Posts Tagged ‘engineered wood floors’

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…)

Cleaning Engineered Wood Floors: Consumer-Caused Delamination

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

The process of layering materials together to form a product is called lamination. Any product made by layering materials together can separate under the right conditions. Engineered wood floors are made by gluing (laminating) several thin plies of wood together to form a board suitable for flooring. By definition, engineered wood is a plied board and can delaminate. That is, any of the layers can separate, including the veneer top sheet.

There is more than one reason why boards delaminate. My job as a flooring inspector is to figure out the exact reason for a flooring failure. Is the cause manufacturing, installation, or site/maintenance related?

Today’s Inspection Safari looks at a maintenance-related cause. (more…)

Mystery Spots in Engineered Wood Flooring

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

wood flooring spots

When you install new engineered wood flooring, you don’t expect to wake up one day and find spots appearing throughout the floor. But that is what happened to a floor in a suburban home here in San Diego. The homeowner found me on the Internet and hired me to figure out what happened.

The floor had been installed professionally using the glue-down method over a concrete slab foundation. At first, everything was beautiful! The gorgeous natural hickory engineered wood flooring (veneer over plywood) made the family room look great. Then, slowly, over a period of several months, small light gray spots began appearing. At first, they were barely noticeable. The spots slowly grew in size and darkened until they were highly visible everywhere in the room. That is when I was asked to inspect the floor. (more…)

Engineered Wood Flooring Fading From Sun Exposure

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

fading wood flooring
Did you realize that sunshine fades everything — even furnishings in your home that are not in direct sunlight? Yes, paint, fabrics, photographs, and flooring all fade when exposed to ultraviolet rays from the sun. How quickly fading occurs depends on what part of the country you live in, how your home is situated on your lot, and window covering effectiveness. Everything inside your home sun fades eventually. (more…)

Engineered Wood Flooring Inspection: Raised Wood End Joints

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

raised wood end joints | Glenn Revere

I have been inspecting flooring complaints for over 40 years. In that time, I have seen all types of problems. Some of them were unavoidable. Most of them were avoidable. Not following a manufacturer’s installation requirements definitely falls into the “avoidable” category.

Installing a wood floor involves many steps, from acclimating the wood prior to installation to cleaning up post-installation. While all wood floors are generally installed in the same way, each manufacturer requires certain installation variations in order to assure a quality installation. These variations are not a secret. Each box of wood contains detailed instructions. If the instructions are missing or something is vague, more information is available on the manufacturer’s website. There is also a toll-free number that one can call for technical support.

So it always amazes me when an “experienced” installer ignores these important requirements and does it “his way.” (more…)

Inspection Safari: Engineered Wood Flooring Complaint

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

wood flooring

When a person uses a store sample to buy wood flooring, one expects the delivered product to closely resemble the sample. What happens when the sample and the installed product are “substantially” different? I inspected an engineered wood floor for this exact complaint.

Engineered wood floors are made by gluing a thin veneer of real wood over a plywood base. The thickness of the veneer and the plywood base depend on the quality of the flooring. More expensive flooring has a thicker veneer and a thicker plywood base. But whether the flooring costs less or costs more has nothing to do with how the store sample looks compared to the delivered, installed flooring. What you see is what you should get. (more…)

Know the Difference Between Wood Flooring Types

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

photo of wood flooring

Before I became a Certified Flooring Inspector, I did not realize that there are two types of wood flooring: solid wood and engineered wood floors. (Laminate is a hard surface type of flooring, but is not considered wood.)

Both types of wood flooring have certain things in common. Both can only be installed in an enclosed, temperature controlled environment. While wood flooring is not a living thing, it is (more…)

Flooring Inspection: Discoloration of New Engineered Wood Flooring

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

discolored hardwood flooring | Glenn Revere

Engineered wood flooring is a sturdy, long-wearing product. It is basically a thin veneer of real wood glued over a plywood base. The product generally comes factory-finished with a top coat wear layer. The cross-ply base gives the engineered wood floor more stability than a solid wood floor. It allows installation in areas not suitable for a solid wood product. Engineered wood also costs less than solid wood.

Engineered wood floors are popular today. Like any product, they can have problems. These problems can be related to manufacturing, installation or maintenance. As a certified flooring inspector, I see them all.

Recently, I inspected a new, professionally installed glued-down (over concrete) engineered floor with a natural maple veneer top sheet. The wood veneer was (more…)