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How to Lay Flooring Around Corners

Many floor installations call for flooring to be laid around a corner. Doorways and L-shaped walls are examples of the types of structures that often need to be navigated. Whether your material of choice is laminate or hardwood and whether it is a floating floor or it is nailed or glued down, there are several steps that will ensure a consistent, attractive appearance around the corner while allowing the proper space for expansion and movement.

Laying courses of flooring around corners requires a few extra steps.

Step 1

Prepare the area.  Remove the shoe molding throughout the room with a pry bar.

If you are installing around a cased doorway, undercut the casing with a handheld dovetail saw.  Lay a piece of your underlayment and a scrap piece of flooring on the floor next to the casing and use it as a guide to cut out the casing at the height of the flooring.


Step 2

Lay courses of flooring, moving toward the corner until you can no longer fit a full course between corner and the previous course. 


Step 3

Measure the distance between beginning of the next course and the corner.  Be sure to account for an expansion gap.


Step 4

Transfer that measurement onto the next board you are going to install, and mark out the section that will need to be notched out to fit the corner. 


Step 5

Cut out the marked area with a jigsaw slowly and carefully.  A fine-tooth blade is recommended for most flooring.


Step 6

Position the cut board in place.  Slip a pry bar in between the cut board and the wall and use it to pull the board up against the previous course.


Step 7

Cut additional boards to the same width as the narrow section of notched out board and install them in between the last full course and the wall.  Continue installing full-width courses up against the uncut portion of the board.

Things You Will Need

  • Pry bar
  • Dovetail saw
  • Jigsaw with fine-tooth blade
  • Ruler or measuring tape

Tip

  • When and how to secure the notched-out board in place will vary depending upon the type of flooring. For nail-down applications, you will want to face-nail the cut portion. For glue-down applications, apply glue before positioning the board into place.

Warning

  • Always wear eye protection when cutting and nailing.

About the Author

Matt Brown has been writing professionally for more than 15 years. He shares his experience in home remodeling and do-it-yourself projects with his readers. Brown earned his bachelor of arts in communications from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Photo Credits

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