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A New Floor for Your New Kitchen

Some people put in new flooring in their kitchen as a part of a large, extensive remodeling project. Others make the floor a stand-alone project. That's the nice thing about kitchen floors: You can do it either way you want. But no matter how you decide to do it, if you choose the right materials and the right design, this can be a sure way to bring new pizzazz to the kitchen. Here are some tips for when you decide to tackle this task.

First, examine your old floor. One helpful fact is that you often will not even need to take out the old flooring, provided it's in good shape. So check it out and decide if you think it needs to be removed. Remember, though, that your kitchen will connect to other rooms, so make sure that when you put down the new floor, the connecting surfaces are even. If not, you'll need to tear out the old floor.

Most people choose to use vinyl flooring in their kitchen, so we'll look at this type as our primary example. If you choose vinyl, buy it in sheets. You'll also need to buy adhesive. Don't just use any adhesive; instead, use whatever kind the flooring manufacturer recommends, as it can seriously affect how well the flooring lays.

Next, make a template of paper of your floor's length, width, and perimeter. Using that template, place the vinyl on top of it and cut it according to this pattern. Be sure to allow an extra five percent on all sides for cutting and waste. in some cases, it might be wise to leave even more excess, just so you can easily match the pattern as you want it.

The amateur would think that it's now time to put down the adhesive. Wrong: That could be a sure path to ruining your project. Instead, before putting down the adhesive, take all of your pieces and do a "test fit." Place them as you know they will go on the floor, but without adhesive just to ensure that they fit. Only when you're positive they fit should you put down your adhesive. Work the vinyl piece down completely and then go on to the next piece. Continue in this manner for all of the vinyl pieces. Be sure to allow some overlap on your first piece, where your seam is to be.

Now get something to use as a straight edge, and lay it along the vinyl overlap and line it with your seam. Cut down the two pieces of vinyl, down one end to the other. When you have all pieces in place, get rid of all the scrap pieces. Then you can use a roller to put adhesive on the edges, and finally press the seams together firmly to create a bond.

It might be that you only need to create a bond on the vinyl at the seams and edges. If this is true in your case, just lay a sheet of vinyl so that it fits well into the corners. Then cut the seam and smear adhesive under the seam, and then press down on the edges to create your seal.

And incidentally, if you're one of those who would prefer a hard wood or ceramic floor rather than vinyl, just consult the instructions that the manufacturer provides. Remember, though, that with these kinds of floors, you'll have to put in a little more mark and time. Plus a slightly higher level of expertise is needed. Therefore, you either want to consult a professional for tips, or perhaps hire a pro to do the whole project.

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