I am installing 3 1/4 hardwood strip flooring in my living room/dining
room.The room is a rectangle with the long dimension running from the
front of the room to the back of the room.My instincts tell me to lay
the flooring paralell to the long dimension but the floor joists also
run this way. There is 5/8 plywood ontop of the floor joists.Is this
enough support to run the hardwood paralell to the floor
joists?Also--what esthetic affect does it create to run the flooring
paralell to the short dimension? I am having a hard time visualizing
what it will look like if I install the floor this way.
I intended to add--
5/8" alone as the subfloor is almost surely not enough stiffness to be
satisfactory, however. Generally, one would have at least two 3/4" or
the 1+" T&G underlayment.
As for the aesthetics, you can judge that by laying some out loose to
see what you think. It certainly is in general true that stip flooring
is laid "long ways" in a room. As much as anything, it eases/speeds
the installation by minimizing cuts/fitting at ends. The more
rectangular the area, the more it makes a difference in that regard,
You lay the floor once, but look at it for decades. Which direction looks
better: floor aligned with the room's long axis or the room's short axis?
I guess if you covered the floor with throw-rugs, it wouldn't make much
In general, aligned with the long axis is the way flooring is laid and,
therefore, it was what has become familiar and, therefore, "better".
I've seen rooms that owing to other considerations were laid
"short-ways" that looked perfectly natural that way. All I am/was
suggesting is OP look at his room and decide--and, if he's uncertain,
try laying some out and see. But, the "safe" way is to stay w/
hardwood flooring should be laid perpendicular to joists
otherwise when you sand and re-finish it, your floor will be wavy.
especially if you decide to re-sand it in the future
diagonal flooring would require joists to be 12" on center.
Depending on the ratio width/length and the size of the room running
the "short" way
might look ok. It will definitely be stronger crossing the joists. I
considered running 45 degrees when I did my floor even though my joists
ran the preferred way and my room was narrow.
Wider planks might help but I don't know to what extent and then again
depending on room size they might make the room look smaller. For what
it's worth I wrote up my floor install notes notes on my personal
website (http://www.sawbee.com/rwmProjects/woodFloor1.html ) This was
the first time I ever did a floor, so I may have missed some obvious
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