• In this video, This Old House general contractor Tom Silva shows how to install a beautiful wood floor in just less than one day.

    1. Trim doorjambs and casings to allow new flooring to slip underneath. Place floor plank on subfloor, lay pull saw on top and saw through jambs and casings at all doorways.
    2. Cover the subfloor with thin foam-rubber underlayment. Butt the underlayment seams together, don't overlap them, then staple to subfloor.
    3. Lay first floor plank along starting wall with its grooved edge facing out. Be sure to leave ¼-inch expansion space between plank and baseboard.
    4. Measure distance from end of plank to wall. Subtract ¼ inch for expansion space.
    5. Cut floor plank to length with power miter saw.
    6. Snap together the boards in first row and slide into place; be sure to maintain ¼-inch expansion space along the wall.
    7. Continue to install planks in this manner, making sure to stagger joints from one row to the next.
    8. When necessary, use a hammer and tapping block to gently tap closed joints between the rows of flooring.
    9. At the ending wall, rip floor planks to width with a circular saw. Don't forget to subtract ¼ inch for the expansion space along the wall.
    10. Use a pry bar to force closed the joints of the planks in the last row.
    11. Install transition moldings to cover the thresholds at all adjoining rooms.
    12. Cover the expansion space around perimeter of room with shoe molding. Be sure to nail the shoe to the baseboard, not the floor.
    • Difficulty: Easy
      Planks snap together easily, but spending all day on the floor can be tiresome

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      Tools List

      • japanese pull saw
        Japanese-style pull saw
      • electric stapler
        Staple gun
      • finish hammer
        Hammer and tapping bar
      • flat prybar
        Pry bar
      • miter saw
        Miter saw
      • circular saw
        Circular saw

      Shopping List

      Engineered flooring


      -inch staples

      Transition molding

      Shoe molding

      1½-inch (4d) finishing nails