Archive for the ‘Flooring Inspector’ Category

How to Find and Hire a Certified Flooring Inspector

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

I belong to an association of flooring inspection professionals called N.I.C.F.I. or the National Institute of Certified Floorcovering Inspectors. I wanted to pass along some thoughts to you regarding this extraordinary group and its role in the flooring industry.

Like any industry, the people in the overall flooring business range from mediocre to excellent. Within this industry, there are several hundred flooring inspectors. I am here to tell you that the approximately 135 NICFI members are the best in their field.

In order to be a Certified Flooring Inspector, we must first have some type of flooring experience. Then, at our own expense, we are required to take multi-day, out-of-town classes sanctioned by one of several certification bodies and pass tests in whichever area of expertise interests us: carpet, laminate, wood, ceramic tile, resilient, or any combinations. After passing these in-depth tests, (more…)

Carpet Problems and Solutions: Carpet High Lines

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

carpet high lines | Glenn Revere

Carpeting is made using one of two methods: tufting or weaving. Almost all of the residential carpet sold today is made by tufting. Tufting machines are basically giant sewing machines. Instead of a single needle, 800-1,000 computer controlled needles stitch carpet yarns across a backing material to form the carpet. The needles are set to control the height of the carpet pile. Sometimes a single needle stitches a row of yarn that is too long. Cut pile carpets are carefully sheared after tufting in order to assure a smooth, even pile surface. Even so, a high row or high line can show up after a carpet is installed. If the high row is bent over and buried in the carpet pile, the line may take days or weeks to appear after the carpet has been repeatedly vacuumed. Tufting high lines always run lengthwise. (more…)

Inspection Safari: A Bamboo Flooring Installation Gone Wrong

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

As an independent, certified flooring inspector, I am commissioned by various parties to look at flooring complaints. Manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and consumers all call me in regards to flooring problems. Many of the “industry” calls are for “routine” inspections. When a consumer calls me, I know the inspection will be anything but routine.

On today’s Flooring Inspection Safari, I take you to a family’s newly remodeled second floor condominium. The family had updated it in advance of the birth of their first child. They wanted to complete all the work, including new engineered bamboo flooring throughout their home, before the baby came home. Sometimes things just don’t go according to plan!

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Laminate Wood Flooring: Weirdest Flooring Inspection Ever!

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

hardwoord flooring box | carpet expert Glenn Revere

I’ve been inspecting flooring for a long time — 40 years! — and I thought I’d seen it all. Or at least, most everything. But this particular inspection really took the cake.

I’d been contacted by a major manufacturer to look at some of their wood flooring. The complaint was “floor falling apart”. There was a note attached that said they couldn’t find any warranty information for this product, sold and installed in 2005. They sent me their inspection form for wood/engineered wood flooring.

I made an appointment with the homeowner to inspect this complaint. When I arrived, I asked to see the “defective” wood floor. Mr. X said, “You are standing on it!” When I looked down, I saw a laminate floor.

Now, a lot of people think a laminate floor is the same thing as a wood floor. But they are made from completely different materials and (more…)

Cleaning Laminate Floors Without Streaks

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

laminate flooring streaks | Glenn Revere

Every new product — whether it is a computer, ceiling fan, toaster, or flooring — has certain care and maintenance requirements. Manufacturers always include a “care guide” with their warranty information. When you buy new flooring — laminate, carpet, vinyl, wood, stone, or tile — read and follow these instructions. If you don’t, your new flooring won’t look its best or last as long as it should. And ignoring the care guide could void your warranty! This sounds simple, but often the care guidelines are not followed. (more…)

Inspection Safari: Carpet Sprouts – Causes and Solutions

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

carpet yarn sprout | carpet expert Glenn Revere

Last week, I inspected a large commercial installation. The complaint came in as “loose tufts and snags”. What I found was something very different: sprouts.

As defined in my book, All About Carpets, “sprouts are long ends of yarns that protrude above the pile surface…Sprouting is a defect only if excessive and unserviceable.”

When I looked across the large, open, glued-down (no padding) installation, it appeared someone had dropped small ball bearings all over this tufted carpet. What I actually saw were random longer loops of carpet pile that were sticking up above the rest of the level loop pile. So what was going on? Had something yanked loops out of the carpet backing? Or was it something else?

Tufted carpet is made by using needles that stitch carpet yarns into a thin sheet of material. As many as 1,000 needles run across a width of carpet. Each needle sets a looped yarn at a predetermined height. For cut-pile carpet, a knife cuts (more…)

Carpet Discoloration: Heat Damaged Carpet Seams

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

discolored carpet seam | Glenn Revere

Making tufted carpet is complicated. Several steps in the process use heat. Some of those steps include twisting yarn, dyeing yarn, and curing the carpet backings. So heat and carpet is a good combination, right? Well, not always.

Heat can also damage carpet, as today’s Flooring Inspection Safari illustrates:

A high quality nylon carpet was installed in a second story condo. Approximately 18-24 months after the installation, the renter noticed the carpet was fading from tan to pink along the seams! The carpet had not been cleaned yet. The renter, acting on the owner’s behalf, turned in a claim. I was asked to inspect the job for the manufacturer. As always, I looked at the overall installation to make sure it mets industry quality standards. I have duplicated the main portion of my inspection report here. It explains my findings: (more…)

Damaged Wood Flooring: Manufacturing or Installation Related?

Tuesday, August 19th, 2014

engineered wood flooring damage | Glenn Revere

As a Certified Flooring Inspector, I field inspection requests from consumers, manufacturers, and installers. The complaints range across a wide variety of problems. Sometimes the blame for a problem is obvious. It is clearly one person’s or one entity’s fault. Sometimes things are not so obvious and I cannot clearly deduce who is at fault. Today’s Flooring Inspection Safari complaint falls into the latter category.

In this case, the consumer complained her newly installed engineered wood floors were scratched and chipped. She noticed the problems when she moved furniture into her home after the installation was complete. She called the installers and they returned to look at the damage. Then they filed a complaint with the manufacturer, who called me. I looked at the floor two months after the installation. I have included the body of my inspection report here for you. You’ll notice that I am always required to check the entire installation: (more…)

Laminate Flooring Installation Problems: Gapped End Joints + More

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

laminate flooring gapped joints | @GlennRevere

You finally bought your new laminate flooring! Congratulations! But remember, installing your new floor correctly is as important as — and maybe even more important than — the selection and purchase. You are paying cold, hard cash for that floor and expect the best. The installation should also be “the best.”

As a Certified Flooring Inspector, I see so many beautiful floors that have been “messed up” because of sloppy installation procedures. Every box of flooring contains detailed installation instructions. With the proper tools and a little training, it should be relatively easy to install laminate flooring. This is a do-it-yourself floor. You’d think professional installers would do it right every time. Well, don’t bet on it. (more…)

Cork Flooring Problems: My Cork Tiles Won’t Stick!

Tuesday, August 5th, 2014

cork flooring installation | @GlennRevere

As a Certified Flooring Inspector, my job is to look at flooring installation failures and figure out what happened. Some people say I am a forensics flooring failure person. I look at all kinds of flooring. Today’s Inspection Safari is about a glue-down cork tile floor that wouldn’t stick to the concrete subfloor.

As with any flooring material, cork tiles must be installed according to the manufacturer’s specifications. Each brand has its own requirements. You can’t necessarily install Brand X the way you did Brand Y. That is why installation instructions are included with every box of material. Unfortunately, some installers think you CAN install different brands the same way and get the same results. It doesn’t work that way. (more…)