Installation Tips for Wood Flooring


Top Tips for Installing Wood Floors

At Cochran’s Lumber, we are premier wood floor suppliers who can also provide expert guidance on installing your wood floors, whether you’re putting in our Truewood™ engineered flooring or our pre-finished solid wood flooring. We’ll help you select the right amount, give you pointers on everything from sub-flooring issues to the right acclimation time, and make installing your wood floors fast, easy and worry-free.

Here are our top 10 tips to installing a beautiful wooden floor that you’ll enjoy for many years.

1. Get Acclimated.

Wood needs to acclimate to the humidity levels in your home. Humidity levels are crucial to maintaining the beauty and integrity of wood flooring. We recommend storing the wood in the room it’s going to be installed in for several days to allow the wood to reach the same humidity levels. Engineered wood is less sensitive to humidity fluctuations but still benefits from acclimation.

2. How Much Wood?

Most wood installation experts agree that when ordering wood, you need to add about 10 to 15 percent to your measurements to allow for waste and irregularities. Some wood retailers sell wood by the carton, so make sure you know exactly how much square footage is in each carton. At Cochran’s you can trust us to sell you just the right amount of wood you need for your job with no overcharges or hidden fees.

3. How’s Your Sub-flooring?

Solid wood floor installation requires a minimum 3/4-inch plywood subfloor. A thinner subfloor might need an additional layer of underlayment added to it to ensure your subfloor can support the new flooring. If the subfloor squeaks, fix it now before you install the wood. You can repair squeaks by reinforcing the joist with deck screws. The subfloor should be perfectly flat before you install the flooring.

4. Consider a Vapor Barrier.

Made of felt or heavy tarpaper, a vapor barrier provides additional protection against excess moisture. It goes directly over the subfloor. One of Cochran’s flooring experts can provide guidance on whether you need this.

5. Allow for Expansion.

When your installation begins, your flooring professional will leave from 3/8 to 1/2 an inch of space between the wall and the wood. This gap will be covered with a baseboard later. It allows for expansion when changes in moisture level cause the wood to swell. Cochran’s can provide you with baseboards, transitions and trim that coordinate perfectly with your chosen floor finish.

6. Is Installation Different for Engineered Wood?

The only difference is that Cochran’s Truewood™ can be applied anywhere, including concrete slabs without a subfloor. It can also go in higher-moisture areas that might not be suitable for solid wood. Cochran’s can craft a Truewood™ floor that matches the solid wood flooring in the rest of your home for a unified look.

7. Go Green.

Cochran’s wood is low in volatile organic compounds or VOCs, dangerous toxins found in many other building products. Cochran’s wood eliminates the need for onsite finishing, which means installers can place the flooring without filling your home with dust, fumes and sawdust.

8. American Made.

Cochran’s sells only classic American woods that are responsibly grown, sustainably harvested and milled right here in our Virginia shop. We avoid the problems that come with imported woods because we never import any. We appreciate the glorious color variations, character and richness of woods like longleaf pine, cherry, walnut, maple, hickory and oak. These woods will give you a uniquely beautiful floor that showcases a proud heritage.

9. Protect Your Investment.

When you install wood floors it’s a good idea to keep them out of direct sunlight as this could cause unwanted changes to the finish. Keep in mind that some woods, like cherry, naturally darken over time once they are installed as flooring. Use common sense and avoid wearing heavy boots or high heels on wooden floors.

10. Enjoy Your Beautiful Pre-Finished Flooring.

Our millwrights, craftsmen, artisans and designers work hard to bring you finished wood flooring that is more than just a floor cover. It’s a work of art. Our deep-rooted commitment to sustainability and our devotion to craftsmanship have made us the first choice in wood floor suppliers among designers, architects and homeowners. Call Cochran’s today and discover how easy and affordable it can be to get the wood floor that’s perfect for your home, your lifestyle and your design dreams.

Consider Cochran’s Lumber

At Cochran’s Lumber and Millworks, we create distinctive wood flooring marked with high quality craftsmanship.  Visit our showroom today and discover why Cochran’s is fast becoming a favorite among the most discriminating homeowners, builders and designers. Our friendly staff and talented artisans are waiting to help make your beam dreams come true.



Cochran’s Lumber and Millwork is proud to be the leading provider of spectacular floors for homes, offices, and retail spaces across America! Our newly redesigned showroom was thoughtfully designed to make the selection of flooring and finishes exciting and simple. We feature a variety of new and reclaimed flooring products and many new and unique finishes.

We are proud to offer an inviting space where customers can come and get a clear visual of the many types of hardwood flooring options that we offer, and feel comfortable at the same time.

Visit our showroom today in historic Berryville, VA (only 50 miles west of Washington D.C) or give us a call at 1(877) 297-8331.