Can I Put Flooring on My Ceiling?


Wood flooring planks are an alternative ceiling covering for a remodeling job. Wood is rigid yet lightweight enough to use as a ceiling material, making it the best type of flooring to use for this purpose. Whether you're finishing a bare basement ceiling or want a new look for an already finished ceiling, wood adds warmth and distinction to the upper portion of the room.


  • Wood flooring comes in a variety of colors, sizes and designs. Hardwood, laminate and bamboo flooring are readily available options. You'll find wood flooring ranging from very light to almost black wood tones so you can get the look you want for your ceiling. You also have options when it comes to width of the wooden planks. Keep in mind that individual narrow planks take more time to install because you need to attach them individually.

Measurements and Layout

  • You'll need accurate measurements to determine how much flooring is needed to cover the ceiling. Measure the length and width of the room to determine the area you'll need to cover. The product specifications on the flooring material tell you the area covered by one package. The wooden planks of the flooring material will run perpendicular to the joists in the ceiling. This allows you to nail the boards directly into the joists for the greatest strength.


  • Installation starts at one end of the room. As you work across the room, cut the planks to fit the space. Stagger the ends of the boards along the ceiling for a more natural look. Leave a 1/4-inch gap around the edges to allow for expansion that is normal with wood. The planks interlock using a tongue-and-groove system. The planks are nailed to the ceiling as you go.


  • If you're using unfinished wood flooring, paint or stain it before you attach it to the ceiling. The work is much easier with the flooring laying down on a flat surface than trying to reach above you with a paintbrush or roller. You can touch up the nail holes and blemishes in the finish that occur during installation once all of the ceiling pieces are in place. Purchase extra flooring material to account for cut pieces at the ends that come from staggering the boards. Finish around the edges with decorative trim to cover the expansion gap you left along the edges of the ceiling material.

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