Dear Dr. R.V. Shrink:
We want to update our motorhome with new flooring. Our carpet is ten years old and looking nasty. We have agreed on plank flooring, but we can't agree on who the installer will be. I want a professional and my husband wants to do it himself.
Don't get me wrong, he's a handy guy. My concern is the expense of doing it wrong and having it ripped up. It's not a house, it moves. I'm thinking there are methods and materials that differ from stick house flooring to RV. My husband say's, "A floor is a floor."
What are your thoughts on installation?
--Floored in Florence
I am no expert at flooring but let me take a shot. I have done two rigs in the past: the first one with glued down tile and the second with a floating floor. Even though I wouldn't agree with, "A floor is a floor," I would say they are similar.
If your husband is handy, he should have no problem pulling off this job.
There are many things to consider. With a floating floor you will need to make sure you leave a quarter inch gap on the edges, seal the edges so that moisture does not get underneath and then trim it in quarter round. I didn't care for how that job turned out as the quarter round did not give a factory look when finished.
Since I am in Quartzsite this week I talked to Tim Klenk of Master Tech RV. His company performs the entire gamut of RV renovations.
He recommends a product called Karndean. It looks like wood plank but it glues down like tile, allowing a nice tight edge.
Once you decide on a material and a method, I would suggest you do a lot of studying. Listen to the many opinions you can find on RV forums and decide how comfortable you are doing your own work.
You might want to split it up. Perhaps removing old flooring and furnishings, having a professional do the install, then replacing furnishings yourself. That can save you on labor.
You can't keep a good man down. If you stop letting him do stuff he will have too much time on his hands and start getting into trouble.
My wife used to go for handsome, but now she goes for handy.
--Keep Smilin', Dr. R.V. Shrink