To create a floor that’s both beautiful and durable takes a strong back and a skillful eye. Flooring installers and tile and marble setters tackle the job—laying and finishing carpet, wood, vinyl, and tile. Work starts by removing old flooring then cleaning and leveling the surface. These workers measure the area to be covered, and cut flooring material or tile to fit. Relying on design plans—or their knowledge of attractive patterns and colors— they place tile and flooring and affix it in position. Each type of flooring requires its own skills and tools to install: Carpet installers use “knee kickers,” to position carpet, and power stretchers to pull it snugly against walls. Floor sanders and finishers power sand hardwood floors, then apply stains and sealants to preserve the wood. Floor layers install durable linoleum, vinyl and other materials. Tile and marble setters use special cutting devices to size ceramic and marble tile, then install it and finish the floor surface. The work of installing flooring comes with challenging physical demands; workers spend much of their time reaching, bending, and kneeling, and wear protective equipment when needed. Most schedules are full time, and self-employment is common. Most flooring installers and tile and marble setters learn on the job starting as helpers, though some enter the field through a 2-4 year apprenticeship.
What they do:
Apply hard tile, stone, and comparable materials to walls, floors, ceilings, countertops, and roof decks.
On the job, you would:
Cut and shape tile to fit around obstacles and into odd spaces and corners, using hand and power cutting tools.
Lay and set mosaic tiles to create decorative wall, mural, and floor designs.
Align and straighten tile using levels, squares, and straightedges.
Engineering and Technology
building and construction
Arts and Humanities
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
changing what is done based on other people's actions
Hand and Finger Use
keep your arm or hand steady
hold or move items with your hands
Ideas and Logic
notice when problems happen
order or arrange things
listen and understand what people say
communicate by speaking
exercise for a long time without getting out of breath
People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Computer aided design CAD software
EasyCAD Iris 2D
Data base user interface and query software
Aya Associates Comp-U-Floor
no high school diploma/GED or high school diploma/GED usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.