Installing Reclaimed Wood Floors

Installing reclaimed wood floors or antique flooring. Install this type of flooring, the same way you would any 3/4 solid hardwood flooring. Although, some care and consideration should be taken long the way. You can't toss reclaimed flooring around like you could, a regular hardwood flooring.

Reclaimed flooring or Antique flooring, the name says it all. They're oldâĦYep very old. A lot of these flooring are 100 yrs or older. Reclaimed wood floors have one common problem, they're very dry. So during, your installation you must be very careful with them. You've spent a lot of money on them. You can't afford to have any pieces to go to waste. Money well spent will be going out the window.

Estimating The Amount Flooring Needed

Same Size Width If, you will be installing the same size width. Round-up to the nearest foot, to cover for waste. When ordering your reclaimed wood floors. The easy one to figure out.

Example: 12 1/2 x 12 1/2 = 13 x 13

Different Size Width If, you will be installing different size width, to achieve a random width look. Estimate the percentage of each reclaimed flooring needed, then figure out the amount to a full row.

Why do you need to know this? Different width will have different linear footage per bundle. Your waste amount will be different for each reclaimed flooring width. We want to make sure we have a complete row of each wood flooring width

Example: Width A, bundle consist of 80 linear feet of wood flooring.80/13=6.15 rows. Width B, 70 linear ft. 70/13=5.38 rows Width C, 60 linear ft.60/13=4.61 rows Width D, 50 linear foot.50/13=3.85 rows They all represent 20 sq. ft. per bundle.

This is the final adjustment you need to make when ordering your material. All partial rows should be rounded-up to nearest full row. You don't want to be a foot short on any width. Reclaimed wood floors take an average of 4-6 weeks to order. We don't want to hold up any project that amount of time.

Example: 13x13 = 169 square ft. You will be installing 4 random widths. Divide the amount of sq. footage by the amount of width. 169/4= 42.25 (round-up to 43 sq. ft.) You'll need 43 sq. feet of each reclaimed flooring width = 25%.

Referring back to the linear footage example above. We know we want 25% of reclaimed wood floors of each size based on 13x15 room = 195 sq. ft. We will be installing our floor on the 13 foot length. Each bundle contains 20 square feet. We need 3 bundles each. Width A=240 LF, Width B=210 LF, Width C=180 LF, Width D=150 LF. (LF/15=rows) Width A=18.5 rows, Width B=16.15 rows Width C=13.85 rows, Width D=11.5 rows. Let's keep in mind 60 sq. ft. x 4 equals 240 sq. ft. 45 sq. ft. of waste is a lot. At $10 per sq. ft. or more this is lot of money to be throwing away.

Let's tweak our numbers a little bit, before we place our antique flooring. Looking at the numbers that we have. Any numbers closest to a full row should be left alone. In our case this would be Width "B", with 16.15 Rows at 60 s.f. So we'll purchase this as is. Let's work on A,C and D. We'll reduce Width "A" to 2 bundles which will give us 12.30 row at 40sf. Increase "D" to 4 bundles, which will give us 15.38 rows at 80 s.f. and we'll put "C" at 2 bundles, which is 9.23 rows at 40 s.f.

So with our final square footage at 220 s.f. We've reduced our antique flooring purchase quantity by 20 s.f. That's a $200 minimum on material, that we saved. We can probably tweak it some more, but I think you get the idea, on how to.


white pine flooring To reduce waste and achieve the unique look you want. Do a dry layout with your reclaimed wood flooring.

Set-up your reclaimed flooring the same way you would like a regular nail down flooring. Mix in the different widths that you have, completing a row for each reclaimed flooring. If you need help, visit our staple down page for instruction on set-up, then come back.

After you have performed a dry layout, of your reclaimed flooring(do not do any cuts at this time). Balance the appearance of your reclaimed wood floors. Move rows or pieces around. Evenly distribute the many different characters of your reclaimed flooring.

Don't forget about your furniture placement also. If, you have limited reclaimed hardwood flooring boards with a lot of characters. You may want to save them for areas, where you would like to show them off. Avoid putting them under a furniture or a rug area.

Reclaimed Flooring Installation

2 Points make a straight line. Start your first row from a straight chalked line, refer to staple down page, for help. Face nail your board in. When installing wide plank reclaimed wood floors. Apply a generous amount of tongue and groove, hardwood flooring glue to the groove of your reclaimed flooring board. This will help keep your joints tight, but it will also allow it to contract, then install your flooring staples.

If, your floor boards have large cracks in the middle of your planks. Apply glue in these areas, also. On wider reclaimed wood floors, you can face nail flooring boards, if needed. Apply nail to areas, where there is a lot worm holes or knots. This way your nails blend in, and there won't be a need for filling them with wood putty.

Installing Square End Planks, Using Cut Nails

Layout 1 strip of underlayment, expose enough subflooring, so that you can see the locations of your subflooring joist from the wall. Make reference lines on your underlayment paper with a pencil or chalk line, to represent the location of your sub-flooring joist. Chalk your starting line also, at this time.

heart pine flooring
Do a dry layout of your reclaimed wood floors. This time cut them in place. Be sure, that your cut edge lands in the middle of a joist. Starting from your starting chalked line. Set-up about 3 feet of reclaimed flooring rows. Using 3d cut nails, face nail your first antique flooring row in place. Install a nail 1 inch in from the edge of your reclaimed wood floors into the sub-flooring joist location. Install 2 nails per joist. If, the edges are splitting from the cut nails, you will want to pre-drill the holes with a 1/16" drill

heart pine flooring Using 2, 8" x 12" scrap boards, cut 2 equal triangles. place both pieces in front of your last reclaimed flooring row. Fasten the outer triangle down with screws. Using a hammer, tap the triangle that's closest to the reclaimed flooring in place. This wedge system will apply pressure, tightening the joints of your square end reclaimed wood floors. When the joints are tight. Chalk a reference line on the face of your reclaimed flooring, for nailing.

Repeat this process to complete your reclaimed flooring installation. Using the same installation procedures we spoke about, in the above article and our staple down method page.

Plugging Holes

Some antique flooring have large knot holes, that may be missing. You will need to make plugs for this area.

Determine the diameter of your plug, needed for your reclaimed wood floors. Make a square strip 16-20 inch long. It could be either 3/4 x 3/4 or 3/4 x 1 depending on the size plug needed.

Using a hand planer, taper the tip of your reclaimed flooring strip, to fit your hole or wood knot. Once, you have a snug fit. Apply regular wood glue, to your plug. Then install it, use a hammer to tap it in . Then, use a Japanese flush cut saw to trim flush to your hardwood floor surface.

Tip: For, odd shaped holes, re-drill the holes, before making a plug to fit.

You should have a clear understanding of how to install reclaimed wood floors and the techniques used. If, your stuck and need help or may have a question, contact us.

G and S wood floors Lynn,Ma.