Do It Yourself: How To Lay The New Ceramic Look Vinyl Flooring

You can install a beautiful vinyl floor that looks almost like ceramic tile and save yourself a lot of money in the process.

If you are like a lot of people, you love the look of a new floor in a kitchen, living area, dining room, or bathroom. But like a lot of people, you might not want to go to the expense of paying someone to lay the floor. Paying for labor can be very expensive, and when you combine that with the money you have to spend for the materials, you could be out a lot of money. You can, however, do it yourself.

Today's vile tile flooring has changed drastically from the vinyl flooring you used to see in your parents' or grandparents' kitchens. There are now vinyl flooring tiles available that look a lot like ceramic tile. The big difference is that vinyl floor is so much simpler to install. If you visit your local building supply store, you will see a vast selection of tile colors and sizes. You can buy quality tile that is installed by basically peeling and sticking.

The first thing you need to do is measure your floor space. Once you have figured the square footage, you can look on the boxes of the flooring to determine how many squares are in each box and how many boxes you need. Buy extra tile and hang onto your receipt. You won't want to stop what you are doing to go out and buy more tile. You can always take extra boxes back. Vinyl flooring can be cut with a utility knife or scissors. Use whatever you are most comfortable with.

Decide what pattern you want to lay your floor in by laying out several pieces in the center of the room. Don't peel the backing off before you do this. You are just trying to get an idea of how you want your floor to look. The easiest pattern is to lay your tile side by side so that the edges form straight lines. If you want to step away from the traditional, try laying your tile diagonally so that each piece begins at the center of the piece next to it. Remember, however, that you will have to cut odder shaped pieces if you do use this pattern.

Before you begin sticking your tile down, make sure your floor is clean. You can lay peel and stick vinyl tile on other flooring, such as linoleum. If you aren't sure that your tile will look good or lay flat on your old floor, test a spot in a pantry or behind the refrigerator. If it doesn't look like your tile will stick, you will need to remove the flooring. You will probably need to remove the quarter round that juts up to the baseboards and replace it after you have finished laying your flooring.

Once you have decided what pattern you want, you can begin in the center of the floor or in the center of a doorway. Peel the backing paper away from the tile and firmly press it to the floor, smoothing your hand over the tile piece to ensure that all of it is sticking. As you continue to peel and stick, make sure each piece of tile is fitted tightly against the preceding piece so that you don't have any cracks showing between the tiles. Work in the center of the room first, and try to lay as many pieces as you can without cutting them.

Once you begin laying the tiles around door frames, along cabinets and appliances, and in the corners of the room, you will have to start cutting them. Don't worry if you make a mistake. This is why you needed to buy at least one extra box. You can use a pencil to mark where you need to cut on the tile pieces. Save any scrap pieces as you work. You may be able to use those in smaller areas. Once you have finished laying your tile, nail your old or new quarter round back against the baseboards. Now, step back and admire your work and think of all the money you have saved.

© High Speed Ventures 2011