Timber supplies advice: how to lay a wooden floor

Chandlers builders merchants offers everything you need to install a wooden floor.  From an extensive range of quality timber supplies – including laminate, engineered and solid wood flooring – to specialist tools, we have it all covered and our friendly team can even give the practical advice you need in order to complete your project and achieve a superb finish.

Follow Chandlers' advice on buying timber supplies, along with tips for laying a wooden floor yourself:

  1. Which timber supplies for your project?

Visit your local builders merchants and look at the range of timber supplies on offer. Laminate and engineered wood floors are the easiest to work with and lay yourself, as the boards just click together.  You must bear in mind that certain products are better suited to different locations, such as in damp conditions, or with underfloor heating systems.

  1. Calculate your timber supplies

To do this, simply multiply the maximum length of the room by the maximum width to get the area in square metres and then add 10% to allow for wastage. 

  1. Make sure you have the right tools and safety equipment

Your local timber supplies depot should have everything you need, from fitting kits, tape measurements, saws and hammers to face masks and safety goggles.

  1. Prepare the sub-floor

Check the fitting instructions for your particular product – at the least it needs to be flat, dry and clean. Once ready you may also need to install a damp-proof membrane and underlay.

  1. Let your timber supplies acclimatise and remove existing skirting boards

Rest the wooden flooring horizontally on the floor in the room where it is to be laid for at least 3 days so that it can acclimatise to the room's temperature (i.e. not stacked near radiators or in direct sunlight).

  1. Establish the starting point

This is usually the longest wall and furthest away from the door. Use spacers to incorporate an adequate expansion gap of 12mm. Stagger the end joints – at least 100mm apart.  You may need to cut the flooring around any radiator pipes.

  1. Adjust around doors and frames

Shave the wood down so that the door can pass over it and it fits below the door frame.

  1. Add trims

When the flooring is completely laid, remove the spacers and fit threshold strips in doorways and corresponding scotia trim around the perimeter of the room to cover expansion gaps – this will also achieve a neat and professional finish.

As a trusted timber supplies depot we would usually only recommend that you undertake the installation of solid wood flooring if you are a very competent DIY-er – since this is more complicated to lay, with less margin for error, since gluing and/or nailing is involved.

Chandlers builders merchants – for timber supplies and more

Besides our wide range of timber supplies, joinery and wood flooring, we have a full range of stock for many different projects:

  • Construction, building, insulation and roofing materials
  • Internal finishing products
  • Groundworks and landscaping supplies
  • Kitchen design services (Chertsey branch)
  • Bathroom design services (Lewes branch)
  • Glass cut to size (Chertsey branch)
  • Paint mixed to order (Chertsey & Lewes branches)
  • Electrical goods (selected branches)
  • Tools and hardware
  • Porotherm's environmentally-friendly clay block system
  • Sustainable building solutions – namely water, energy and fabric

Our friendly and knowledgeable staff are on hand to offer the benefit of their experience and expertise in order to help you choose the right products for your project. 

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