There are many different types of flooring projects that require the use of subflooring to do well. Installing subflooring is not extremely difficult and is something someone can do as a home project. There are some basics that you should know about installing subflooring before you begin the project.
Building Codes for Your Area
There are specific building codes that you must follow, even for home projects. Subflooring is one area of home improvement that many cities and counties have building code requirements. Prior to purchasing your subflooring material, make certain to check and see if there are any building code requirements that you must follow for your area.
Safety equipment is important to ensure that there are fewer accidents during your project. Buy a pair of inexpensive safety glasses from your local store. Anytime that you are working with projects that require sawing, cutting, nailing or stapling it is best to wear safety goggles.
Not all woods are good for subflooring projects. For example, if the wood is too thick it can be difficult to install the main floor or worse yet the floor will be elevated. Subflooring wood should be approximately 3/4 inch thick or less.
Aligning the Grain
Prior to cutting your wood for the subflooring, look at the room and the joist locations. It is important for the grain of the wood for the subflooring to be aligned perpendicular to the joists in the room. This will give your subflooring more strength.
Cutting the Wood
Now you are ready to begin cutting the wood for installing subflooring on your project. When you are cutting the lengths of the wood are certain to measure from the joist area and not from the tongues. You need to measure from the top edge and the center of the joist to achieve the best cut for laying the subflooring.
Placing the Wood
Now that the pieces have been cut for the wood it is time to secure them to the joists. One potential complication is that often subflooring wood can bow in the middle while working with it. You need to have someone press against the bow area or put a weighted object on it so that the subflooring wood will lay flat enough for the project.
Lay the first piece of subflooring. The following pieces should be aligned with the tongue of the previous piece. You can tap the two boards together (avoiding bowing while doing so).
To prevent damage to the pieces, use a block or a rubber hammer instead of tapping directly on the subflooring wood.
Wood will expand and contract. Many times you hear complaints about squeaking floors or bad areas in floors. To prevent these types of problems, it is important to leave space for expansion and contraction. Between the subflooring wood pieces leave a one-eighth inch space.
Securing the Wood with Screws
Nail screws are the absolute best for securing the subflooring wood. Regular nails tend to come out or create problems. Using a screw gun and wearing safety goggles, secure the flooring with the proper screws.
Make certain that there is adequate contact with the joist to secure the flooring into place.
Adhesive specifically for subflooring also works well. You can place adhesive the joints of the boards and around the screwed areas to have better holding of your new subflooring.