How do I install hardwood flooring myself?

  • Hardwood flooring must be installed perpendicular to the floor joists or on a diagonal for any single layer subfloor. To run parallel to the joists, you’ll need to add a 1/2” plywood underlayment or brace every 16” between joists with a nominal 2”x 6” SPF nailed in place.
  • Select a starting point based on the most aesthetically or architectural important element in the room, taking into consideration stairways, hallways, fireplaces, cabinets, adjoining floors, transitions, the squareness of the room, etc.
  • Once the starting point is established, secure a backer board to the subfloor and start nailing. We recommend using 2” cleats, 1-2” from board ends, and 6-8” apart with a minimum two cleats per board. Around the perimeter of room, allow ¾” on the width and ¼” on the length for expansion.

For more information on this, and other subjects, visit the Gaylord Hardwood Flooring blog: How to Install a Hardwood Floor