Using the Old Floor

floors, flooringIn some cases you won’t have to remove the old flooring to find a strong base for the new flooring. You only have to prepare the existing materials. This is frequently the case when installing a new vinyl floor over an old one that’s still functional, just ugly. 

Flooring filler material, available at floor and building material suppliers, can be spread with a trowel to fill in the old floor’s inlays and imperfections. Once dry and swept clean, it is a smooth surface ready for adhesive and/or flooring materials.

Pro Tip

To verify that the subfloor is firm, spend a few minutes walking around it in thin-soled shoes trying to feel low spots or other problems.

Trade Secret

Many professional hardwood floor installers use builder’s felt, also known as roofing felt or builder’s paper, as a final underlayment before laying flooring. They recommend 15-lb. felt for most jobs and 30-lb. felt for floors that are not as smooth or that require additional moisture protection.

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