When Engineered Flooring Attacks: Avoiding Lemons

Angelim Pedra Engineered Flooring NOT Exploding. This is good.
Angelim Pedra Engineered Flooring NOT Exploding. This is good.

So you’re ready to buy some engineered flooring, convinced that you’re cleverly avoiding the pitfalls of solid flooring’s dimensional instability. You get your engineered flooring. You install it yourself, and it looks great. You pat yourself on the back; you belong to an elite class of truly savvy home owners.

Then your floor explodes.

Ok, maybe it doesn’t explode, but it undergoes any number of mechanical failures, from veneers detaching due to inferior adhesives on to unlevel joints popping up due to bad milling, bowing, cupping, you name it. So why is this all happening, despite your super-savviness?

Because you bought your flooring from a twitchy looking guy standing out behind Lowe’s with a U-haul and claims of owning his “own mill” in China or Indonesia.

Ok, again this might be a slight exaggeration. But the point I’m trying to illustrate is this: Make sure the engineered flooring you’re buying comes from a reputable source. Check the brand, make sure it’s been around for a while. Make sure it’s got a good reputation, GOOGLE IT (or Bing it or Yahoo! it, just make sure you research it.) Hardwood flooring is a massive purchase, so a little research can go a long way in making sure that you don’t get skunked with some bum material. Look for customer testimonials. Bargain hunting can be nasty: Cruising Craigslist is probably not the way to find quality material. You might be able to find an independent broker or sourcer, but then you’re in the same position: Research the companies they’re recommending.

Here are a few reputable engineered flooring brands to take a look at:

http://www.allwood.com

http://www.novausawood.com

http://www.cikel.com

http://www.ecotimber.com

Be safe out there, consumers! Arm yourself with knowledge!