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Five (Or More) Important Tools For The Flooring Installer

Posted: Thursday, November 04, 2010

If you’re the do-it-yourself type, you might be considering putting in your own wood plank flooring. A quality wood floor can really add an elegant and attractive flair to any home, and can add value at the same time.

If you have done home improvement projects in the past, but flooring is a new concept, it’s a good idea to get an idea of the tools and supplies that you will use. Many power- and hand-tools can be used for the same process, but it is helpful to know what works well, and is designed especially for a particular task.

Saws: A miter saw with at least a 10”-inch blade is used for basic cuts for narrow planks and trim, but consider a sliding compound miter saw for wider planks and diagonals. A jigsaw helps negotiate strange shapes, and a circular saw will help with plywood and hardwood repair work. You’ll need a table saw to rip lengths of wood. Some specialty tools include a jamb saw for under door cases, a toe kick saw for cutting sub-flooring away from walls and cabinetry, a router for inlays, insets, and potentially re-grooving planks. One of the most useful specialty tools is the Fein MultiMeister, for special under-casing cuts and small sanding work.

Prep Tools: It’s recommended that you have the hardwood adhesives on hand that are appropriate for your application. In addition, a flooring edger will flatten any high spots in the sub-floor, a concrete demo hammer will address high spots in concrete, and take out ceramic tile and thin set in the process.

Installation: When you’re ready to install, you will need a good flooring nailer or stapler to fasten down the flooring. You should also look into having a good pull bar, and strap clamps for tightening your planks. Also helpful are a trowel for glue-downs, and other nail guns for miscellaneous woodwork.

Repairs: When it comes to repair needs, consider an adhesive remover for general glue clean-up, a dust controller for allergy assistance, and a good floor repair kit.

There are a lot of tools out there to help the do-it-yourself installer enjoy a beautiful flooring result, but there are a few essentials. Preparation is key, but common sense goes a long way.