Flooring Calculator – Estimate Hardwood, Laminate, & Vinyl Flooring
How to Estimate Laminate, Hardwood, and Vinyl Flooring
Installing a new floor covering can add new life to the room and value to your home.
Of course, there’s the beautiful and time-tested hardwood flooring or tile. But don’t underestimate laminate and vinyl flooring.
When you decide to start a flooring project, the first step is to measure the space and calculate how much material you need, and we’ve got you covered.
Keep reading to learn how to estimate your flooring project and calculate how much material you’ll need.
Step One: Measure for Flooring
The first step to calculating floor material is to know how large of an area you want to cover. Most manufacturers and contractors price flooring projects and material by the square foot, so we suggest measuring room lengths and widths in feet.
Occasionally, flooring is available by the square yard, be sure to convert square feet to square yards, if needed.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind for professional measurements.
- Use a good tape measure and keep it level while measuring.
- Measure wall to wall, not baseboard to baseboard. Flooring will go under the baseboard.
- Always measure the widest parts of the room. If there is a bump-out or any other irregularity that creates additional width, measure at that point, even if most of the room is not that wide.
- If the floor plan is complex or there are multiple rooms, break it up into smaller, regularly shaped sections. Then add the square footage together. For example, separate an L-shaped room into two rectangles that are easier to measure.
For more tips, we have some great information explaining how to measure an irregular room for flooring.
Step Two: Calculate the Amount of Flooring You Need
For vinyl, laminate, or hardwood, plug your lengths and widths into the calculator above (or multiple length x width). We suggest adding 10% extra material to allow for waste, placing seams, and matching patterns and gives you the quantity required to purchase.
Floor Area Formulas
You can also calculate the square footage or square yardage manually. For a typical rectangular room, make sure your measurements are in feet, then multiply the length by the width to find the total square footage.
For other types of rooms, use these formulas to find flooring area. Enter your measurements in feet into the formulas, then solve to find the amount of flooring needed.
sq ft = l × w
l = length
w = width
sq ft = (l – (2 × b)) × (w – (2 × b))
l = outer length
w = outer width
b = border width
sq ft = πr2
r = radius
π = 3.14159265359
If you know the circle’s diameter, you can find the radius by dividing the diameter in half.
s = 1/2(a + b + c)
sq ft = s(s – a)(s – b)(s – c)
a = edge a
b = edge b
c = edge c
Use our square footage calculator to find the area of more shapes.
How to Estimate New Flooring Cost
The flooring calculator can estimate the cost of material by entering the price per sq ft of materials. If you’re calculating cost manually, start by multiplying the room’s square footage by the cost per sq ft of the flooring you’ve selected.
After you have an estimated price for major materials, it’s time to estimate additional material needed. Depending on your space, you may need thresholds, base trim, or special edging. Some types of flooring also require an underlayment.
Find Qualified Flooring Professionals in Your Area
Estimate how many additional parts you need for your type of floor and find the cost for those parts. To find your total material cost, add the flooring cost to the cost of the additional parts.
It pays to research costs as they vary widely. For instance, laminate flooring can range from 75 cents to $5 per sq ft, and hardwood flooring can range from $4 to $15 per sq ft.
Some flooring materials require specialized underlayment or treatment for various subfloors. When using the calculator, you can input these prices to obtain a cost estimate.
Estimating Labor and Tools
If you’re a DIYer, you most likely won’t need to hire a contractor to complete the project, but you’re not done yet!
At this point, you should consider any tools that may need to be rented or purchased, such as power nailers, floor rollers, or sanders. The tools required will vary based on the type of flooring you choose.
Do your research and equip yourself with the list of tools you’ll need and the costs to rent or purchase.
If you’re not planning on doing the project yourself, give your contractor the quantity for an estimate. They may want to take additional measurements themselves and order the materials needed as well.
An advantage in hiring a contractor is that you needn’t worry about miscellaneous expenses like renting a nailer or sander, buying the proper glue or nails, or having the necessary equipment.
You can find a flooring professional who will discuss options with you and give you a final installed price. If you are installing it yourself, remember to add these additional costs into your project budget.