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surrendertoflow

LVP to avoid (read if considering Coretec or CaliBambo) and a mystery

surrendertoflow
8 months ago

Ugh. I’m sorry in advance for the length of this post. It truly is a long (and ongoing) story.

In July of 2019, we used a local flooring company to install almost 2000 sq ft of Coretec Berlin Pine. Within a month it was clear that the bevel paint was coming off on many of the planks and many of those were also chipping at the corners where the paint had come off. The flooring company worked with Coretec (Shaw) to bring out an independent inspector to investigate and the problem was so obvious that we had a response within the same day that the floor was defective (a process we were told that usually takes weeks). After some back and forth we were eventually refunded the money by Shaw and, of course, wanted nothing more to do with them or any of their products.


We worked with the flooring company to find a replacement and ended up going with Cali Bamboo North Shore Oak because that was the only other LVP that we could find that had the warm tones we were looking for. After the installers had ripped up the Coretec planks on the bottom floor, they pointed out to us that there were so many pattern repeats in the Cali Bamboo flooring that they couldn’t make it look good. This pattern repeat issue was something we had explicitly checked on before purchasing so we were livid that we had been told inaccurate information by CB sales people. There was a 3-day struggle with them because they kept saying if we install the floors we accept them as is, but our argument was we had to install what was here because we were on subfloors at that point and we have a toddler (not clean and not safe!!). They FINALLY agreed that that was sound reasoning, then told us there was a problem with manufacturing and there actually should have been more patterns than the 4 we had and they had plans to fix it. They refunded our money with the assurance they would have the pattern repeat issue fixed and new planks would be in stock in about 6 months. So the installers hastily laid down what we had from them at the time with everyone expecting a new floor fairly shortly (which didn’t happen). So we currently have clearly defective boards on the floor (one even has numbers printed on it) and overly stressed and cracked molding (some with nails sticking out) from too many install attempts because we just needed them to get us off the subfloors immediately. The Coretec floors are still installed upstairs because they hadn’t been ripped up yet when the installers figured out there was a problem with Cali Bamboo.


It’s been over a year since then and Cali Bamboo recently said they fixed the repeat issue. We found out they didn’t really (just took the same 4 exact patterns and reversed them) and when we questioned how that didn’t line up with what they said before they’ve gone silent and basically aren’t answering anything else. So needless to say, we are also not fond of Cali Bamboo.


We are still searching for LVP with warmer tones and are awaiting samples from many companies including Flooret (who has had the best customer service BY FAR so far). I have to say though, given that we had to have the flooring install company fight for us two times in a row over unexpected issues, we are highly anxious about ordering direct and having an independent installer do the installation for us. If our house is under some kind of crazy curse and something goes horribly wrong with our floors for a third time, even if the flooring manufacturer admits fault, I imagine we’d be out the installation costs? The flooring manufacturers we dealt with for our two horrible experiences were abysmal, but at least the flooring company we worked with that partnered with the manufactures fought for us until we (and they) were refunded everything including installation costs.


There is another piece to the story that we’re terrified of repeating. Both of these issues apply to the Coretec floors but not to the Cali Bamboo floors. First off, the “haze” that people complain about on forums that makes it to where you can’t ever get the floor looking clean is absolutely true. And we’ve only ever used approved cleaning tools and solutions. Anything Coretec suggests is worthless to fix this problem. There are still footprints from install a year and a half ago on those floors. No problems with the look or ease of cleaning the Cali Bamboo floors downstairs at all.


This last issue is the worst one. Since we have a toddler, we spend a lot of time down on the floor. It took awhile but we finally figured out why all of our socks and pants were getting holes in them so quickly and why every time I’d get up from my knees off the floor I’d have whitish patches on them. The Coretec floors are shredding our clothes (like a fine-grit sandpaper)! Again, the Cali Bamboo floors do not do this. I sure wish they had a better pattern repeat solution and their customer service was better so we could just go with them because at least we know their floors won’t tear up our clothes and we can clean the floors just fine without the haze. We have gotten several samples already from Armstrong Empower and Pergo extreme and they seem to have the same ultra matte finish as the Coretec Berlin Pine. I so hope this isn’t the latest trend that we’re going to find across the board because I’m telling you that finish is horrible (though as explained below, it perhaps can’t all be blamed on the finish). When we go upstairs we have to avoid touching the floors with our clothes to try to keep them from being ruined (pretty hard to do with a three year old). It’s just an absolutely ridiculous situation.


The thing we can’t figure out is all of these companies are using different materials for the protective top layer (Coretec uses UV acrylic, Armstrong Empower uses diamond dust with urethane, Pergo Extreme uses aluminum oxide) but if it even remotely has a matte finish like the Berlin Pine then it does the same thing (as evidenced by me getting down and testing the samples on my pant knees!) regardless of what the wear layer is made of. Even some samples that aren’t super duper matte are doing it. We were hoping we could just avoid the acrylic since that’s what Coretec uses but it doesn’t seem to be the material that’s the culprit, it seems to be the finish I guess but that doesn’t really explain it totally either!? Also can’t explain it away by blaming it on embossing/texture because the Coretec floor we have doesn’t have really bumpy ridges (and feels pretty smooth to the touch though you can definitely tell it’s not a slick/glossy finish just by the feel). The Cali Bamboo floor we have does have quite a bit of embossing/texture (more than we’d prefer in fact) but no issues with clothes shredding. The CB North Shore Oak finish does have a noticeably slicker feel in between the embossed ridges if you run your finger over it compared to the Berlin Pine, though it doesn’t appear glossy or shiny. Does anyone have any clue as to what on earth is causing this fabric damaging property on the floors that are doing it??!!


I’ve also seen other people complaining about the haze problem with other LVP besides Coretec so that also doesn’t seem to be a problem that is specific to the acrylic top coat they are using. (But again, no such problem with Cali Bamboo so definitely not an issue with all LVP).


Also, of note, we saw the issue with paint coming off the bevel on A LOT of samples we looked at in our second round of looking for a replacement. You could see the paint coming off onto a wet paper towel (just using water) by just rubbing it over the painted bevel. So that’s also not an issue just specific to the Coretec floors (at that time Cali Bamboo was the only one we tested that didn’t have this issue). So if you are floor shopping and are getting something with a painted bevel, I recommend you do the wet paper towel test!


So I guess what I’m looking for here is...

1) We’re seeking an understanding of why some LVP has the haze problem people complain about and why some LVP has the clothes shredding problem we’ve had and at least one LVP (Cali) doesn’t. Since neither of these issues seem to be able to be explained away by a difference in what the top layer is made of or whether or not there is pronounced texture/embossing we don’t know how to avoid it and are understandably terrified of going through another round of flooring fail!

2) Also wanting to hear from people about whether or not they have LVP that has the haze/footprint issue or the clothes shredding issue or the bevel paint issue or the dumb pattern repeat issue. I’m sure there are some who do actually have the clothes problem (given our testing of recent samples and how widespread the matte finish is now) but don’t realize it or aren’t down on the floors enough for it to be noticeable. BTW, we told Coretec about it and they didn’t care in the least. When we left negative reviews mentioning the clothes-shredding capabilities of their flooring they said it must have been an installation problem (as if).


We’re desperate to find a replacement that isn’t going to repeat any of these problems we’ve experienced! Any advice/help anyone can share will be GREATLY appreciated!! TYIA!


Comments (136)

  • Gina-Marie Clark
    4 months ago

    I finally finished my upstairs in Super core Sweet Talker and I am absolutely in love with it! Perfect blend of classic with a bit of rustic. I love the different tones in different light and I love the flow in wide open spaces😍 I installed over 1k sqft by myself and once you get going it goes fast because of the giant planks. My only regret is not doing it downstairs but we already did over 1800 sqft of a different Super core color.






  • Mary Elizabeth
    4 months ago

    @Gina-Marie Clark - nice job! You must be younger than we are - lol!

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  • ashleyb345
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    @HU-110304776 ironically I just ordered samples of the north shore oak color. I heard the same thing and didnt know if they changed or increased their patterns or not yet.

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    4 months ago

    @HU-110304776 @ashleyb345

    Maybe they updated it again? we recently got a sample box of North Shore Oak which showed 3 of the patterns we currently have installed and their reversals, so they have incorporated reversals at least since our install (so that would be 4 unique patterns with 4 reversals). I haven’t heard that they have 11 unique patterns yet. I’ll ask my rep if I can get him to answer my emails 😛 The pattern repeat was our only complaint about the Cali longboards so if they fixed that issue that would be great! Though I’d still be worried they might change the finish to that destructive finish like all their competitors seem to be doing so I’d check the finish on any new colors, even if it’s in the same collection

  • HU-110304776
    4 months ago

    I got samples of both Cali and Coretec. The Coretex is as you said. Matte finish, sort of rough... assuming from the aluminum oxide. I didn't even bother testing it on clothes because I could tell from the feel it's exactly as you say.

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  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    4 months ago

    @HU-110304776 We’re currently waiting on more longboard colors that don’t have big knots so the repeats shouldn’t be so obvious. I have to say, between living on floors that tear up clothing and living with repeats, we’ll take the repeats! (But still hoping the new colors are better so we can have less matte AND less obvious repeats.)

  • d3_max_t
    4 months ago

    @surrendertoflow thank you for bringing attention to this issue!


    I'm also trying to decide between @Flooret and @Cali Floors. I have a full plank of Kingswood (Flooret) on the way and have just received a North Shore Oak sample (Cali Bamboo). I'll be sure to test both.


    This absolutely sucks, as the number of people who found this information are ridiculously low compared to how much LVP is being sold.

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    4 months ago

    @d3_max_t Cali is coming out with new longboard colors at the end of this week!! And the patterns have less knots than North Shore Oak so we’re hoping that the repeat issue won’t be as noticeable with the new ones! So you might want to check those out! We’ve got fingers and toes crossed that at least one of the new colors will work better for us AND that they have the same finish as the North Shore Oak (we will, of course, still test the new colors). I will report back here once we decide what we are going with in case it helps anyone else (hoping to get the new samples next week as long as there aren’t any delays). Good luck! (Would also be interested to hear what you end up finding in your tests and choosing for your floor!)

  • PRO
    Debbi Washburn
    4 months ago

    I am grateful for all the work you are doing on this. I have sold a lot of Coretec and Legacy flooring collection and have not had anyone ever mention these things.

    Thanks!

  • lb913
    4 months ago

    I know this thread has gotten long, but I wanted to let y’all know CORETec approved my defect claim!! Now I have to wait until Sept for them to have the flooring in stock. I’m really hoping they fixed the issue because I love the color and variation of the Bravado Pine.

  • Katherine Henries
    4 months ago

    @surrendertoflow thanks for keeping us updated on this. We are looking at both @flooret and @Cali Floors - specifically their North Shore and Seaboard. Just got samples from CB today and waiting on the flooret to arrive before making a final decision. If we go with Cali Bamboo I'll be sure to update with out final impression.

    surrendertoflow thanked Katherine Henries
  • Jackie Tuthill
    3 months ago
    last modified: 3 months ago

    Any issues with coretec plus hd Klondike contempo oak? We installed three years ago and love it but I saw mention that it now might be made in new facility and quality has diminished ? I don’t want to install it in our new build if it’s going to deteriorate help,,,,

  • Megan Philbin
    2 months ago

    I just wanted to add in our experience with Coretec pro plus Chandler oak. We have the haziness, never clean appearance. When installed it had the white powder all over and I felt like it never really got clean.


    We noticed shredding of socks as well. Most importantly, the floors are cutting my children's toes and we are finding blood everywhere. Our dogs paws were wearing down as well. We put in a claim through our installer rite rug, and they approved a reselection. Not sure what that means yet, they have yet to contact us to pick it out. They said in there investigation that the top coat can have an 'exfoliating' effect... That with the kids injuries is why they approved the claim. I'm worried all LVP have this issue

    surrendertoflow thanked Megan Philbin
  • Mary Elizabeth
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    All the effort to find the right flooring, in the right color is exhausting! So glad we are done with that chore! We have no vested interest in the company, but we are VERY happy with the Supercore Extreme we installed a couple months ago.

    We live on a lake, so constant sand and water, 14 adults and 15 grandchildren, plus my husband is still doing trim work, so lots of tools. NOT ONE scratch yet! Also cleans so easy - no haze, no spotting, just clean!

    I can't speak to any other colors, but the Asheville Extreme is very lightly textured, with a micro bevel. The bevel helped with installation, as it gives a sharp visual so you know it's locked in. Now it's not even noticeable. IIRC, one of the other color samples we received did have a lot more texture, which I don't care for.

    Alan, from Supercore, has posted here that they have added more colors in the Extreme (8 mm, 5G) Series.

    We looked at almost all the other brands listed in this thread, but I think we got the best one, given the complaints here.

    surrendertoflow thanked Mary Elizabeth
  • Connie Stackhouse
    2 months ago

    So sorry that you are having these problems. I think what it boils down to is that Luxury Vinyl is a cleverly misleading flooring industry catch phrase. There is nothing luxury about vinyl, no matter how you market it. if you want wood look, go with REAL wood. If you want stone look go with REAL stone. Anything less will decrease the resale value of homes above the low to mid price range. That is a sobering but true reality.

  • Mary Elizabeth
    2 months ago

    A blanket statement that one product will increase the value of a home, while another will decrease it doesn't really make any sense. We used the LVP in our lower level. Our main level is solid maple hardwood. I can't imagine having water and sand on hardwood! Ceramic tile or a finished concrete? Not a fan of either. People's lifestyles and budgets will dictate their choices.

    surrendertoflow thanked Mary Elizabeth
  • Jennifer Hogan
    2 months ago

    Reality check. If I were to replace my LVT flooring with new LVT it would cost $16,000

    if I replaced with Hardwood flooring it wound cost $25,000. Hardwoods would raise the sales price by 2.5% or $6,750. So I would be spending 9,000 to raise the value $6750, so I would have $2250 less to spend on my next home.

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    2 months ago

    @Mary Elizabeth I can’t wait to be in your shoes….done with the search and happy! We aren’t there yet, but I’ll check out the latest additions to SuperCore. We had looked at some samples earlier this year and passed but maybe the newer stuff coming out will appeal to us more. Really hope the newer stuff will have a non-destructive finish! Thanks so much for your input and recommendation!

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    2 months ago

    @Megan Philbin That sounds horrifying! I'm so sorry that is happening to your family :-(

    Luckily our Coretec Berlin Pine is just tearing up clothing, slippers, mops, vacuum heads, etc., but no blood for us! (However, we do avoid it as much as possible where it is still installed upstairs. Who knows what would be happening if it were downstairs where 99% of the action is.)


    I'm not at all surprised by their "exfoliating" comment, but I'm kinda shocked they are admitting anything and giving you the option to select other flooring (I'm guessing just from them?) Though one would think if anything would get them to respond at least semi-appropriately it would be making your children's feet bleed for heaven's sake! They certainly didn't care at all when we told them it was tearing up our clothes (we got lucky that the floor was defective otherwise.)


    Please do let us know what you end up choosing! And, of course, test your new flooring for this issue before install! I have heard from one person that a sample they had wasn't that destructive matte finish and then when the floor was installed in the same color, it was matte/destructive!


    We are unfortunately still on the hunt. We waited for months for the new @Cali Floors longboard colors because our North Shore Oak by them is still one of the only ones that doesn't create holes at all, even after rubbing that pitiful test fabric I use over it 100 times! But the problem with that is horribly noticeable pattern repeats because of the big knots, so we were hoping some of their newer, more subtly-patterned longboards would have the same finish as North Shore Oak without the knots (so less obvious repeats). I was reassured that they should have the same finish, but I don't think they even understand what I'm talking about because the new longboard colors most definitely do not have the same finish! Might be composed of the same material, but that top coat on them is definitely more matte than on the North Shore Oak. You can feel the difference, and, as expected, you can see the difference in our fabric tests. We made a video for @Cali Floors in the hopes they will pay attention and take this issue seriously. If you want to see how we are testing flooring now to find out quickly how abrasive it is you can check it out in the link below: (the "knee test" was too painful to do it on so many samples so we had to come up with a new method!) Unfortunately, one of the only other ones we have found that also had a non-destructive finish that we liked the look of (their New Horizon Teak Classic) was discontinued in the time we were waiting for the new longboard colors. They are saying the color will return in the fall but it will be updated in their mute step line. I'm worried about that because one of their other mute step colors is one of the WORST we have tested so far as far as abrasiveness, on par with the horrible Coretec Berlin Pine and I would guess with yours too. I don't know what it will take for these companies to take this seriously and stop making these floors so destructive! It's so not necessary and ruins a promising product that otherwise performs so well! Here's the video where we demonstrate the range of destructiveness in the finishes using our updated heel-slide test. Please excuse the tone in the video. I promise I'm a more pleasant person when I'm not talking about how exasperated I am to try to find non-matte/destructive LVP over the past two years!

    https://youtu.be/r34E3MFJK1g


  • Brandi Helms
    last month

    We have been in our custom build for a month and a half. Since moving in I have noticed holes in all my kids socks. I also have raw spots on my toes. I finally put 2 and 2 together, googled and found this post. I have emailed Cortec.

    surrendertoflow thanked Brandi Helms
  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    last month
    last modified: last month

    @Brandi Helms I’m so sorry this is happening to you too! Might be helpful to count up how many people are reporting the same thing in this thread and show them the selected people that are also having this problem. I’ll be surprised if they aren’t dismissive and you don’t have to fight so you’ll probably need back up. But there is at least one case in this thread where they did agree to replace the floor because it was injuring someone’s children! So they should have it on file. That will hopefully work in your favor!! Good luck!!! I can also do another shorter video just comparing our coretec floor to the other lvp we have that doesn’t damage clothes at all so they can see a direct comparison (it’s very obvious and easy to demonstrate). If enough people complain then maybe they will start to care and change their manufacturing processes! (Unfortunately it seems all the other companies are doing it now too though, but maybe if one changes the rest will follow.) Also, congratulations on figuring it out faster than we did!

  • Rosa Harris
    last month

    I have been looking for LVP for a few years. Brought home many samples and did all kinds of wear test. I did not want any transition strips. Then I discovered Flooret and Weshipfloors supercore. After many samples. I decided on Supercore Extreme. Bought a sample of Acacia put 10 pieces down in front of kitchen door for 1 year testing I really liked the color. But it had painted bevels. I did not want bevels. Finally checked back on website and they now have Wild Acacia. I recieved a sample and fell in love with the color. I installed the flooring myself (I still have not finished with shoe mold everywhere) it has been down for 3 months now. I love it. I have put all proper pads under furniture and heavy appliances to avoid dents and scratches. I attached canvas under all throw rugs instead of other type of rug pads. I needed a floor to stand up to me. I also have 1 cat and 24 grandchildren. We have taken care of a puppy for a few weeks. I love my floors.

    surrendertoflow thanked Rosa Harris
  • joanhawsey
    21 days ago
    last modified: 21 days ago

    Hi- I had 1500 sf of Coretec installed about 5 years ago in our condo on a lake and did not encounter the rough finish issues, but found it hard to keep clean We installed 2060 sf of Supercore hickory in a new house we just built and I am quite pleased with the much cheaper price, stone base instead if wood for a waterproof product, and love how it looks. We have had no issues with walking in bare feet. The mat finish does show smudges and foot prints when the sun is on it, but i prefer that issue to tye super slippery surface od hardwood i have had in the past. It is not as hard to get clean as the Coretec was . Plus it is great woth my 60 pound dog and two large grand dogs. I am happy with our choice. We ran it right into out bathrooms for a threshold-free look. good luck all!



  • Megan Philbin
    21 days ago

    I just wanted to give an update to our replacement claim through rite rug for the injuries to our children from our Coretec floor. We finally picked a replacement floor and got them to agree to give us a price match on the new floor. We are now getting Fidalgo Oak. It had a very different texture than the Chandler oak we currently have. Fingers crossed that we won't have the same issues. I know they have the same top coat, but we were told all Shaw/Coretec floors have the same topcoat, so we really had no choice.

    surrendertoflow thanked Megan Philbin
  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    21 days ago

    @Megan Philbin

    Thank you for the update! I’m glad you were able to find something that has a different feel with hopefully less…actually let’s go with NO destructive qualities! Were you able to do any fabric tests on it? Make sure you do test it out before install so you can let them know if their replacement has the same issue! We have found this issue varies within brand and even within collections across different colors so it’s totally possible you found one that doesn’t have the same problem! 🤞🤞🤞


    For what it is worth, the issue doesn’t seem to be related to what the top coat is made of as far as we can tell because we have two extreme examples in our home and the manufacturers report using the same top coat (UV acrylic) on both products. Despite having the same composition, one shreds horribly/obviously/quickly and the other you literally can’t make a hole in even on our pitiful thin test fabric with over 100 hard passes! But you can definitely tell a difference in the feel of them (plus the fabric test makes the difference super obvious). So having the same top coat doesn’t mean they will perform the same at all as far as fabric shredding!

    Also, for what it’s worth, if you test your new selection and it does not perform as well as you’d like on fabric tests, you should know it is possible to argue with them that you can’t find a suitable replacement from their brand and get your money back in full. That’s what we did. Their first offer was to pay us a laughable $2000 to keep our defective floors, then they offered to replace with another Coretec floor and when we refused all of those offers and demanded a refund, they finally agreed we could select whatever brand we wanted. That’s how we got the Cali Bamboo North Shore Oak (and then they had to refund us when they royally screwed up to too.)


    We are actually eagerly and anxiously awaiting a box of something we are hopeful about! After testing like a million samples (probably actually a hundred), we couldn’t find anything that matched the performance of our North Shore Oak (zero fabric damage) UNTIL NOW!! We got one sample of SuperCore Natural Oak Xtreme and it did just as well!!! Zero damage in our fabric test!!! We’re cautiously excited and are hoping it’s not a fluke. We’ll find out once we get our sample box! It’s worth mentioning that the other samples we got from them did some fabric damage (not the best and not the worst, their other samples ranged from 20-30ish passes before we started to get holes in our test fabric). So somehow this one specific color seemed to be a unicorn. Hoping that at least the boxes they currently have in stock of this one color all have the same finish quality! I can update you on what happens with that too in case this flooring is another good option🤞🤞

  • jmg0402
    20 days ago

    This thread has been amazingly helpful. We are currently on the hunt for vinyl flooring, want a minimum of 20 mil, and a neutral light brown color, not too gray,

    not too golden. I can’t even tell you how many samples I have from different brands, including Shaw, Coretec and Cali. we have Cali in our current home, and can attest to the repeating pattern issue, but have had zero other issues. Can’t find the right color with them for the new house though. Have a couple Cortec samples we like the color of, but am now extremely wary of them and will perform all of the mentioned tests. Just ordered a slew of Flooret and SuperCore samples, so we’ll see how they look and perform. Mainly, just wanted to say thank you to everyone that’s been posting here with their progress and advice. Looking forward to the continued updates.

  • Ned Phillips
    15 days ago
    last modified: 15 days ago

    This has been a very informative discussion. Thanks to everyone for your comments.

    I too have been searching for new flooring. Need about 850 sq ft. I’ve decided to go with rigid core vinyl plank. Started searching at the beginning of last month and expect to finish by the end of this month. This is not a life or death decision like those faced by jurors.

    I now have about 20 samples on hand with about 20 more on the way. In my opinion, the abrasiveness of the floor surface is only one of many relevant criteria to use to evaluate flooring. For families with young children, it could be (probably should be) a major criterion. For my wife and me who are retired, who never walk on our floors (mainly ceramic tile) in bare feet or socks, and who never get down on the floor for fear of not being able to get back up again, a slightly abrasive surface is not a problem. In fact, because abrasive surfaces are generally less slippery, it’s desirable. We may wear out the soles of some shoes a little earlier, but that is a low price to pay for a safer floor for us.

    However, I am concerned about how an abrasive floor might affect the feet of our small dog. Does anyone have any experience with abrasive flooring surfaces adversely affecting the feet of dogs or cats?

    I evaluate rigid vinyl plank flooring on the following factors most of which I can determine by searching online or contacting the manufacturing company.

    Realistic appearance and general color that we want

    Amount of color variation within and between planks

    Edge detail - Nano bevel, Micro bevel, Pronounced bevel, Painted bevel, etc

    Amount and type of surface texture

    Surface Gloss - Matte, low gloss, high gloss, etc.

    Total thickness of planks

    Thickness of wear layer

    Type of protective top finish layer - diamond dust, aluminum oxide, microscopic ceramic beads, UV cured urethane

    Weight per square foot

    Plank width(s)

    Number of unique planks (pattern repetition)

    Weight per carton - lower is better because it’s easier to carry

    Quality of Attached Underlayment Pad - Includes thickness and type (cork, EVA, & IXPE)

    Warranty

    Customer Reviews

    Quality of vinyl and locking system used - 100% virgin is best. Some locking systems are quicker and easier to use.

    FloorScore or Greenguard certified

    If I like the appearance of a sample and it rates well on the above criteria, I also test it for:

    Resistance to staining from mustard, crushed dark sweet cherries, orange juice, chocolate syrup, & coffee.

    Resistance to wear via a sandpaper wear test, a nail scratch test, a new quarter edge scratch test, a scuff test.

    Resistance to Impacts and Dents, via a one minute compression test at about 10,000 psi and a separate pointed 3.5 lb steel bar vertical drop test.

    Ease of Cleaning - I smear very fine particle red mud across a plank, let it dry, and see how easy it is to clean off.

    I only run tests on samples that look promising. Using a spreadsheet, I create a total score for those samples much like is done by Consumer Reports.

    I weigh each of the criteria as I deem appropriate for my situation and preferences. Half of the total score is based on my tests and half on the other factors above. In my case for example, the edge style accounts for 8% of the total score and the wear layer thickness accounts for 7%. The surface gloss accounts for only 3% but it would count much higher if I were young spending lots of time on the floor with my small children. Perhaps in that case the abrasiveness of the floor surface would account for 15% of the total score. Rather than rating each sample for the level of surface gloss, perhaps it would be better to test each flooring sample for how badly it wears out pieces of fabric rubbed against it. In my case, customer reviews count for only 1% of the total score.

    In the preliminary testing that I have done, I have found a significant difference in the stain resistance, scratch resistance, and impact/dent resistance of various samples of rigid core vinyl plank flooring. These attributes are not highly correlated with the price.

    In the beginning I included the type of core in the rating system., WPC vs SPC. I’ve since decided that the kind of core is not important to us. Supposedly WPC is warmer to the touch and softer under foot. As a practical matter it’s insignificant. Both are much warmer and softer than ceramic tile. Place 2 samples with SPC cores and 2 samples with WPC cores side by side on your kitchen counter for a couple of days to reach the same temperature. Now place the palm of your hand on an SPC sample and a WPC sample simultaneously. I’ll bet that you’ll have a hard time telling which feels cooler. (in fact they should be the same temperature.) If you have a stone countertop, place a hand on that for comparison. If not, use the bottom of a cast iron skillet. The difference between WPC & SPC flooring, in the rate of transfer of heat from your hand to the flooring surface, is too small to be significant. Try it on another pair of samples. The thickness of the wear layer and perhaps the texture may also slightly affect how warm it feels, but it’s not relevant to selecting a floor.

    SPC is more dense and more resistant to dents. There may be a difference between WPC & SPC concerning how they sound when walked on with hard heeled shoes. I don’t know. We always wear soft spongy soled shoes in our house, so we don’t care how hard the floor is. As time goes on, I might eliminate some of the rating criteria if all samples rate nearly the same on a specific criteria.

    A closing thought. I don’t disapprove of companies making flooring that is slip resistant and perhaps also slightly abrasive. I suspect that some of these companies want their products to be ADA compliant as it relates to slip resistance.They just should note the abrasive nature of their products in their promotional materials and spec sheets and train their sales reps accordingly.

    Hopefully this post will give you some ideas on how to evaluate vinyl plank flooring for your case, based on your needs and preferences.

    surrendertoflow thanked Ned Phillips
  • lmblaber
    10 days ago

    I installed $15k of LVF at a shore house. as soon as it was installed I noticed foootprints, mop marks, and a haze the floor never looked clean. after back and forth with the store they sent a third parry to evlauate. They offered to replace all the floods due to an abrasiveness! injust completly renovated and cant imagine taking out the floor!

    They offered to have a company come buff the floora to see if that helps. inwould NEVER buy these floors again! coretec/Shaw is well aware of the problem, instead of fixing the problem they continue to sell the defective floors. I spent mknths researching wish I would have come across these threads earlier. seriousky seriously, think twice before purchasing these floors.

  • lmblaber
    10 days ago

    Sorry for all the typos!

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    10 days ago

    @lmblaber I’m so sorry this is happening to you too. Very interesting they offered that explanation! So there must be at least some critical number of people complaining about such things to them then if they are the ones that brought up abrasiveness to explain the issue you are having. (I do think the fabric damage and the haze/cleaning issue are related to the matteness of the finish because we have zero cleaning issues on the LVP that we have that does not damage fabric and feels much less matte.) I know how disruptive it is to think you’re done with major renovations and then find out you either have to start again or accept a defective product! Unfortunately it’s not just Coretec with this issue anymore. We are STILL looking for something that does no damage (and therefore wouldn’t have the haze issue)! If you do end up accepting a replacement and actually find a suitable one, please do update us! As soon as we find one (if we do), I’ll be on all the forums letting everyone know about it! Good luck to you!

  • lmblaber
    9 days ago

    There are several forums talking about this issue.

    The claims manager told me that ”due to the finish they’ve had babies feet bleed.” What is so interesting is if I replace I have to pick a different style, even though they are still selling this product!

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    9 days ago

    @lmblaber Yes, someone posted on here about her children’s feet bleeding! Oh I’m sure they will continue to sell the product they’ve already manufactured, but maybe just maaaaaaayyyyybe if they are that aware of the stakes they will research it and make different choices for future products (though I hope we aren’t still looking that far in the future😒) .

  • Brandi Helms
    8 days ago

    Cortec is replacing our ciaro oak flooring but they did not give us the option to choose another style. They are sending us more ciaro oak. i hope we do not have the same problem with the replacement.

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    8 days ago

    @Brandi Helms That’s great that they agreed to replace it! But do check before install of the new product they send you. They won’t voluntarily say they’ll replace with a different product but if you show that it’s the same stuff with the same problem (I’d be very surprised if it isn’t), then you do have more power than they are letting on. We refused the first two offers they gave us and demanded they just refund us in the end so we could go with another product and they did end up agreeing to that. Of course then you have to search for a different product, but better that than going through the trouble of install and then dealing with the same exact issue! I’ll send a video today of the test we do now on our samples. Pretty easy and you can quickly see what’s damaging and what’s not. Thank you for the update!! Very curious to hear ifof the new product they send to you does/doesn’t have the same issue!

  • Chessie
    8 days ago

    How on earth is flooring causing shredding of clothing, or bleeding feet? Can someone post a closeup of such a floor? If the finish is that rough, why was it purchased? I honestly have never heard of such a thing.

  • Megan Philbin
    8 days ago

    When LVP was originally made, it was shiny and did not have realistic patterns or embossing. My first house we installed this type of LVP and loved it. Though it did not look realistic. We moved and wanted LVP again but they changed the way they finish the top coat. Now it is matte finish with an embossed texture. It feels smooth to the touch, but it's like micro sand paper, it is abrasive. The sample in store we felt was much smoother and shinier than what was installed. My kids are getting injuries to their feet, there's blood all over the floor. And my dogs pads of his paws are completely worn down. Obviously if we knew this would happen, we would not have gotten it installed.

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    8 days ago

    @Megan Philbin @Brandi Helms

    We now test every sample we are considering for this issue so we don’t make the same mistake again…basically we see how many passes it takes to make a hole by stretching dark, thin fabric over a heel and pressing hard while rubbing back and forth over the sample. We check for a hole after every ten passes. Just sharing so you can test your new selections before install to make doubly sure you won’t run into the same issues! This is an easier/less painful way to test than the “knee test” we originally did. Note I do use thin fabric so I can quickly see if the sample will damage fabric or not (I perform the same test on our other LVP with the same fabric and it truly does not make holes no matter how hard I try.) I took a video today but apparently Houzz only lets me post pics. If you want the video demo, I’ll try uploading to YouTube and can send you a link!

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    7 days ago

    @Chessie It’s not something you’d be able to see in a pic. And the floor feels smooth enough so, unless you know what the more destructive matte finish feels like from experience, you also wouldn’t know by the feel of the floor. Think of what ultra matte paint on a wall feels like, it’s smooth but just feels matte compared to satin or gloss paint. They are all smooth but you can still feel a difference between them. The ultra matte floors do the damage and unfortunately all the latest LVP samples we’ve tested are doing this (older LVP doesn’t.)

  • lb913
    7 days ago
    last modified: 7 days ago

    @surrendertoflow please share the video our replacement floors just arrived, and I’m going to pick up a box today. We plan to test it over the weekend, and make a decision to have the new product install. We too had blood shed on the tops of my daughters feet, as she draggs her feet when crawing. This happened after about 20 mins of crawing around. We installed our floor in January 2021, filed the claim in April and got it approved in June. We did not have to do an inspection, so I assumed they were already aware of the issue. I have spoken to many LVP installers across the US and none have seen this issue. btw we have CoreTEC Premium Plus Color Bravado Pine. here is a picture of Before and After cleaning. hard to tell the difference!




  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    7 days ago
    last modified: 7 days ago

    @lb913 I will post a video as soon as I get the chance! Might not be until tomorrow, but I promise I will get it on here! Yes, most installers/manufacturers/retailers tell me the same thing. I think it is a new problem honestly because when we first bought our LVP over two years ago, the matte Berlin Pine finish was unusual...now it's on just about every single dang sample we try out. So I think it's only really in the last year it has become more widespread. Plus, it's hard to figure out that your flooring is tearing up your clothes/skin. It honestly took us a while to figure it out. No one assumes their floor is tearing up their clothes/skin! I will say some installers said they were aware because their knee pads would be torn up and their hands would be chaffed if they didn't wear gloves. And FloorCritics said they had heard of the issue when I emailed them about it, but have they done a blog on it to warn people?? No. :-<

  • Chessie
    7 days ago

    I have searched online and can find no other mention of this issue, anywhere, other than this thread. This is really odd. You definitely should post a video.

  • Ned Phillips
    7 days ago

    According to my tests, Armstrong PRYZM is less abrasive than the other samples of rigid core vinyl plank flooring that I've tested. In my opinion, PRYZM is a high quality product, with an SPC core.

  • Jen K
    7 days ago

    @ned I hope so. We're installing the Armstrong Empower line in our new build. As we only had a sample, we didn't get to test this but then I wasn't aware of matte finish issues of other lines to start.

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    7 days ago

    @Jen K You can test even small samples! We do it all the time! I do encourage you to test your sample before install if it is an issue you are worried about.

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    7 days ago

    @Chessie @lb913 @Megan Philbin @Brandi Helms @Ned Phillips @Jen K @lmblaber @jmg0402

    Here is a video we put up on YouTube so you can see how we do or our fabric tests on flooring now. (We do the same on any samples we are testing too). For those of you wanting to make a case with Coretec to get a different replacement (like if they are arguing you just got a ” bad batch” or something, you are welcome to use this to help support your case! Hope it’s helpful!

    https://youtu.be/7SVZyaty0_w

  • joanhawsey
    6 days ago

    Has anyone tested Super Core SPC like this video? my grandaigher crawls on mine with no issue but she just visits vs living here daily i will say it does clean up, but shows smudges more quickly and obviously than my prior wood floors. Buy the waterproof and scratch resistance is worth it to me

  • ashleyb345
    6 days ago

    @surrendertoflow just watched your new video. Very helpful! Thanks for making!

  • surrendertoflow
    Original Author
    6 days ago

    @joanhawsey We have tested some SuperCore samples and it wasn't super straightforward. People seem to love it and have recommended it so we got some samples. They weren't the worst and weren't the best as far as fabric damage goes. Some were in the 30-40 pass range, some were in the 20-30 pass range. So I wouldn't expect any bloody feet from those but I don't know what that range would translate to as far as wearing down fabric over time. We have only lived on two examples, one that doesn't shred at all and one that shreds horribly. Not sure what living on the mid-range flooring would be like. I suspect the rate it would damage clothing would be slower and maybe not even noticeable, at least to most if they aren't playing on the floor every day. We actually found ONE SuperCore sample that did zero damage that we got SO excited about (Oak Natural Xtreme) and even ordered a box to make sure it wasn't a fluke. We were disappointed that the planks in the box were inconsistent. We tested 4 full planks out of the box: one did no damage, one did damage in 40 passes, and 2 did damage in 60 passes. We are still considering this one, but would obviously prefer to have one that does zero damage since we know that is possible (or at least was) and would be hugely disappointed if we went through all of this and paid tens of thousands to replace the flooring and then found out it's still damaging our clothes! It's the only one that we've tested so far besides our North Shore Oak that we are considering.

  • Julie Chen
    3 days ago
    last modified: 3 days ago

    We have samples of coretec at home now and compared to other brands there is a fine sandpaper like finish. I actually liked the sandpaper feeling because I thought it would minimize falls/slipping, but after reading this thread I am concerned. I have another sample made by Oceanside Flooring (makes an in house line sold by the Floor Store in CA only) that does not have the sandpaper finish and is much more "slippery". Interestingly, all my kids like the slippery finish, but my husband was worried his dad would fall. It's hard to know which is better - slippery finish or sandpaper-like non slip finish. I suspect older adults will like the anti-slip finish. Pets, crawling children are a different story. I do have a 55 lb goldendoodle whose paws get torn up by concrete if he plays too exuberantly, so I can see how this may be an issue with dog paws.

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