Think again if you imagine a pre-finished hardware flooring installation is not durable enough to withstand kitchen traffic, children's toys and pets. Today's pre-finished hardwood flooring systems may offer 25-year finish warranties and lifetime structural warranties--not to mention tools, techniques and interlocking tongue and groove joinery that make DIY installation a snap.
Investigate pre-finished hardwood flooring products on the Internet and at your home improvement store before deciding for or against its use in the kitchen. Many manufacturers offer long-term warranties according to the pricing and quality rating of their products.
Lift wooden thresholds prior to sealing kitchen doorways and cabinetry with plastic and tape to control dust. Position a fan to draw dust out the open window. Wear a dust mask and install a vacuum bag on your circular saw.
Cut tile grout seams with a diamond-tipped blade intended for cutting stone and masonry. Adjust the saw blade depth to cut only through grout and the first wooden under layer. Pry up the plywood underlayment, removing it with the tiles.
Open and store the pre-finished hardwood flooring in the kitchen three to four days before beginning the installation. The product should acclimate to the same temperature and moisture content as the subfloor in the environment where you will install it.
Snap a chalk line about 3 inches from as exterior wall--that is the width of the plank plus a 1/2 inch expansion gap. Align the plank on the chalk line and nail it along the outer edge.
Mark cut lines on planks in correct locations and dimensions of obstacles such as pipes and air vents. Notch along the cut lines with a jigsaw. Fit planks together with interlocking tongue and groove joints.
Fit the groove of the next pre-finished hardwood flooring plank over the tongue portion of the previous row. Secure it with a special stapler that positions itself against the tongue edge to drive in a staple at the correct angle.
Remove all planks from their cartons and lay them out on the floor to mix their colors and grain patterns prior to installation. Stagger planks with noticeable variations so they blend rather than standing out in an eye-catching group.
Undercut door casings enough to install the planks underneath. Rest a side saw on a scrap hardwood plank to achieve the correct elevation and cut away the casing. Notch the planks to be installed, slide them beneath and secure them.
Install or reinstall strips of quarter-round molding along the floor at the bottom of the cabinets and baseboards when the pre-finished hardwood flooring installation is complete. The molding will hide the expansion gap left around the perimeter.