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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Our new home upgraded with Armstrong Grand Illusions laminate floors. It looks great. However, when we walk on it, it squeaks and creaks both upstairs and downstairs. The floor installer and Armstrong distributor said this is normal due to laminate floor. The house builder said they can not do anything since we selected laminate floor. Can anyone help us how we should do to fix squeaky/creaking floor with the builder or Armstrong.

Thanks!
 

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The floor should not squeaking. Saying it's laminate and this it does this is just not right. Builder likley needs to fix the subfloor. Are the floors floating, glued, or nailed?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
The floor is floating. By reading over other discussion, it seems the laminate floor may have creaking if the joints are not manufactured accurately. Armstrong Grand Illusions was made in China. Do you think this may be the issue. Since the floor installer said the subfloor is leveled and underlayment was installed.
 

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We've seen a lot of similar issues with this product. The Grand Illusions has drop together end joints with no locking system on them. Only the long edges lock. The short ends move more and tend to creak.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
We found more info on the planks of the Armstrong Grand Illusions. The floor material is made in China. Someone else may bought the same lot. The label on the plank is Armstrong L3030 12 S LESH 1 Run Date 04/21/2011 Made in China 20:10 B. Does anyone know how to fix the squeaky/creaking while walking on.

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David
 

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The only way I know of the really fix it is to take the floor apart and reinstall it while gluing the end joints. The sad thing is, other companies have chosen to use this method as well and for the most part I haven't seen any problem with them. Maybe quality control on the Armstrong stuff is lacking and too much play is allowed in their joint.
 

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Armstrong's Response to Laminate Noise Issue

Hi! We apologize for the difficulties you are experiencing with your Armstrong floor. There are various reasons for excessive noise in laminate flooring to occur. Please contact our customer service department at 1-800-233-3823. They will be able to review some possible causes of this issue with you and help you determine the next step to take.


Kim with Armstrong Flooring
 

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Armstrong Grand Illusions Creaky Floor

My Armstrong Grand Illusions flooring snaps and pops, too. My 1/4-round molding around the perimeter of the floor may not allow the floating floor to shift enough but I doubt if molding tightness is the root cause. Another problem is the musty smell emanating from this product. As soon as I walk in the door after being outside I can smell this musty odor. I'm certain it's the flooring and nothing else. There are other posts regarding the smell. I've lived with this flooring for over 2 years and am not happy whatsoever with this product.
 

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Armstrong's Response to Grand Illusions Comment

We are sorry to hear that you're unhappy with the performance of your floor. Armstrong does have a process in place to handle these sorts of issues with our floors. The process works through the retailer where the floor was purchased. Please contact your retailer and arrange for them to inspect your floor. If for some reason you are unable to contact the retailer, please contact us directly at [email protected].
 

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I did some additional tests with spare Grand Illusions planks and can say the product does indeed smell and was made in China. There are 2 different dates of manufacture, April 2009 and February 2010, on the spare blanks. The tough finished floor mylar coating seals the smell, it's the particle board joints and end cuts that smell. I've had so many issues with this product! The first problem was proper levelness where no more than 1/8" deviation every 6' was not met by the flooring contractor. In fact, no subfloor levelness preparation was done whatsoever. Levelness issues were addressed but not done entirely correct. There were a couple of high spots we opted not to grind down due to dust and instead attempted to float out. Support from Armstrong, the builder and the installer has been middling at best.
 

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Interesting that Armstrong Watches these forums, it must mean that they have enough complaints that know where to look.
This was my thought too...strange that someone makes an apperance after a complaint is done.

I belong to a BMW forum and same thing there....BMWUSA will magically appear when someone is ripping mad.
 

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Armstrong Follow-Up

We do apologize for your troubles and sincerely want to offer our assistance. In order for us to be able to help, we do need more information. Please contact Armstrong direct at [email protected]. A customer service specialist is awaiting your email and does look forward to providing you assistance.
 

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Armstrong Customer Service

At Armstrong, we sincerely want our customers to be satisfied with our flooring products. Our well-trained customer service relations team is available to take any calls related to our products - from questions related to finding a floor, to DIY issues, to floor care to warranties and more - Monday thru Friday, 9-4:30 EST. (1-800-233-3823) or by email at [email protected].
 

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I contacted all parties concerned including Armstrong. I contacted a company moments ago who specializes in formaldehyde testing to inquire about the musty smell and chemical composition of the Armstrong laminate. I'm considering sending this testing company a sample of the Grand Illusions flooring. I talked to both the builder and installer this morning about the musty smell. I'll keep people abreast of my findings.

My best bet other than remove the flooring is to purchase a quality air purifier with a 3-stage filter to include a charcoal layer. They're not cheap, the model I'd need is approximately $500. These air purifiers usually work reasonably well and remove other VOCs. It has been over a year since flooring installation so I'm not holding out much hope that the smell will entirely dissipate on its own. There's a section of the floor where I can slide two planks apart and stick my nose in the crevice; the musty smell is unmistakable.
 

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A couple of comments about the creaking issue: Today I was told by the Armstrong representative how two high spots could cause the snap, crackle and pop issue. I suspect it could but my area of laminate is somewhat large and the two moderately high spots in my opinion shouldn't cause other area joints to crack like it does. My neighbor has a similar problem with a different type of laminate. I believe the noise issue is an inherent characteristic of some laminate floors.

Also of note: When my flooring was being installed levelness tolerances weren't clearly defined by the Armstrong representative over the phone or the Armstrong representative who visited my home. The installation was clearly flawed but the Armstrong representative, for whatever reason, failed to readily own up to it. Besides 7 areas of the subfloor not meeting levelness criteria, there were several end pieces less than 8"; all end pieces butting against the wall should be at least 8" which is a manufacturer prerequisite. Also, my flooring wasn't initially installed in a nice random pattern. I had this repeating step pattern which was pretty lame considering the cost.

Note: Leveling a concrete floor is not difficult. Push a 6' level across the floor and you'll see the slab deviations. Fill in the low spots and grind down the high spots.

I wouldn't consider the snap, crackle and pop noise the laminate makes an endearing feature, it cheapens the product, but the noise really doesn't bother me much. My real concern is chemical composition and musty odor.
 
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