How Long Does It Take To Install Hardwood Flooring

November 13, 2020by LV Flooring0

There are a lot of factors in play when you install hardwood flooring. The type of hardwood flooring matters. In the same vein, what works for one home may not work for the other. The time necessary for hardwood flooring installation also varies depending on the manner of installation. This is because of acclimation. No matter the type of hardwood flooring, it has to be given time to adapt to your home or office building.

In this article, you will learn about the various types of hardwood flooring. You will also understand the basics of hardwood flooring installation. By the end, you will become familiar with the dos and don’ts for ensuring a successful installation.

It is important to follow these steps to ensure the smooth installation of your hardwood flooring. Remember, any oversight in installation can have serious consequences for your flooring.

What is Hardwood Flooring?

Hardwood Flooring

Unlike the synthetic natures of carpets and vinyl flooring, hardwood flooring is natural. Also, they provide your home with aesthetic beauty and comfort.

When you install hardwood flooring, you increase the resale value of your home. The wood flooring is usually long-lasting and durable. Due to the natural status of hardwood flooring, it makes your floor look authentic.

Some hardwood flooring have very fine finishes that hide scratches well. These make them ideal for pets to walk around on. Also, they tend to have a strong resistance against moisture and pet accidents.

Before you determine how long it will take to install hardwood flooring, make sure to check the quality of the wood. The best types of hardwood flooring to use are Red Oak or Brazilian walnut.

Now that you know what hardwood flooring is, the next step is to gain insight into the types of hardwood flooring. Each type of hardwood flooring has its respective pros and cons. To make a choice, it eventually boils down to personal preference.

The Types of Hardwood Flooring

The timeline for hardwood flooring installation differs depending on the particular type of wood. There are two major types of hardwood flooring, namely; prefinished and unfinished.

Prefinished Wood

This type of wood has been treated, stained and sprayed from the factory. All the necessary processes that ensure its durability and beauty have taken place. However, this type of wood takes longer to arrive.

Due to the numerous processes that it has to go through, it tends to arrive late. It is important to order it as early as possible. 

However, it takes significantly less time to install prefinished hardwood flooring. Most of the vital protective work has already been done on it. There is no need for extra drying because it is ready for installation.

Unfinished Wood

The other choice you may pick when installing hardwood flooring is unfinished wood. This comes to you from the maker mostly fresh. This flooring comes as raw wood with no paint or protective covering on it for installation.

The installation of this hardwood flooring can take a few extra days. To ensure adequate cover, the flooring will also need sanding and preventive action.

Related article: How to Install Laminate Flooring?

Unfinished Wood

Why You Need Hardwood Acclimation

Before you install hardwood flooring, you need to ensure acclimation. This is an important part of hardwood flooring installation. You need to ensure that the wood you bring in adjusts to its new environment.

To prevent wood flooring nightmare, hardwood flooring acclimatization is necessary. Basically, it is the method of altering hardwood floors’ moisture content to balance the condition in which it is supposed to work.

How can you make moisture adjustments? By taking the hardwood floor boxes to your house and opening them, including any plastic wrap. This reveals the planks to the breeze and humidity.

Laying the boxes a foot apart is the safest method to do this. This can help speed up the timeline for hardwood installation. In a crosswise pattern, another sheet may be laid on top. 

Ensure your hardwood floor is built when it is neither drier nor wetter than the rest of your house. The floor can retain moisture from the subsurface and air if it is too dry. If this happens, this may cause the planks to stretch. 

A minimum of 5 days is strongly recommended for your hardwood floor to acclimatize. However, a week to 10 days is equally ideal. Any old flooring must be replaced to save time and to eliminate any surprises.

Before you install hardwood flooring, the subfloor should be thoroughly cleaned and tested. It is important to figure out earlier rather than later if any maintenance or removal of the subfloor is required.

Factors That Affect the Timeline for Hardwood Flooring Installation

The rate at which you will install your hardwood flooring may vary depending on several factors. 

  • Flooring type
  • Subfloor Status
  • The Project Scale
  • Process for Installation

You are now familiar with the types of hardwood flooring. However, there are other important factors to consider before you install hardwood flooring.

The condition of your subfloor is very critical to the successful installation of hardwood flooring. You need to eliminate every form of rot. This is to prevent mould from growing underneath your hardwood flooring.

A wet or damp subfloor can harbour pathogens that can multiply later. If you place your new hardwood flooring on the wet subfloor, grime can grow over time. Also, ensure you completely vacuum and dry your subfloor. This will create a healthy foundation for your hardwood flooring.

The timeline for hardwood flooring installation varies depending on the size of the project. Naturally, the larger the floor space, the more time it will take to install. Additionally, the type of hardwood flooring comes into play again. Prefinished and unfinished wood both differ in installation.

How Long Does it Take to Install Hardwood Flooring?

Hardwood Flooring Installation time

In this section, we will break down the time necessary to install hardwood flooring. You will learn about the amount of time it takes. It can often take 1-3 weeks before prefinished hardwood arrives. If you order a legitimate novelty piece, it can take longer. Often, the corresponding transition parts are one of the hang-ups on prefinished hardwood. This will postpone the delivery.

The next step is acclimatization. Drop off the hardwood so the wood adapts to the temperature and humidity in your home. You can achieve this in a minimum of 2 days. For denser woods such as Brazilian Cherry or Brazilian Walnut, it may take longer. A minimum range of 5-7 days is enough to allow the wood to acclimatize for longer.

It can generally take between 1-4 days to install hardwood flooring. However, this will vary based on the amount of wood and the area’s complexity. The nature of cabinets and angles of furniture may hinder installation. When you set up on a diagonal, it may take longer, due to the many cuts.

It can take a bit longer if there is flooring that needs to be ripped up. In general, it is possible to tear up the carpet and laminate on the same day. It can take at least 1 full day to tear up the tile. This is especially true if it is over a concrete slab.

Make sure you arrange some extra time to adjust your timetable while you relocate your furniture. You also have to engage in some trim work after installing the hardwood. This includes installing shoe moulding, base moulding or replacing the current base moulding.

If the floor is uneven, you will need additional time to install hardwood flooring. However, this varies widely and you may not know about this until you rip up the existing floor. Doing this can take an additional hour or up to an additional two days.

You need to consider all these things when installing prefinished hardwood flooring. Also, you need to work closely with your installer to work around a more favourable schedule. Pick installation dates that will not severely interrupt your daily life.

The timeline for installing prefinished hardwood flooring for 1000 square feet is 1 to 5 days. The total installation time including retouches and additional preparation for 1000 square feet is between 2 to 4 weeks. By now you are familiar with the knowledge of installing hardwood flooring for prefinished wood. Next, you will learn about unfinished wood.

Related article: Things to Consider Before Installing White Oak Engineered Hardwood

Timeline for Installing Unfinished Hardwood Flooring

Usually, in 2-3 days, you can have the unfinished hardwood flooring. This normally holds for regular wood, but special orders can take an additional week or two. Pine, herringbone, extra-large boards, extra longboards are examples.

The hardwood flooring requires 1-2 days to acclimate. However, denser woods can take up to two days or more. Compared to prefinished wood, installation time is less. It is typically a little easier to nail in unfinished wood, but it takes a considerable period for it to dry.

Depending on the size of the room or whether you use a stain colour, sanding & refinishing sometimes takes 3-5 days. Sometimes, the humidity will add an additional day to the process. Furthermore, you may need some extra time to rearrange delivery schedules, installation dates, as well as additional time to rip out existing flooring.

The timeline for installing unfinished hardwood flooring for 1000 square feet is 4 to 9 days. The total installation time including rip-up for 1000 square feet is between 1 to 2 weeks.

In a nutshell, the exact phase of construction depends on how you intend to install the wood. The installation goes smoother if the wood flooring is installed in a straight line. 

A more complicated construction style may have been chosen. Examples like inlays or mixed-width timber may expand the timeframe. This method may take a few days. Furthermore, the more shelves, doorways, or curved walls to maneuver around, the longer it will take to install hardwood flooring. 

Alternatively, it’s best to hire hardwood installation experts if it feels too complex. They will help you with the technical aspect of the installation. You can oversee the installation without bombarding your mind with its complexity.


Choosing either prefinished or unfinished wood is just the first step to installing hardwood flooring. Ensure that your hardwood flooring is well acclimated to your new environment. Also, there’s a need to remove rot from the pre-existing subfloor.

Generally, it can take a couple of weeks to install hardwood flooring in your home or office. However, this timeframe is subject to changes. For one, you have to put into consideration the amount of time it will take for the flooring to acclimatize. Furthermore, if you have to remove the existing subfloor, the timeline for installation will go up 

Contact hardwood installation experts to assist you if the work gets too tedious. They will make your installation process easier and faster. If it’s a new home, try and begin installation before you move in.

Here at LV Flooring, we provide hardwood flooring services to suit all your needs. Contact us today to get a quote and get effective solutions for your flooring needs.

Related article: What is the Best Way to Install Hardwood Floors?

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