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Common Flaw in Laminate Flooring Installation

Thursday, September 19, 2019   /   by John Schlanbusch

Common Flaw in Laminate Flooring Installation

Laminate floors are a great cost-effective option, hardy and largely scratch-resistant, with a variety of high-end looks. It's also possible for a homeowner to install it themselves, saving even more.

Despite their reputation for ease of use, though, laminates do present problems. And being a somewhat popular DIY project, it's perhaps not surprising that one common issue is the result of human error.

Peaking is when your laminate floor has high points at the joints (picture upside-down v's where two boards meet). It happens when the flooring hasn't had enough room to expand and the two boards push against each other. With nowhere to go, each end pushes up.

If you haven't installed it yet, make sure to let your flooring sit in your house for at least two or three days prior to installation so it can adjust to the climate.

But if you do see peaking, the good news is that it's a fairly easy fix. Track the board back to the wall, where the molding is. Remove the molding and trim off enough of the board's end to allow the floor some space. You also want to make sure the molding isn't nailed to the floor so as to allow for that expansion.

Peaking can also happen in a large room if there are no expansion joints to help relieve the pressure, says Lumber Liquidators. As a rule of thumb, if the room is longer than 27 feet in any direction, you'll want to include expansion joints.