Whether you love modern flair or rustic style, pallet wood floor will always be a good choice to jazz up it. With the proper preparation and installation, this kind of flooring can be durable and last longer. Keep on reading to know how to do it well.
Benefits of Installing Pallet Wood Floor
You can choose various kinds of flooring, such as tiles, concrete, vinyl, and many others. However, if you are looking for the cheap one that can give a stunning look to the space pallet wood floor will be your greatest bet.
You might be wondering what are other benefits of pallet wood floor just to make sure that it is worth installing and better than the counterparts. Let us check them out!
1. Low Cost
Comparing to decent pallet wood hardwood floors, along with their installation, pallet wood is relatively cheaper. You can even get some of them free if you are lucky.
Besides being affordable, or even free, pallet wood is also extremely versatile. You can turn it into a pallet wood floor lamp, a bed frame, a planter, and many other pieces of furniture. For this reason, they are great for any DIY project.
2. Easy Installation
The pallet wood floor is easy to install. The good news is you do not have to be an avid carpenter to do it. You just need to take the planks, sand them down, and install them. You can find the details about it later.
3. Easy Maintenance
The pallet wood floor is quite durable, long-lasting, and easy to maintain. It is still probed to damage, though. The longevity depends on the foot traffic that it will get every day and the quality of the materials you use.
Wood pallet dance floor might be more vulnerable than pallet wood floor in the basement, but it is not a big deal. You can always remove the broken piece with some spare wood, and you are good to go.
4. Rustic Charm
One of the biggest reasons why people opt for the pallet wood floor is that it looks striking with its rustic appearance.
Most importantly, you can get this rustic charm without breaking your bank account. It will resemble the natural and elegant look of that pricey hardwood.
Where to Find Pallet Wood
Now you might be wondering where to get pallet woods as collecting them can take a while. So, do not be in a hurry, take your time, and enjoy the process.
Here are the places that provide many pallet kinds of wood.
1. Grocery Stores
Grocery stores, department stores, and warehouse usually get large shipments of products regularly. Therefore, they are likely to have many unused pallets at the disposal.
You can try going to a grocery store or warehouse near you and asking whether you can have some of the unused pallets. Since they do not need the pallets anymore, you will probably get them free.
2. Small Hardware Stores
New businesses, such as small Hardware and garden stores do not usually have a systematic way to manage the unused pallets. They will be likely to feel happy if you take the pallets with you. Therefore, you will get them free.
3. Landfill Sites
They usually have many discarded pallets regularly. However, knowing where they were used previously is a little bit hard.
4. Hardware Stores
You can always get as many pallets as you want in a hardware store. However, it will cost you some money.
How to Choose the Best Pallet Wood
Choosing the right one for your pallet wood floor is not that simple. It is not hard either, though. You need to consider several things when picking the materials up.
- Make sure you only use the ones that have an IPPC logo on them.
- Avoid ‘MB’ (Methyl bromide) or “CT” (Chemically Treated) because they are not safe for your pallet wood floor.
- Avoid colored ones because they contain formaldehyde.
- Do not use the pallets that were loaded with meat because they may contain dangerous bacteria.
- Do not use the ones that have experienced prolonged exposure to wet conditions, as they are prone to fungus.
- Use the ones with the ‘HT’ (Heat Treated) label because they are chemical-free.
- You can also use the ones marked ‘KD’ (Kiln-Dried) and ‘DB’ (Debarked) for your pallet wood floor, as they will not be harmful to your health.
What to Prepare before Installing Pallet Wood Floor
Before installing the pallet wood floor, you have to prepare the materials to get a top-notch and long-lasting flooring.
1. Cut the Planks if Necessary
You have to work with some measurements first. You will also have to picture how you want to lay them if you want to acquire a certain pattern.
Use a circular saw to cut the damaged or uneven edges off the planks. If you want to get a uniform look, you can run them through a planer. However, you do not need to do this if they are already at the same thickness and not warped.
2. Sand the Planks down
Use an electric power sander to sand the planks thoroughly to get a perfectly flat surface on both sides. Do not forget to use proper eye protection and mask as this step entails a large amount of fine dust.
3. Clean the Wood
This additional process is worth a try because it can remove the bacteria. You can clean the planks that you are going to use for your pallet wood floor with bleach.
First, make the mixture of a half-gallon of bleach and 1-2 gallons of water. Spray it over the wood. Leave it to dry. You can repeat this step if necessary.
Bear in mind that this is just an additional process. It does not mean that you can use the planks with ‘MB’ or ‘CT’ logo, and then clean them with bleach, hoping it will alleviate the risk. It will not happen.
4. Completely Remove the Old Floor
If you want to get a smooth and even surface on your pallet wood floor, you need to remove carpets, laminate, and glue from the previous one.
Take your time to do the cleaning process properly before moving on to the next step. Make sure that everything is level so that there will not any bump in the pallet wood floor.
5. Install the Underlayment Paper
After removing the old flooring, you can begin to roll out the underlayment paper beginning from one side of the room to another until the entire floor is completely covered.
You had better lay it by overlapping each other a little bit so that the moisture will not be able to get through. Tack down the underlayment paper by stapling or nailing it. Make sure there are no creases caused by the loose installation.
How to Install Pallet Wood Floor
Pallet wood flooring installation is not that hard. Here are the steps for installing it.
1. Find the Joists
You must find the joists before installing the first plank. You will want to make sure that the pallet wood floor has a firm grip by nailing through the planks and into the joists.
You can use a stud finder to find them or simply tap the floor with a hammer. You will notice the sound when you accidentally hit the area where the joists.
Once you find the first joist, it will be much easier to find the rest, as they are usually about 16 inches apart. Kindly mark them if you have found them all because you are going to install your pallet wood floor at a perpendicular angle to them.
2. Lay the Planks and Think about the Pattern
This is one of the most exhilarating parts of installing pallet wood floor. Kindly lay your planks on the floor and take some time to think about how you want them to look like.
By laying the planks down to the entire floor without gluing or nailing them down, you will have the chance to do more cutting if some of the pieces do not fit properly.
You will also be able to know whether a certain pattern will look good or whether you have to change it.
Bear in mind that there has to be a gap (at least 3/4″) between the planks and the wall because the wood will be likely to expand.
Remember that you only provide a gap between the planks and the wall. Never add any spacer between each plank because it is not necessary.
3. Install the Pallet Wood Floor
After marking the joists and find the best pattern to your desire, now it is time for you to secure the planks in place.
You can begin by applying adhesive to the bottom of the first plank. It is optional, though. You do not need to do it if you do not want to.
Place it in the corner that is concerning the joists. Remember that the planks have to be at a perpendicular angle. Secure it with a 3-inches floor nail or power cleats.
You had better put two nails at each side of the plank so that it will be secured properly. If you happen to find any split, you can make a small pilot hole so that the board will not break due to the pressure it gets when you knock the nail into it.
If everything runs well, you can continue installing until you get the first row. Repeat the steps until the entire room is completely covered.
Pallet Wood Floor over Concrete
The pallet wood floor is not only for indoors. It can be great for outdoor usage, too. Installing some planks on your deck or patio would add a distinctive charm to the space.
However, installing the wood pallet patio floor will be a bit hard especially if your outdoor living area has a concrete slab. It does not mean it is impossible, though.
Check out how to install the pallet wood floor over concrete properly.
- To prevent the moisture going up from the concrete to the wood flooring, lay 6-mil polyethylene sheeting over the slab.
- Fasten 3/4″ wood underlayment to the concrete with concrete screws. Make sure it is thick enough and you space it every 16 inches.
The height of your new floor will be raised about 1 1/2″ due to the combination between the underlayment and the flooring. Make sure this change will not cause any problem.
- You can opt for screwing rows of treated 1x4s to the slab. Lay them perpendicular to the direction of the planks that you are going to install.
- Install the planks by nailing them down to the underlayment or 1x4s with standard flooring nailers.
How to Apply Finish over Pallet Wood Floor
Well, applying a finish over pallet wood floor depends on what style you are really into. If you are a big fan of rustic charm, you can just leave the planks that way.
However, if you were dying for modern flair, making the pallet wood floor glossy would be the best option. Check out the steps on how to apply the finish properly below.
1. Make sure that the surface is free from dust and any particles by sweeping or sucking up the dirt with a vacuum cleaner. Anything will do as long as it can result in a clean working area.
2. Apply mineral spirits over the secured wood floors by using a paintbrush. By doing this, you will open up and clean the wood, which makes it easier for you to apply the finisher.
3. Let the mineral spirits to completely dry before you move on to the next step.
4. Apply stain or paint onto the surface of your pallet wood floor, and let it dry for about 24 hours. Do not forget to seal it with polyurethane.
Those are some tips on how to install the pallet wood floor. They can also be applied to any other furniture that uses the same materials. So, roll up your sleeves and have some fun with your DIY projects.