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How to Install Sheet Vinyl Floor
Recently in our small master bathroom makeover we installed a roll out sheet vinyl floor. Many of you asked about the floor from my Instagram picture of it and I’m here to show you how easy it is to install a sheet vinyl floor, and what a great solution it can be for your home. Here is a step by step guide, it’s easier than you think to have a new floor in an afternoon.
And be sure to scroll down if you want to do this project in your own home. You can get a printable sheet with these instructions to easily use for your project.
How to Install a Sheet Vinyl Floor
1. First, prep your room. We did this in a small bathroom, so we removed the vanity and toilet, which was part of our makeover plan. Remove the baseboards too if you have them. Then sweep and wash the floor. That square shape on the right in the picture below is the left over paper backing from the previous vinyl floor that was there. I removed most of it when I uncovered this floor previously.
It was white hex tile that was original to our 1900 home. I was so excited to find it but it turned out to be very dirty and there were several cracks in the floor. Ultimately we decided to cover it up with this eco-friendly vinyl floor instead. I choose a hex tile pattern because I liked it, but this type of flooring comes in many patterns and colors including tile and wood looks.
2. Next, make a diagram of your room so you’ll know how to cut the vinyl. Just a simple one will work. Measure out each edge of the wall very exactly and write it down on the diagram. It helps if you have two people doing this. Once can measure and one can write. Make sure to measure this twice and check that you have the correct measurement along the correct wall/part of the diagram.
3. After you have all the measurements, you’ll prepare the floor to be cut. Sheet vinyl flooring comes in large rolls. Select a space where you can roll out the entire piece. This happened to be in my home office. Cut off the plastic wrapping and roll it out, right side up.
It doesn’t matter at this point if you have a rug or wood floor under it, since you’ll get a piece of hardboard on which to actually make the cuts.
4. Then you transfer your measurements from the diagram to the floor itself. We did this with the correct side of the floor up so we were sure to have the measurements correct and the shape of the room correct too. Some people choose to do this on the opposite side of the floor, but then you are transferring the opposite of the diagram and measurements onto the floor, which can get very tricky.
If you have a long straight wall, try to use the factory cut edge of the floor on that wall. It will help insure that the cut is straight and will save you from measuring. Make sure if you have any parts of the walls that stick out that you account for that in your markings.
We used a pencil and the same tape measure to make the measurements. Since once the floor is cut, the pencil will be under the baseboard at the very edge of the floor, and it can be erased, as opposed to say a permanent marker.
Use a long straight edge to mark your lines. It can be a piece of wood or something sturdy. We had a long metal piece we used.
5. After all the measurements are made and you’ve checked with with someone else (if possible) against the diagram, check them again. You paid $$ for this floor and don’t want to make the wrong cut and mess it up, so check three times!
Then you cut. It sounds scary, but it’s not. We over-measured our floor by about an inch on each side, just to make sure it would fit. Once it is in your room, you can easily trim off the excess with a box cutter.
To cut the floor, place a piece of larger flat wood under the floor. If you can do this on a surface where cutting through won’t matter then great, but obviously you don’t want to cut the floor below the vinyl. We used a piece of leftover hardboard and a box cutter.
Go around to each of the pencil lines you made and cut along them. Soon enough you’ll have a cut out floor in the same size and shape as your room. Parts of the floor may roll up but you can hold them and get them out of the way of cutting with binder clips. See here the cut is about a inch larger than the exact pencil line measurement.
6. Then you move the piece to the room to put it in! The great thing about roll out/sheet vinyl flooring is that it does NOT require any adhesive or nails to secure it to the floor below/subfloor.
You do NOT put any glue on the bottom of this flooring, or on the floor you are laying it on. Be sure to check the instructions on the specific flooring you get of course.
We installed this right over hard ceramic tile but it can be used over many surfaces as long as they are flat. The company you buy it from will specifically tell you not to use any adhesive or glue to secure it to the floor below. The vinyl has no memory, so it will lie flat, and the baseboards in the room are what hold it in place.
This may be the part where only one person is working as in our case – notice I watch and take all the pictures? 🙂
Dan used the long straight metal piece to smooth the floor in. Since you cut the floor with an inch or two to spare, you’ll be able to get it in place correctly. You want to make sure all the edges of the floor fit into the spaces where they are to go.
You probably will have to do some trimming, especially if you cut the piece larger than your measurements. To do this just use the box cutter and straight edge to cut along where the wall and floor meet.
If you do this in a bathroom like we did, make sure to cut out the circle for the toilet and the openings for the bolts to go through. Otherwise, you won’t have to cut any other openings in the floor, just along the edges.
The floor can be shimmied a bit and if you step and lean on it a bit you can also get it to move that way. It’s pretty forgiving and easy to work with.
*Update* I’ve had lots of people ask about this floor, so here is the information on it. It is called Rich Onyx in the Easy Living Collection by Tarkett Flooring. I purchased it at a local flooring store called Carpet Factory Outlet. To find a retailer near you, enter your zip code here.
After we installed the floor, we installed our toilet too since we wanted to make sure that got hooked up correctly before we put down the baseboards. If you’re not doing this in a bathroom, then you can go ahead and install the baseboards right away. That will be your final step before putting the room all together.
After we put in the baseboards behind the toilet, we installed the vanity. And then the baseboards around that. All bathroom set ups are different so it will depend on your room. Here is our new floor.
See the entire small master bathroom makeover here. We’re absolutely thrilled with this floor and even though I loved finding original white hex tile, this was the best solution to cover it up and clean things up. We didn’t know what we’d find if we tried to replace that original tile, and this saved us a lot of money too. The floor was less than $3 a square foot, which is very affordable for flooring.
I hope this helps you with your next flooring project! If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments.
Update: We have had this flooring for several years now and it looks exactly like when we purchased it. It has not buckled, shifted or moved in any way. It’s easy to clean, soft underfoot, and still a modern design. We don’t get water under it, and have not caulked it by the tub or anywhere else.
See my bathroom projects here and all of my projects here.
Sharing with the August Before and After Party at Thrifty Decor Chick.
Save this picture on Pinterest for your next room makeover.
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