How to Install Columbia Engineered Hardwood Flooring

By Emily Beach

  • Overview

    Hardwood floors are a popular design feature, and can add character and warmth to any home. While these floors are highly prized for their appearance, they are also known as being one of the most expensive flooring options available. If solid wood floors are out of your price range, consider using Columbia Engineered Hardwood. Engineered flooring is made from strips of real wood covered with a thin layer of veneer. They can be sanded and finished the same way as solid floors can be, but are available at a fraction of the price. This material is surprisingly easy to install, and can be completed in just a few days.
    Beautiful wood flooring
    • Step 1

      Level the subfloor before you begin. Use a self-leveling concrete compound if your floor is only slightly even. If the subfloor is completely out of level, install a 1/4" layer of plywood over the surface instead of attempting to level it out. The plywood should be fastened in place using a floor stapler.
    • Step 2

      Place a layer of Columbia 3 in 1 foam over the plywood or subfloor. Columbia recommends this product be used with all engineered floors. The foam will cushion the wood and make it more comfortable to walk on, as well as help to deaden noise.


    • Step 3

      Lay your first row of wood flooring planks. Start at the longest wall and place the panel on the floor. Leave a 1/4" gap between the wall and the panel to allow for expansion.
    • Step 4

      Apply a layer of wood adhesive to the tongue of the plank before placing it into the groove of the connecting piece. Continue connecting planks of wood via the tongue and groove connectors, applying adhesive to each one as you work. A putty knife or paintbrush can be used for applying adhesive. Use a rubber mallet to tap each plank firmly into place.
    • Step 5

      Use a circular saw to cut any planks as necessary at the end of a row. Use the leftover pieces only if they are more than a foot long. Shorter pieces will disturb the pattern of the floor and create an odd appearance.
    • Step 6

      Leave another 1/4" gap at the opposite wall to allow for expansion. To complete the project, install toe-boards or trim pieces around the perimeter of the room.
    • Skill: Moderate
    • Ingredients:
    • Self-leveling compound
    • 1/4" plywood
    • Floor stapler
    • Columbia foam underlay
    • Wood flooring
    • Wood adhesive
    • Putty knife or paint brush
    • Rubber mallet
    • Circular saw
    • Tip: As with all floating floor systems, Columbia hardwood floors are not fastened to the subfloor. While adhesive should be used between the tongue and groove connectors, it should not be placed on the bottom of the planks to anchor them to the floor.
    • Tip: If you can't find the Columbia Flooring products you'd like for your home, check out the company's online dealer locater. A link to this website can be found in the resources section of this article.

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