The DIY’ers Guide to Choosing Luxury Vinyl Planks

Luxury Vinyl Planks are one of the hottest products in flooring right now, thanks to the versatility, durability and endless choices available to consumers. Installing luxury vinyl is also easier than other flooring options. There are a few questions you should ask yourself before determining if it’s the right choice for your flooring needs. Once that’s answered, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get to work. With a few professional tips from our experts, you can feel proud of the work you’ve done.

There’s no question, YouTube has become an excellent learning platform. DIY’ers can turn to quick tutorials for advice, troubleshooting and step-by-step instructions. While this is a great resource for home renovations, it doesn’t have to be your only one. We hope that these helpful suggestions get you from idea to success.

Preliminary Work

Before you choose a luxury vinyl product, you need to know a few things about the surface the product will be placed on. Most consumers choose LVP because of its durability and waterproof core. This becomes an ideal product for basements, man caves, kitchens, mud rooms and other areas prone to moisture. 

There are essentially two different installation options for LVP: glue-down and floating floors. Choosing the right product isn’t simply a matter of which one is easier to install. The reason you would choose one over the other is determined by the levelness of your subfloor (or foundation). 

If you are covering a basement, the better choice is a glue-down LVP. This is because basement floors are typically not completely level. There are low-points to allow water to drain out. A floating floor would not be the best choice in this application. Another advantage to a glue-down LVP is that if the area was to get damaged, it is easier to repair one small area. This can save you significant money if a problem was to arise. 

Floating floors are an excellent choice for offices, kitchens and play rooms. The installation of a floating floor is usually easier for the DIY’er. The click-together process usually means you can have a new floor in one day, depending on the size of your project. 

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Purchasing Your Luxury Vinyl Planks

Once you have determined which luxury vinyl flooring option is right for your project, you need to know how much of the product you will need to complete the job. Start by measuring the length and width of the area you are covering. This will give you the area. Boxes of LVP are sold by the square feet covered. 

It’s always best to account for mistakes, threshold transitions and miscalculations by purchasing an extra box. Most establishments will gladly return unopened products, if you end up not using them. 

It’s also wise to purchase everything you need at one time. There could be slight color or texture variations between lots. This could become an aesthetic issue when you’re wanting the same flooring from room to room. Purchasing the exact amount of LVP for the job helps you achieve a seamless look across a larger space or multiple, adjoining rooms.

Helpful salespeople can provide a wealth of information when you go to make your purchase. They can ensure you’ve chosen the right product for the job. They can offer quick installation tips. They can also guide you to any additional items you may need for the job. At Just Around the Corner, our salespeople are committed to answering your questions and offering honest advice. 

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Quick Tips for Success

Most DIY’ers have the ability and confidence to get the job done. However, we hope these few tips will prove helpful as you roll up your sleeves.

Don’t rush through prep-work- Make sure you’ve cleared the surface of any debris or unevenness that could cause your new LVP to bubble or fold. You’ll get a longer wear-life when you adhere or float your floors across a smooth, even surface.

Acclimate your floors- Don’t forget to give your new floors 24 hours to hang out in your home, before you begin installation. Temperature variances can cause expansion and contraction, which could result in post-installation problems.

Find your center- Working from the center-out with a glue-down luxury vinyl ensures a visually appealing pattern from wall to wall. 

Know how many plank-rows are needed- Before you begin clicking together your LVP, you want to calculate how many rows will cover the width of the room. Your first and last rows should never be cut more than halfway. A little math can help you accomplish this.

Trim door jams and casings- Trim is easy to remove and reinstall. However, door jams and casings are usually left in-tact. Using an oscillating multi-tool, shave a small amount of your casing down to accommodate the floor’s thickness. 

Don’t forget about expansion gaps– Shims at your walls help you easily account for the natural expansion and contraction of your floors.

Find your groove– Click-together luxury vinyl planks are usually DIY-friendly. However, there is a learned finesse that is needed to easily attach one plank to another. Play with the angle to find your sweet-spot.

Easy Alternative

If after reading this article you determine that installing LVP is a project you’d rather leave to the pros, please don’t hesitate to give us a call! We are also happy to answer your questions during the project. We want to earn your respect, regardless of whether or not we do the installation.

We encourage you to visit our showroom to learn about the wide variety of luxury vinyl products available. And right now is a great time to do so. In celebration of 30 years in business, we are offering 50% off our top-of-the-line LVP (while supplies last)!