How to Install Quarter Round Floor Molding

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Quarter-round floor molding derives its name from its pie-shape, which measures one-quarter of a circle. Quarter-round is installed on the edge of your floor, directly against the base boards, and is used to both hide imperfections in the edges of the floor or baseboard and to provide a finished look to your room. Often installed around tile and hardwood floors, installing quarter-round floor molding is the final step in the installation of your new hardwood or tile floors.

Things You'll Need

  • Paint
  • Paint brush
  • Tape measure
  • Miter saw
  • Nail gun
  • Air compressor
  • Putty
  • Sand paper
  • Caulk
  • Caulk gun

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Measure the length of each wall requiring quarter round molding at the base to determine the amount of quarter round needed. Quarter round should not be installed around door jambs or through doorways.

Paint the quarter round prior to cutting and installing, if you are planning to paint the molding. Painting in advance saves you time and prevents accidental spills on the floor.

Measure the length of the first wall, then measure and mark your first piece of quarter round. Determine the types of miter cuts required, either inside or outside. An inside cut is used to connect two pieces of quarter round when turning an outside corner; an outside cut is used to connect two pieces of quarter round on an inside corner.

Set your miter saw to the correct 45-degree setting, either on the left or the right of the saw. To rotate the miter saw, pull the handle on the bottom out and then rotate the saw, using the gauge on the base of the saw to determine the set degree. The left 45-degree setting is for left-outside cuts or right-inside cuts. The right 45-degree setting is for right-outside cuts or left-inside cuts.

Place the quarter round on the saw table and firmly press it against the saw fence and table with your fingers. Ensure that your fingers are safely away from the blade and then make your cuts.

Place the quarter round in place and then secure it to the baseboard using the nail gun and air compressor. Nail at a downward angle directly into the side of the quarter round and through the baseboard.

Repeat steps 2 through 5 until the quarter round is installed.

Fill the nail holes with putty and allow the putty to dry. After the putty has dried, lightly sand the surface to smooth.

Apply a bead of caulk to the top and bottom of the quarter round to create a water-tight seal. Apply caulk to any gaps where two pieces of quarter round meet. Apply a small dab of touch-up paint to the puttied areas if necessary.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you come to a door jamb, end the quarter round section with an outside 22.5-degree angle, rather than a 45-degree angle


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