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How to Install Baseboard Molding

Finish a new flooring installation yourself by adding new baseboard moldings for a professional-looking touch. Baseboards come in a wide variety of molding profiles; for example, the wider the baseboard, the more formal the look. Use an alternative material, like a low-profile shoe molding, to cut down on expenses.

Step 1

Measure the length of baseboard needed. Add 10 percent to the amount to cover possible mistakes.

Step 2

Visit a home remodeling store to decide upon the type, or style, of baseboard needed. Choose a baseboard that fits the decor of the room—flat for more modern interiors, curved and highly designed for more ornate interiors.

Step 3

Purchase the molding in lengths that do not require much splicing (cutting) and matching. Average lengths of molding run around 14 feet.

Step 4

Purchase a product that comes pre-primed to save prep time. Paint the baseboard before installation.

Step 5

Measure and cut baseboard to fit the first wall. Use a mitered cut at each end that meets another piece of molding at a corner. Use a straight cut when matching lengths along a wall. Use a miter saw for perfect miter cuts. Corners that meet in 90-degree angles require a mitered (angled) cut using a miter saw set at a 45-degree angle—two 45-degree cuts placed together result in a 90-degree corner.

Step 6

Put baseboard into place making sure that it is flat against the wall. Use a pneumatic nail gun to attach the board to the wall. Nail at wall studs only, locate these before attaching the baseboard using a stud finder. A single two-inch finishing nail at each stud is all that is needed to keep the baseboard in place. Larger molding widths, four inches or more, need two two-inch finishing nails placed vertically at the studs.

Step 7

When all baseboard is installed, finish the project by filling each nail hole with wood putty. Wipe away excess putty for a smooth application. Allow the putty to dry per the product's instructions.

Step 8

Touch up the baseboard using the paint it was painted with earlier.

Warning

  • Always wear safety goggles when using electric saws.

About the Author

Alex Burke holds a degree in environmental design and a Master of Arts in information management. She's worked as a licensed interior designer, artist, database administrator and nightclub manager. A perpetual student, Burke writes Web content on a variety of topics, including art, interior design, database design, culture, health and business.