Karin W
Karin W
  • Hometalker
  • Junction City, KS
Asked on May 4, 2013

Do I need underlayment, when installing new wooden floor over old

KMS WoodworksKarin WWoodbridge Environmental Tiptophouse.com
+9

Answered

I want to install a new floating engineered hardwood floor over an existing hardwood floor. Do I have put down underlayment in between?
12 answers
  • Simple answer is no. Underlayment would only be required if there were holes in the floor that needed bridging and even then underlayment would not be the first choice. What you should be installing under the new floor is the highest quality padding the manufacture suggests to use. The padding offers a few things. One moisture barrier although not needed in your case. Softer feel under your feet and most important some level although small sound control. Engineered flooring tends to be a bit more noisy than nail down hardwood. It also offers the ability of the floor to move as it shrinks and swells from moisture levels within the home. Although movement is small the padding allows for this slippage and helps prevent buckling of the floor.

  • Jeanette S
    on May 5, 2013

    There used to be a "quiet pad" underlayment...we used it on our floor and I highly recommend it. It really cuts back on the "hollow" sound!

  • KMS Woodworks
    on May 5, 2013

    Why not just refinish the existing hardwood? from a cost standpoint you will save a lot. By installing a new product, you may need to cut down doors, install new thresholds and base boards or shoe molding. What rooms are planning to do?

  • Karin W
    on May 5, 2013

    Thanks for the advice. We had thought about that many times. We refinished it ourselves years ago, but it was a mess and didn't turn out very good. If my husband had your skills I surely would do it. Also, it is hard to do while we are living here in the home. If we have somebody do it for us it will be more expensive than just putting in a new floor. We just want to do the living room and the hallway. It is about 320 square feet. For the new floor we would pay about 1000 $ plus the padding and moldings.

  • LandlightS
    on May 5, 2013

    I agree with KMS...I will take wood over a laminate any day of the week. Not only will you have to cut the bottom of the doors, you will have to undercut the door jams for proper installation as well as new shoe mold (unless you can remove the existing shoe mold with breaking the sections) Refinishing should run about $1 - $1.50 per sq. ft. where a good quality laminate will run $2.50 per sq. ft. for product only.... Good luck Gary

  • Karin W
    on May 5, 2013

    Do you mean $ 1.50 per sq foot, if I have somebody else do the work, including the material?

  • Karin, Refinishing should be less than replacement. You can always save money by doing the finish work yourself and have someone else do the sanding and prep for you. I would agree with LandlightS on the cost being around the $2.00 per foot cost including materials.

  • Karin W
    on May 5, 2013

    You are probably right, but it is hard for us to do that stuff. We are not skilled! And we have 3 dogs and cats. If we are here, they are here. LIke I said, we did the whole thing about 10 years ago. It did not look good and wore off so fast! And scratched so easy. I guess I got to get some estimates and move into a hotel for few days while they do it.

  • Karin another thing to ponder is the noise. dog nails on laminate flooring is loud. With three pooches it will drive you nuts if they are active. Even if they wear the floor down you would be much more happy with the solid wood floor then the laminate types. I speak from experience on this. My one dog although we keep his nails trimmed short drives us nuts when he wakes from naps and starts running around the house. We have laminate in two bedrooms that I put in many years ago. We ended up with carpets on the floor to keep us sane.

  • Karin W
    on May 10, 2013

    Well, thanks to every bodies advice we have decided against the floating engineered wooden floor and are looking into having the original floor refinished. However, from what I hear it is not cheaper to refinish than to buy a new floor. The cost is closer to 3 $ per foot. I had a company come out here and look at the situation and now am waiting for an estimate. The company has done work in the neighborhood and has very good reviews.

  • KMS Woodworks
    on May 11, 2013

    $3 a sq foot is a pretty common rate for a full sand refinish. "Screen and recoat" can be down to 1/2 that. of course the layout poses a big "adjustment factor" stairs and hallways are more $$ than a big room due to the need to do a lot of hand work along the edges. check put this recent project of mine http://www.hometalk.com/919391/the-fun-part

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