How to Lay Loc Laminate Flooring

Written by nathan mcginty
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Loc laminate flooring is a popular flooring manufactured in the U.K. It comes in a variety of styles and features a tongue-and-groove connection system that doesn't require any messy glue or adhesives. Laying Loc laminate flooring doesn't require a lot of special tools and can be done by the average DIYer.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • Moisture barrier (if needed)
  • Foam padding
  • Loc laminate
  • 5/16-inch spacers
  • Table saw
  • Pencil
  • Rubber mallet
  • Pry bar
  • Painter's tape
  • Quarter round moulding
  • Hammer
  • Finishing nails

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Measure with the tape measure the room where you plan to lay the Loc laminate. Purchase enough laminate to cover that amount of square footage plus 10 per cent for overage. For example, if you plan to lay laminate in a room that measures 10 feet x 10 feet, you need to purchase enough Loc laminate to cover 110 square feet.

  2. 2

    Purchase padding and (if needed) a moisture barrier. Use the moisture barrier only if you plan to install the laminate over a concrete subfloor. That will help prevent moisture from seeping upwards and possibly warping the laminate. The foam padding is needed regardless of the subfloor.

  3. 3

    Ensure that the subfloor is clean and clear of debris. Remove any nails or screws that are protruding and vacuum up any dust and dirt. On wooden subfloors, any high spots need to be sanded down. For concrete subfloors, valleys need to be smoothed and filled in with a self-levelling compound.

  4. 4

    Store the Loc laminate in the room where you plan to install it. Do not take the laminate out of the packaging for at least 48 hours, which will allow it to acclimate to the climate of your space.

  5. 5

    Lay down a strip of moisture barrier if installing on a concrete subfloor. You can do this in pieces as you lay down the laminate on top. Overlap two pieces of moisture barrier by at least 8 inches. Attach the pieces with tape. Place your foam padding layer on top of the moisture barrier (or directly on top of the subfloor, if on wood). This foam can also be placed as you lay the laminate rows. Do not overlap padding and do not tape the pieces together.

  6. 6

    Start in one corner of the room. Lay your first piece of flooring down in one corner. It is important to keep at least a 5/16-inch spacing along the wall. That will allow the Loc laminate planks to expand or contract with temperatures. Tile spacers are good for this purpose.

  7. 7

    Saw your second board in half with the table saw. Place the board lengthwise against the first board with the cut edge facing the wall. Angle it slightly upward and slide the tongue on this board into the groove on the first board. Slowly lower the second board to the ground until you hear it lock (hence the name "loc") into place. Be sure to keep the toe of the board 5/16 of an inch from the wall with the spacers. Tap the board into place with the rubber mallet. Cutting the boards and staggering them gives your laminate Loc floor a more natural wood look.

  8. 8

    Return to the first row. Lay another plank lengthwise along the wall (don't forget the spacers) and at the head of the first board. You will also have to fit the tongue on this board into the groove on the head of the first board. Tap the board into place.

  9. 9

    Lay another whole board on the second row. Insert the tongue into the groove along the first row. Tap the board into place with the mallet.

  10. 10

    Repeat this process, staggering the first two rows, until you reach the opposite end of the room. You will have to measure and cut the last two pieces in order to fit them against the wall. Use the pencil to measure your cuts. The fit will be tight, so use the pry bar to wedge those two into place.

  11. 11

    Use painter's tape (it won't harm the laminate) to keep the rows you just laid down firmly in place. It's also helpful to leave heavy objects, such as furniture or the unpacked boxes of laminate, on the completed rows to keep them from moving.

  12. 12

    Finish the room off by doing two rows at time, staggering one and then the other as you did with the first two rows. Be sure to tape completed rows and remember the 5/16-inch spacing that needs to be in place along the wall.

  13. 13

    Remove the spacers along one wall. Measure and cut the moulding to fit. Nail in place with the hammer and finishing screws. Repeat this for the other walls. Remove the tape holding the planks in place.

Tips and warnings

  • Some models of Loc laminate come with built-in padding; in that case, you do not have to lay a separate layer of foam.
  • Mix the laminate planks from all the different boxes in order to get the best overall blend for your colour.
  • Always use the proper safety equipment when working with tools.

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