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View Full Version : Pergo laminate flooring question


Heat
09-17-07, 09:16 PM
Anybody have experience with Pergo brand laminate flooring, specifically the type with the padding attached?

I'm about to buy some laminate and was looking at this from Lowe's, but was kind of concerned about how the planks are about six or seven inches wide, I was concerned that there would be big, obvious connections.

Any thoughts on the subject? Or would it be better to just buy the padding and put that down, then narrow planks?

Lee Harvey Oswald
09-17-07, 09:56 PM
My dad did pergo floor throughout the house and it looks excellent. He did the padding first and then the narrow boards. There are no big, obvious connections. I can't really help with the ones with the padding already attached though. The floor is also very durable and easy to keep clean. Its been several years and there is not a scratch or scuff mark anywhere on the floor.

When he did his he did it, for the most part room by room. He bought for a couple of bedrooms first and it was the glue together boards. When it came time to do the rest of the house they no longer sold those kind and they had the snap together kind which was easier for him to put down. There was a slight difference in the look of the boards but its not something anyone would notice since each room was completed with the same boards.

kvrdave
09-17-07, 10:58 PM
I use this a lot. Started putting it in all my rentals, and it has been fantastic. But.....BEWARE!!!!! the crap they sell that already has the padding on the back is absolute crap. I have no idea what the difference was, but it would not go down well, the end (even though they are locked to other pieces) would actually bow up. I have got to believe that we either had a reject batch or that they will eventually take this stuff off the market. DO NOT USE the stuff with backing already on. Rolling the foam down is simple and quick, and there is no reason to go with the crap with backing already on.

Also, any cheap foam backing works great. Don't buy the stuff made by Pergo, or other big name brands. I ended up finding some generic foam pad that was around $10 a roll instead of $30.

Also, don't feel like you have to use Pergo brand. There are a lot of good brands out there now, and the main thing you want to look at is the thicknexx of the to laminate layer. Thicker is better.

Kittydreamer
09-17-07, 11:17 PM
Got mine at Costco and I love it. :up:

kvrdave
09-17-07, 11:20 PM
Only thing I did not like about Costco was the fact that I could never seem to find the trim pieces. Don't know if they didn't stock that, or if they kept it hidden.

Kittydreamer
09-17-07, 11:23 PM
Only thing I did not like about Costco was the fact that I could never seem to find the trim pieces. Don't know if they didn't stock that, or if they kept it hidden.
Yeah we had to get ours at Lowes but it still worked out pretty well. We still need to do the dinning room and living room, maybe the kitchen but so far, it's so nice to have rather than carpet, which sucks.

Anyway, good luck to the OP. Pay someone to install it, it's a bitch.

kvrdave
09-17-07, 11:56 PM
:lol: Depending on what type of room you are doing, it is a pretty simple install. It's an easy learning curve, as well. I generally take what I save by doing it myself and buy a new tool. Seriously, it is pretty easy, and if you have any ability at all, it will come out great, and you will save big bucks by doing it yourself.

Kittydreamer is just a wuss. :D

Sdallnct
09-18-07, 12:06 AM
I would put Pergo in a Kitchen. But do be aware that the occasional splash of water on top is no big deal if water gets under it (such as from a water line leak) you are totally screwed. Also while the Pergo site said you can replace an individual piece in the middle of the floor, it is a bitch to do.

The best thing about Pergo like flooring is it's ease of install for the DIY. There are much better floors out there including actual wood or engineered but are generally tougher for the DIYer to do.

If your goal is to save money...it is hard to beat a laminate. If you goal is to upgrade and put in nice flooring, I would look at something else. No offense to those that have it. I was going to put it in my media room, but wife didn't like that idea. We ended up with those commerical carpet squares which are also easy to install and have to admit I do like it.

kvrdave
09-18-07, 12:19 AM
I have used commercial carpet squares as well. :lol:

If you are going to do carpet, they are good. But I found that if a pet pees on them, the people generally don't notice as well as they do if they slip and fall from a pool of pee. :)

Psi
09-18-07, 12:26 AM
I have used commercial carpet squares as well. :lol:

If you are going to do carpet, they are good. But I found that if a pet pees on them, the people generally don't notice as well as they do if they slip and fall from a pool of pee. :)

You are the very definition of "slumlord." :)

jonw9
09-18-07, 07:24 AM
I put down 400 ft^2 this summer of the exact stuff you are looking at. I think i got the 25 yr. warranty stuff.

I notice no problems with the pad. The joints don't look as smooth as the glued stuff it replaced, but the boards are not as smooth either (wood grain) so you don't notice.

The real learning curve it with the plastic block you hit with a hammer to push the boards together. Have it wrong and you break a lip or an edge. Seems minor, but when you put the next board on it doesn't fit flush.

I started in the kitchen and finished in the laundry room. I wish I would have done it the other way, because the laundry room is my best work, and only the wife sees it! :lol:

kvrdave
09-20-07, 03:40 PM
The real learning curve it with the plastic block you hit with a hammer to push the boards together. Have it wrong and you break a lip or an edge. Seems minor, but when you put the next board on it doesn't fit flush.


I actually just use the palm of my hand with a good leather glove on.

grrrah
09-20-07, 03:59 PM
Whats it cost to have this installed by a contractor? I know its pretty easy to do, but I'm lazy, and would want it done rather quickly.

I heard a good estimate is to double the cost for the material (i.e, if its $2 a square foot, it will cost about $4/ installed). What about the costs for padding and the trim? cutting?

While we are at it, whats a general guestimate for the cost of ceramic tiling installed in the kitchen (installed per ft^2)?

Thanks, you guys are my heroes.... :D

SPiRAL
09-20-07, 04:21 PM
Got mine at Costco and I love it. :up:


Right on sister. Same here, I did my house, room by room and it looks awesome.

Maxwell Smart
09-20-07, 04:40 PM
anyone have any pics of the flooring they installed? I want to put some wood floors in my living room

Sdallnct
09-20-07, 04:52 PM
Whats it cost to have this installed by a contractor? I know its pretty easy to do, but I'm lazy, and would want it done rather quickly.

I heard a good estimate is to double the cost for the material (i.e, if its $2 a square foot, it will cost about $4/ installed). What about the costs for padding and the trim? cutting?

While we are at it, whats a general guestimate for the cost of ceramic tiling installed in the kitchen (installed per ft^2)?

Thanks, you guys are my heroes.... :D

OMG, really if your paying to have it installed get something else, don't get a laminate. IMHO the only reason to get laminate is the easy install for a DIY. If you are going to go to the expense of having it done, get at least engineered or maybe a bamboo or something. It will only be a little more for material and doubt that much more for a pro to install.

I think you would be hard pressed to find install for $2.00 sf. Maybe if you have a handy man or someone like that. But think at the end of the day you will pay at least $3.00 to maybe $5.00 for labor install. But guess it does depend on your area.

grrrah
09-20-07, 05:44 PM
OMG, really if your paying to have it installed get something else, don't get a laminate. IMHO the only reason to get laminate is the easy install for a DIY. If you are going to go to the expense of having it done, get at least engineered or maybe a bamboo or something. It will only be a little more for material and doubt that much more for a pro to install.

I think you would be hard pressed to find install for $2.00 sf. Maybe if you have a handy man or someone like that. But think at the end of the day you will pay at least $3.00 to maybe $5.00 for labor install. But guess it does depend on your area.
good to know. I am just thinking about doing it for now. I am probably in one of the higher laber cost areas. I am more concerned with cutting the edges and lack of tools. That and I was hoping it would be finished in 1 or 2 days with tiling the kitchen floor at the same time. (both pretty small areas)

Im a complete clueless n00b at this. is it dificult to DIY even if the flooring would end at a staircase (up and down), at tiles, etc?

I have a buddy thats a contractor that I can ask to "help" I guess.

kvrdave
09-20-07, 05:51 PM
anyone have any pics of the flooring they installed? I want to put some wood floors in my living room

Next week I will be putting this down in the emu lady's house. Everything has been stripped out, and it is currently being painted. I'll try to remember to take pics and will post them. It really is easy, and looks great.

jonw9
09-20-07, 05:55 PM
I will look to see if i have any pictures to put up.


I paid about $1.99 ft^2 for the flooring and I think Lowes was going to charge $2.69, but I would rather try it myself then to pay one of their contractors.

Heat
10-09-07, 03:35 PM
I kept on looking for a laminate that looked most like hardwood, then I thought “why do I want an expensive piece of plastic when I could get real hardwood for the same price?”

So I bought 3/4" hardwood by Bruce - I don't have it yet, it's on order. It's 350 square feet of 3.25" wide plank (similar to the Dover View, but not that one) for the living room, hallway, and steps. I also have 400 square feet of 2.5" oak strip flooring on order, for the three bedrooms. The total cost was about $2,800 for the 750 square feet of materials, but this includes $400 worth of stair noses.

I’ll have an installer that I know do the living room, steps, and hallway at a cost of $2.75 / square foot, and I’ll do the bedrooms once I figure out the tricks. As far as I can tell I just need a miter saw for cross cuts, a special flooring nailer, and I’ll borrow a friends’ table saw for any ripping that I need to do (cutting length-wise).

kvrdave
10-09-07, 03:49 PM
And I still haven't started mine. :(

FantasticVSDoom
10-09-07, 08:34 PM
One thing that we did was parquet wood flooring in our old house... It was a little cheaper than traditional hardwood, but looked great and was fairly easy to install. However I did glue myself to the floor a few times, and almost ended up in divorce court due to the volatile nature of home improvement projects between my wife and I.

D.Pham4GLTE (>60GB)
10-10-07, 12:05 AM
We looked into lowes and what not, but Costco was by far the cheapest. and if you wait, they have it onsale for a few bux off a box every once in a while.

with regards to the trim pieces, those you have to buy elsewhere like hd or lowes.

DaveNinja
10-10-07, 01:59 PM
I did a room with the click together stuff (traffic master or something) last weekend. Its a lot easier than the old glue together stuff. get a chop saw with a fine tooth plywood blade, a jigsaw with a simular fine toothblade and a table saw. its so much easier with the right tools. i helped a friend putting flooring down a month ago and we had to rip boards with a jig saw. it took forever.
different brands click together easier. my friend had the Dupont stuff that had foam backing attached and we had to really hammer the pieces together to get them to click. the stuff i put in my house last weekend was a lot easier to click in, just a couple taps with a hammer onto the plastic tapping block.

Draven
10-10-07, 02:35 PM
We replaced the carpet in the dining room of our old townhome with a laminate we got from Sams. It was the kind with the backing attached, but we really didn't have any problems. Well, not until I cut the last board and ended up (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/showthread.php?t=417975) in the hospital.

I'll see if I can dig up some pics of the final install. I was very happy with how it turned out, injury notwithstanding.

movielib
10-10-07, 04:21 PM
I kept on looking for a laminate that looked most like hardwood, then I thought “why do I want an expensive piece of plastic when I could get real hardwood for the same price?”

So I bought 3/4" hardwood by Bruce - I don't have it yet, it's on order. It's 350 square feet of 3.25" wide plank (similar to the Dover View, but not that one) for the living room, hallway, and steps. I also have 400 square feet of 2.5" oak strip flooring on order, for the three bedrooms. The total cost was about $2,800 for the 750 square feet of materials, but this includes $400 worth of stair noses.

Good choice. We put in hardwood (a medium tone oak) and porcelain tile late last year/early this year to replace carpet and vinyl and it's the best thing we could do for our house. It's like a new place. Our wood is 3/4" and 3.625" wide. It wasn't as expensive as we thought it would be.

Shazam
10-10-07, 04:51 PM
I kept on looking for a laminate that looked most like hardwood, then I thought “why do I want an expensive piece of plastic when I could get real hardwood for the same price?”Hardwood is not very good for below grade installation, and if you have big dogs, hardwood can get really beat up.

grrrah
10-10-07, 05:51 PM
Whats it cost to have this installed by a contractor? I know its pretty easy to do, but I'm lazy, and would want it done rather quickly.

I heard a good estimate is to double the cost for the material (i.e, if its $2 a square foot, it will cost about $4/ installed). What about the costs for padding and the trim? cutting?

While we are at it, whats a general guestimate for the cost of ceramic tiling installed in the kitchen (installed per ft^2)?

Thanks, you guys are my heroes.... :D
To answer my own question (and thought I would share incase anyone else was interested), I went browsing around (CA- Bay Area), and found the following guestimates:
laminate flooring: $1-$4 a square foot
Hardwood flooring $4-$10 a square foot
Hardwood installation ~$4 a square foot, with laminate being slightly less if not the same.
also, $4 hardwood was often nicer (imo) than the $4 laminate. So I think I will be going with a mid-range hardwood instead. Me likey the bamboo

dabsabre
12-13-07, 04:58 PM
we're looking into doing the whole house (2000 sq ft) and had some friends who used simplefloors.com

does anyone have any opinions on either their Classic Collection or the Genva-Loc Collection (comes with a 2mm pad already attached)? we don't have any dogs, but it would include a kitchen install.

http://www.simplefloors.com/products/Laminate-Flooring/category3.aspx

kvrdave
12-13-07, 05:05 PM
I know nothing good about the stuff with the pad already on. And the pad is so cheap and easy to lay down, that I wouldn't chance it. Otherwise, even though I do a lot of it, and would be justified in buying bulk, I don't. I buy from the local guy for a few cents more, but I can return what I don't use, and if I need one more box, I don't have to order it.

mndtrp
12-14-07, 03:14 PM
This was in our kitchen when I bought the house a few months ago. It looks good, doesn't seem to scratch, and is easy to clean. I don't know how long it will last, how hard it is to install, or what a good price is, but I do like it.

Heat
12-15-07, 12:09 AM
Funny that this thread came up - my house is in the middle of having 3/4" oak hardwood installed. Looks nice, so far.

kvrdave
12-15-07, 01:29 AM
This was in our kitchen when I bought the house a few months ago. It looks good, doesn't seem to scratch, and is easy to clean. I don't know how long it will last, how hard it is to install, or what a good price is, but I do like it.

The local hardware store put it in their store. With people walking all over it for years with mud, gravel, etc. and even being flood mopped, it looks amazing.

kantonburg
08-10-10, 08:25 AM
I know this is nearly a 3 year bump, but

I'm putting Pergo down in my daughters room and hallway this weekend. Reason for us going laminate is two 8 year old, 7 month old, dog, & cat.

We did go with Pergo (Berkshire Cherry from Lowes if anyone is interested). Has anyone installed lately and has anything changed over the past 3 years? We did get the underlayment attached to the flooring. After talking with several people here that have installed it they all said buy it attached.

I also got the kit (pull bar, spacers, tapping block), a undercut saw, trim kits (2), I have a circular saw with a 150 tooth blade made for paneling.

Any other advice?
Thanks!

kvrdave
08-11-10, 10:54 AM
http://www.amazon.com/Skil-3600-02-120-Volt-Flooring-Saw/dp/B0037KM8TQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1281399583&sr=8-1
<img src=http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/414LabAV9dL._SL500_AA300_.jpg>

I am seriously considering this. At the price it would be worth it for a single job, especially if you think you will ever do more.

A circular saw is probably going to make the work harder. If you have a rail you can use, it should be easier. But this stuff will dull blades like you won't believe. But you do have some "fudge factor" on the ends you cut as they will be hidden by trim.

Now for the stuff with underlayment attached, they have gotten better. In fact, I probably wouldn't have a problem using them today. I still don't, but it is more because I know the regular stuff and am use to putting down underlayment first. I actually looked at the "kit" yesterday. If you don't have those types of tool already, they should make it easier. The pull bar being the most useful.

How big of an area, etc?

kantonburg
08-11-10, 02:52 PM
http://www.amazon.com/Skil-3600-02-120-Volt-Flooring-Saw/dp/B0037KM8TQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1281399583&sr=8-1


I am seriously considering this. At the price it would be worth it for a single job, especially if you think you will ever do more.

A circular saw is probably going to make the work harder. If you have a rail you can use, it should be easier. But this stuff will dull blades like you won't believe. But you do have some "fudge factor" on the ends you cut as they will be hidden by trim.

Now for the stuff with underlayment attached, they have gotten better. In fact, I probably wouldn't have a problem using them today. I still don't, but it is more because I know the regular stuff and am use to putting down underlayment first. I actually looked at the "kit" yesterday. If you don't have those types of tool already, they should make it easier. The pull bar being the most useful.

How big of an area, etc?

Bedroom and hallway is 182 sq/ft. Not a lot. This is obviously my trial run. Our living room will be next with our bedroom following. That saw was on the isle where the laminate was at our Lowes. I am getting a chop saw and table saw tomorrow from my FIL. I have a jigsaw. I wanted something a little more true than a circular saw to rip the first row.

kvrdave
08-11-10, 03:01 PM
I use a chop saw and a table saw. They work very well for the project. You will dull blades pretty quickly though, and that can get spendy. But for only 187 sq. ft. you should be fine. I use a 12" chop saw and 1 blade will last about 400 sq. ft. Bastards cost about $70 for a good one ($20 to sharpen). If you decide you enjoy doing it and decide to buy tools, don't get the 12" Blades are super expensive. Get a 10". Jigsaw will go dull even faster, but you won't use it nearly as often. Table saw hold up really well, but you only use it to rip the boards on your last row, generally.

Also, most flooring instructions seem to want you to stagger your rows by using a full piece on a row, then a 2/3 piece, then a 1/3 piece, etc. I am convinced that they do this to sell more product. If you simply lay down the first row, then use the "scrap" piece from the end piece of that row as your next starter, you are golden. I had read where you need about 10% more sq. ft. of flooring than the space you are doing because of "loss." The last project I did (2 weeks ago) I had 3% loss, and the bulk of that was from ripping the last row, a screwed up measurement, and one bonehead cut.

Heat
08-11-10, 04:04 PM
This is what I used for my flooring:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Bau0-8RQL._SL500_AA300_.jpg
http://www.amazon.com/DW745-Heavy-Duty-10-Inch-Job-Site-Capacity/dp/B000HXT2N6/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1281559706&sr=1-2

It’s a very useful tool and doesn’t take up a ton of room in the garage, less than a “normal” table saw. But if you father-in-law has a table saw, use it. Assuming that the table saw has guides, use it for both your rips (length long cuts) and your cross cuts. The jigsaw may come in handy for getting around doors since the Pergo will be pretty wide.

I also picked up a Bostich nailer which I really need to list on eBay.

I put in about 550 or 600 square feet of wood flooring, the 2.5" wide strips of Bruce Hardwood that you see in hardware stores for about $3 per square foot.

kantonburg
08-11-10, 07:56 PM
I use a chop saw and a table saw. They work very well for the project. You will dull blades pretty quickly though, and that can get spendy. But for only 187 sq. ft. you should be fine. I use a 12" chop saw and 1 blade will last about 400 sq. ft. Bastards cost about $70 for a good one ($20 to sharpen). If you decide you enjoy doing it and decide to buy tools, don't get the 12" Blades are super expensive. Get a 10". Jigsaw will go dull even faster, but you won't use it nearly as often. Table saw hold up really well, but you only use it to rip the boards on your last row, generally.

Also, most flooring instructions seem to want you to stagger your rows by using a full piece on a row, then a 2/3 piece, then a 1/3 piece, etc. I am convinced that they do this to sell more product. If you simply lay down the first row, then use the "scrap" piece from the end piece of that row as your next starter, you are golden. I had read where you need about 10% more sq. ft. of flooring than the space you are doing because of "loss." The last project I did (2 weeks ago) I had 3% loss, and the bulk of that was from ripping the last row, a screwed up measurement, and one bonehead cut.

I have to admit I was wondering what the "manufacturer's recommendation" and "real world" staggering system really was. Everyone I've talked to did say that whatever you saw off on the last board in the first row will be the first board in the 2nd row. Though Pergo's instructions do say that the first board has to be at least 8" long and the seams need to be at least 12" apart. I can see the 8" long requirement, but if the seams are even 8"-10" does it really matter "that" much?

I'm trying not to over think the process. The room is partially empty and tomorrow I'm pulling the carpet up and pulling the baseboards off. Friday night I'll sand any sub-floor that may be sticking up and shop-vac the whole room. I'll probably lay out some pieces to formulate a plan and Saturday morning go right at it. Any bets on how long it'll take? I have two closets, and 4 door jambs to work around.

Heat
08-12-10, 09:28 AM
I'm assuming that it's not that the seams 8" to 10" apart will be a problem, it's that they will catch the eye and it won't look quite right. And not only do you want the seams at least 12" or so apart, you will need to keep an eye on the second row over to make sure the seams don't line up.

Avoid patterns. And after you pull up the carpet, foam, and any staples, walk around the floor and listen for any squeaks in the wood. If you hear any squeaking at all, use screws to tighten the wood to eliminate the squeaks.

/ I've never installed Pergo

kvrdave
08-12-10, 09:59 AM
I have to admit I was wondering what the "manufacturer's recommendation" and "real world" staggering system really was. Everyone I've talked to did say that whatever you saw off on the last board in the first row will be the first board in the 2nd row. Though Pergo's instructions do say that the first board has to be at least 8" long and the seams need to be at least 12" apart. I can see the 8" long requirement, but if the seams are even 8"-10" does it really matter "that" much?

I'm trying not to over think the process. The room is partially empty and tomorrow I'm pulling the carpet up and pulling the baseboards off. Friday night I'll sand any sub-floor that may be sticking up and shop-vac the whole room. I'll probably lay out some pieces to formulate a plan and Saturday morning go right at it. Any bets on how long it'll take? I have two closets, and 4 door jambs to work around.

I think I have probably kept them that far apart, not becuase of the instructions, but because it makes common sense when you see it. I probably have kept the seams as close as 8" apart, and I've never had a problem, so don't sweat that. I've probably been as close as 5" before. It will seem obvious when you get there.

kvrdave
08-12-10, 10:01 AM
I also picked up a Bostich nailer which I really need to list on eBay.

I put in about 550 or 600 square feet of wood flooring, the 2.5" wide strips of Bruce Hardwood that you see in hardware stores for about $3 per square foot.

A regular flooring nailer? Hell, I might be interested. I've never installed the wood floors, but only laminate. But I've thought about doing it.

kantonburg
08-12-10, 11:08 AM
I'm assuming that it's not that the seams 8" to 10" apart will be a problem, it's that they will catch the eye and it won't look quite right. And not only do you want the seams at least 12" or so apart, you will need to keep an eye on the second row over to make sure the seams don't line up.

Avoid patterns. And after you pull up the carpet, foam, and any staples, walk around the floor and listen for any squeaks in the wood. If you hear any squeaking at all, use screws to tighten the wood to eliminate the squeaks.

/ I've never installed Pergo

The squeak test is high on my list.

kvrdave
08-12-10, 11:15 AM
You won't have squeaks with pergo. It interlocks nicely, and there just isn't any way.

If you decide you must use a screw somewhere (and it is rare that you need to), make sure you drill a pilot hole first, because it is laminate and glued sawdust, and may crack. Also, put the screw at the very edge of the wall so that the screw will be covered by your moulding.

Heat
08-12-10, 11:29 AM
I'm talking about sqeaks in the floorboard, not the pergo itself, and screwing down the floorboards before the pergo is installed. As part of the room preparation.

Put down screws even for the slightest squeak.

kantonburg
08-12-10, 12:33 PM
You won't have squeaks with pergo. It interlocks nicely, and there just isn't any way.

If you decide you must use a screw somewhere (and it is rare that you need to), make sure you drill a pilot hole first, because it is laminate and glued sawdust, and may crack. Also, put the screw at the very edge of the wall so that the screw will be covered by your moulding.

OH I meant the sub-floor. I'll throw a screw or two in the joists if I find a place that creaks or squeaks.

kvrdave
08-12-10, 12:41 PM
:lol: That makes more sense. My bad.

kantonburg
08-12-10, 12:52 PM
One thing I think I need to return is a vapor barrier. I'm installing on a wood sub-floor on the 1st floor over a basement. Moisture level is low, but the guy at Lowes says you have to have a vapor barrier unless you're on a true 2nd story. Pergo's explicit instructions say not to use one except on concrete. What do you usually do Dave? Obviously the underlayment isn't a substitute.

kvrdave
08-12-10, 02:17 PM
You know what's awesome? No one is reading this but the 3 of us anymore. I say fuck them!

Okay....I've never used a vapor barrier. But I use the plastic bubble wrap stuff underneath instead of the boards with it pre-installed. I don't make sure it is perfect, but it would act as a bit of vapor barrier. The people at Lowe's, Home Depot, etc. aren't very knowledgeable. I don't see any reason for it. I've installed it on concrete slabs before (not in a basement) and never had a problem. A first floor with just a crawlspace would have more moisture potential than a 1st floor with a basement, so I can't imagine using it, especially if the instructions also say to not use it because those instructions generally go "above and beyond" what a person truly needs anyway.

kantonburg
08-12-10, 03:22 PM
You guys have been a great help that's for sure. Two last questions.

Do I need a special jigsaw blade or will my wood blade suffice? Also any tips/tricks when notching the boards to fit around door jambs?

I also will have my floor vent fall in between row 1 and 2 where I start. Is there any issue with having a half-rectangle notch going down the tongue side of one board and the groove side of the other since I really don't see any way around it. I suppose I could rip the first row narrow and try to center up the rectangle cutout of the 2nd row.

kvrdave
08-12-10, 03:41 PM
1) Use any wood blade with the most teeth on the blade. That gives you the smoothest cut. You may go through a few blades, but one blade should be fine for at least 10 boards worth of cutting. When it starts to go slow, replace the blade.

2) Door jambs are a bitch. The absolute best way to go so that you have no regrets is to go ahead and remove the door, jamb and all, and lay the floor down, then cut the jamb to fit on top of it. That looks best, but is the hardest. the next option is to use something like a roto zip (http://www.thetechzone.com/reviews/tools/rotozip/rotozip.jpg) type tool with an attachment that will allow you to flush cut the jamb in place. You can also use a regular saw, but it is tough to do. That will let you slide it in. Your last (and worst) option is to simply jigsaw the piece to fit. You have to really cut it perfect, and you might make a few mistakes. When I choose this method, I cut it short, try it, make adjustments, cut more, try again, etc. If you do this and you don't end up with perfection, you can get some caulk of the same color as your floor to put in the gap. Not perfect, but works in a pinch.

No issue with a half-rectangle notch out. So long as you have some groove for the flooring to attach to, it will, and once you have the rest in, it will hold into place without any problems. Don't bother ripping to fit.

Heat
08-12-10, 06:17 PM
On the moisture barrier, follow what Pergo says.

On the blade, I'm really not sure what blade you would use to slice plastic. The wood blade would work, I guess.

On the vent, I always had two pieces of wood meet where the vent would go so that I could make two cuts on each board, rather than using a jigsaw and making a U shaped cut. The Pergo is much wider than the wood I was using which is good because the job will go much quicker, but bad in that you will have to do more custom work to get around things like the door jambs.

Take some pictures of the project!

Here is some work I did last summer:

http://img25.imageshack.us/img25/5889/duringk.jpg (http://img25.imageshack.us/i/duringk.jpg/)

http://img808.imageshack.us/img808/9516/img0660.jpg (http://img808.imageshack.us/i/img0660.jpg/)

Michael T Hudson
08-12-10, 07:56 PM
Looks great.

kantonburg
08-13-10, 05:37 AM
Looks good Heat!

I'll definitely be taking pictures. I got everything out last night and started taking the moulding off the wall. I stopped when the baby went to bed since his room is next to this one and I didn't want to hammer the metal prybar. That shouldn't take long today. Floor, I found, was very flat with no raised edges.

Heat
08-13-10, 09:56 AM
Thanks!

I really like the oak floors, those strips are 2.5" wide and I used 3.25" wide everywhere except the bedrooms. The difference is that the thinner strips are cheaper (about $3 per square foot) and come with a 5 year finish, while the wider strips were a little more expensive (about $4.25 per square foot) and had a 15 year finish.

kantonburg
08-14-10, 09:36 PM
Well I got the bedroom done today. Took me a bit longer than I expected. Then again this was my first time installing and I took my time trying not to mess things up in the beginning. I'm still debating using the transitions from the bedroom to the hallway. I'm not sure I can line up the first row in the hallway with the pieces coming out of the bedroom. I'm beat right now. I started prepping the bedroom when I got home on Friday and had everything ready to lay when I woke up Saturday morning. Started about 7:50 and finished the room around 8:00pm. Then started prepping the hallway. I just took a shower and sat down here. I probably stopped 2 hours total during the day. I'm guessing the hall will take me much less not only because it's smaller, but I got a good feel for how the boards "work" about half way through the room.

I'll post pics when I'm done.

kantonburg
08-17-10, 03:03 PM
Well I have one transition to install today after work and I'll be done. Here are a few pics. Whatcha think?

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/wescat2/th_41270_424609279319_502659319_4623177_8348043_n.jpg (http://s26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/wescat2/?action=view&current=41270_424609279319_502659319_4623177_8348043_n.jpg)
http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/wescat2/th_40030_425618099319_502659319_4649374_4215352_n.jpg (http://s26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/wescat2/?action=view&current=40030_425618099319_502659319_4649374_4215352_n.jpg)
http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/wescat2/th_40030_425618084319_502659319_4649371_7684222_n.jpg (http://s26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/wescat2/?action=view&current=40030_425618084319_502659319_4649371_7684222_n.jpg)
http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/wescat2/th_40030_425618054319_502659319_4649365_1694213_n.jpg (http://s26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/wescat2/?action=view&current=40030_425618054319_502659319_4649365_1694213_n.jpg)

kvrdave
08-17-10, 03:44 PM
Veru nice. I have made it through a bedroom and into a hall without a transition before, but you have to have an amazingly square house to do it.

Oh, and your wall is pink, which I assume is to match your vagina. -ptth-

kantonburg
08-17-10, 04:22 PM
Veru nice. I have made it through a bedroom and into a hall without a transition before, but you have to have an amazingly square house to do it.

Oh, and your wall is pink, which I assume is to match your vagina. -ptth-

Dang the pink walls didn't make it one post. For the record I was totally against it when we moved in and fought it tooth and nail. Obviously I lost. I was shooting for no transitions, but my hall closet wall was 3/16" further back than my hall wall. Not to mention we're not putting the laminate down in the baby's room till after Christmas so a transition is almost necessary for that. I do like that they have a very low profile.

kvrdave
08-17-10, 06:00 PM
And I've never had a problem with the transitions. And if you did, it's a quick easy fix. It looks great.

kantonburg
08-17-10, 08:58 PM
I installed the wood to carpet transition in the baby's room tonight. That HAS to be the worst design ever. The transition is made to lay against a raw edge of carpet instead of pressing down over the edge. I had the carpet cut perfect to go under and I noticed the T-molding would not snap in unless the carpet piece was flat. I pull the directions out and sure enough it sits on the sub-floor and the carpet just lays up against it. I suppose I could go get a tack strip to put in front of the transition. I just thought it would be made for the carpet to go under and when you snap it down it would hold the edge of the carpet. I spent about 1 1/2 hours and made it look nice, but until we do his room with the same floor I won't be ultimately satisfied with how that part turned out.

Heat
08-17-10, 09:11 PM
There are a lot of different types of transitions out there, just browse around until you figure out what works best for you.

But you shouldn't be doing laminate to laminate transitions, plan ahead to avoid them. That is a transition piece in the third picture, on the right, right? Rip the laminate to create a piece that fits smooth against the next piece which will not be an easy job. Which is why you should start at one point and do the rest of the house from that point - that is, ideally you would start in the hallway, not on the far side of your den.

kvrdave
08-17-10, 10:17 PM
Heat, tell me more about your flooring gun you plan to put on Ebay.

But yeah, there are lots of different transition pieces. Some come with enough "stuff" that you can make it work on anything. Best bet is to plan ahead, but when working on rentals, I often times don't want to plan that far ahead. But it can nearly always be done.

Heat
08-17-10, 10:30 PM
When I bought my nailer used ones would sell on eBay for around $180. After my first post I checked on the going rate on used nailers, Amazon now sells the factory reconditioned one for $60:

http://www.amazon.com/Factory-Reconditioned-Bostitch-MFN200-Manual-Flooring/dp/B000T8TSME/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1282102021&sr=8-1

The demand for used ones that are not reconditioned has gone down so I think I'll just hang on to mine. If you want one, pick up the one from Amazon for $60, it's a great price. I wish that I had that option when I first needed one, I paid about $230 for mine after tax. You can see my nailer in my first picture, it's right in front of the green laundry basket.

kvrdave
08-17-10, 11:13 PM
Thanks, that's an incredible price. I was thinking of a pneumatic one. How rough was it on your arms using a mallet for hours? How was it as far as ease of use overall?

kantonburg
08-18-10, 06:56 AM
There are a lot of different types of transitions out there, just browse around until you figure out what works best for you.

But you shouldn't be doing laminate to laminate transitions, plan ahead to avoid them. That is a transition piece in the third picture, on the right, right? Rip the laminate to create a piece that fits smooth against the next piece which will not be an easy job. Which is why you should start at one point and do the rest of the house from that point - that is, ideally you would start in the hallway, not on the far side of your den.

I could have notched a piece around the bedroom door frame so that I had a straight run into the hallway. My concern was keeping the look uniform once I start the other bedroom across the hallway. I wasn't sure how two ripped boards would look butted against each other (at the time) because that's what I'd have once I start the other room. That and I spoke to what seemed to be 50 people on what to do in that situation and the majority said to use the transition. Looking back I could have probably made it work, but in the end I'm happy with the decision and most importantly my wife likes it. I have one more transition to install from the hallway to the kitchen. I need to get one more from Lowes though. I like how there is "almost" enough to do 3 doorways in the kit.

edclem
08-18-10, 08:55 AM
We have laminate in our kitchen. It's been fine, until the seal on our dishwasher tub failed while it was running overnight a few months ago. Now we have a bunch of seams that have expanded and popped up due to the product swelling from the moisture.

Normally, if there's a spill, and you clean it up, it's no big deal. In this case, we had a decent amount of water hit the floor, and it was several hours before we noticed.

Bummer.

kvrdave
08-18-10, 10:50 AM
Laminate don't like water, no doubt. I've put it in a few kitchens, but tend to avoid doing so for that reason.

Heat
08-18-10, 10:56 AM
Thanks, that's an incredible price. I was thinking of a pneumatic one. How rough was it on your arms using a mallet for hours? How was it as far as ease of use overall?
The manual one is fine. The pneumatic one would be easier but unless you are doing this for a living or putting down a large amount of wood, just use the manual one, my arms weren't tired from using it and I put down about 550 or 600 square feet of wood. Keep in mind that installing wood is slow work, it's not like you are putting in a nail every few seconds and it was more of a loose swing - you aren't pounding the nailer too hard.

Besides, the pneumatic ones will set you back about $400 or so. If you do buy the nailer, go ahead and pick up a few boxes of nails through Amazon, their price is about $5 less per box than Lowe's / Home Depot.

Besides the nailer, nails, and the wood, you'll need:
a. a rubber mallet (1 or 2 pound) to knock the boards into place / make sure they are snug
b. 6# and 8# finishing nails
c. nail punches
d. a hammer or two (I kept one at each end of the room)
e. a drill
f. small drillbits, with a bunch of spares because they will break
g. a can of wood filler (to cover up the nail holes after you punch down the nails - this would be at the starting and finishing walls where you have to face nail the boards)
h. roofing tar paper (the underlayment)
i. box cutter or utility knife to slice the tar paper
j. a marker to write on the bottom of the pieces of wood - to mark where to cut and to make notes about the piece of wood (bowed, bad tongue, etc).

DarkestPhoenix
08-21-10, 05:04 PM
You know what's awesome? No one is reading this but the 3 of us anymore. I say fuck them!

Well, wrong there. :lol:

I was reading it, but pretty much only to answer the question, "Who the hell still puts down laminate?" I can understand it from a past perspective. It used to be so, so much cheaper, yet it looked like hardwood. But now, hell, you can buy hardwood for only about 10¢ to 20¢ more per square foot. Whatever you'd save on purchase price you'll lose in labor costs. Getting that crap to snap together is a real pain, especially if you're doing a large room. In my apartments, for some dumbass reason, the original builders put carpet in the dining area. Don't ask me why. Now, what I've been doing is taking the carpet out and installing tile throughout the whole kitchen/dining area. If the first floor with concrete sub-floor, I always lay tile since there's no need for tile backing board, which almost halves the overall tile costs. Been lucky to pick up about six pallets of tile between 45¢ and 55¢ at the Home Depot. For second floor apts, I did install laminate in three apartment dining areas, because this was the former owners' solution, and they had enough left over for three units, so I did that in units where I didn't have to replace carpet.

If I did have to replace carpet throughout the unit, I would usually install tile in the kitchen/dining area and then just carpet the rest. But, shit, that's running me over $2.00/sq ft (installed) and with Bamboo running regularly at Home Depot for $1.99/sq ft and American Oak on sale every so often for $2.49/sq ft, it just makes sense, since I can easily install this myself. Hardwood is sooooooo much easier than laminate. Tongue and groove, slap together bam-bam-bam nail it, and you're done. 15-25 year finish and it looks amazing. Also, I'm getting about $15-$25 per unit more just by having it, so it's a definite win-win. I always put up tile in my kitchen/bath/patio entryway, since I don't want to redo much over the course of the next, oh, twenty years, once I'm finished, and tile can handle wetness a lot better in these areas that are more prone to them.

I'm also upset about the Bostich nailer...dammit, I really needed one! I just bought a hardcore tools one new for $175, I plan on putting a lot of hardwood down, and it's just as good review-wise as the Bostich. Beats the fuck out of renting one for $45/day. http://www.amazon.com/Hardcore-Pneumatic-Flooring-HARDWOOD-FLOORING/dp/B000NE7X4E/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&s=hi&qid=1282229837&sr=1-6 Saving $725 bucks isn't bad, either.... :lol:

For door jambs, I use my Fein MultiMaster to simply rip them off at 1/4 or 1/2 inch above the sub-floor, then slip the tile, hardwood or laminate beneath it. Trust me when I tell you this is MUCH easier than removing the whole thing and cutting it while it's off. Before I purchased the MultiMaster, I was using an angle grinder for pretty much the same thing. Both seem to work without much trouble, but the angle grinder will smoke you out pretty badly.

Best part of the hardwood/tile combo is that you can run without shimming anything, since they are exactly the same height. Transitions are the worst part of the flooring, since they run up your cost at $13 per stick. Also, I don't buy that special hardwood to carpet transition, I just use the 'T' stick, tack the carpet down then go over it...works just fine.

I don't get using the tar paper...I just use the red paper that's like $8.50 for 500 sq ft.

kvrdave
02-23-11, 12:48 AM
http://www.simplefloors.com/products/Laminate-Flooring/Masterpiece-Collection/collection34.aspx

Starting a new project with this stuff. Went to the showroom, and was pretty astounded. This is 12mm stuff, and I had been using 8mm stuff before. Additionally, it has beveled edges and comes in random lengths, so it really looks damn near like a wood floor. Had a 10% off sale during superbowl, so got it for $1.52/sq. ft.

Heat
02-23-11, 01:48 AM
Did you have issues with the 8mm, or just think the 12mm will go better?

And take some pictures, I'd like to see how it looks installed.

kvrdave
02-23-11, 01:45 PM
Will do. Never had an issue with the 8mm, just expect this to last better. They also have a hardness scale on these things. The first Pergos were a 1 (not very hard) and the hardest is a 5. These are a 4 with a moisture resistant core.

The house I am doing is probably my favorite place. It's about a 1700 sq. ft. 4 bed/ 2 bath near my home. So I decided to go with good stuff.

kvrdave
03-06-11, 11:05 PM
Okay, I have 2 rooms done, and I'm going to be sore in the morning. My initial observations with this go around. First, the first 3 rows of this stuff takes a little time because it seriously snaps together and you must make sure those first 3 rows are good and tight or they start to lift up. That is important to know because it doesn't snap on the side. It has a ridge where it laps over to help keep it from pulling apart, but it only snaps down. At first I worried about this. Having done two rooms, it is a great design. Second, I have mainly worked with 8" and even 12" stuff and this is only just over 5". That means that I am putting down a lot more. It simply takes more time. Third, the bevel edge style looks fantastic compared to most laminate flooring. Really has a nice look of individual pieces of wood flooring. This is also very thick and strong stuff. Lastly, the random length thing is okay. It takes a bit more planning just to make sure you don't end up with edges near the same place, but no biggie.

http://i387.photobucket.com/albums/oo316/kvrdave/lam1-1.jpg
http://i387.photobucket.com/albums/oo316/kvrdave/lam2-1.jpg
http://i387.photobucket.com/albums/oo316/kvrdave/lam3-1.jpg
http://i387.photobucket.com/albums/oo316/kvrdave/lam4-1.jpg
http://i387.photobucket.com/albums/oo316/kvrdave/lam5-1.jpg
http://i387.photobucket.com/albums/oo316/kvrdave/lam6-1.jpg
http://i387.photobucket.com/albums/oo316/kvrdave/lam7-1.jpg

crankyman
03-07-11, 12:49 PM
looks great!

did you leave some space around the edges for expansion?

Shazam
03-07-11, 12:51 PM
You did a good job taking the feces off the walls.

kvrdave
03-07-11, 01:25 PM
looks great!

did you leave some space around the edges for expansion?

Hell no. I figure if it expands I just end up with a bigger house. win/win

Tommy Ceez
03-07-11, 03:02 PM
Lumber Liquidators sells Durawood (a grade down from their Bellawood) flooring for an average of $3.69/$3.89 ft^2 for 2.25/3.25 respectively but always has at least one color on sale for $2.99/$3.69.

I just did 860 ft^2 of the 2.25 and 550 ft^2 of the 3.25. A contractor I found off ServiceMagic did the install for $2 a ft^2...and this is in the NY area. He did a great job. He also stripped the steps and stained to match my color.

The Durawood (Casa de Colour) has a 25yr gurantee

Heat
03-07-11, 11:39 PM
I like the width of the one that looks like wood.

That was one of the reasons I didn't go with laminate, I didn't like having six inch or eight inch wide strips on the floor. The joints were way too obvious.

kvrdave
03-08-11, 12:35 AM
Yeah, I really do like the look of it as well. But I can also tell that this is the one house that will get this treatment. For most, I'd save the money and time, but I really like this particular house. It is close to my own, so I make sure I have good renters and rent it out cheap.