Back Stair Flooring. At last!Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Heeeeeyy! Yay! Progress!
Suddenly, in a flash, outta nowhere, I finally had an idea for the back stair. The steps anyway. The rest of the embarrassing disaster area, yeah, grrr not so much yet.
It's one of those areas that will always be messy, dirty, muddy, filled with grass clippings or leaves n' junk and crud and just a giant disaster. Which is hugely frustrating to me. Goal for the back stair: minimize the mess.
|Before. And my shadow. What's he looking at? Good question, I dunno.|
|I mean. I am so embarrassed. It's filthy. And awful. Just awful. And I suffer the view multiple times daily.|
My shopping adventure began at the Menards website where I thought I had found two good options. Key: thought. When I got to the store though, turns out one was that click snap connect floating whatever that won't work and the other looked too cheap and pathetic, I couldn't.
|There's one of the two staple pullers* I bought. While it does seem to help, I can't say it's as revolutionary as they purport. Again, ignore the major mess. Please.|
|All cleared. And my shadow again. He's so helpful, right?|
I end up on Lowes' website. Sigh.
And find these. Which look ya know quite decent on the website. I purchase them online for in-store pick up using Giving Assistant which gives me cash back and donates to a cause of my choice.
Get to the store, and yeah, pretty passable. Too close yet slightly different from our existing hardwood floor which is a minus in my mind as it might appear I was impossibly trying to purposefully match but having spent the better portion of my day on this, I was done. Signed, left, came home.
The fact that I spent a mere forty five bucks on way more than I needed perked me up a tad though.
As I've never installed a floor such as this, it seemed wise to inform myself. Read the box and it says instructions are enclosed. Well. Hm. I didn't purchase a full complete box, and guess what, there were no instructions to be found.
|The back of the box. "Enclosed instructions." Mmmm hm. Why not just print them on the box? Aaaahhhh, smart, that's why.|
I email customer service and get an email back several days later, "call the manufacturer or we can have a store call you." I reply saying, please just send the directions or tell me where I can find them. Alas, no response. What service.
Call the Lowe's 800 number and they don't have any information regarding instructions. Get transferred to corporate, no nothin'. Get transferred to a nearby store, no nothin' but a flooring guy gives me some tips: use adhesive primer and cut with a utility knife. That's all he said.
Sorry Lowe's, I just, I can't with you.
After checking out instruction tips online here (which is a good tip but I'll explain later why it is also not a good tip) and generally elsewhere, I'm off to the races.
I start by clipping an inch off of the ends as our stair is approximately 35"-ish wide. Now, here's where that above tip was generally handy. Using a sharp utility knife, I scored the piece twice, bent it back, and snap!, it popped right apart.
|To cut the first one I used a non-slip straight edge,* cork on the back to be precise.|
Though I had measured each individual tread, before I went a-trimmin' those up thankfully I remembered an old Norm Abrams tip, or maybe it was a Tom Silva tip, well either way....
|Ah see, I almost drove myself absolutely bonkers. (Yes Jason, your label is still on my ruler, nice work.)|
|Because the risers were getting the vinyl too, I propped a plank up, butt the piece to trim up to that, laid the full piece on top, aligned to the front edge.|
|Straight edge had been on the left (and cork down too yes), protecting the good side.|
But in the case of the This Old House tip, you'll have to trace a line then use a non-slip straight edge with the waste side out. Or the remnants of another cut piece to stick on top. Which is all just tough in general anyway on a long slippery surface with "wood" grooves.
Or be brave, go slow, be methodical and be careful as I did; I didn't want to mark up the vinyl lest the line not remove. As I mentioned though, I did screw up several times.
That's a slew a' cutting tips. Heh. But hey, cutting is inherent to this task.
Once everything was cut, I splashed on some adhesive primer. So glad I bought the large jug! Useful now three times! Wallpaper, wallpaper, and flooring. Nice.
|Yay, adhesive primer.|
Call me a weinie or bat-sh*t loopy or judge all you want, but..........see ok. The day we lost Hailey, it took what felt like eons for me to go back inside the house. When I finally did, there were muddy paw prints on the steps. My heart fell out of my chest. Needless to say, I never washed them off.
And ok, just in case they hadn't worn away after this amount of time I know sure, I was not going to clean the stairs. I'd rather cover over them. So it is. Ok? Ok.
(A friend posted this on Facebook the other day which I did start to read until the eye hoses exploded instantaneously. Which is probably why I had an upsetting dream about her that night.)
Since it's cooler in the back stair plus the bare wood and no air movement, the adhesive primer stuff was taking for.ev.er to dry.
|Hence fan after two hours of waiting. Patience is a virtue. Patience is a virtue. Not today it ain't.|
That's when I discovered I cut all the treads wrong. Ahhhh boy. Yay.
|Yeah, you can't see what I'm about to refer to. But looking surprisingly nice, eh?|
SooooooOOo, heh, yep, I recut all the treads. This is why we purchase extra.
As I'm nearing the end of the recutting and I slide out one last plank, by the way, guess what slithers out....Yep, the instructions. Insert major eye roll here. No, I don't bother to look because at this point?, what's the point.
Cut, stick, cut stick, cut stick stick stick stick stick. Not sticking very well. At all.
|So not only could I a.) not use a 100 lb. roller on the steps, I could b.) not get a 100 lb. roller on the steps. Feet and a clean rag had to do.|
|Diggin' my new stapler, I am!|
|Yeah. Looks surprisingly better than halfway decent, yeah?|
|And here with the runner back on. Yeah. Works for me!|
|There, looking down. Not a great shot, hm.|
|Please ignore the walls and the bottom of the stair. And the door. And everything except the new flooring.|
So make that three. Three floors I've replaced in this house to date. Here, the pantry, and the first floor bathroom.
Spring has gone very much into retreat making the back stair chilly again meaning it's likely too cool back there to use the adhesive.
Oh plus too though, I rediscovered an idea to cover over the unattractive, slippery, so-not-level-at-all tile at the base without ripping out the tile, but the floor itself is too cold as well.
Sooooo, now we wait for the weather to warm up....to be continued!
Oh, before I head out, this goes to what I was talking about last time too: An Off Leash Dog Ruined My Life. Reasons not use a leash: zero. Leash 'em up, people! (Thanks to my mom for sharing that with me.)
Oh and one last thing! Don't forget voting is still going on for Best Remodeling Blog -- please come vote for Flipping the Flip! No registering at all, just a single one time vote. Thank you!
*The vinyl tiles, staple pulls, non-slip straight edges, Bostitch compressor, Bostitch stapler, and vinyl tile adhesive are Amazon affiliate links. Mwah, thanks! Please see the "boring stuff" tab for more info.