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How To Lay Vinyl Plank Flooring

If you are eager to give your space a fresh and modern look, then vinyl plank flooring may be a perfect option for you. Whether you’re experienced with DIY or a complete beginner wanting to start your first home improvement project, we are here to help. This comprehensive guide will lead you through the process, ensuring that you achieve a professional, stylish, durable, and low-maintenance flooring solution. So, how do you lay vinyl plank flooring?

Start by ensuring your subfloor is clean, smooth, and level, then measure the room to determine the layout and pattern you want. Begin in a corner, leaving a small gap for expansion, and lay the first plank. Interlock subsequent planks by angling them and clicking into place, working row by row. Use a utility knife to trim planks as needed, maintaining a consistent expansion gap around the perimeter. Finish the installation by adding baseboards or quarter-round moulding to cover the gaps, and you’ll have a beautiful, durable vinyl plank floor that’s perfect for any room in your home.

There are a few steps to laying vinyl plank flooring, and it can be seen as one of the easier materials to lay. However, if you do not have much experience in flooring, it may be best for you to hire professionals in laying vinyl flooring. With that being said if you want to give laying vinyl plank flooring a go, here is our step-by-step guide.

Step 1: Gather Your Materials

Before you begin the vinyl plank flooring installation, whether residential or commercial, make sure you have all the necessary materials ready:

  • Vinyl plank flooring
  • Measuring tape
  • Utility knife
  • T-square or straightedge
  • Spacers
  • Adhesive (if using peel-and-stick planks)
  • Underlayment (if required)
  • Hammer or mallet
  • Baseboards or quarter-round moulding
  • Safety equipment (gloves, safety glasses, knee pads)

Step 2: Prepare the Subfloor

Ensure your subfloor is clean, dry, level, and free from any debris or imperfections that could affect the installation. If needed, lay down an appropriate underlayment to create a smooth surface.

Step 3: Measure and Plan

Take accurate measurements of the room to determine the layout and pattern you desire for your vinyl plank flooring. Careful planning now will prevent issues with awkward gaps or narrow pieces at the room’s edges.

Step 4: Start in a Corner

Commence the installation from one corner of the room, preferably the farthest point from the main entrance. Remember to leave a small expansion gap (usually around 1/4 inch) between the planks and the walls to accommodate temperature changes and prevent buckling.

Step 5: Place the First Plank

Position the first vinyl plank with its tongue side facing outward, typically the edge with the groove. Ensure it aligns parallel to the starting wall and use spacers along that edge to maintain a consistent gap.

Step 6: Install Additional Rows

Continue adding planks in the first row, interlocking them by angling each one and securely clicking it into place. Be sure to stagger the end joints for a more natural appearance. Employ a T-square or straightedge to maintain proper alignment.

Step 7: Cut Planks as Necessary

When reaching the end of a row or encountering obstacles like doorways, use a utility knife to trim planks to the required size. Precise measurements and clean cuts will ensure a snug fit.

Step 8: Progress with the Installation

Continue adding rows of vinyl plank flooring using the same interlocking method. Check that each plank fits snugly without visible gaps. If needed, employ a hammer or mallet and a tapping block to gently secure planks in place.

Step 9: Finish with Moulding

Upon covering the entire floor, remove the spacers and install baseboards or quarter-round moulding around the perimeter. This not only provides a polished appearance but also secures the flooring in position.

Step 10: Admire Your New Floor

With the final piece of moulding in place, step back and take in the beauty of your newly installed vinyl plank flooring. It not only enhances your space aesthetically but also offers durability and low maintenance. Congratulations on successfully completing this DIY project!


From gathering the necessary materials to preparing the subfloor and planning the layout, we walk you through each crucial stage of the installation process. With this guide in hand, you’ll achieve not only a professional-looking vinyl plank floor but also the satisfaction of a successful home improvement project.

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