Laying Vinyl Flooring The Correct Way.

By: Steve Drumm

I will be blunt at this point. You are gonna need quite a bit of kit for this job. Unless you’ve got plenty of vinyl, it may even be cheaper to pay for another person to do it for you.

Anyway, to do the task you’ll require a roll of vinyl (obviously), a Stanley knife, vinyl glue, a steel straight edge, a tape measure, a paint scraper (for the glue), a ballpoint pen, a roll of double-sided flooring tape. And, if you have got a tiled floor or it is made of concrete you’ll will need some self-levelling compound.

Step 1: The Vinyl:
Laying cold vinyl is a nightmare. It’s stiff and doesn’t stretch well. So, leave the vinyl in a warm room for a day and turn on the central heating. It will make fitting it a great deal easier.

Step 2: Preparing your floor:
If you have a raw concrete floor, you will need to make sure it is absolutely flat. Otherwise the lumps will show through the vinyl. It may look horrible and present a possible safety hazard. Purchase a self levelling compound, spread it over the floor to fill the holes and follow the instructions. That will do the trick.

Self levelling compound is what you will need if you are covering ceramic tiles, as well. Spread a thin layer and fill in all of the joints between tiles. Again follow the instructions and let it to set.

If you are covering floorboards, you will need to lay hardboard over them to establish a flat, smooth and stable surface. Don't forget to stagger the joints and use an abundance of pins to make sure they do not rise over time.

Step 3: Lay the Vinyl:
Ensure the area is clean. Take out the vacuum out and give it a good hoovering. Take your shoes off. You won’t will want them on to do this job. They will just drag grit around. Now, unroll the vinyl against the longest continual wall. Keep unrolling until the pattern is parallel with the wall. Leave a 4 inch overlap against the wall.

Now you will will want the Stanley knife. When the vinyl is unrolled, keep it as flat as you possibly can around the edges close to the wall by making vertical cuts into the waste vinyl (i.e. the stuff pressing against the walls that will not be covering the floor). For a neater finish, cut into the corners and trim the surplus vinyl so that you form a V shape.

Step 4: Fit the Vinyl:
Now that you have cut the majority of excess vinyl off, it is more manageable. Get a pen and mark off more excess vinyl. Cut it away. Your aim now is to get the vinyl into the rough shape of your room leaving a 1 or 2 inch excess all around the sides.

Step 5: Trim and glue:
Ok, press the straight edge against the vinyl and trim to fit exactly. Force any edges under cabinets, skirting boards etc. This is going to give you a nice, crisp finish. if you have got anything different to ‘stay-flat’ vinyl, this is the time to stick it to your floor. Follow the instructions on the glue container.

Step 6: Finishing:
You are practically there. Get a soft brush and starting from the centre of your room, push out any bubbles. Secure the vinyl along at the doors and entrances to the room with double sided carpet tape. It will stop it moving.

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For my training as a carpet fitter, I joined a company called Contract Flooring. It was hard going to start with but it is definitely the best way to gain experience. They taught me everything that I know.

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