Thursday, June 04, 2009

Easy, breezy installation, my fanny!

The 'EZ' Instructions assured me installation was a breeze. Time after time HGTV showed regular folks just like me laying 'floating flooring' in mere hours. The installation guide pointed out that it would take 'novices' about five hours to lay their product.

My response? I guess that would depend on what the definitions of 'easy' and 'novice' are.

My experience was a wee bit different. In fact, it took this 'novice' and one very courageous and devoted son ten hours one day and five the next to get the flooring down. You can see the results above. It's still without all the trim, but at least the floor is in place.

I hope.

It was hardly the mother-son bonding experience I'd hoped for.

I suppose I should have started with a less ambitious project than a room that has cabinetry you have to cut out around, one pantry door, and three other exit doors. The room was small, I told myself. How hard can it be?

Let's just say the phrase 'isn't this a breeze?' wasn't communicated during the flooring fiasco. By the time I'd finished up Sunday after skipping church (I'll have much to atone for this Sunday) I'd ended up destroying a circular saw before I even got to use it, developed 'hand saw wrist' from having to handsaw all of the boards, sustained nicks and cuts from misses, garnered a swollen left knee, and that wasn't the end of my misfortune.

I went to plug the refrigerator back in after moving it a mere six feet from the kitchen to the family room and the unit would not come back on. I unplugged it and waited a respectable amount of time as I'd heard moving a fridge could screw it up and it had to 'settle' before use. I tried again. Nothing. I called the experts.

End result? I have to buy a new stove AND a new refrigerator.

Yesterday I went shopping for appliances. They're being delivered today.

I reckon this means I'd better get that trim on, huh?


I suppose I should look on the bright side. The refrigerator crashing helped me make my decision about the stove.

I'm going with the one that won't take two weeks to deliver, won't require paying someone to come run a gas line to the kitchen and is a tad bit cheaper. The coil-top electric it is.

Thanks to everyone for their input last week. To those of you who have run into home improvement nightmares, I feel your pain. And for those of you whose experience with laminate flooring was pleasant and uneventful, I HATE YOU, I HATE YOU, I HATE YOU!

(Just kidding!)

All things considered, I gotta tell you, I'd rather be in Manhattan like the Assassin.

~Bullet Hole waiting for the doorbell to ring and life to return to 'normal'~

P.S. I hear you laughing, Bookmobiler. Hey. I can do normal.


Bookmobiler said...

"Hey. I can do normal."

If you let me know when that's scheduled I'll pencil it in on my calendar.

That will be this year?

When assured some thing is a breeze to assemble you can pretty much bet the breeze is hot air!

I hope your son managed to avoid being wounded too.

Christie Craig said...


That you even tackle these chores impresses me. I'm such a wuss when it comes to anything that involves a saw.

Congrats on the job even if was a nightmare. And thanks for the chuckle.


Linda C said...


Congrats on getting that floor in. I'm married to an architect, but it's like being the shoe makers kids, nothing gets done. We let Home Depot redo our kitchen. Gary hates "pre-packaged" kits. "the instructions are never right" Oh wait he's a guy and never reads them LOL.

However, I did put up a closet system and it only took me 2 days He He

Kathy Bacus said...

I'll get back to you on the 'normal' scheduling, Bookmobiler.

And thanks for asking about the son. He's still recuperating--not from the cuts and bruises--but from other, shall we say 'fallout'. After I'd mangled three planks in a row I wasn't very pleasant to collaborate with.

He's got grit to stay the course, that's all I can tell you.

~Bullet Hole~

Kathy Bacus said...

Thanks, Cbristie. I assure you most of my 'hip' projects are done by necessity rather than by choice. And since I like to save a buck, I'm pretty anal about doing it myself when I think I have a reasonable shot of succeeding. Needless to say, I probably won't try to lay laminate in a kitchen again. A nice, uncomplicated room? Maybe...

~Bullet Hole Bacus~

Kathy Bacus said...

Congrats on tackling the ghastly closet project, Linda, and coming out the victor. It would probably take me double your two days to complete the project. Heck. It would take me two days to get my closet cleared out!


~Bullet Hole BaCus~

Terry S said...

I really want laminate flooring and thought for a while I would do it myself. Like you say, every novice on tv does it with no problem. Then I took a more in depth look at the process and decided this would be a job that was way out of my depth. Couldn't even find a smidgen of confidence. I went exactly opposite of you by getting the stove and fridge first. Then I started my saving for a new floor fund early in 2008 and, knock on wood, should be able to get it in this year. Yay!

I admire the fact you did it. Big congratulations. And the silver lining is you and your son will look at that floor for years to come and the stories you'll have to share.....Oh to be a fly on the wall and hear all the variations.

Bookmobiler said...

"He's still recuperating--not from the cuts and bruises--but from other, shall we say 'fallout'"

Learned a few new phrases at his mother's wounded knee, did he?

Kathy Bacus said...

I tend to do th ings a bit 'bassackwards' at times, Terry. Which makes for some interesting outcomes. I'm having to 'pay as I go' as well, but I figure all good things come to those who wait.

Of course, waiting until I'd saved the money to have someone install the flooring probably would have been a wiser decision.

Live and learn...


Kathy Bacus said...

It was, indeed, a 'learning experience', Bookmobiler!

For both of us...


Keri Ford said...

Kathy, you completely amaze me with what you do and how well you do it! The floor looks great.

And your son likely told everyone of his friends every word that you said--they then told their parents. You're going to be a legend! *g*

Kathy Bacus said...

Thanks bunches, Keri. The kids' friends already think I'm a 'bubble off plumb'. (Thought the carpentry reference worked well here...) ;)


Virginia said...

I am not laughing here because I am putting laminate flooring in the kitchen right now, we still like about a third of it and it is not easy. It just doesn't snap together and my poor knees will never have skin on them again. Our refrige was too big to move out so we had to work around it. My son and I plan on finishing the laminate today and then I am going to paint before putting trim back up. I have got to get back to work but I feel your pain.

Kathy Bacus said...

At least I'm not alone in my frustration, Virginia. It certainly takes more than a little finesse to get those planks to lock in completely.

And I hear you about the knees. I wear a brace to keep my knee cap from floating off course when I'm doing intense activity and I still ended up with a knee the size of a respectable canteloupe.

Good luck completing your project!

~Bullet Hole who plans to buy knee pads if she ever attempts a flooring project in this lifetime~

Virginia said...

I can sadly say we didn't get finished. It has rained all day here so it was very hard to get the laminate cut today. We did do some with simple cuts on the deck but we need to cut around some cabinates and the last doorway so we will finish up tomorrow. Son didn't really want to mess with it today and I made him. I don't like but about three feet.

Virginia said...

My frige is what caused my problems the icemaker leaked and rotted the kitchen floor so we had to patched that up and put down a new floor. We do have a circular saw and I went to Lowes and got a blade for it that they recommended to cut laminate with, we also have a jig saw for the cut that are hard to do. My kitchen is about 15 and half foot by 11 and a half. Putting this floor down was a lot harder then I thought it would be, cutting around all of the cabinates, but it does look nice. If you had a room that was totally empty it may not be as bad. Oh well better luck next time around. I may do my small hallway beside the kitchen before I am done.