Install Glue-down Vinyl Plank Flooring On a Wood Sub Floor

vinyl plank flooring
  • 3-5 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 100-200
What You'll Need
Utility Knife
Straight edge
Tape measure
Nail gun or hammer (optional)
Nails (optional)
1/4" Underlayment (optional)
Proper adhesive
Trowel or paint roller (depending on adhesive)

Vinyl plank flooring is one of the most versatile and beautiful floors that you could install in your home. With vinyl plank flooring, you get a very durable floor that does not have issues with water like some other floors do. You can get a realistic wood look or even a tile or natural stone look with this type of flooring. It is more affordable than the real thing and usually performs better. It is warmer under foot than other types of hard surface flooring and is easier to clean. Installing it on top of a wood subfloor is something that can be done with the proper knowledge. Here are the basics of how to install a vinyl plank floor on top of a wood subfloor.

Step 1 - Determine How Much You Need

The great thing about using planks instead of sheet vinyl is that it is very easy to figure out how much you need. Take the tape measure and measure the length and width of the areas that are to be covered. Break it down into rectangles and squares so that you can multiply it out. Multiply the length times the width of the areas and add them together. Then add 10% for overage.

Step 2 - Order the Material

woman using a computer

Once you know how much you need, visit the flooring store of your choice. A flooring specialty store is going to be your best bet as they know what they are talking about when it comes to floors. Choose the style that you want and be prepared to order it. You also need to determine what type of adhesive you need. Some types of vinyl require a multipurpose adhesive. Most of the newer vinyl planks require a pressure sensitive adhesive. Just make sure that you order the right type for your floor.

Step 3 - Prepare the Subfloor

Assess the condition of the wood. If the subfloor is perfectly smooth plywood, then you could install the vinyl directly to it. If it is uneven or wood slats, you will need to apply 1/4" underlayment to the top. Simply nail the sheets of underlayment to the wood sub floor and make sure everything is covered.

Step 4 - Spread the Adhesive

applying thinset

Spread the adhesive out on the floor for a small area. If you are using a pressure sensitive adhesive, you will be able to roll it on gently with a paint roller. If it is a thicker glue, you may have to trowel it on.

Step 5 - Install the Planks

Take the planks out of the boxes and place one of them into the adhesive. Press it down firmly into the glue. Take another plank and press it up tightly against the first. Continue doing this until the floor is covered. When you get to a wall, you will have to cut the plank with the knife to make it fit. Once you have the planks in place, you should roll them with a roller and remove any excess adhesive.