Why You Need To Acclimate Your Laminate Flooring

47 Views 16 Min Read
Why You Need To Acclimate Your Laminate Flooring

It’s common knowledge that hardwood flooring needs to acclimate to its surroundings before it’s installed, this is because different climates can change the wood pieces. So you need to give the flooring time to adjust, or else you risk the pieces warping and bending after installation.

But a common misconception that many people have is that laminate flooring doesn’t need to be acclimated before it’s installed since it’s not hardwood. But this false belief can lead to less than optimal outcomes.

And so today we’ll be discussing why you need to let your laminate flooring acclimate, and how it is best to do so.

Everything You Need To Know About Letting Your Laminate Flooring Acclimate

There are a lot of things to discuss here since we need to cover why you should let your laminate floor acclimate and how to do it. But we do need to cover both of those things, in order to fully convince people that this step simply isn’t optional!

Here’s a quick overview for you though, in case you don’t have time to dive into all the specifics or you’d just like to know what you’re getting into.

  • You need to allow your laminate floors to acclimate for many reasons, the most important of which is the fact the pieces might not fit correctly if you don’t.
  • But you also need to follow the right process, by regulating your house temperature, allowing the right amount of time, and choosing the right spot.

Reasons Why You Should Always Acclimate Laminate Flooring

The thing about laminate flooring is that although it’s made from different materials than traditional hardwood floors, the material used for laminate flooring also changes based on climate, temperature, and other environmental factors.

More specifically, the material used for laminate flooring is very porous. This means that high temperatures and humidity levels will cause the pores to expand, therefore making the floor pieces larger. Whereas low temperatures and humidity levels will result in the pores and flooring shrinking.

Another thing to consider is that even if the warehouse and your house are the same temperature and humidity level (which is unlikely), the flooring will still experience various conditions throughout the transportation process. So no matter what, always acclimate your laminate floors if you want the pieces to fit and not become damaged over time.

Why You Need To Acclimate Your Laminate Flooring

The Best Process For Acclimating Laminate Flooring

Now let’s take a look at how you can acclimate your laminate flooring properly, because even the best intentions can go awry if you don’t complete the correct process. First of all…

The Right Placement For Acclimating Laminate Flooring

If you place your laminate flooring in an less than optimal position then it might not acclimate properly, and you’ll be back to square one. So keep the following guidelines in mind.

  • Don’t take the flooring from the packaging, leave the pieces to acclimate in the cardboard and plastic they came in.
  • Don’t stack the boxes on top of each other, instead, you should lay the boxes side by side.
  • Place these boxes in the center of the room and away from the walls!

As long as you follow these steps, your laminate flooring won’t be subjected to any other environmental conditions and can focus on acclimating to your home’s overall temperature and humidity.

Try To Have The Best Temperature and Humidity That You Can In Your Home

Regulating your house’s humidity and temperature is important, but there are two different parts to doing it.

You need to keep your home’s temperature and humidity at around the same levels at all times, and especially you should focus keeping those levels steady while your flooring is acclimating. But keep in mind that whatever temperature and humidity that your home is at when your flooring acclimates, is where it needs to stay or else your floors could shift after installation.

And furthermore, it’s best for everything (not just your flooring) if you keep temps between 64 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit. As well as approximate humidity levels of somewhere between 25% to 75%.

Allow Your Laminate Flooring To Acclimate For The Right Amount of Time

When you’re excited to get that new flooring installed, it can be tempting to let the pieces acclimate overnight and then get straight to it. But the truth is, if you don’t let your flooring acclimate for the right amount of time then you can undo all the progress.

Most manufacturers recommend you let your new floors acclimate for about one to three days, but most people agree that it’s best to acclimate for about 48 hours or longer. Because although you can easily acclimate the floors for too short of a time, waiting for longer won’t have any negative effects. Better safe than sorry!

Vinyl flooring is an excellent option for homeowners looking to add value and style to their homes without breaking the bank. But you may not be aware that this flooring needs time to acclimate before it can be installed. Here’s what you need to know about acclimating vinyl floors:

What Happens If You Don’t Acclimate Vinyl Flooring?

It will warp and crack if you don’t acclimate your vinyl flooring. That’s because the mesh is not perfectly flat, so it can’t support itself evenly on all sides of the board. Therefore this unevenness makes it more likely for cracks to develop in your new flooring.

Not only does not acclimating vinyl flooring create these issues, but it also means that when you install new ones later down the road, you’ll need to re-caulk them before using them again.

How Long Does Vinyl Flooring Need to Acclimate

Your vinyl flooring will need to acclimate to the temperature of your home. This can vary by manufacturer, but most vinyl floors take 24 hours or less before they are ready for use.

Some manufacturers recommend that you allow their floors to sit for up to 72 hours after installation before moving furniture. It’s important to note that there can be differences between manufacturers’ recommendations and what is best to practice in certain situations. For example, if you live near an airport with high humidity levels during summer months, then waiting 72 hours may be beneficial. It may be because the humidity will help keep your room at a comfortable temperature all year round!

Can You Put a Refrigerator on Vinyl Plank Flooring?

The answer is no; you cannot put a refrigerator on vinyl plank flooring. This is because the steel and plastic parts of your fridge will scratch the flooring surface and create unsightly scratches over time.  You’ll need to choose another place to store your food items under your kitchen counter.

Which Vinyl Flooring Types Require Acclimatization?

Vinyl plank and tile are two common types of vinyl flooring that require acclimatization. These products can be installed on concrete or wood subfloors without any problems, but they will not work well if installed on other surfaces. For example, laminate floors are not compatible with these products because they contain glue that causes friction between the layers. It occurs during installation, causing them to wear faster than other materials.

Vinyl composition tile is also a poor fit for many homeowners because it contains fine particles that do not provide enough traction for walking barefoot on floors.  Therefore, it’s essential that you first use pads before walking across your newly installed surface, so you don’t slip!

How to Acclimate Vinyl Flooring

Place your vinyl flooring in a room with the same temperature as the room you will install it in. This allows for a proper acclimation of the vinyl, which can only happen if there is no difference between both rooms’ temperatures.

Leave your new flooring in this new room for 24 hours, during which time you should not walk on it or touch any part of it. You can wear socks or shoes without grip while walking across your newly installed vinyl tile flooring. However, make sure they don’t have laces or ties that could catch on any sharp edges!

After waiting 24 hours since placing your vinyl tiles down, feel free to start stepping around with bare feet. Just make sure not to get too close, though. If anything sticks out more than usual, just pull gently until satisfied.

Does Room Temperature Matter?

Room temperature is a factor in the adhesion of laminate flooring. The glue used in laminate flooring is activated by moisture, so it can be challenging to get a good bond if you are installing your new laminate flooring on a wet surface. The best way to ensure that your laminate floors will not become slippery is to acclimate them slowly.

The easiest way to do this is by placing the first layer of laminate on top of a baseboard or underlayment, then applying the second layer after it has dried completely. If you’re replacing an existing wood floor, use rags or paper towels to clean up any residual dust before laying down the first layer of flooring.

When Can You Start Walking on Vinyl Plank Flooring?

When you are installing vinyl plank flooring, it is recommended that you wait until the flooring has been adequately acclimated before walking on it. The reason for this is to avoid any damage to your feet and potentially lead to a trip or fall. Once the vinyl plank has been installed, you can start walking on it immediately!


When vinyl planks acclimate, they will contract and expand. The space between the boards is called a gap. This gap is a good thing because there will be no cracking from moisture or temperature changes. 

What are the Different Types Of Vinyl Flooring

There are two main types of vinyl plank flooring available today: SPC (stone plastic composite) and WPC (wood plastic composite). Both are similar in their composition but differ slightly in terms of quality and cost. This is due to differences in manufacturing processes used by each manufacturer; however, both offer high-end quality at affordable prices!

Vinyl flooring is one of the most popular choices for homeowners because it’s easy to install. However, you might be surprised to learn that several types of vinyl flooring are available to choose from, and all have pros and cons.

Stone Plastic Composite

SPC vinyl is a composite material made of a plastic core with a thin layer of stone on top. It’s an incredibly versatile product, and it can be used to cover any type of flooring need you have. It has been widely accepted as the best choice for high-traffic areas like kitchens and bathrooms. This is because it doesn’t require much maintenance and can withstand lots of wear and tear due to its durability. SPC vinyl also offers excellent sound absorption qualities, which will help reduce noise pollution in your home or business space!

Wood Plastic Composite

WPC vinyl is made from a blend of wood and plastic. The wood is pressed into the plastic, giving it a rough-looking texture that mimics real wood. This material can be natural or synthetic; if it’s natural, the color of your flooring will vary depending on where you live. If it’s manufactured, your flooring will always be white or whatever color you choose.

The WPC vinyl look is very realistic because of its durability. Even if you’ve got kids running around on your floors all day long, there’s no need to worry about scratches!

Vinyl Plank

Vinyl plank flooring is a type of vinyl flooring with a wood-like look and feel. It’s made from PVC (polyvinyl chloride), a plastic resin, and it’s often used as an alternative to hardwood floors. Vinyl plank floors are available in many colors, shapes, and sizes. The manufacturer will usually provide an installation guide to help you decide which size plank would be best for your home or business space.

Extra Note – What You Can Expect From Laminate Flooring If It’s Not Acclimated

We’ve discussed how and why you should let your laminate floor pieces acclimate, but not really gone into any of the consequences if you don’t.

  • You may have a hard time installing the floors, the pieces will be more fragile and not fit the same way as they normally would.
  • If the pieces are swollen then over time they will begin to shrink again, this will cause unsightly cracks between the floor pieces.
  • Or if the pieces are shrunken then as they expand they might begin to warp.


So to wrap it all up, although laminate flooring is different from hardwood, you still need to let it acclimate to its new surroundings. Just make sure you’re doing it right, and your pieces will install easily and stay in place for the long run!

Hopefully these tips were helpful, and now you appreciate how important the acclimation process is.

Why You Need To Acclimate Your Laminate Flooring

Share this Article
I'm Andrea, a decor and interior design expert who loves to share her tips and tricks for creating a beautiful home. I believe everyone deserves to live in a space that makes them happy, and love helping others achieve that. I'm always on the lookout for new trends and ideas to share with her readers. Can’t wait to help you create your dream home!
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *