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October 21, 2019

ReStore How-To: Installing Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP) Flooring

By Corina Patterson

Are you sick of looking at that tired, old linoleum or dated tile in your kitchen? Now is the time to update and the Charlotte ReStore is the place to start! We offer a wide variety of flooring options from laminate and porcelain tile in all the latest colors, to luxury vinyl plank flooring.

Luxury vinyl plank flooring is one of our most popular products because it is durable, affordable, easy to install and looks great! With a simple click-and-snap installation, LVP is a great beginner DIY project and when complete, makes a huge impact in your room.

In order to demonstrate the simplicity, we installed LVP in a vignette in the Charlotte ReStore. Keep in mind, we are not flooring professionals, but if we can do it, you can too!

The very first thing you will need to do before embarking on this project is measure your room. This is how you will determine how much flooring to purchase, so this step is crucial. LVP is sold by the square foot, so you will need to measure the length and width of your room to determine the square footage. Here is an easy equation: Length x Width = Square Feet.

Once you have determined your measurements, you can purchase flooring. Pro Tip: Purchase a little extra flooring in case you make mistakes!

Let’s talk about materials. You’ll need the following:

  • Rubber mallet
  • Utility knife
  • Contractor’s square
  • ¼” spacers
  • Tapping block
  • Pull bar
  • Underlayment (for installation over tile only)
  • Knee pads (optional, but highly recommended!)
  • Luxury Vinyl Plank flooring

Before you begin installation, remove baseboards or shoe molding and make sure your floor is clean and free of dirt and debris. You do not need any type of underlayment unless you are installing your LVP over tile. Using an underlayment prevents grout lines from telegraphing through the vinyl.

Once your floor is clean, you can get started by opening your boxes. You will notice that the vinyl planks vary in their woodgrain pattern. In order to avoid unnatural duplication on your floor, you will want to separate your planks by pattern. This will help you achieve a more natural look in the end.

Get started by laying your planks from the left corner along the longest wall. Insert ¼” spacers between wall and first row of planks. By leaving space between wall and planks, your vinyl will be allowed to expand (which it will), and remove the chance of buckling later. Attach two planks together by lining up the tongue and groove edges; hold one plank at a slight angle while pushing it down and snapping it into the previous plank. You will feel the boards “click” into place. Repeat this process for the next plank in the row.

Pro Tip: Some planks may need a little extra help clicking into place. Using your mallet and tapping block, gently tap the plank into place. The tapping block prevents any damage to the tongue and groove while the mallet offers the perfect force to encourage the “click.”

Chances are you will need to trim your flooring after completing your first “run.” Simply measure the amount of plank you need, grab your contractor’s square to use as a straight edge, score with your utility knife and snap off the excess.

Pro Tip: Need to trim a small amount or a shape for a corner? Use heavy-duty scissors to make those exact cuts! As long as they are rated for cutting heavy-duty plastic, you will be able to make precision cuts with ease.

Continue the installation process from left-to-right and then right-to-left, until the room is complete! Replace baseboards and voila! You have a new floor!

Have you used Luxury Vinyl Plank flooring in your home? Tell us about it! Share your pictures with us on social media #CLTReStoreDIY!

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