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How Much Extra Laminate Flooring Do You Need to Buy?


Before you order your laminate floors, make sure to get 5-15% over to cover for waste from cutting or damaged pieces.

When you're ready to replace your flooring, you need to put in an order for the right amount. If you're planning to use laminate, that means adding a little extra to your purchase: an additional percentage added on to the exact measurement of the flooring you need.

Many homeowners, however, struggle to determine exactly how much.

Why Order Extra?

When it comes to laminate flooring, you can't just measure the size of the room and then decide to order the exact amount of flooring you need. As you put together your room, you'll need to cut off extra laminate at the ends of pieces that don't quite fit the exact measurements of the room.

Consequently, you may end up with some waste left over at the end of your project. Generally, you should include waste calculations in your calculation of how much laminate you should order.

In fact, always order the entire amount that you think you need, including extra for waste, at the start of your project.

This accomplishes several things:

#1 You can be sure of consistency within the lot. While laminate flooring usually has few differences between one lot and the next, you may notice some differences--and you'd rather have a room with a consistent appearance.

#2 Ordering extra for waste prevents delays. If you don't order enough flooring in the first place, you may find yourself waiting around for more to come in. This can mean wasted time for your contractor or even result in your project getting pushed back, since the contractor may need to work on other projects while waiting for your materials to come in. 

Exactly How Much Extra Should I Order?

When you place your laminate order, allow an additional 5-15% of your initial flooring measurement to account for waste.

Now, if the room is relatively simple--a square with no extra corners or features in the middle of the room that you need to work around--you can probably get away with 5% waste, especially with an experienced contractor installing your flooring.

On the other hand, if you have a complicated room--or if the room is particularly small--you may need to go as high as 15% waste. 

What If the Box Doesn't Come with the Right Measurement?

You need an extra 25 square feet of flooring, but each box only comes with 20 sq. ft. Can you get away with not ordering that extra five square feet of flooring, or should you take the plunge and order the extra box?

Short answer?

Ordering the extra box has a number of benefits.

When it comes to flooring, too much is always better than too little. If you don't need to use all of the extra flooring you ordered when you install it, you can set the laminate flooring to the side, ideally in an area climate-controlled approximately the same way as the room where the flooring is installed.

Then, if there is damage to the laminate in the future, you can easily use the extra flooring to make repairs--and it will be a better match for your existing flooring than if you try to buy a new batch. 

On the other hand, if you're working with an experienced contractor in a relatively simple room, you may be able to get by without buying that extra box--especially if you're on a tight budget.

Before making a decision to leave that extra box sitting on the shelf--virtual or otherwise--talk with your contractor about how much waste laminate they feel they will need for your room.

Talking with your contractor can also give you a better idea of how much waste laminate they expect to need in general, which can help you make better buying choices.


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