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Old 09-14-2010, 08:29 PM   #1
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click lock wood flooring and tile


I have about 900 square feet where I want the carpet replaced with wood. I noticed that click lock wood is cheaper to install. I am not a do it yourself kind of person. I want to hire someone. I have not been happy with the companies that have come so far. One would not give a bid until I hired him, another blew me off (then sent an abbreviated estimate 2 weeks later), another showed up 35 minutes late and did not even have a tape measure. Another 2 tried to up sell me way more than I wanted.

I joined Angies List and am having guys from them come in to give estimates.

A few questions.

1. Is click lock wood real wood? One guy said its just like laminate. I think it is a little nicer than laminate. The install prices I see on this are $2-3/square foot.

2. One guy who tried to sell me some more expensive wood is now offering to do my click lock wood flooring for $4.50 square foot. That includes installation and the flooring. This sounds kind of cheap. I like a low price, but what do I look for in terms of quality? He has good reviews on Angies List.

3. When I went to home depot and looked at the flooring (the lower cost stuff looks just as nice as the more expensive to me to be honest), there was a big difference in warrantee. What does it tell me about a floor that only has a 5 year warrantee? Why would anyone want that? I would think you would want the 25 year warrantees or more right?

4. A couple of guys told me that it is ok to put wood in the entrance to my house and in one of my bathrooms (it is a half bath). How does click lock wood do with some water on it? Will it stain if someone overflows the toilet? If not, I will get tile.

5. I also want to do tile in at least one of my bathrooms. It is only 35 square feet. I saw tile for $2.00 (or less) a square foot up to $6/square foot. One guy quoted me $6.06 square foot. Is there any difference in quality with the more expensive stuff? The designs of the cheaper stuff at Home Depot looks fine to me.

I have never had work done on my house. I have allergies and I just want the carpet gone. I don't want to spend a lot of money. I want to do my bathrooms because the vinyl is ripping. One is 35 square feet so that does not appear to be a whole lot of money.

What else should I ask them?

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Old 09-15-2010, 09:50 AM   #2
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click lock wood flooring and tile


Quote:
Originally Posted by guessingo View Post
A few questions.

1. Is click lock wood real wood? One guy said its just like laminate. I think it is a little nicer than laminate. The install prices I see on this are $2-3/square foot.

2. One guy who tried to sell me some more expensive wood is now offering to do my click lock wood flooring for $4.50 square foot. That includes installation and the flooring. This sounds kind of cheap. I like a low price, but what do I look for in terms of quality? He has good reviews on Angies List.

3. When I went to home depot and looked at the flooring (the lower cost stuff looks just as nice as the more expensive to me to be honest), there was a big difference in warrantee. What does it tell me about a floor that only has a 5 year warrantee? Why would anyone want that? I would think you would want the 25 year warrantees or more right?

4. A couple of guys told me that it is ok to put wood in the entrance to my house and in one of my bathrooms (it is a half bath). How does click lock wood do with some water on it? Will it stain if someone overflows the toilet? If not, I will get tile.

5. I also want to do tile in at least one of my bathrooms. It is only 35 square feet. I saw tile for $2.00 (or less) a square foot up to $6/square foot. One guy quoted me $6.06 square foot. Is there any difference in quality with the more expensive stuff? The designs of the cheaper stuff at Home Depot looks fine to me.

I have never had work done on my house. I have allergies and I just want the carpet gone. I don't want to spend a lot of money. I want to do my bathrooms because the vinyl is ripping. One is 35 square feet so that does not appear to be a whole lot of money.

What else should I ask them?

I'll answer what I can:

1. wood is wood. What's different is how it is "put together" Some floors are solid, and others are lots of little pieces glued together somehow. When something is "laminated" it means that thin sheets of material are fixed together to form a larger piece. I generally prefer the look and feel of solid wood. Laminate has advantages in cost, strength, and stability.

2. this guy probably tried to sell you more expensive wood because he can mark it up alot more, and make more money. No surprise there... he's trying to make a living just like you are. Once he figured out that you weren't interested, he's giving you a good price on the product that you want. Also no big surprise. If you like him and feel he is trustworthy, ask him to show you a couple of his installations or just ask for references. for such a small job, he may not be willing to travel all over town with you to show you several installations..... you'll have to do some legwork.

3. You've already figured out the difference in the product: warranty. the actual product is probably very similar. They may use a lower quality wood or glue or assembly process for the cheaper product. However, companies are legally required to set aside money to cover warranties when they offer them. The company doesn't do this for free, they charge you more to cover the cost. My company (on average) sets aside 4% of sales for warranty.

4. With any wood floor, you need to clean up water immediately. It probably depends on the finish whether it will stain or not. I personally would not have wood in a bathroom. (My inlaws always do carpet.. UGH!) I prefer tile. We have bamboo in our kitchen and entryways and it does great.

5. I don't know much about the different kinds of tile. I've seen "cheap stuff" that looks great. I think the much more important thing with tile is to make sure that your installer does a good job.

Good luck with your projects.

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Old 09-15-2010, 09:03 PM   #3
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click lock wood flooring and tile


1. Is click lock wood real wood? One guy said its just like laminate. I think it is a little nicer than laminate. The install prices I see on this are $2-3/square foot.

You have Laminate flooring, which is a composite backing, basically highly compressed particle board with a few chemical hardeners thrown in and a melamine wear layer on top. The wear layer on laminate in not real wood. It's a synthetic material that is harder and more durable than any wood will be. That makes laminate more resistant to scratching than real wood or engineered floors. It's the better choice if you have pets that are prone to scratch a floor with their claws.

Engineered flooring sound more like what you are looking at. Engineered floors are generally constructed of a high grade plywood as a back board and a layer of real hardwood on the surface. These floors perform very much like a real hardwood floor but cost less and are more structurally stable. The drawbacks of engineered floors are that they can indent easier since their back boards are softer than a solid hardwood would be and the wear layer can sometimes be so thin that you can't sand and refinish them as much as a real wood floor if you can sand them at all. Higher grades like Kahrs can be sanded nearly as much as a real hardwood but the price reflects this. Warranty on lower end products reflects a couple of issues. First, the finish on the product may not be as good (not as many coats or as much aluminum oxide in it.) Second you pay more for higher end products because you are paying for that additional warranty. The company has to make more money if they are taking additional risk by offering repair or replacement of a product for a longer period of time. Lower priced products usually have more character marks like knots and streaks that cleaner woods as well.


2. One guy who tried to sell me some more expensive wood is now offering to do my click lock wood flooring for $4.50 square foot. That includes installation and the flooring. This sounds kind of cheap. I like a low price, but what do I look for in terms of quality? He has good reviews on Angies List.

That price does sound a bit low for a decent product and installation. He could be completely legit though. It sound like he was trying to talk you into a better product because he may know the product you have chosen won't perform well for long. I've had plenty of customers ask for the absolute cheapest thing they can get and then blame me when problems occur down the road, even though my installation has nothing to do with it. We like to keep people away from those products because it's less headache for the customer and the company that sells and installs it down the road. Sometime we have to overprice a project on this type of material on purpose so we don't get the job, just because we feel it isn't worth dealing with the problems that will arise down the road.

3. When I went to home depot and looked at the flooring (the lower cost stuff looks just as nice as the more expensive to me to be honest), there was a big difference in warrantee. What does it tell me about a floor that only has a 5 year warrantee? Why would anyone want that? I would think you would want the 25 year warrantees or more right?

See the answer to question 1.

4. A couple of guys told me that it is ok to put wood in the entrance to my house and in one of my bathrooms (it is a half bath). How does click lock wood do with some water on it? Will it stain if someone overflows the toilet? If not, I will get tile.

All wood floors are susceptible to water damage. An entry is usually just fine. Put a rug in front of the door to catch water and you don't generally have any issues. If you have any water on the floor, wipe it up ASAP instead of leaving it. Bathrooms are a little different. It can be done and it can work fine, but you have to be careful to watch for water. I personally wouldn't do it. Kitchens and powder rooms are fine, but bathrooms and laundry rooms are a little different due to water risk. I'd go ceramic in these areas.

5. I also want to do tile in at least one of my bathrooms. It is only 35 square feet. I saw tile for $2.00 (or less) a square foot up to $6/square foot. One guy quoted me $6.06 square foot. Is there any difference in quality with the more expensive stuff? The designs of the cheaper stuff at Home Depot looks fine to me.

Ceramic is tricky. The cheap tile is usually plain old red clay with a glaze on it. This type of tile works just as well as high priced tile if it's set right. Higher end tiles are often porcelain and sometimes colorbody or thrubody porcelain. The differences are as follows.
a) Glazed ceramic - interior only. If you chip the glaze you see it. Cheaply priced.
b) Glazed porcelain - interior and exterior in many cases. Porcelain is more dense and doesn't absorb as much moisture so it's more freeze/thaw stable outside. You can still chip it and see the chips pretty badly. Decent quality at a good price.
c) Colorbody porcelain - interior and exterior. The base color of the tile goes all the way through the tile and the surface has a pattern glazed onto it. This tile can be chipped without noticing as much since the color inside the tile is similar to what you see on the surface. Mid priced and very good quality
d) Thrubody porcelain - interior and exterior. The color and the pattern go all the way through the tile. This tile is usually the most expensive and not widely available anymore. If you chip it though, the chip has to be pretty bad to be noticeable. The color and pattern throughout the tile tend to camouflage the damage.

The other thing to watch out for at stores like the Home Depot and Lowes is that they often get in "Seconds", which means they are not first quality products. I've heard horror stories about some of this tile. Most often the problem is that the tiles are not uniform in size. They can vary quite a bit from one tile to the other. This makes it a nightmare for the installer to lay it and try to keep the grout lines straight. Sometimes it's impossible and you floor looks shoddy just because you have crooked grout lines.

I have never had work done on my house. I have allergies and I just want the carpet gone. I don't want to spend a lot of money. I want to do my bathrooms because the vinyl is ripping. One is 35 square feet so that does not appear to be a whole lot of money.

What else should I ask them?

1) Laminate or Engineered, I'd ask for a decent sound dampening pad to make it sound more like real hardwood. We use a lot of Silencer pad, which is very good but doesn't add a great deal to the overall price.
2) Ask about Schluter Ditra with the ceramic. If you have concrete floors this isn't an absolute must though it is still recommended. If you have wooden floors you are going over with ceramic, you MUST have a membrane like Ditra first. Ditra is an uncoupling membrane that will keep your tile and grout from cracking as easily due to structural movement, which is plentiful with a wooden structure.

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Old 09-15-2010, 11:56 PM   #4
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click lock wood flooring and tile


poppameth pretty much nailed it . If you want a good floor go to a hardwood floor specialist and get hardwood , if you get floating click hardwood it is Veneer over cheaper plywood ,If your price is an Issue , laminate is pretty inexpensive , and inexpensive to install , The surface can not be refinished , But a good installer can replace a board in the middle , Cheap click hardwood usually has very thin veneer of hardwood over plywood , Can't be refinished , You could get an on sale prefinished hardwood for about 8$ per square foot , But the liquidators products are hard to install , And won't look so ggod , then the customer blames me ,The installation company . And I have to do extra work , Wich I won't be getting paid for , So unless I am out of work . I don't install from the liquidators . If I do I tell them it will not look so good . The milling will be off a little , Maybe a little warped etc , It won't fit together very good , , steer clear of wood products in moisture area's If you have a covered porch it would be ok in the entry , if the wind blows rain in , WEll ????, If your looking at bang for your buck , With a decent lasting finish use laminate ,But a hardwood floor up here ,end cost is 9$ to 11$ per square foot . laminate could be done for 4.50 If your getting a engineered floor installed for 4.50 I'd say it's low end builder grade . Or Liqidator product . Lowes has Bruce engineered fo REALLY cheap , but the veneer is REALLY thin
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