Installation of stone floors should be performed by a reliable professional. It is heavy, difficult work that is labor intensive, unforgiving of mistakes and often requires use of some sophisticated tools. Your retailer may offer installation or likely can make a recommendation.
However, there are things you can do to make the installation go more quickly and to control some of the costs.
To begin with, move all your furniture and other objects and materials from the areas where the installation will take place. Some installers might be willing to move your furniture, but that would almost certainly add cost and time to the project.
Similarly, arrange for the disconnection and removal of appliances before the installers arrive. Again, some installers may agree to disconnect and move your electrical appliances for an additional charge, but beyond the cost factors, this is not their area of expertise, and liability for damages might be an issue. As far as any gas appliances, the best policy is to have the gas company or appliance company disconnect and reconnect all gas appliances. In bathrooms, the removal and replacement of toilets is sometimes necessary; find out ahead of time if there is an additional charge for that to prevent misunderstandings.
If there is a previous floor to be removed and disposed of, find out if there will be any additional charge for that, and if you decide to remove the old floor yourself, get it done a day or two ahead of installation, and make sure the substrate or surface where the floor is to be installed is cleaned as best as possible before the installers arrive.
Remove all floor moldings and baseboards ahead of time. Saves you time and money over having the installers do it, and they probably wouldn’t accept liability for breakage or damage if they do the removal. If baseboards, woodwork and paint need retouching after the installation is complete, this is your responsibility.
Other things you should know . . .
- Remember that stone flooring has thickness…after stone flooring is installed, it’s possible that doors, especially closet doors, basement and bedroom doors, may not clear the new floor and swing free. Some installers will remove doors in order to install the natural stone and re-hang them if possible. But if they can be re-hung to swing freely, they probably trim doors to adjust the clearance. Check with your retailer/installer as to their policy and the cost, but you may need to arrange for a carpenter to provide this service after the installation or do it yourself if you’re handy.
- There will be waste products from the installation. Usually these materials are collected by your installer and set out for your trash collection. Check with your retailer before the day of installation so you’re clear about the clean up, if there are added costs to do so, and ask about the plan for natural stone remnants.
- Plan on being home the day of installation and available for questions.
- The tools and techniques involved in stone floor installation can make the work area hazardous. Please make sure that your children and pets are kept completely away from the work area on installation day.
- Maintain good ventilation in the installation area for 48 to 72 hours after installation. This will allow any fumes to dissipate and any particulate dust to settle.