It’s Back to DIY School, Part 2 The Installation Processes BuildDirect Blog Life at Home

It’s Back to DIY School, Part 2 The Installation Processes BuildDirect Blog Life at Home

Laying down engineered flooring for kitchens

Engineered hardwood can be installed in a number of different ways. As mentioned in the previous point, the type of sub-floor you’re dealing with will determine how you install your floor. But let’s have a glance at the different ways you can lay it down.

Like solid hardwood, engineered hardwood can be nailed down. This, however, is a difficult process that shouldn’t be attempted by a novice DIYer. Your floor can also be glued down. Some engineered hardwood floors can be installed using radiant heat (whereby warmth is radiated from underneath the planks). But the easiest method of getting the job done (and therefore, the best method for our DIY school) is opting for a floating installation, whereby the planks are glued together and the entire floor ‘floats’ as a unit.

A thin vapor barrier provides moisture-resistance and cushioning, and the planks are glued together. Because the floor will float, it’s important to leave a gap of 5/16 inches between the flooring and the baseboard (the narrow board running along the base of the wall) or the wall itself.

Vanier Engineered Hardwood Birch Cosmopolitan Trendy Collection: Chestnut Birch

Boards are installed left to right with the groove side facing the wall. The boards must be bonded with adhesive in the tongue and the groove. When the process is complete, wait 12 hours before placing furniture on the floor and 24 hours before introducing heavy objects or full traffic. Check out this video on a general engineered hardwood installation!

Once your floor is good to go, it’s time to focus on your countertop. As mentioned earlier, you’ll be installing a granite countertop in your kitchen, so what do you need to know? First off, you may need some help lifting the slabs themselves, for both storage and installation. And you will need an appropriate saw for the granite itself.

  1. Existing cabinets should be firmly in place before you start the countertop installation. Make sure the cabinet corners are square. Perform the sink cut-out (the space needed for the sink itself), cutting outside to avoid excess dust.
  2. It’s Back to DIY School, Part 2 The Installation Processes BuildDirect Blog Life at Home
  3. Cut the granite slabs to the right length and prepare the sides as required. Align the slabs square to the front end of the cabinet. Remove the slab, apply glue to the cabinet frame, and then place the slab back on the cabinet and let it set.
  4. Clean the edges that will be seamed. Ensure edges are straight and square to the slab, and use araldite adhesive for the seam joint before tightly butting the slabs. Use clamps to bind the slabs together before the araldite hardens.
  5. The surface should be sealed following the installation to prevent staining. Apply sealer on the top surface and allow 10 minutes for absorption. Allow a minimum of 48 hours to dry. Apply a second coat to prevent against bacteria and mildew. You will need to seal your countertop every 1-2 years depending on usage.
  6. For an even easier countertop installation, you can investigate granite tile-based modular countertop kits. which simplifies the process especially for the DIYer in mind.

There’s more information about granite as a material in this short video .

Once your floor and countertop are sparkling and in place, move on to your backsplash.

  1. Measure and prep your area, making sure the surface is clean before applying adhesive. Find the center point of the area on which you’re laying tile, and lay a row of tiles with plastic spacers to get a feel for the grout spaces. Mark them with chalk. Think about your design – get creative!
  2. Apply prepared thin-set grout to the substrate (underlying layer), and smooth it carefully with a trowel. Ensure you don’t cover the chalk lines.
  3. Start the installation at the bottom of the wall to provide a solid support system. Lay the tiles in rows, and add caulk (waterproof sealant) to the edges to prevent moisture build-up. Cut end pieces using a cutter – measure where the cut should be, then score it with the cutter and break by bending it carefully.

Getting you started

These tips will get you started on your kitchen renovation. For more information and specific installation instructions, visit BuildDirect’s Learning Center. Now it’s time to perfect your space and think about how to maintain that beautiful new kitchen


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