Oak skirting can be the perfect addition to your home. It brings a sense of style and warmth to any room and can upgrade your house. It is important that you are certain on your skirting before you install it as it isn’t something that gets replaced very often. If you need help installing oak skirting, choosing between MDF and oak, or even just looking for some inspiration, you’ve come to the right place! Timber 2 U Direct have put together a guide to adding oak skirting to your home, complete with benefits and tips!
What is oak skirting?
Skirting boards have been around for centuries and serve a few purposes. They can be added to rooms for purely decorative reasons. In period houses, you might find high skirting boards with designs and detailing. In its simplest form, skirting is a plank of wood that has been fixed to the bottom of a wall. They are usually fitted to protect the wall from knocks, scrapes, and marks that those everyday activities may leave, such as hoovering, mopping, and moving furniture. They can also be used to hide unattractive and uneven floor or wall edges.
Why choose oak skirting over MDF?
If you have done your skirting board research, you may have heard the term MDF thrown around. MDF stands for medium-density fibreboard. Despite being a little more affordable than oak skirting, MDF can’t offer the same authentic look as oak does. Hardwood skirting is very high quality and can provide you with protection for your walls for an extended time. It is durable and has a low moisture content which means it will retain its shape over a long period of time and throughout any cutting and fitting that occurs. Not only is it durable, but it provides your home with that premium feel. The wood is more natural than MDF and is suited to homes that are looking to give a rustic, classic feel. If you are a fan of exposed woods, then oak is perfect for you.
Tools you will need to install skirting
Ensure you have the correct tools for fitting your skirting. You will need:
- A mitre or tenon saw
- Tape measure
- A pencil
- Wood glue
- 2nd fix nail gun
- Nails and screws
- Mitre box
How to cut oak skirting
Before installing your skirting, you will need to cut it. Our made-to-measure services mean you might not need to use this information, but we are going to share it with you just in case you over measure.
Before cutting your skirting, ensure you have the correct measurements and mark out where you are going to cut. This will prevent any further issues with the installation. To get smooth edges when cutting, we would recommend using a mitre saw or a tenon saw.
This is perhaps the most difficult part of cutting an oak skirting board. The pieces on a corner will need to fit together seamlessly and therefore, must be cut on a 45-degree end cut. To get this perfect cut, use a mitre box. You can get one specifically made for use with skirting boards, but a normal one will also be okay to use. For internal corners, one end needs to be square and the other needs to be shaped to the profile. This is called a profile joint. It is cut this way so they fit together seamlessly.
How to fit oak skirting
Firstly, locate where you want to place your skirting board on the wall. Mark the wall with a pencil to ensure the correct position. Start with the longest part of the wall furthest from the door and work your way round towards the door. This not only saves time but allows your skirting boards to fit together better.
Use plenty of wood glue before nailing or screwing your board to the wall. This will allow it to stay in place and you will have less room for error when drilling or hammering.
The type of wall you are fixing your skirting to is going to make a difference to the method you use. If you are fitting it to a brick or concrete wall, there are a few methods you can use. In the past, cordless drills have been used, but this can easily split the boards. The best alternative to this is to use dowels. It is a much neater method and will not cause any damage to your wood. Ensure you drill into the dowels bit by bit and clear the dust as you go. You may also need to use a hammer in order to not blunt your drill bit.
If your skirting board is going to be stained or varnished, you will want to reduce the number of holes you make. In this instance, you can use rawl plugs and fix the skirting board in place with lost head nails. Avoid drilling for this option and hammer the nails in instead.
Buying oak skirting
Here at Timber 2 U Direct, the online trading arm of Brooks Bros LTD, we have oak skirting available for purchase. Our skirting can be purchased in 6 varieties of profile, which can be cut to your measurements and delivered directly to your door. All of our oak timber comes from FSC certified forests so you can ensure your wood is not only ethical but also of the highest quality.
If you are ready to start fitting a skirting board in your home, contact our team today or call us on 0115 993 1111 for more information about our oak skirting profiles or timber options.