Can You Glue Down Laminate Flooring?

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can you glue down laminate flooring

Laminate flooring is an excellent, budget-friendly flooring option for all kinds of homes. 

If you love hardwood flooring, but don’t want to spend a large amount of money, it is a great option. It is durable and easy to maintain as well as very aesthetically pleasing. 

However, one of the issues that people sometimes have with it is its ability to stay secure. 

Laminate flooring can sometimes shift and move around with time. Because of that, people often wonder if they can glue the flooring down. 

Gluing down laminate flooring is not a good idea. It needs to be able to expand and contract easily. 

However, there are ways you can secure it to your floor and make it more stable. 

Securing Laminate Flooring: Basic Idea 

Some of the things you should do to secure your laminate flooring include: 

  • Measure correctly 
  • Prep the flooring
  • Trim doorways
  • Use underlayment

Why Not Glue Down Laminate Flooring? 

Laminate is sometimes referred to as “floating flooring.” This is because it uses a snap-together type joint that can be installed very easily. 

This type of joint is perfect for laminate flooring because it tends to swell with different humidities. 

However, if you glue the laminate down, it will not be able to shift with different moisture levels. This could result in cracking and damage underneath the planks. 

When you install laminate flooring, you need to leave slight gaps to allow it to shift. 

While gluing the laminate down could possibly result in cracking, there are ways to make it stay put. 

Measure the Planks Properly

measure the planks properly 

The best way to ensure that your laminate flooring doesn’t shift or move around is to measure it properly. 

You should have no more than a ¼” gap between the edge of the laminate planks and the wall. If you keep everything else tightly laid down, this will keep it from shifting. 

This expansion gap will allow the laminate to change size and shape without shifting its position. It will also give you enough space to allow for baseboard installation. 

While you need to leave some room for the laminate to move, too much could be an issue. By leaving no more than ¼”, you can be certain that your flooring will stay put. 

Acclimate the Flooring 

It is highly recommended that you acclimate your flooring for at least three days before you install it. 

This will give the laminate enough time to expand and contract with the moisture in the room. Then, when you install it, it will be at the correct size. 

While the laminate planks will still change size and shape as they absorb moisture from the air. 

However, if they have been acclimated, the changes will be more subtle. It will not be enough to crack or damage the planks. 

Trim the Doorways

When you install your laminate, make sure that you trim your doorways and door jambs. 

This includes cutting slots in the doorways to allow the laminate to fit underneath them. If you don’t do this, you could end up having to put them too close to the edge. 

By cutting slots where the planks can fit will let you cut them to the exact right size. 

This should especially be done when you are fitting laminate around corners. Taking the time to do this will keep the planks in place and keep them from moving around as you walk. 

Use an Underlayment 

Even though laminate flooring is a floating floor, it still needs an underlayment. 

When you lay down the planks directly on the subfloor, they can slide around. Putting a material between the two will help hold the laminate in place. 

An underlayment will also keep moisture from getting under the planks. Since laminate is not water tight, any spills can get beneath the flooring. 

When this happens, you could end up with mold or mildew under your floor. An underlayment will help prevent this. 

Frequently Asked Questions

faqs can you glue down laminate flooring

  • Can you use nails on laminate flooring?

Just like with glue, nails will prevent laminate from sliding around and expanding or contracting. 

However, a bit of movement will prevent structural damage. Because of this, nailing down your laminate is not recommended. 

  • Can you drill holes in laminate?

You can drill holes in laminate without issue. However, you should take steps to protect it if you are going to. 

Put masking tape around the area where you are drilling to prevent cracking and splitting. 

  • How do you secure laminate flooring edges?

You can secure laminate floor edges by measuring the planks correctly. 

If you don’t have enough laminate to get all the way to the edge, you can also install baseboards. These will allow you to make miniscule adjustments and leave an exact ¼” gap. 

Conclusion

While gluing down laminate flooring is not a good idea, you can still secure it to your subfloor. 

By trying the above methods, you can be certain that your laminate will stay put. You can also be sure that it won’t crack or split over time. 

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AUTHOR

Michael J. O’Connor is a writer and marketing specialist from the Bay Area of California. A graduate of Sonoma State’s Creative Writing program, he spent many years as a contractor and carpet layer, learning the ins and outs of flooring and general contracting. When he’s not typing away at his desk, he enjoys hiking with his dogs, woodworking and collecting rare books. See full biography here.

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