Nail Down – Typically used with the 3/4" solid products, however there are adapters available for thinner flooring sizes as well. 2" nailing cleats are used with a wood flooring nailer and mallet to attach the flooring to the subfloor. Solid Strip floors or Plank floors can only be installed on wooden subfloors on grade or above grade. The National Oak Flooring Manufacturers Association has complete installation instructions available on their web site.
Staple Down – 1-1/2 to 2 inch Staples are used versus nailing cleats to attach the wood flooring to the subfloor. A pneumatic gun is used to drive the staple into the wood flooring and subfloor. This procedure is easier than the nail down for do-it-yourself installations. Not all wood flooring manufacturers recommend the same staple gun. Read the manufacturers installation manual to assure you have the right staple gun and right size staples.
Glue Down – The recommended mastic or adhesive is spread on with the proper sized trowel to adhere the wood flooring to the subfloor.
Engineered wood floors and parquets can be glued down. Solid strip floors and plank floors can only be nailed or stapled. There are many types of adhesives on the market, please use the manufacturers recommended adhesive when installing their flooring. Not using the manufacturers recommended adhesive and trowel size could void any warranties you may have.
Floating – With the floating installation method the floor is not mechanically fastened to to any part of the subfloor. There is a thin pad that is placed between the wood flooring and the subfloor. A recommended wood glue is applied in the tongue and groove of each plank to hold the planks together. The padding protects against moisture, reduces noise transmission, softer under foot, and provides for some additional "R" value. Some engineered floors and all Longstrip floors can be floated. This is a very fast, easy and clean method of installation. Please consult the manufacturer installation instructions to see if your flooring can be floated.
Canadian Flooring - hardwood & laminate flooring distributor in Toronto, Ontario