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Loft floor installation

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MattyT

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I'm going to lay boards in my attic so I can stand on the floor. What is the best way to connect the wooden boards to the wooden joists? I've seen some plastic loft legs that raises the wooden panels so that air circulates under the boards.
 

MikeG.

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There is nothing to be gained by having air circulation below a loft floor. Loft floors often have to be raised to clear insulation, and services (pipes & wires).
 

Jasper42

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Think the idea of raising the floor boards is to ensure you do not compress the insulation, not provide an air gap. This ensures the correct thickness so helps keep the heat in. I‘ve seen the plastic in use and home made, both work but the home made just looked stronger.
 

Mike Jordan

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Screwing the boarding in place with or without spacers will allow access if needed to wiring etc. Knocking in nails will be very likely to cause cracks in ceilings.
 

Peterm1000

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The loft legs are because building regs now require so much insulation that it runs above the joists and you can no longer put boards down like we used to a few years back
 

MattyT

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What are the best screws to use to avoid cracking the panels when I drill into them please? I'm going to use self drilling screws, but should I use chipboard or wood screws?
I'm not really sure of the difference.
 

MattyT

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ok thank you. I wasn't sure if chipboard screws would help to avoid the panels splitting. If I use self drilling wood screws, do you think I still need to pre-drill holes if the panels are 22mm thick? Or is there a faster way around it? Thanks
 

MikeG.

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No, just screw them in. Before screws had a slot cut in the thread to make them self-drilling, chippies used to hammer the screws in half an inch or more, just to get them started. If screwing adjacent to an edge, go slightly further away from the edge and angle the screws slightly. But really, this is a loft floor. The odd mistake is unimportant, and you'll quickly learn what you can and can't do just by doing it.
 

Fergal

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I recently partially boarded the loft of my new-build using the plastic loft legs available at Wickes. They were pretty cheap and seem strong enough. They were then covered with 18mm chipboard. I won't be putting much stuff in the loft as access is difficult, but the boards could take my weight as I was installing them. I used regular wood screws (4x40mm I think) and pre-drilled the boards before screwing them down. One tip I can give you: always drill holes in the feet of the loft legs before screwing them down to the joists rather than trying to drive a screw straight through them as the screws go in at an angle and end up moving around.
 
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