To DIY or not to DIY?

Whether you’re a person who loves doing things yourself or someone who wants to save money on the floor of your dreams, there are several things to consider before you answer the question, “To DIY or not to DIY?”

Some common mistakes we’ve seen DIY endeavors encounter include:

Choosing the wrong type of floor

Hardwood floors are beautiful but may not be the best choice for rooms with a lot of moisture like bathrooms.  They are slippery when wet and wood expands and condenses with moisture changes.  Sometimes cork flooring is used because it’s more comfortable to walk on than ceramic tile and it has a soundproofing quality, but its softness can lead to damage if you have large dogs in the house.

Not Preparing the Sub-Floor

The flooring you install is only as good as the subfloor under it.  Proper preparation is required for your new floor to last and look good.  It should be clean, flat, and dry, as well as the right type of subfloor for your flooring selection.  Removing blobs of drywall and making sure the subfloor is a suitable material to support your new floor is essential.

Poor Layout Planning

Making sure the flooring will flow smoothly from one room to the next is necessary.  For example, starting to lay flooring in the incorrect direction in a room creates a problem when you must change directions to install it in a hallway.

Not having the right tools

Having all the tools and materials you need before beginning your project is critical.  Different types of flooring require different installation steps and unique tools.  For example, hardwood floors require a different saw than ceramic tile.  Adhesives, surface preparation and clean up are different as well. Taking time to research what you need and speaking to a qualified professional will help prevent frustration and delays.

Using Cheaper Materials

Flooring is a key investment in your home.  It’s an item intended to look great and serve you well for years.  It’s necessary to understand the construction and quality of the materials you choose, especially if working in moisture prone or high traffic areas.   Cheaper products can be prone to scratches and stains. The old saying, “You get what you pay for,” is very often true.

Being short on Materials

There’s more to purchasing materials than just measuring the square footage of the floor.  Depending on how the floor is installed and the amount of waste when cutting makes it necessary to have the extra materials required to complete the job correctly.  Ordering more later can result in unintended color variations from different production batches of the flooring materials.

Underestimating Time

Hardwood flooring, sub-floor preparation, removing mold & trim all take time.  Hardwood floors take 3-5 days to install and refinish, but it takes an additional 4 days before furniture or drop cloths for painting can be placed on the floor.  Unless you’re a professional, estimating the time it will take to complete the job can be difficult.   Many DYI jobs turn into more time and problems than anticipated.   This can result in calling a professional for help or replacement after the fact.

Underestimating DIY skills.

If you’re up for it and ready to go, best of luck in DIY your project!

If you’re not sure you’re up to the task or have enough time to complete it on your own, getting qualified help is your best option.  Sometimes you may be able to call in an experienced friend for help, but if you need a qualified professional, we’re ready to help.

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