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How to Figure Hardwood Flooring Nails

Sue-Lynn Carty

Nails secure your hardwood flooring to the subfloor or framing members. To determine how many nails you need to secure your flooring, you have to consider room size and nail spacing. It is also a good idea to figure in an extra amount in case a nail breaks or bends during installation. Figuring the number of nails you need requires a few simple calculations.

Secure your hardwood flooring with the correct number of nails.

Step 1

Measure the length and width of the room. Multiply the measurements to figure out the room's square footage. Before you can figure out how many nails you need, you have to determine how many hardwood floorboards the room requires.

Step 2

Decide on flooring board width. Typical widths for hardwood flooring are 2 1/4, 3, 5 and 7 inches.

Step 3

Estimate the number of bundles or boxes of hardwood flooring you need. Hardwood flooring manufacturers print an estimated square footage coverage on each box or bundle of floorboards. Divide the estimated square footage coverage of your hardwood flooring into the total square footage of the room.

Step 4

Calculate how many boards you need. Multiply the number of hardwood floorboards per box by the number of boxes you need to cover the room.

Step 5

Determine the nail spacing requirements for your hardwood flooring, based on the width of the floorboards. Boards 2 to 2 3/4 inches wide need one nail every 8 to 10 inches. Boards 3 to 3 3/4 inches wide require a nail every 6 to 8 inches. Boards 4 to 7 inches wide need one nail every 6 inches.

Step 6

Calculate the number of hardwood flooring nails. Multiple the number of boards calculated in Step 4 with the nail spacing requirements in Step 5.

For instance, you need 500 2 1/4-inch floorboards to cover a room, with one nail placed every 8 to 10 inches. Multiply 500 by 8 to calculate the low estimate of 4,500 nails. Multiply by 10 to get the high estimate of 5,000 nails. In this example, you need 4,500 to 5,000 hardwood flooring nails to secure the floor.