As the journey of home improvement continues, the next big project we’ve tackled is a flooring solution for our bedrooms and passage. After deciding tiles weren’t an option we had a look at various laminate, vinyl and hardwood floor options. The laminate is practical, easy to install and also cost effective, but we wanted something different… The vinyl and of course hardwood flooring options were better looking, just not a good fit for our budget, cue Pinterest!
I had seen a few (USA) DIY tutorials on plywood flooring, and after two months of investigation, managed to put together a plan for our own plywood DIY flooring. Have a read below to see the process and finished look:
We started off with screeded cement floors painted with a floor paint. As we didn’t want to go through the expense and trouble of putting down a wood floor sub-base, we went with the option to glue the wood straight to the cement floors. We found a chemicals manufacturer in Westmead, Pinetown called the Pekay Group who had a two part glue that would work on bonding wood to cement. This is normally used to glue down parquet flooring.
After measuring up dimensions of the area and deciding how wide we wanted the wood strips, BoardPrep in Pinetown cut our flooring strips from sheets of 9mm thick pine plywood.
A sheet of ply is 1220mm x 2440mm, and we cut the planks 147mm wide, so got 8 lengths, allowing 3-5mm for the blade size to ensure that all 8 lengths of wood were near to the exact same width.
You’ll need to prepare the area you are wanting to lay wood onto, make sure it’s been vacuumed and wiped down with a damp sponge, then completely dry.
We used 5c pieces as our floor spacers between each length of ply.
Use a tooth 6mm tiling trowel fitted with some duck tape to reduce the tooth size to 3mm (or a 3mm trowel if you can find one), to spread the glue onto the floor. Just do the glue one length of wood at a time because it’s quick drying.
On the underside of the wood, cut 3mm deep score marks across the width so the wood doesn’t bow, this also helped to adhere the wood to the floor. Once the first few rows were laid, we put bricks onto the ply wood after glueing them down to keep resistance on the wood while it adhered to the floor. We didn’t mind too much if the bricks dented the wood as it gave a distressed look when finished.
We left the floor to dry for 48 hours before sanding the whole area down with an Orbital sander. Vacuum and sponge down the floors before putting down the first layer of white washed paint. We used the Dekade range, Quick-Primer paint for the white washed mix, 1 part primer paint to 2 parts water. After applying three layers of paint leaving 6 hours between coats, we left it to dry for 48 hours..
Once the floors were completely dry, we applied three coats of Rystix Timbacare Interior ArmaFloor clear sealer. Dave took to the floor with steel wool after the second coat had dried. This gave the floor a sleeker, smoother texture, before applying the final coat. All we need to do in these rooms now is add the skirting boards, and we’ve got ourselves a new floor.
Voila, a uniqe DIY flooring solution with a lovely look and feel, no matter what colour you paint it.