We just refinished the parquet we have in two of the basement rooms (a living and a master bedroom) I am going to install the baseboards this weekend I am not a big fan of the result but I am not in the mood to install vinyl right now So I am considering adding vinyl later. Is there a way to leave room under the baseboard so I can later install the vinyl planks without removing the baseboard (just remove the quarter round)

PS: I know that wood of any type is not recommended in basement but it has been OK for a long time, since before we bought the house

  • If using quarter round then it is possible since the quarter round should cover any measurement mistakes if not too bad, or just pop the baseboard off again when installing the vinyl. Remember it is measure twice cut once.
    – crip659
    Jun 17, 2022 at 18:16
  • Whether it's only base shoe or also has quarter round, whichever is the last piece of trim, has to cover the expansion gap along the wall. Aiming for a less than 1/2" discrepancy of measurement... that, and your 1/8" expansion gap, are all covered by 3/4" QR, or 3/4" base shoe only.
    – Mazura
    Jun 19, 2022 at 1:59

2 Answers 2


Just don't do the quarter round yet. Usually the problem is the client is vehemently against QR and just wants base. That would mean you shouldn't do the base yet either.

"Leaving room" is a lost cause - if there's enough room to work, then there's going to be a gap with no QR.

If there's going to be QR, there's supposed to be an 1/8"~1/4" expansion gap away from the base anyway, which is what QR is for. Which is usually 3/4", so no spaces larger than ~1/2" and you're good.

  • 1
    As long as you're going to do QR, you can do the base this weekend. Put it sitting in contact with the floor. The only reason to try and shim it up a little is to keep it from wicking moisture from the floor. That attempt could be made, but not for the reason of sticking plank under it later.
    – Mazura
    Jun 18, 2022 at 1:24
  • Yeah the answer is quarter round molding which can be easier removed and put back
    – MiniMe
    Jun 19, 2022 at 0:29
  • Just don't expect QR installed a month ago with a pneumatic nail gun to come out in one piece.
    – Mazura
    Jun 19, 2022 at 1:49

I say no- do not leave the baseboards high to accommodate the "future" vinyl flooring. Even the click lock type vinyl flooring will install way easier without having to try and slip it under your baseboard.

You can run the baseboard down tight to the floor (as it should be) and when/ if you do vinyl later either remove the baseboard again and reinstall after your new flooring. Another option is to leave the baseboard and install your new flooring up to it and then add a "shoe molding" to trim the floor. A shoe molding is a small molding- either a quarter round or something that is smaller than your original baseboard. The downside of this is that it looks like an add on, especially when it abuts your door casings (trims).

  • Nominal shoe molding has a parabolic curve, 3/4" tall and 1/2" wide. Quarter round has a circular curve and covers 3/4". it looks like an add on when your skill set isn't up to snuff of one of the highest paying jobs in the industry: finish carpentry.
    – Mazura
    Jun 19, 2022 at 1:22

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