Laying and Treating New Floorboards

17 Oct 2007
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United Kingdom
I am intending to remove our bedroom floor carpets and the chipboard underneath (on joists), and replacing it with new redwood T+G floorboards which I presume I will then stain/varnish. (The underlying chipboard is in a bad state and squeaks alot).

Q I presume its not normal practice to sand the boards before staining/varnishing? (they seem reasonably smooth to me).

Q Must the ends that butt up to each other be laid so they fall over a joist?

Q Should I treat both top/bottom equally so as to avoid the boards from "bowing"? (i.e. if I stain and varnish the top side, should I also stain and varnish the bottom side before laying?)

Q Is it ok to just varnish (and not stain) the newly laid floorboards, maybe 1 or 2 coats?

I'm not a professional (obviously), so thanks for any help/advice.

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A. No need to sand
A. Yes, make sure both ends fall on a joist
A. No need to treat the underneath
A. Yes, you can varnish without stain for a natural finish

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