How to Install Hybrid Rigid Core Flooring

What to know before, during and after a DIY or Professional Hybrid Rigid Core installation.

The better prepared you are to install Hybrid Rigid Core flooring, the better your floors will look and perform (and the less stressed you'll feel). Review the basics before getting started. 

Before You Buy

Know your installation options.

All of our hybrid rigid core flooring products feature a "floating floor" structure, meaning that instead of gluing or nailing the boards down, you will lock them together – side to side, end to end – creating a surface that "floats" on top of the subfloor.

In some circumstances, you or your installer may prefer to use a full-spread adhesive, but it's not required. Some collection instructions may also recommend adhesive if expansion due to high sunlight exposure is a risk*. 

Close up of planks being locked together

Create an accurate budget.

When budgeting for your project, don't forget to account for things like removal and disposal of your old floor, subfloor repairs, additional tools and materials, and even the cost of moving furniture.

Decide whether to DIY or bring in a Professional.

If you are an advanced DIYer or have done a waterproof floor installation before, you may decide to take on the project yourself — especially if it's on the smaller side, like a bathroom or laundry (and no adhesive is required). Larger projects or glue-down installations may warrant help from a professional installer.

It's important to remember that regardless of your experience level, challenges can arise. If you want peace of mind that your flooring is installed correctly, we recommend hiring a professional flooring installer. 

WHY HIRE A FLOORING CONTRACTOR?

Preparation

Read the installation instructions.

Carefully read through the instructions for the specific flooring you are installing. Do this well in advance (even before you buy!). The instructions go over each step and how to prepare. You'll also learn about specific scenarios that may require slightly different materials or additional steps to ensure a totally waterproof floor installation.

Prepare the room.

Clear out furniture. Remove and dispose of old flooring if necessary. Gently remove any wall bases or trims that you'd like to reuse.

Prepare the subfloor.

Be sure the floor you're laying over is dry, clean and flat. If repairs are needed or old adhesive needs to be removed, do that before you start the installation.

Gather additional materials and tools.

Your list could include coordinated trims and moldings, safety glasses, a tapping block, pull bar, hammer, saw, caulk (for high-moisture installations) and other tools. Check installation instructions for specifics.

Acclimate flooring according to instructions, if necessary.

Most Hybrid/Rigid Core installations do not require acclimation. Review your installation instructions, because there may be certain circumstances, such as flooring being stored in extreme temperatures, when a short period of acclimation is necessary. This step gives the flooring time to adjust to the environment of the room where it will be installed. 

Open box of hybrid rigid core flooring

During Installation

Read every step of the installation instructions provided with your product. They cover special considerations that might not be obvious except to an experienced professional, including: subfloor requirements, trim preparation, establishing a starting point, and guidelines and materials for full bathroom installations. 

Close up of installed plank

After Installation

Once your new floors are in place, clear tools and materials from the area and clean the floor with the recommended cleaner for vinyl floors.

*Refer to the Hybrid/Rigid Core installation instructions for more information.

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