Vinyl Flooring Installation in Las Vegas—Can I do it myself? Why? Why not?

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If you don’t necessarily consider yourself a handy person, don’t worry, the guide doesn’t end here. Installing vinyl flooring has few requirements: 

  • Spatial awareness: If you can build a lego set, you’re hired!
  • Two hands: If you can carry the box of flooring, you can install it!
  • Basic tools: Everybody needs a circular saw and an oscillating tool!

The most challenging aspects of installing click-vinyl or laminate flooring are: Working around/under door jambs and cutting baseboards.  

Note: Installing vinyl flooring on a staircase? You might want to hire a professional, or check out this guide.


TOOLS: (Est. Cost $150)
To install click-vinyl flooring you will need the following tools:

  1. Circular Saw -
  2. Long Straight-edge -
  3. Oscillating Tool -
  4. Utility Blade -
  5. Pencil or Washable Marker -
  6. Tapping Block -
  7. Pull Bar -
  8. Rubber Mallet -
  9. Hammer -
  10. Knee Pads -
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Step 1: Preparation for LVP flooring

  • Remove and label baseboards in the areas you plan to install flooring. 
  • Remove and dispose of old flooring. 
  • Clean the subfloor of debris and check that the area is fairly level. 

Large cracks or gouges can be filled in, but humps and bumps need to be ground down and may require the help of a professional. Any subfloor imperfection that could cause a floating floor to seesaw or rock can cause the joints to come apart or break over time. The subfloor needs to be leveled before installation. If you’re unsure about an area, install a few planks to test for movement or flexion of the planks.

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Step 2: Choosing Directions

With your subfloor prepped and ready, begin the installation by choosing a direction to install your planks. Which direction should your vinyl flooring be installed? The most common direction to install vinyl flooring is parallel to the longest wall but there are other factors to consider. While you will want to consider each individual room, your entire floor plan should have a cohesive design as you move from room to room.

Light Source

If the room is abundant in natural light, you might consider running the boards in the direction of the light. Running the planks perpendicular to the main light source will reveal slight variations in the height of the boards creating small but visible shadows. Installing your wood planks in the same direction as the light ameliorates this problem, resulting in a better look.


Installing the floor lengthwise from the front all the way to the back will make your hallway appear longer as opposed to a horizontal pattern which may end up appearing ladder-like. 

Small Rooms

For narrow rooms, you could run the flooring horizontally. The space will appear larger than it really is by drawing the eye from side to side. This trick gives you and your house guests a larger perception of the space.

Step 3: Installation

All floating floors require at least a 1/4th inch gap along walls and door frames. This allows for thermal expansion and contraction as your flooring adjusts to the seasons. Adding spacers along your starting row not only allows for expansion, but also keeps your flooring in place as you tap things into place.

First Row, First Cut, & Closing Joints

Starting with a full, uncut plank, place your first plank securely against the spacers, ensuring that the plank is oriented correctly with the receiving edge facing away from the wall. Subsequent rows will lock in place by being inserted from above. With your first plank in place, add additional planks along the wall creating your first row. For this first row you likely have not had to use the tapping block to close the end joints. After cutting the final plank to size and installing, you will need to utilize the pull bar in order to fully close the joint. 

Staggering Rows

Congratulations, you’ve finished your first row! To begin the next row, you can use the leftover piece from the first row in order to stagger the planks. You want at least a 6” (six inch) stagger to avoid awkward looking joints. If the leftover piece is less than six inches, you will need to cut a new plank down to size. As you install these pieces and subsequent rows, you’ll notice that you may need to utilize the tapping block to fully close joints along with the pull bar when you get to the end of the wall. Continue this process until you reach a doorway.

Cutting Under The Door Jamb -  *IMPORTANT*

This step is very important, but do not be intimidated! Using your oscillating tool and a wood blade, cut off enough of the door jamb for your plank flooring to slide under, including an additional 1/16th inch space for vertical expansion. 

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Step 4: Joining Rooms 

To continue your flooring onto the other side of the door, you must leave an expansion joint covered by a molding. If you’re terminating the vinyl here, use an appropriate molding to seamlessly join the vinyl with the existing floor on the other side. Use a t-molding if the heights are the same, a reducer for small height differences, or an end cap if the vinyl butts up to carpet or an entry door.

Step 5: Install/Reinstalling Baseboards

Now that your flooring is down, you can reinstall your baseboards, in which case all the mitering has already been done. If you took this project as an opportunity to install brand new baseboards, we’ll show you how to get perfect miter cuts in our upcoming blog!