How to Nail Hardwood Flooring Near Wall: A Step-by-Step Guide for Homeowners

how to nail hardwood flooring near wall


Hey there, Reader! Are you ready to give your home a fresh new look by nailing hardwood flooring near the wall? Hardwood flooring adds warmth and elegance to any space, and knowing how to install it properly is essential for a flawless finish. In this guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of nailing hardwood flooring near the wall, ensuring that you achieve professional-looking results.

Whether you’re a seasoned DIY enthusiast or a homeowner looking to save on installation costs, this guide is for you. So, grab your tools and let’s get started on this exciting project that will transform your home!

Section 1: Preparing for the Installation

Gather the Necessary Tools and Materials

Before diving into the installation process, it’s important to have all the necessary tools and materials on hand. Here’s a list of what you’ll need:

1. Hardwood flooring boards
2. Underlayment
3. Nails or staples
4. Hammer or flooring nailer
5. Measuring tape
6. Pry bar
7. Level
8. Pencil
9. Safety goggles
10. Knee pads
11. Carpenter’s square
12. Saw (circular or miter saw)
13. Wood filler
14. Sandpaper
15. Finishing nails
16. Polyurethane or sealant

Having all of these tools and materials ready will make the installation process smoother and more efficient.

Prepare the Subfloor

Before you start installing the hardwood flooring, you need to ensure that the subfloor is clean and level. Follow these steps to prepare your subfloor:

1. Remove any existing flooring or carpeting in the area where you’ll be installing the hardwood.
2. Inspect the subfloor for any squeaks or loose boards. Secure any loose boards with screws.
3. Use a level to check for any uneven spots on the subfloor. If you find any, use a floor leveling compound to even them out.
4. Sweep or vacuum the subfloor to remove any dust or debris.

By properly preparing the subfloor, you’ll create a solid foundation for your new hardwood flooring.

Section 2: Nailing the Hardwood Flooring Near the Wall

Start with the First Row

Now it’s time to start nailing the hardwood flooring near the wall. Follow these steps to begin with the first row:

1. Measure the width of the room and mark the center point on the starting wall.
2. Using a carpenter’s square, draw a straight line perpendicular to the starting wall.
3. Lay the first board along the line, starting from the center of the wall.
4. Leave a 1/2-inch gap between the board and the wall to allow for expansion.
5. Place a second board against the first, tongue-side facing you. Ensure a tight fit between the boards.
6. Use a flooring nailer or a hammer and nails to secure the boards to the subfloor. Nail the boards at a 45-degree angle, approximately 2 inches from the ends and every 8 inches along the board.

By nailing the boards at an angle, you ensure a secure and sturdy installation.

Continue Installing the Remaining Rows

Once you’ve completed the first row, it’s time to continue installing the remaining rows. Follow these steps:

1. Apply a bead of wood glue along the groove side of each board to ensure a tight fit.
2. Insert the tongue of the next board into the groove of the previous board at a slight angle.
3. Use a pull bar and a hammer to tap the boards into place, making sure they fit snugly.
4. Continue laying and nailing the boards row by row, following the manufacturer’s instructions for staggering the seams.
5. Use a circular or miter saw to cut the final boards to fit into the remaining space, leaving the same 1/2-inch expansion gap.
6. Repeat the nailing process for each row until you reach the last one.

Take your time during this process to ensure that the boards are aligned properly and fit tightly together.

Finishing Touches

After you have successfully installed all the hardwood flooring near the wall, it’s time to add those finishing touches. Follow these steps:

1. Fill any nail holes with wood filler. Allow the filler to dry and sand it down to create a smooth surface.
2. Buff the floor using sandpaper or a floor buffer to remove any imperfections.
3. Clean the floor thoroughly to remove any dust or debris.
4. Apply a polyurethane or sealant to protect the hardwood flooring and give it a beautiful finish.

By following these steps, you’ll achieve a flawless hardwood flooring installation near the wall that will enhance the overall look of your space.

Section 3: Maintaining Your Hardwood Flooring

Protect the Floor from Furniture and Heavy Traffic

Once you have completed the installation, it’s important to take steps to protect your newly installed hardwood flooring from damage. Follow these tips:

1. Use furniture pads or felt protectors on the legs of your furniture to avoid scratches.
2. Place doormats at entryways to trap dirt and prevent it from scratching the floor.
3. Avoid wearing high heels or shoes with spike heels on the hardwood flooring.
4. Clean up spills immediately to prevent moisture from seeping into the wood.
5. Use area rugs or runners in high-traffic areas to minimize wear and tear.

Regularly Clean and Maintain the Hardwood Flooring

To keep your hardwood flooring looking its best, it’s important to establish a regular cleaning and maintenance routine. Follow these guidelines:

1. Sweep or vacuum the floor daily to remove dirt and dust particles.
2. Use a damp mop and a mild cleaning solution specifically designed for hardwood floors.
3. Avoid using excessive water or harsh cleaning products, as they can damage the wood.
4. Wipe up spills immediately to prevent stains and damage to the finish.
5. Periodically check for scratches or dents and address them promptly using a touch-up kit or professional refinishing services.

By following these practices, you’ll ensure that your hardwood flooring near the wall remains beautiful and in optimal condition for years to come.


Now that you’ve mastered the art of nailing hardwood flooring near the wall, you can enjoy the beauty and warmth it brings to your home. Remember to take your time during the installation process, ensuring that each board fits snugly and securely. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you’ll achieve professional-looking results that will leave your friends and family in awe. If you’re interested in learning more about home improvement projects, check out our other articles for useful tips and inspiration.

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