a couple of days. It is required to lay it in even piles on a perfectly flat base, and in a couple of days it is an example of operational condition.

It turns out that the material warms up to room temperature and acquires room humidity.

It is imperative to remember that when laying the laminate, it is not laid close to the walls, but a gap of 1 cm is left. It is important in order to compensate for thermal expansion, and there must be a gap, since otherwise the laminate will stir up. To make it easier to maintain the gap, for the time interval of installing the laminate, it is required to install spacers of the required thickness between the boards and the wall. We are also talking about laminate scraps, and a material with a thickness of 0.8 cm is suitable for a house.

Please note that a gap of 1 cm should remain around the columns, projections or pipes. After laying the last row, remove all gaskets. Laminate flooring will decrease or increase in size with changes in moisture and this gap will give it room for such changes. After that, the gap will be covered with a plinth, which is important to attach to the wall.


Laying scheme

There are several simple laminate installation schemes, and in general they can be divided into 2 groups - diagonal and straight.

If you have not had any business with such a coating, and are just wondering how to lay the laminate, it is better to choose one of the direct methods. There will be less trimming, which means less waste.

  1. Where to start laying laminate flooring correctly A productive deck-type laying is a practically waste-free installation scheme, since what left when cutting the last board in a row will be the start of a new row. Only segments less than 0.3 meters in length will be rejected.

    The disadvantage of this method is that this coating does not always look beautiful.

  2. Shift by 1/2 - this laminate laying scheme is recognized as the most reliable in the sense that the joints in adjacent rows are always spaced at a good distance. This will make the floor stable, and it is much less likely that the cross-type joints will diverge.The amount of waste will depend on the floor geometry, but there is usually much more waste from "straight layouts".
  3. Offset 1/3 - This method of stacking can be used if the length is at least 1.

    2 meters. With this method, there is not much waste and the 3 rows start with different lengths of material. Every 3rd with a whole, and the others are cut to 2/3 and 1/3 of the length. As a result, the row joints in the neighborhood are spaced 0.4 meters apart.

    In this case, the coverage will be reliable.

An additional variation is offset with a verified step. Choose an exact offset size, which can be arbitrary, but is definitely less than 30% of the length. The shortest of the planks cannot be less than 0.3 meters, otherwise there is a higher risk that it will pop out or need to be glued to those placed next to it.

The scheme is calculated, because it depends on the dimensions of the laminate board. Whichever installation scheme you choose, remember that short pieces less than 0.3 meters are better not to stack. Usually they are the ones that pop up. It is difficult to install them in place without disassembling, and you can also damage the locks.

In short, do not skimp on trifles.

Please note that in more expensive collections with complex lock structures, a shorter length with a short piece is allowed. But all this is indicated in the documents, and there is no need to lay laminate with a shorter length.


Before laying the laminate yourself, you need to clean everything from the room. The floor must be completely clean and dry.

Laying laminate flooring on a damp screed is prohibited, even if it is moisture resistant. Before starting work, everything must be thoroughly cleaned with a vacuum cleaner. The following materials and tools are required for work:

  • Ruler, square, tape measure, knife and pencil.
  • Hammer, Z-plate or laminate trim, and the plate is much more convenient to work with.
  • Wood saw or angle grinder with suitable disc.

You can cut the laminate with a grinder, hacksaw, jigsaw, but a perfect cut is obtained using a miter saw. There are also special machines for cutting laminate, but not everyone has it and trimming, each of the devices mentioned will do. If it is difficult to make a straight cut, use an inexpensive miter box, but wide enough to fit the board. You can make a miter box with your own hands from three boards, which are knocked down in the form of the letter P.

Rules and algorithm of actions

Where to start laying the laminate correctly, you will learn further.

The procedure itself will depend on the type of lock connection and the chosen method, but in general, the work goes step by step.

  1. Where to start laying laminate flooring correctly Spread the film on a flat and dry base, it starts a little on the walls, and then attached with masking tape ... At the end of the installation, it is cut and folded into a gap, but this is not necessary.

  2. The underlay is definitely required, it must be laid along the wall from which it is important to start laying. If the backing is made of several pieces, the joints are glued with tape.You shouldn't cover a lot, because you can't walk on it.
  3. Start laying the laminate with the short side facing the window. So the joints will be less noticeable, do not forget about the gap between the wall and the edge of the board.

    Install special spacers.

  4. Place the board, resting it on the pads (long side and end). The spike will point into the wall, and a groove will open to the side of the room.
  5. The method of fastening the board depends on the lock shape, there is a lock and a click. The first locks are less common.

  6. Lay out the first row and the last board is usually cut off. Do not forget that here, too, there should be a gap of 0.3 cm to the walls, and in order to fit such a piece tightly, Z-bars are required.
  7. The next row needs to start on a board of a different length, and this will depend on the scheme, but the order is the same. It is only required to do the joining along the long part, and insert the end lock first, setting it so that the lock is close to the edge.

    When the long side is connected, the side lock will "ride like on rails".

  8. Then do everything by analogy.
  9. The last row usually needs to be cut to length. Expand the bar with a spike from the walls, rest it against the gaskets, and then mark where it needs to be cut. Due to the fact that the geometry of the rooms is almost never perfect, it is better to try it on on the spot, and then put marks at the beginning and at the end.

These are all instructions and now you know how to lay your laminate flooring yourself.

Recommendations to simplify work

Installation of laminate is more convenient and faster if you start several rows at once. If you shift everything by 1/3 and lay 3 rows (or more) in parallel, and lay it with a ladder, and the number of steps should be at least three, you can do more. Everything will depend on the size of the room. Why is that? This will make the locks easier to snap into place.

The disadvantage is that the amount of waste will increase, albeit slightly.

How to minimize waste

In order to waste a minimum of material, it is necessary to choose the dimensions of the laminate and the installation scheme taking into account the geometry of the room. There will be no pieces at all if the length of the room is:

  • A multiple of the laminate length - you know the length of the room, the selected laminate. Then estimate how many whole planks will lie along, and if this is an integer, you can choose any type of layout. For example, a room is 3.

    6 meters, and laminate planks are 1.2 meters. Naturally, 3 planks will fit perfectly, and you will need to cut the last by a couple of cm so that there is a gap along the walls, and 2 cm is practically nothing.

  • If the offset is 1/2 of the laminate, either a whole number of boards or with half can be stacked in length. For example, the same 3.

    6 meters in length will include 3.5 boards with a length of 1.05 meters. You need to cut the material a little, 9 cm will go away, and if you find a laminate with a length of 1.02 meters, it will be the best.

  • With an offset of 1/3, the length can be selected to fit a whole number of boards, +2/3 or +1/3. For a length of 3.6 meters, you get 1.08 meters or 0. 98.

Naturally, the idea is clear, and also check the width. The last board should not be narrower than 5 cm (taking into account the gaps).

Making difficult places

Now (albeit in theory) it is clear how to properly lay the laminate in the apartment. If you already have laminate flooring, you can practice in a small area and it will be easier. But there are always some problem areas in the room that you don't immediately understand how to do.

There are a couple of such areas - door frame and pipes. How to lay laminate flooring so as not to find fault? This is not difficult - you only need a ruler, a drill with crowns, a hacksaw for wood and linings that will close the gap around the pipes.

Nut and adjoining to the door frame

In order for the laminate near the door frame to lay beautifully, without gaps, it is advisable to lay it with the frame installed. If you do not have doors installed, there is time to study while the laminate is "lying down". During installation, the box needs to be made a little shorter, namely so that the saw blade can crawl between the floor and it.

If the box is supplied, it can be trimmed. During installation, the laminate is slipped under the racks, and then there will be no gap. But decorating the joints of the laminate with the rest of the coatings is a separate topic. And if the door opens into a corridor with tiles, there are additional ways of joining tiles and laminate. The simplest and most obvious will be the nut.

They can be different, there are a lot of options. If you don't like the sills at all, if the cork expansion joint, which is almost invisible.

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