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Flooring Projects

On This Page: New Hardwood Flooring... Refinishing Old Wood Floors... Laying Tile Floors...

New Hardwood Flooring:

Preparations Before Installing Wood Flooring

With many home improvement projects, there is a lot of prep work. Laying new wood flooring is no different.

In this century-old house, we cut off the door jambs, laid down some red rosin paper, and made layout lines for the strips of flooring.


Installing Strips Of Hardwood Flooring

The first rows of unfinished wood flooring are installed with screws, including a perpendicular board at the doorway.

Then flooring boards are stapled down while paying careful attention to staggering the end gaps and many other details.


Using Wood Plugs To Fill Screw Holes
In Wood Flooring

The first strips of oak flooring were fastened with deck screws sunk into 3/8" holes. We used a plug cutter to make wood plugs from scraps of flooring and glued them in place.


Sanding A New Hardwood Floor With A
Drum Sander

A rented drum sander is run back-and-forth across the floor to smooth out the imperfections. A special disc sander is used to reach the edges.


Finishing A New Hardwood Floor With Urethane

We carefully removed the dust left over from sanding, then we applied 4 coats of oil-based polyurethane.


On This Page: New Hardwood Flooring... Refinishing Old Wood Floors... Laying Tile Floors...

Refinishing Old Wood Floors:

Overview Article:
Refinishing A Wood Floor

A quick summary of the techniques used to prepare the room, do the sanding and apply the polyurethane.

Also, some before-and-after pictures. 


Room Preparations Before Floor Sanding

Closet door hardware is removed and heat registers are removed. Door casings and baseboard is removed so the sander can get close to the wall.


Removing Old Floor Finish With A
3-Head Random Orbital Floor Sander

The Varathane ezV floor sander is an excellent tool to remove the old varnish or urethane.


Applying Polyurethane Floor Finish
To An Old Floor

This time I used a special mop to apply the polyurethane. It's quicker, but a little trickier.


Tips On Using The
Varathane ezV Floor Sander

An explanation of how to set up the Varathane ezV rental floor sander, how to install the dust bag and filter, and tips on cleaning the machine before you return it.


Second-Coat Adhesion Problem With Polyurethane, And How I Solved It

The humidity was very high when I applied the first coat of polyurethane. I waited the proper amount of time before applying the second coat, but it wasn't long enough, and the urethane crinkled.

Thanks to the company's advice, I was able to fix the problem with only a modest amount of work.


Uncured Polyurethane Shavings Or Dust
Can Self-Ignite

After I scraped the improperly-cured urethane from the floor, I simply dropped the stuff in the trash can. Big mistake... it heated up and started to smolder.


On This Page: New Hardwood Flooring... Refinishing Old Wood Floors... Laying Tile Floors...

Laying Ceramic Floor Tile:

Preparing A Wood Sub-Floor For Ceramic Or Marble Tile

The tongue-and-groove subfloor is screwed down, high spots are sanded, and a coat of oil-based primer is applied.


Installing Wonderboard Cement Backer Board For A Tile Floor

After the 3'x5' panels are cut to fit, thinset mortar is applied to the wood subfloor and the backer board is screwed down. Fiberglass mesh tape is applied to the joints.



Using Hardibacker Fiber Cement Tile Backer

Hardibacker is a 1/4" thick underlayment for ceramic tile. Being made from cement and wood fibers, it's easy to cut and drive screws through.


Installing A Floor Warming System For
Tile Floors

Special heating cable is fastened over the tile backer in a serpentine pattern. After the tile is installed, the results are... foot-warming.


Laying Floor Tile

After the layout lines are established, the full-size tiles are set in thinset mortar. Then the cut tiles are laid.


Grouting Floor Tiles

Sanded grout is mixed to the proper consistency and plowed into the gaps with a grout float. After drying, the haze is wiped off.


On This Page: New Hardwood Flooring... Refinishing Old Wood Floors... Laying Tile Floors...


Patching Thin Hardwood Flooring

When a new doorway is opened up, some special techniques are needed to join the old floors together.


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