I live in Chicago and had heard that 5" white oak hardwood flooring needed to be both glued and nailed but I was also told that due to our extreme weather it should not be glued because when season changes and the wood wants to move, it can't because of the glue. As a result of that, every plank can split because of the stress. Can anyone tell me which is correct.

Additionally, can it be installed after being in the house for 3 days?

  • as Zach mentions below, modern hardwood is nailed thought the tongue; glue is only used for the pieces you can't nail as a way to avoid nail marks in the finish.
    – virtualxtc
    Mar 9, 2014 at 21:01

2 Answers 2


If it's solid hardwood and not a laminate or engineered, you probably don't want to glue it. How thick is it? Generally hardwoods are edge nailed through the tongue with a special nail gun.

3 days isn't a great amount of time for it to acclimate, but if you take it out of the boxes and spread it out, that'll help.

You may want to contact the manufacturer if you bought it boxed some place or contact the mill where you bought it and see what they specifically recommend.


Usually it is either glue or nail. In commercial or apartment building you would often have concrete floors. You would glue down hardwood in these areas. Given that the building is temperature controlled, the concrete would have very little seasonal movement.

In a residential setting you can glue down hardwood - this is really a call the manufacturer makes. But you must have very flat/clean floors and I have primed before gluing to wood. You have 5" wide boards too. I can't ever recall gluing down wood that wide, especially on wood. The expansion contraction of wood is much greater width wise than with the grain. In short, you just need to nail this stuff down.

As for installation after 3 days, where was it before? If it was in the showroom somewhere then probably. If it was sitting in a cold warehouse then you probably need to give it more time. If you don't know, you need to give it more time. I wait at least 10-14 days before installing.

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