Installation & Preparation
The first detail to be addressed with any of our installations will be furniture. Our installers are able assist in moving some items like couches and dressers but they will not be able to assist with items such as pianos, bed frames, and appliances/utilities (toilets, washers/dryers, refrigerators, dishwashers, etc). Our crews will also remove and re-hang any doors in the area of work. If there is a significant increase in floor height (i.e. new hardwood floors being added over a slab) doors might need to be shaved/trimmed to insure clearance. Counter-heights need to be taken into consideration as well.
The next detail to consider is the trim. Our installers can pull any existing trim and store it but it will be necessary to hire a trim carpenter to hang any trim after the job is completed. In some cases, the existing trim is not salvageable and new trim will be required. In specific situations, our installers can install paint-grade or stain-grade shoemold but a painter will need to come and touch up any paint-grade trim that is used. We can provide references for both.
Tile and Carpet installations are relatively straight forward and once the steps above are addressed, the only extra steps would be for tile. Coordination of glass and plumber trades will be needed prior to any demolition or installation of tile or stone.
Wood Flooring Installation
All wood flooring must go through an acclimation process prior to installation/finishing. We want the wood to adjust to its new environment and reach its equilibrium moisture content (EMC) within “normal living conditions” before we secure it to the subfloor. This one of the most important steps of hardwood floor installation and not properly conditioning the wood may cause excessive expansion, shrinkage, dimensional distortion, or even structural damage. We need the climate conditions inside the home to be consistent for at least 3 weeks prior to installation. The ideal relative humidity (RH) inside the house needs to be maintained between 35-50% and the temperature is between 68-75℉. The moisture content (MC) of the subfloor will be evaluated prior to installation as well. Concrete subfloors will need to be below 5% and wood subfloors between 9-13%.
The installation process for engineered flooring is relatively simple after all the steps above have been accounted for. Our crews will make sure the subfloor is cleaned and prepped prior to the floating or gluing of the wood. After installation, the floors will be ready to walk on and furniture pieces can be moved back into place within 24 hours. The installation for solid hardwoods is a little more detailed.
After the subfloor has been properly prepped and the solid hardwoods have been installed, we move into the acclimation period mentioned above. Before the floors are sanded we want to assure that the MC of the wood is between 7-9%. We approach this stage with a scientific approach and allow the wood to acclimate as long as necessary to achieve its EMC but the approximate expected timeline is 10-14 days. In general, the wider the solid hardwood boards are the longer it takes to reach its EMC. While the floors are acclimating, they are able to be walked and lived on and furniture may even be brought back in, but the floors will need to be cleared again prior to the sand and finish process. The sand and finish process typically takes 3-4 days based on square footage, staining, and polyurethane finishing.