Billybob

Vinyl plank flooring

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I'm considering LVP for my living room (currently carpet over hardwood).

First time I've ever done a floating floor and I was surprised at the look of the new vinyls, seems a better choice than laminate or engineered wood.

Lumber liquidators had some decent ones, looking at their CoreLuxe Ultra 8mm, I didn't like anything at Homies.

 

Anybody have any advice or opinions?

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Just replaced all downstairs carpeting with it after a burst waterpipe incident. Easy to install (get the install kit from HF, best $12 you'll spend); once the pieces are 'clicked' and gently hammered (use rubber mallet) together they won't come apart without damaging the interlocking tracking; be wary of the first few rows shifting under the gentle hammering until there is sufficient weight/area/friction to be unaffected; although it doesn't need any underlay, it'll behoove you to get the subsurface as flat as possible ... you'll hear the difference walking over any low spots ... pipes can now burst away with no further damage ... apparently :th:.

 

Only been a few weeks so can't comment yet to wearability 

 

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Used Coretec flooring in my family room and really like it. Feels great under foot, cleans up well, and has been very durable since I put it in (May 2017) and with a house of 5 and a dog, that's important. Cost is about $3.50+ per square foot and installation is a breeze.

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I've installed lots of 8mm classic laminate and somewhere north of 1000 ft of 5mm vinyl click plank, and except for the water factor I like the laminate a lot better. I've never used the newer thick core vinyl. And the Costco product is a lot cheaper, often on sale under $1.50/ft. The newest laminate product of their says it's "24 hr spillproof", whatever that means. I still wouldn't put it in a kitchen. But I have floors I installed in rentals with their stuff 20 years old, and it's still pretty solid.

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Installed my first one in my family room where the dog spends most of his time about 3 years ago. So far not a mark on it. Since then I have used it in 3 rental bathrooms and 2 kitchens and have been very happy with it.

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For heavy duty durability and a quality feel I like the plank look tiles.

Just put down an area rug of what ever size you like on top to decorate to your taste and have a warm place for your toes. Just work extra clean when grouting. Clean the tiles right away, very well . The simulated wood grain is a bear to clean the grout off if you let it dry too long. Straight vinegar will help you clean up if needed.

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4 hours ago, Seakarp said:

For heavy duty durability and a quality feel I like the plank look tiles.

Just put down an area rug of what ever size you like on top to decorate to your taste and have a warm place for your toes. Just work extra clean when grouting. Clean the tiles right away, very well . The simulated wood grain is a bear to clean the grout off if you let it dry too long. Straight vinegar will help you clean up if needed.

You need to really be sure of the stability of your floor for tiles that big. Definitely out for the 140 year old row houses my area!  If I were to do it Id definitely put radiant heat under there. I retrofit radiant under my terrazzo kitchen and thickset tile bath. Warm comfortable floors in winter.

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I've done a couple of projects with SMARTCore and SMARTcore Plus from Lowes.  Total of ~ 1000 sq feet.  

Overall I've been very happy with it.  I do have a couple of small scratches- but those were from something being dragged across it, and they are the kind that only show up under a certain light-  bugs me but not a big problem.

 

 I don't  do a ton of floors, so it always takes longer than 'd think just to hit my stride WRT remembering  what I am doing- doesn't  matter if it's laminate, LVP, hardwood or tile.  A couple of observations/tips

 

1) I used a laminate install kit to help. Not required per the instructions but handy-  the spacers make it easy to keep it off the edge of the wall (need I think 1/4 space around the base and I have a tool that's lets you tap the joint together-  a piece of metal with a small lip to grab the end of the plank and a sticking surface.  Might be the same kit others mentioned above.

2) getting the first few rows down is the toughest part.  after getting the planks together, I used some masking tape to hold the seams tight.  With a few rows, the whole floor can slip our of alignment and pop some of the seams and you need to reset.  A few 3" pieces of tape solves that- This was an issue more with the Smartcore Pro which has a padded backer to it and is just a bit thicker.  Also, found that once you get some board down, throw unused boxes of flooring down on top to keep the laid floor from shifting.  This isnt' an issue once you have a bit of flooring down, but the backsides of this is slippery, so they move if you don't have much down

3) at least with the SmartCore there can be a trick to getting the joint tight.  When they go together well, the joint are essentially invisible.  If the joint isnt' perfectly lined up, take it apart and do it over.  I'm sure it's manufacturer specific, but I found that reaching under the board a pressing it from the backside seemed to guarantee an easy fit. So line up and snap n from above and then reach under with gentle pressure.  

 

I also installed this on a set of stairs.  In this application, this is a glue down product.  The stairnose molding  if pretty expensive but it  looks great

 

 

 

 

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