How to Install Hardwood Floors: Tips & Tricks for Professionals

How to Install Hardwood Floors: Tips & Tricks for Professionals

As professionals, it’s our duty to know how to properly install hardwood floors. There are countless guides on the internet teaching both experts and DIY devotees how to get the job done correctly. However, we couldn’t manage to find one definitive guide that ticks all the boxes of proper hardwood floor installation. With the help of our crew and a few clients, we managed to come up with a shortlist on how to install hardwood floors, the right way. We’ll be sharing this information with you in this article.

First Atlanta Flooring’s guide on how to install hardwood floors

The idea behind this blog post is to help professionals who are just starting out, and also teach “veterans” a few tips and tricks to ease and improve their work. In this list, we’ll be going over several key aspects of hardwood floor installation, including what types of materials and machines to use, how to handle a situation when there’s already a floor installed, and more. 

Each step of the process is highly important, and if you follow these steps, the quality of your work will definitely show at the end of the day. 

  1. Use quality materials and equipment

We cannot stress this enough, but using top-quality hardwood planks and installation materials is crucial, and greatly impacts the work of a professional. This doesn’t mean you only have to work with top-of-the-shelf materials, but investing in premium-grade equipment and buying from trusted suppliers will automatically give you a competitive edge. 

Quality planks, underlayments, adhesives, as well as sanding machines and wood saws can make a huge difference during the job. Your work speaks for itself, so if clients can see your professionalism, they will surely recommend you for future gigs. If you’re in the market for materials, make sure to check out our shop at

  1. Mind the wood

This is probably an underrated tip, but it’s highly important to let the wood acclimate to the interior environment before installation. Prior to installing the wood planks, open the boxes and leave them in the designated work area. The acclimatization process will prevent cupping or shrinkage after the installation is completed. You can even use a moisture meter to test the moisture level of the hardwood.

  1. Prepare the subfloor

Preparing the subfloor is one of the most important steps when it comes to hardwood floor installations, and sometimes it can take more time than the actual installation. Prepping the subfloor involves patience, especially if you have to remove old flooring. This might go without saying, but you should avoid installing hardwood planks on existing flooring. This way, you can avoid problems from arising in the future, such as squeaky floors, mold and humidity, and uneven floors, among others.

You should remove old flooring, tiles, carpets, or anything else, and start fresh. The only thing that should be underneath the hardwood floor is a good quality underlayment, like a moisture barrier, for example. Keep in mind that before proceeding with laying down the planks, you should make sure the subfloor is even, without any bumps or nails sticking out.

  1. Rack out the hardwood floor

Now that everything’s in place, rack out the hardwood planks first, before nailing them down. This will give you a good idea of the modifications you need to make, especially when it comes to doorways, corners, staircase bases, and more. This step will allow you to intuitively scout which planks need to be cut and modified to fit in specific places.

  1. Install the hardwood floor

The last step is the actual installation. Nailing the planks can be done by using manual nail guns, or with a pneumatic tool. Whichever you choose, make sure they are sturdy and from trustworthy suppliers. For smaller wood pieces, you’ll need to use adhesives. Keep in mind that solid hardwood expands and contracts as temperature and humidity fluctuate, so make sure you leave small spaces around walls for this process. You can cover up the visible gaps and spaces with baseboards and moldings at the end.


Following these steps, your work will definitely improve and your clients will be satisfied. A great job requires patience, coordination, skill, and intelligence. If you don’t cut corners and don’t skip steps, you’ll be installing quality floors in no time. With the right materials, machines and guidelines by your side, your work will speak for itself.

Are you looking for quality wood flooring options?

If you and your team are embarking on a project and need durable hardwood planks, make sure to check out our website. We are a group of highly passionate people who love what we do and strive to supply premium-grade flooring options to professionals. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you need any assistance with your shopping. We’ll try to assist you with anything you need.