How to install shoe molding on uneven floors? – Easy Secret

Shoe molding is a thin strip of molding that finishes out the look of baseboards.

If you want to give proper finishing to your floors of the room, you need baseboards. But perfectly flat and steady floors are hard to find, so your baseboards’ look doesn’t look so good.

When you try to install baseboards on uneven floors, there may be a chance of gaps. For these gaps, you can use shoe molding. Shoe moldings are very flexible, and they can bend according to your rooms’ floors.

But how to install shoe molding on uneven floors?

Well, to install shoe molding first, you need to choose the right shoe molding for your baseboard. Then you have to mark your shoe molding and cut it accordingly. Use a belt sander for finishing and a pneumatic brad nailer to fit the shoe molding to your baseboards.

Why is installing shoe molding on uneven floors is tough?

Installing shoe molding on uneven floors is tough. Because-

  • As the floor is uneven, you cannot easily measure the area to install the shoe molding.
  • You cannot set your tools like a miter saw or other devices properly to the floor.
  • Cutting the moldings according to the floor becomes tough when the floor is curvy. And if it is not cut according to the shape of the floor it will not fit the floor properly.
  • If you somehow set the shoe molding still, there is a chance of gaps in different places. The shape of shoe molding will also not look perfect.
  • In the end, there is a big chance that the shoe molding will not fit your floor correctly, which will cost you money.

Things you require to install shoe molding on uneven floor

You need some tools to install shoe molding on uneven floors. Those are-

  • A putty knife.
  • Measuring tape.
  • A coping saw.
  • Miter Saw
  • Belt Sander
  • Pneumatic Brad Nailer
  • Wood Block
  • 1/8-inch Thick Spacer
  • Stain Marker
  • Pencil
  • Wood Glue
  • Nails
  • Base Shoe Molding.

How much does it cost to install shoe molding on an uneven floor?

The door and window trim cost, like shoe molding, begins with about $0.50 per linear foot, which one will typically purchase in eight-foot lengths. It’s a thin molding consisting of two inward-facing flat sides and one outward-facing concave side.

A contractor takes the average cost for a shoe molding job is between $5.75 to $9.00 per linear foot. On average, materials cost is between $1.35- $4.50 per linear foot. On the contrary premium, hardwood can cost more.

The total cost for a 20×20 room is $450- $700 for pro installation. Standard shoe molding, available at home improvement centers and lumberyards, comes in a width of 7/16 inch to 1/2 inches and ranges from 3/4 inch to 1 inch in height.

It’s also made in a variety of material options to match the different types of baseboards. The costs of baseboard materials are generally reasonable, ranging from $0.60 per linear foot for basic styles in fiberboard to about $1.20 per linear foot for wood.

The process of installing shoe molding on an uneven floor-

Let’s see how can you install shoe molding on an uneven floor.

Step 1: Choose the molding

  • You can find two types of shoe molding: unfinished molding and the other is prefinished molding.
  • The unfinished molding is that molding that is not painted or stained. You have to use those types of wood species that match your baseboards; then, you must color them.
  • But in prefinished molding, the shoe molding is already painted or stained, and it is ready to install, so you can save your time by buying it.

Step 2: Mark the molding

  • To mark the molding, you have to use a pencil, and it will help the shoe molding to fit flawlessly to the baseboards.
  • You must measure the entire length of the wall from an inside corner and then use a pencil to mark the whole room.

Step 3: Cut the molding

  • After marking the shoe molding with a pencil, you now have to cut it.
  • Use a miter saw and set it to make a 45-degree cut. Then start cutting outside of your pencil mark, and don’t cut it too short. If you do not have a miter saw, make a purchase before installing shoe molding. It will really help you get a smooth cut.
  • If one side is cut correctly, reverse the to a 45-degree direction and cut the opposite side of the shoe molding.

Step 4: Test if it fits

  • Put the shoe molding in its position and check if it is fitted or not.
  • If it is not fit, just cut it again correctly.

Step 5: Sand and finish

To remove any rough edge or any small amount of molding, you can use a belt sander. It will release a minimal amount of shoe molding to ensure the fitness of your shoe molding into the corners.

Step 6: No-Gap fit

  • Use a woodblock to push down the base shoe molding against the floor to ensure a no-gap fit.
  • Then use a pneumatic brad nailer to attach the shoe molding to the baseboard.

Step 7: Cope inside corners

  • After fitting the shoe molding against the floor, you need to cut a cope joint by cutting the first piece of trim at a 90-degree angle so that it fits tightly to the corner.
  • Then you have to cut the second piece at a 45-degree angle, and it will give a tight-fitting to your corner joints, and it will look even more significant.

Step 8: Install outside corner

  • You have to cut the end of each molding piece coming together at an opposite 45-degree angle for the outside corners.
  • Use glue to attach the joints.

Step 9: Flatten any protruding nails

When you use a pneumatic driller, there is a chance of having protruding nails coming out of the baseboards or shoe molding. Use a hammer to lightly tap the nail heads until they are just below the molding surface. You can also use nailers for baseboard to ensure smooth nail driving.

Unless you have the right nailer for shoe molding, check our guide on the best nailer for shoe molding.

Step 10: Last touch up

  • After the installation process of shoe molding is done, there is a chance of finding spots on the shoe molding or the baseboard that need a touch-up. You can use a stain marker or matching paint to touch up any nicks or mark the trim.
  • There are small gaps between the molding pieces because the corner was out of the square or the floors were uneven. Use caulk to fill the gaps or wood putty for staining the trims.


Still have some questions in mind? Check the section below.

How do you fill the gap between hardwood floors and baseboards?

If the gap is small and you are looking for a quick fix, you can use some caulk. You have to bridge the gap with the caulks, and it will solve your problem.
But when the gap is too big, you should install the additional molding. You can use shoe molding, and you will need glue to put the shoe molding in its place.

How do you install uneven floor skirting boards?

First, you need to get a ruler and draw along the skirting board to see the gaps. By these, you can understand how much to cut off.
Then you start scribing on the skirting board. Lay the skirting in a way where you can quickly get the pencil section that you marked earlier. Once you do this, you grab the block plan and slowly start scribing.
Once the skirting is level with the pencil mark, make sure the rest of the skirting board is equally scribed and check again how the skirting board looks.
Then try to fit the skirting board to the wall to see if the gaps are gone. If there is no gap, your work is done.

How do you trim uneven floors?

If you want to trim uneven floors, you have to line the trim as straight as you can with the corner of the floor. Then you have to use a nail gun or hammer to install nails every 6 Inches along with the trim.
When the trim installation is complete, you can see a gap between the trim and the floor, and then you have to use some caulk to fill the gaps.

Wrapping up

Shoe molding makes your floors more attractive and appealing also saves you from dust and insects. Though baseboards cover most of the gaps between your floor and wall, they are more extensive than shoe molding. So it doesn’t fit appropriately to an uneven wall.

But if you know how to install show molding on uneven floors, it will be easier than you think. There can be small gaps. And by installing shoe molding flat against the floor covers all your gaps and gives a professional look to your household.

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