If you’re like most of us, you probably don’t spend a lot of time thinking about your loft.
But if your loft doesn’t have proper flooring, installing it should be your next home improvement project. This might seem like a waste of time, but it can be a helpful addition to your home.
We’ve put together this guide to show you how to install loft flooring the right way and why you should make this job a priority.
So let’s get started!
How To Install Loft Flooring
Installing loft flooring isn’t a complicated process, but you do want to make sure you know what you’re doing. Simple mistakes can cause you big problems later.
To start, you need to make sure you have all the right tools and supplies. Here’s a quick list of what you’ll need:
- Tape measure
- Pencil and Paper
- Jigsaw (just pick the best one for the job)
- Electric screwdriver and screws
You’ll also want to make sure you’re wearing the proper safety equipment, including:
- Dusk mask
- Disposable overalls
And of course, you’ll also need to buy the right amount of loft boards. The exact number you need will depend on the size of your loft, but once you have all these supplies gathered and ready, here’s what to do next.
Step 1: Measure Your Loft
Start by measuring the length and width of your loft. Then take these two numbers and multiply them together to find out how many loft boards you’ll need. (Taking this measurement in mm will make the buying process easier.)
Now think about the areas you plan to board. After all, you might not want to install flooring over the entire space.
Many lofts have awkward corners or edges that are hard to reach. You may also want to avoid boarding over water pipes or other important features. Otherwise, you may have to rip your flooring back out the next time you want to access them.
Once you know how much flooring you need, you can head to the store.
Remember to measure the opening of your loft before you go. The last thing you want to do is buy boards that won’t fit through the opening.
It’s also a good idea to buy a bit more flooring than you think you’ll need. You might make a mistake during the installation, and if you don’t have enough flooring, you can put the whole project on hold.
Step 2: Check Your Insulation
Before you can start laying your flooring, you have to take a look at your insulation. Your insulation should be at least 270mm thick. The problem is this often causes the insulation to stick out over the joists.
Despite common loft boarding misconceptions, while you can just squish the insulation under the flooring, you shouldn’t.
This will lower the effectiveness of your insulation, meaning you’ll lose more energy and waste more money. It’s better to raise the floor with loft ledges or take some of the insulation and hang it on the ceiling instead.
Step 3: Lay Your First Board
Start by laying one board in place. Make sure the edges of the board land in the center of a joist. This will give you a way to secure the next board next to it. If the first board doesn’t match up with a joist, use your jigsaw to cut it to the right size.
You can then use your drill and screwdriver to secure the first board.
Step 4: Lay The Rest Of The Flooring
Take your next board and slide it into the groove of the first board (if you need to trim this board, make sure you do that first). You may need the help of a hammer to tap the boards together and create a close join.
But don’t hit the hammer directly against the flooring. Otherwise, you could end up denting or damaging the board.
Put a piece of wood between the two when you hammer and don’t swing with too much force. You should be able to tap the pieces into place gently.
Once you have the second board screwed into place, repeat the process again for the next board, and the next, and the next.
Why You Should Install Loft Flooring
Do you really need to install flooring in your loft?
While you don’t have to, having flooring up there can benefit you in a number of ways. Here are just a few of them.
Extra Storage Space
Need somewhere to store those Christmas decorations? When you have flooring in your loft, it can turn into an extra storage space. This can free up some other space in your garage for, you know, an actual car!
Trying to balance on the joists every time you go into your loft can be dangerous. If you lose your footing, you can fall and get hurt or damage the roof.
Installing flooring in your loft will make it much safer for you (or others) to go up there.
Your loft is home to things like water pipes, electrical work, and more. When you install flooring in your loft, you give yourself easy access to these things. If you ever need to check on them or repair them, you can do so without a lot of hassle.
Sprucing Up Your Loft With A New Floor
Installing loft flooring on your own isn’t a hard project. However, it will take some time. Make sure you follow the steps in this guide as you get ready for your DIY job.
Want to learn other helpful homeowner tips?
Make sure you check out the rest of our blog!