Floating Vinyl Plank Flooring – Reduce Cost with this Carpet Alternative

floating vinyl plank flooring kitchen picture
Floating Vinyl Plank Flooring for Kitchen

I previously wrote about floating vinyl plank flooring as a potential way landlords could reduce their long-term flooring expenses but I didn’t think I’d need to take my own advice so soon.


Over the weekend, I installed Home Depot’s Allure vinyl plank directly over the linoleum in my rental’s bath and kitchen. It costs $1.79 per square foot and the installation was a no-brainer. This is an awesome DIY project for a frugal landlord.


In preparation for the install, I watch a couple of instructional videos and read (okay, well skimmed) the instructions. You can do that too, but let me share some tips that I didn’t come across.


Non-Obvious Tips for Installing Floating Vinyl Plank Flooring


1. Wear a pair of gloves. You’ll use a utility knife to cut some planks, especially if you chose a staggered pattern. In the process, you’ll need to score the planks before snapping them or cut the adhesive backing to make a smoother transition. If you get careless, like I did, you’re going to walk away with some cuts. Use an ounce of prevention and save your fingers!


2. Always work off the manufactured edge. When I scored and cut the planks,  the edges looked pretty good. But even if I worked hard to perfect my edges, they still caused a larger than desired gap. So, the walk away lesson is to always find a way to use the manufacturer’s edges. You’ll be even happier with the final look.


3. Use a small linoleum roller. I grumbled about paying $20 for this tool but it sure came in handy when it was time to roll out a bump and ensure a good bond. So don’t skimp on the roller.


4. Start in the least noticeable area.  Your technique will improve with practice so give yourself a practice area. Next time I’ll start in the area where the refrigerator will sit and refresh my techniques.


 I hope these tips are helpful. Personally I done paying for professional linoleum installations; I’m please with the work I can do myself. I’m going with floating vinyl every chance I get.


Let me know about your experience. What’s your #1 tip?


OK – It’s two years later

I’m noticing some shrink cracks and other people are reporting shrinkage as well.
So I consulted with Brad 2000, who is very active on the Mr. Landlord Forum. Brad recommend that I cut a spare piece about 8-inches long and splice it in. I’ll document the before and after results.


Also, I ran into a former Home Depot installer who gave me the power tip to open the box while the planks are acclimating. That will allow them to shrink under normal pressure.

5 Responses

  1. Lucas

    Hi Al,

    I’ve never used this product, but I’ve heard great things about Allure flooring. Since it’s make of vinyl, does that make it waterproof/resistant?

    I have a small kitchen in a rental apartment that would be a good candidate for this flooring.


  2. Al Williamson

    Hey Lucas,
    Allure calls it water resistent. There a good about of overlapping under the “planks” that make for a fairly good seal
    but the product isn’t a good swimming pool liner. :^).

    That being said, if you already have lino down, you should float over it and get the best of both worlds.

    Thanks for chiming in. Please stop by more often.

  3. Kevin Dickson

    I love this stuff, you can really be slack on the floor prep.
    One time I even left some kitchen carpeting in place because I was afraid of what the subfloor must be like.

    But I won’t do that again, even though it’s hanging in there like a champ after 5 years.

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