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Do I Need Beading Or Skirting Boards?

By Paul Hambidge, Managing Director on 4th December 2016.

Skirting and beading are both types of wooden floor edging. They are used to fill the gap between a newly installed floor and the walls of the room. If your room has neither, you need to invest in skirting to install after your floor. When laying a floor in a room that already has skirting boards, you’ll need beading to cover the gaps between the floor and skirting boards.

Beading or Skirting - The Finer Details

Do I need beading or skirting boards as wooden floor edging? There are several different things to account for when installing new flooring, including underlay and cutting the floor to fit around certain obstacles you may encounter. One of these considerations is what different products you should use to ensure the finish is as perfect as you imagined it to be. But what are the mains things to consider when choosing your laminate floor edging or beading for laminate flooring?

Why do I need beading or skirting boards?

Image of someone fitting skirting boards

When installing your flooring you ideally want a smooth finish that reaches from one side of the room to the other. But, when the floor reaches the walls this doesn’t necessarily make for the sharpest edge. For this reason, products such as floor beading and skirting boards are needed to give a uniform and neat look to your home. However, the occasions in which you will need to use them may differ.

What do skirting boards do?

Image of wooden skirting boards

Is skirting necessary? Skirting boards, in particular, are used for three reasons; to protect the lower part of the wall from knocks and scuffs, to hide uneven floors, or as a decorative feature. They are made of wood, PVC or MDF and can either be moulded or flat. They are also used to cover the expansion gap between the floor and the bare wall, which is a necessary step when trying to present a professional look throughout your property.

When should I use skirting boards?

If you are fitting new floors in a property which has no skirting boards, or ones which are damaged, then you will find that you will need new ones. When fitting a new floor, you should leave what is known as an 'expansion gap' between the floor and wall. This accommodates for the general expansions and contractions that properties go through throughout the years. To cover up this gap, skirting boards are used as a functional and attractive style statement.

Read more: How To Install Skirting Boards

What is beading used for?

Image of floor beading

Wood floor beading is an aesthetically pleasing and simple way to cover up gaps left in your home when fitting new floors. Like skirting boards, wood floor beading - or floor edge trims as they’re otherwise known - come in a range of materials including solid wood and MDF. Beading for laminate flooring for example can add an elegant touch, as they are used to fill the gaps between the floor and skirting boards, which occurs when fitting new floors without removing pre-existing skirting boards.

Read more: 5 Flooring Edging Options For Your Home

When should I use wood floor beading?

Wood floor beading should be used in cases where your property already had skirting boards which you did not or could not remove. Without beading, it isn’t possible to present a neat finish from floor to wall and you would otherwise be left with a small gap. Beading for laminate flooring can create a lovely flush finish for example. Though it is definitely possible to achieve a professional-looking finish without removing your skirting boards, and by fitting laminate beading, it is distinctly more difficult to create a perfectly smooth transition from wall to the floor. If you are looking for the perfect finish for your home, reinstalling skirting boards can be the best way to do this.

Do you have any more questions about skirting boards or beading? If so, let us know in the comments!

Paul Hambidge, Managing Director

Paul has 32 years of flooring industry knowledge & experience from both an installation and manufacturing perspective. He started out as installer of very large commercial flooring projects for multiple retailers. As director of Factory Direct Flooring, he has been involved in all aspects of flooring and has worked with some of the largest producers of wood flooring, vinyl flooring and laminate floors.