In addition to your hardwood flooring material, your
accessories, which include everything from moldings and trims to underlayments, should not be
overlooked. In this section, read through the various accessories to consider incorporating into your project. If you're
interested in purchasing eco-friendly underlayments and hardwood flooring
accessories, visit our green site at Green.FindAnyFloor.com.
The key to successfully transitioning between rooms with different types of flooring is to use the right moldings and
trims. Here are the most common trims and moldings:
T–moldings: T–moldings are used where floors of similar height meet up, in areas like
doorways. T–moldings are also used as expansion joints on large floating
Reducer moldings: Reducer moldings transition between rooms with hardwood floors and rooms with lower
sub–floors, like those floored with concrete or vinyl.
Stair Nose: Hardwood flooring can be used to create stair treads by using a floor trim piece called a
stair nose. This rounded molding creates the leading edge of the stair tread while the flooring completes the rest of the
Quarter Round/ Base Shoe: You can disguise the expansion gap between the floor and the wall with
quarter round moldings. Smaller expansion gaps can be fixed with wall base trim. Quarter round moldings are sometimes used
for stairs where the tread and riser meet.
End cap: Also known as the threshold, this trim eases the transition between rooms with different
materials such as hardwood floors through to rooms with carpet, masonry (including fireplaces), sliding doors, or exterior
Additional moisture protection and noise insulation for your hardwood floors are established with the use of
underlayments. Most underlayments can also serve as a way to cover minor imperfections in the subfloor before installing
your hardwood flooring.
Moisture protection: a thick plastic underlayment called visqueen is the most common material used as
a moisture barrier to protect hardwood flooring. Other options include combinations of plastic and foam which can offer both
moisture protection and noise reduction for wood floors.
Noise reduction (sound / noise abatement): This noise reduction type of underlayment is used to reduce
the noise transmission from one floor level to the next. Sound abatement underlayments are made from several materials
including cork and rubber. Cork underlayments are the most popular choice for their sound–reducing properties. However,
because cork is thicker than other underlayments (generally comes in 1/4" thickness and greater), it may increase the height
of wood flooring to a level that requires modifications of doors and transitions.
Adhesives and Fasteners
As a general rule, always check with the manufacturer's guidelines for your specific flooring when looking into
adhesives. Engineered flooring is most commonly installed using the floating method, in which no adhesive (glue) is used
between the hardwood and subfloor. However, glue might be required to adhere each piece of flooring to one another.
The two main types of engineered flooring are click lock (snap together) and
tongue and groove.
In the click lock system, the individual planks of wood quite literally click together, requiring no
glue (adhesive) between the planks. The tongue and groove system usually requires glue to be used in the groove so that a
tight fit between the flooring planks is achieved.
Solid hardwood floors that are going to be "nailed down" will require nails (called
cleats) or flooring staples for installation. When considering hardwood installation methods with cleats or staples, be aware
that professional tools are needed, as well as correct sizes of fasteners per manufacturer recommendation.
Always check with your professional installer or hardwood flooring manufacturer for the recommended
installation method for your specific hardwood type and flooring project.