Floored

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When we first moved into our house, 8 years ago, we painted a few walls prior to moving our furniture in. That was about the extent of changes we made. Since then, there have been some changes to the interior, but majority of our work has been focused on the yard. Generally, the changes inside the house seem to come due to some accident or need to change something. Such was the case with our boot room flooring due to the furnace pump flooding the space. It is now also the reason for our full bedroom reno.

The excuse this time was thanks to Ellie. When she was sick a few months ago, she destroyed areas of the house with her sickness through the night. The good thing is that most of our house has easy to clean & sanitize hardwood floors or surfaces that wipe clean easily. Not so much for our bedroom. We have a nice, thick, cream coloured carpet. Unfortunately, her illness made irreparable damage to the carpet and meant we really needed to re-do the flooring. We did try to clean the carpet a few times, but unfortunately Ellie left her mark. Really we are using Ellie for an excuse that we have needed for the last 8 years. I have allergies, so having a laminate floor will help keep my allergies in check. Plus having two medium size dogs really goes better with laminate that carpeting. See, we just needed the “right” excuse since we already had so many reasons why we should have done it in the first place.

So now we had our excuse. Time to start spending some more money on the house. It is a good things we can’t travel right now! Priorities would have been a very difficult thing to manage if we could travel. Anyway, we started with the flooring. I knew that I didn’t want to try to match the laminate flooring that is in most of the rest of the upstairs portion of our house. It is a mixed colour laminate with different shades of brown and reddish brown. My office, across the hall from our bedroom, has a light brown laminate, but doesn’t match the main flooring, so why not do something different again. After staring at about a million options and price-points, I finally made a decision on a brown & grey mix colour vinyl plank flooring. I realized when I got home that it is very similar to what we did in the boot room, just a little lighter with a little more brown in it. Perfect!

The problem I had with the vinyl plank flooring is that there are so many different kinds. The boot room stuff is waterproof, which I liked and wanted to also do in the bedroom….just in case one of our dogs were to have any sort of issues in the future. The only thing with the boot room is I find that flooring a little echo-ey. It is a hollow panel that clicks together. Although sturdy and solid, I feel like the girls clicking nails back and forth between beds in the night would get annoying. I wanted something with a little more sound-proofing. So I went with a solid plank vinyl for the bedroom. The next conundrum was the thickness of the panels. I didn’t want a super cheap panel, so that eliminated the super thin stuff, but did I need to pay premium pricing for an extra millimeter or just go with the mid-range piece. In the end, the colour of the panel determined the one I bought, which was in the mid-range. Bonus, it is also meant for dogs, with a scratch resistant surface, waterproof seal and rubber bottom for noise control.

First step was taking the carpet out. To do that, we had to remove our old bed, all the furniture and the baseboards. No problem. The bed frame will be re-homed and the mattress will either go to the dump or my sisters camping trailer. The carpet was fairly easy to pull out, until we reached the closet. The track for the closet was screwed down on top a piece of wood on top of the carpet. Our closet doors are mirrors, and knowing my luck I would somehow break them and have to buy new ones, which I really didn’t want to do. So we took a look at what the flooring looked like underneath that section and cut away the carpet to start. Out went the carpet and we were able to assess what we were going to be working with.

Under the carpet was a solid foam subfloor with the spikey strips of pain around the perimeter to keep the carpet in place. Walking on the foam subfloor, we noticed there was very little give, so we decided to take a risk and put our new flooring over top of it. I liked the idea of the sound-proofing that the subfloor provided and the tiny bit of give shouldn’t affect the vinyl plank connections as they have a bit of flex to them, unlike the old wood laminate flooring. We may come to regret this decision, but so far I am happy with it. My dad did swing by for the post hole digger and warned that he had some issues with an underlay on one of his floors making some of the planks separate, but those were the wood style laminate flooring, not the vinyl planking.

Putting down the flooring was really quick, with little physical effort….other than crawling on the floor and then standing to cut the pieces so that we had overlaps along each row. There is only 1 vent in our rectangular room, so once I had that cut, it was quick work to get the flooring across the room. We did test out the subflooring when we had about 8 rows done. There was a little bit of flex as Kurt walked along it, but it didn’t affect any of the seams, so we finished the room rather than pulling up the flooring to remove the foam sub-floor.

Once we got to the closet wall, I had a little more finicky cuts to make. All of the boards had to be cut down to about 1/4 of the board width. Plus it is always fun getting the seams to snap together and still have the flooring end up close to the wall. I also had to cut an odd shape for the doorway where the transition strip would go, as well as where the closet track goes. Kurt had spent about 45 minutes removing all the carpet from under the closet track so that we didn’t have to take the doors off. Unfortunately, the wood strip, had the tracks sitting about 1/4″ above the flooring. Good thing I had some extra boards. I cut a 1/4″ strip and glued it in to hide the wood-strip, finishing off that section of flooring. Worked like a charm and you would never know there was a gap unless you got down on your hands and knees to look.

The room was coming together, but if you are going to re-do a space, you might as well RE-DO it. Next up paint & a new bed!

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