Anyone used the Dream Home laminate from LL?

kitchenloverJune 1, 2005

My boyfriend is remodeling his kitchen and we are most likely going to go with a laminate floor because of cost, ease of installation, durability, etc.

I noticed Lumber Liquidators sells a brand called Dream Home for 99 cents a square foot. Has anyone used this in their home and how did it go down, is it wearing well, etc.?

I've seen the cheap laminates HD and Lowes sells and I'm not so sure about the quality. I think at those stores unless you pay top dollar (i.e. Pergo) you're getting crap.

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Not just at the big box stores. You get what you pay for any where.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2005 at 9:58PM
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My wife and I just installed about 180sf the Lumber Liquidators Nirvana Laminate Flooring w/ the underpayment attached last weekend. List price on the Lumber Liquidators web site is $1.99psf, but at the store it was on sale for $1.59psf. It doesn't just, "clip together" by "gently tapping" the pieces like their instructions say, but after a couple of frustrating rows, we cut a small grove along the edge of a 12" 2x4 to accommodate the tongue edge of the Nirvana floor pieces, then we were able to use that and a small 3lbs sledge hammer to do the, "tapping" necessary to get the piece to clip together. After that the work went fast we got the entire room done the same way. You also have to use a chisel or utility knife to scrape down the bump on the tongue edge so you can put in last row thats against a way where thereÂs no room for a sledge hammer. So, itÂs probably more difficult to work with than a Lowes or Home Depot product, but our room looks great, those floor pieces fit so tight that IÂm confident weÂll never have a visible seam on that floor, and for the quality of the board itself, we did the room at half the cost of going to a big-box store. We plan on using the same Nirvana Laminate in 3 other rooms. Email w/ questions about this post.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2005 at 10:47PM
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We recently installed 1800 sq ft of Nirvana Dream Home laminate in the Mountain Pine color. It is BEAUTIFUL! Everyone compliments us on it. We got ours for 1.89 per foot and it does have the padding already on it. It does not have the hollow sound of some laminate and it has texture instead of the slick plastic surface that makes some laminate look so fake.HTH

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 8:51PM
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I've been getting a lot of email questions so I thought I'd try and post my responses here for everyone.

Matt Asks:
> Hello, my name is Matt, I read your post at I have just
> purchased the same product from Lumber Liquidators (Nirvana w/
> underlayment). My question is how difficult was it really?? I have never
> attempted to do flooring on my own and in the coming weeks I will be
> installing about 1400sq ft of it. Also is thwere a gap between the walls and
> the flooring? What about transitions? In my mind I guess I see it fairly
> difficult. Do you have any other pointers? Thank you in advance for your
> time!.. -Matt

My Reply:
Hi Matt,

It really wasn't that bad, once we learned the 2 tricks mentioned in my original post (see above) it did start to go quick. This was our first laminate flooring experience, the only other flooring we've done was a 50sqft tile job in our laundry room. Tile in our laundry room was our first home improvement project ever, our guest room w/ the nirvana flooring is the 2nd, and my wife and I are not craftsman (or very handy in general).

Measure accurately and measure often, to make sure your rows are straight/square (same distance from whatever wall you're going to end on) and follow the advice in their instructions and remove the base molding from the rooms you're putting flooring in. That will give you a 1/2inch wiggle room around the perimeter of the room so your cuts don't need to be 100% accurate and that will allow room for expansion (new base molding will cover the gap). Also, we did all of our cutting and rips (lengthwise cut) w/ a cordless 19.2 volt craftsman circular saw. That, a small sledge hammer, tape measure, and a pry-bar to help pop-together the pieces near the walls were about the only tools we needed. As for transitions to different rooms or flooring, go to Lowes or Home Depot and buy your transition (threshold) pieces there.

Your first 3 or 4 rows will probably be a little frustrating, but after that you'll get the hang of it will go quick. My wife and I just bought another 800sf of the Nirvana flooring from lumber liquidators to do the rest of our bedrooms in the coming months. If we can do it, You can too!!!

    Bookmark   July 5, 2005 at 9:49PM
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I don't know if is still in business, but if they are, you might want to check their site for some great product reviews and ratings, especially for the various brands and grades of laminates.

I am not necessarily recommending that you buy from them, since there have been several posts in the past from homeowners that had problems with product and were not allowed to return it. That said, Steve the owner (at least the last time I looked, which was a few years ago) had done a nice job in putting together a useful and informative site, including the advantages and disadvantages of various flooring choices. We used his information as part of our decision process when re-doing our floors.

FWIW, we would never buy flooring from the big box stores, since they cater to the lower end of the market. (Not saying that everything they sell is cheap, just that the choices are limited and skewed in that direction), nor would be buy from a website for this kind of purchase. I want a real person, a physical location that I can go to, and a place where I can touch and look at all the choices. We use only local vendors from start to finish, so that if there are any issues, we have recourse and not just through the mail. However, that is just me - and given what things cost today, I can completely understand someone shopping on price alone, once they have made their flooring decision. I just caution to be mindful of the risks of long-distance purchasing--that's all.


    Bookmark   July 6, 2005 at 12:14PM
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I bought about 15 boxes of nirvana in carolina pine about two months ago, didn't get to putting it down until couple week ago starting opening packages and a lot of them were damaged even though packaging wasn't damaged, I started laying floor and put down about 4 rows about 25ft long the first night. Next morning a section in 2nd row was raised above rest so i pulled if up, replaced the piece which was bad because the locking lip was half gone like striped off and laying in groove of mating piece. Laid about 6 more rows that night and next day same thing on others, I have probally done floor four times, also chips show up on edges later. I am totaly dissatsfied with this stuff. I know I only had 15 days to return any damaged pieces but these pieces were in were in perfect shape, I didn't see any visible damage to packing. I am is process of calling lum liqdators now but reading some of the other posts I am probably wasting my time. Pat

    Bookmark   September 14, 2005 at 5:45PM
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Pat111153 - before you started to install, did you lay down the packages in the room for at least 48 hrs? Sometimes if you don't let the flooring acclimatize to the room, you might get problems like you had.

Also, it helps to buy an installation/tapping kit. It has spacers you need, the tapping block with the groove and a pry bar to help tap in the last row or end piece.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2005 at 2:29AM
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I left it in room for about two weeks. I made me a tool out of an old metal square and cut a groove in a block of wood and inserted metal into it and when laid on floor metal edge only touched back of groove, LL said I didn't need special install kit. if tool was problem I am sure I would have all of them damaged. I have all but a few boxes left to finish and the floor does look good.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2005 at 5:43PM
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I continue to get many emails ( w/ install questions so I put together some photos that might help, link below.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2005 at 8:13PM
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Outstanding job drebin. hats off to you brother.

I want to point out one thing that people need to watch for. Believe me I am not being critical of your work either. All laminates have "pattern repeats", some more than others depending on the brands.

They don't tell you this in the instructions, but open a few boxes first, and separate the repeats to see how many you will have with that particular brand. Then as you lay you will have to shuffle the repeats so you don't get a long pattern repeat running across a room.

Excellent job :).

    Bookmark   December 14, 2005 at 6:13AM
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bsgbenish_cox_net, I read that this stuff is supposed to be so easy to put down, but it took us ALL DAY on Sunday to get just a few rows poorly put down. Our problem was that we would get one row nice and tight like it's supposed to be, then we would move on to the next row, and while tapping that row in, the row before it would shift on the butt ends leaving little spaces. We wrestled with it all day, tried various things (duct tape being one) and could not stop the shifting. It was like the vibrations from the next row would make the previous row scoot. Needless to say, it was maddening? Any suggestions?

    Bookmark   May 15, 2006 at 3:22PM
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I by far do not consider myself to be "A Professional Laminate Floor Installer" , since I have only done 6 flooring projects totalling about 2500 sq ft. I have used Pergo - Bruce - Swiftlock - Mansfield for goods & purchased from the "Home Center Stores" and was pleased with the results. I recently did 400 aq ft. of flooring bought at LL. The goods were Dream Home , Nirvana, Red Oak.

I will NEVER puchase another product manufactured by Dream Home AGAIN!!!. This install took me as 3 times longer to install due to foam backing that was poorly attached to the goods, I had to inspect each plank and trim the majority planks from overhanging backing or ripped backing that was taped before packaging. The boards along the edge did't lock or hold into place well making the process of tapping the joints together a nightmare while other joints seemed to split apart in the tapping process. Some of the sheet goods were marred with big black smudges that were not easy to be safely removed, and some of the goods were chipped, scratched, and damaged , but then packaged in the original clean cartons. I'm not blaming LL for the goods, but I have spoken my dissatisfaction to them about Dream Home Goods and suggested to them not to supply this product.
All I can do know is wait and see what this floor looks like next year before I have to rip it out and start all over again.
I will definately pay closer attention to the country of origin on any of next home repairs.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 9:27AM
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We have now had our Dream Home laminate down for 14 months.
It is still beautiful and holding up well to our two kids.
Sorry for some of your troubles with the product. We purchased 1800 sq ft in mountain pine as I mentioned in my previous post. Maybe we just lucked out and got a good pallet of the stuff.....

    Bookmark   September 8, 2006 at 7:38PM
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I HATE this flooring!! Does anyone have the Dream Home parent company info? LL is no help! The salesman incorrectly told us how to install it. After a year of it being down, we are ripping it up because it looks horrible! It chips and peels and is awful! LL blames our installation, but thanks to their own people, we cannot get anywhere with the so called warranty. I want to write to the company directly and can't seem to find them anywhere. If anyone knows a link or number of where I can call, please email me at, thanks!

    Bookmark   January 25, 2007 at 2:30PM
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We installed this Christmas eve in our kitchen. It was my Christmas present. We love it! Was quite easy to install after the first few rows. We used spacer blocks at the row ends to stop the boards from shifting while doing the remainder of the rows.

I do have a question for anyone that has this flooring. I have noticed that when I clean the floor it leaves streaks. I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions of what type of mop, cloth and cleaner is the best to use to stop the streaking??? It is not horrible, just bothers me!

Thank you!

    Bookmark   February 14, 2007 at 10:06AM
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Yes, I'm currently installing about 400 Sq. Ft. of the Nirvana Sao Paulo Cherry. It has been somewhat frustrating. As far as the pieces "snapping" together, they are fairly easy. I took the advice of another posting that recommended making a tapping block with a notch and used a dead blow hammer. The 2 problems I have encountered are keeping the rows straight and establishing a staggered pattern. I'm a carpenter but have never really installed flooring in any quantity. I've seen plenty done in 3/4" hardwood on wood subfloor. But I'm installing a floating floor on concrete.
When we noticed that the rows weren't straight ( about 10 or 12 rows into the install ), we used spacers at the wall ( where we started ) and the ends and tapped the rows back to straight. In doing this, some of the butt joints opened up. We had to use pry bars at either end of each affected row and force the joint back together.Then when we were about another 10 or 12 rows further into the room, we noticed it wasn't straight again. When we forced it back straight ( by placing a couple of 2 x 4's perpendicular to the flooring and bracing them against the wall we are working towards ),the same thing happened with numerous butt joints opening up. This time ( since we were now about 7' into the room ) the pry bar on either end didn't work. We actually damaged a couple of pieces that I'll just have to live with as they are too far back to back up and replace them. So we ended up breaking a rule of thumb ( so I've read ) by holding a piece of hardwood at an angle down in the "v" groove butt joint and tapping the pieces over to close the joint. We have slightly damaged one piece so far this way.
When it comes to my carpentry, I'm a perfectionist. So I'm a little disturbed by the resultant pattern ( or lack thereof ). There are 12 pieces ( 3-9/16" wide ) of each of 3 lengths in each box. This makes it impossible to start the first 3 rows with one of the 3 lengths and maintain that stagger. We thought about how we could make it work but ended up ( in order to use every piece in each box ) with what I can only describe as a "Subway Tile" look with butt joints occurring in the same location separated by only one row.Does anyone know how you can establish a random pattern of staggers with only 3 different lengths? Even if we cut some off the start of the rows ( because the manufacturer says not to use a piece shorter than 12" ) we could only cut off less than 4" as the shortest pieces are just under 16". I suppose that this is a stagger, but I don't think that that is enough to create a random pattern.
I Appreciate any suggestions,

    Bookmark   April 21, 2007 at 7:02PM
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600 sq feet of Nirvana V3 Sao Paolo Cherry. Moved all our furniture out onto the porch and in the barn. got my wife and her visiting parents started on the project and then went outside to work on something else. 2 hours later I come back expecting to see the first of 2 rooms done. HA! how about 3 rows and a very frustrated wife and father-in-law. stop for lunch and regroup. They try again and 3 hours later I come back in surely expecting to see a finished room. HA! 5 rows done and they are fighting with the mysterious end joints separating. The cheap tapping bar in the LL installation kit is bent flat and taped up with duct tape becasue it's scratching the floor. By now everyone is frsutrated and on edge. Its 4 pm and we are planning on going out to dinner berfore her parents head home to Europe. I get on the phone with LL main number. No help and they say they will have their installation guru call me back. No call comes. I pull out the moisture barrier (being installed on a suspended slab) to keep the floor from sliding so much. No luck, same thing. Every end joint is taped with duct tape and while installing the 6th row, end joints in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd rows open up. F-bomb gets dropped, medium sized pieced sails across the room and everyone is now angry. I call the store where I bought it and explain. He thinks they are defective and will have someone form corporate call me. Meanwhile, friday evening slides in and everyone goes home for the weekend. So at 5:30 we have no floor, no furniture in our 1st floor and everyone is frustrated. Thanks to this completly crap product, we wasted 3 full man hour days of labor and have nothing to show for it except a minor hangover from the margaritas used to calm all the nerves.

I am furious with this product. Some of the pieces are not strait. i.e. the edges that click together have a bow in them so the ends fit but the middle is 1/16th out and won't click in. In the two boxes we opened, about 10% of them were like this. It looks wonderful but has a terrible design apparently - especially with regard to the locking mechanism on the end joints which obviously doesn't hold. On a laminate floor, gaps are death becasue the inner material is not made to withstand dirt and moisture so one little gap will ruin the floor quickly.

More so than not having a floor down, I'm furious it ruined this day and project for my wife and her parents. In 5 hours the whole house should have been done, furniture moved back in and we shoudl ahve been enjoying coctails. 3 people and 600 sq ft could have easily laid any type of flooring in this time frame. Instead I'm on the phone with LL, my wife wants to kill me, I want to kill LL, and my parents-in-law are trying to stay out of it as best they can. I hate to say it but look at where the stuff is manufactured. Add to the tiny magnets in barbie dolls and lead paint on childrens toys, crappy dream home flooring from LL.

I can't wait to see the solution they dream up for their dream home flooring.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2007 at 7:32AM
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I FIGURED IT OUT!!! Someone give me a fricken medal!!!!!!

OK check this out - I bought this crap too boo made in china whatever its cheap and plentiful. Like all the other posts I spent like 3 days getting the first 3 rows in but then I figured it out...

Are you ready (oh I am so awesome...) Build your first row... Then build your second row on top of it. That's right - right on top of it. Use painters tape to temp weld the seams and working with one or even two people slide it forward and then lock it in - but don't push down yet. Check everything three times - make sure it's ready to seat. Then even hinge it with the painters tape. Then you just move from left to right and it all clicks into place.

We're almost done with my guest room 10X14 and moving to my family room 26X15. If I had know this 3 days ago I would have been so happy - but I am glad to share it because I know it will save a lot of people a lot more time than I wasted.

I do have two gaps from before I figured it out - tapping gaps (maybe 3 of them) better than crow bars I guess I'll buy a ratchet strap from wherever to crank it.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2007 at 11:18PM
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LOL!!!! You don't use the familiar tapping block, with a rotating lock laminate!!! You will not get the joints together, and if you do, you trashed the locking tongue & groove.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2007 at 6:09PM
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1. Let Sam's Club do the shopping for you. For my first floor I used their brand of rotating lock laminate with underlayment pre-applied. No problems.

2. I am at this moment installing some Swiss Click I bought at an auction which is tap together. I learned that the first two rows will drive you crazy. What I did was (a) glue the first row together with wood glue to create a stable monolithic strip. These were ripped to half width and the end joints were very short and unstable. (b) don't worry about the second row spreading slightly. By the time you get to the third row the floor will be a more stable mass. And you cen THEN bring the second row back into mating.

On pattern repetition: They do not tell you this but this particular pattern has 8 distinct panels. Each panel is an exact mate for ITSELF. Installed randomly they don't look bad, but if you open and lay out 8 boxes put all the top panels from all boxes in the first row, you will have perfectly matched simulated wood images.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2007 at 11:31AM
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Was researching Dream Home laminates and came across this forum. Have installed quite a few laminate floors (can't have any carpets in the house). Few tools to make job easier:
Combo Pull Bar by Bullet Tools, $17 at, soft had dead-blow mallet, Shaw Flooring dual size plastic tap block. Those who do lots of floors should also check out "Lam Hammer" at". For laminate floors get Standard ($85) or Atlas ($95) model and 9" ($20) extension. Also get a 3/4" pipe clamp with a 2'-3'pipe and a 3'-4' 2by2 board.

To keep raws from sliding, cut some 3" wide strips of 1/4" plywood (or sacrifice couple of floor planks) and screw them (NOT nail) to the STUDS placing screws about 1.5" above floor to the left wall that perpendicular to the raws you laying, as well as behind 1st raw. (The strips must touch the floor!). This will prevent the laminate from sliding when you tapping it - and no matter what manufacturers say, you will ALWAYS end up tapping it in place. For that reason by planks with beveled edges - it prevents boards from chipping if you tap too hard.

To move single raw left or right without disturbing the rest of the flooring:
1. Brace raws below and above the one you need to move at the wall toward which the movement will occur by attaching spacer strips as described above.
2. Hook the raw you moving with the Bullet pull bar.
3. Put a 6"hx20"l board against the wall directly above pull bar.
4. Connect sliding piece of 3/4" pipe clamp to the pull bar.
5. Brace 2by2 board against the wall (so its end rests on the 6"x12" board and not sheetrock)on one side and against pipe clamp screw head on the other. This way, when you start titening the clamp, it will push against the board and move the pull bar towards opposite wall.
6. Make pencil mark across 2 rows so you can see how much movement occurred by checking frequently how far apart the pencil marks are. Proceed SLOWLY!!! Remember that the floor, the board and the wall would flex a bit, so after every detectable movement release pressure from the clamp and check the actual position of the raw to make sure you didn't move it too far.

If using underlayment for your laminate installation, consider "Quiet Walk" brand, $30 for a 3'x33' roll (100 sq feet). It's a great product that reduces noise, provides moisture barrier, leak protection and insulation from cement floors, while giving you a smooth, durable easy to use surface to lay the floor on.

Hope this was helpfull.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2007 at 6:38PM
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Just had 600sf installed....I'm not confident enough to try this type of work myself, especially after reading some of these horror stories!! I made the contractor's guys remove and reinstall the whole floor because they had lined up almost all of the boards so the floors looked like a chalk line was snapped every 3 feet or so. That only required two extra boxes of boards, and when the guys were finished it looked great. So far no other problems, and I'm hoping that it will last for a long time to come. If I had found this site before going to LL, I'm not sure I would have used this product. With a 50/50 rating I wouldn't have wanted to take the chance. I will say this; there's a lot to be said for hiring contractors because if they screw up, it's out of their pocket, not yours!

    Bookmark   January 26, 2008 at 6:02PM
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I am glad I saw this thread. I was ready to go buy 500 SFT of this today. I may have to eat the cost and buy Pergo or a flooring from Lowes or HD.
Are those other brands any better?

    Bookmark   April 4, 2008 at 7:07AM
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My wife and I installed the mountain pine this weekend and loved it. It is not hard to install after you learn a trick or two. It is the best laminate we have seen, not cheap glossy looking like the ones at the big box centers. I would reccomend purchasing the installation kit from HD instead of LL . It is much better quality.
I would suggest
1. get installation kit from H.D.
2. seat you ends after folding lengthwise by hand the tap the edges until seated.
3.DO not use the pull bar anywhere that will show (just on the outside where the quarter round will cover. It will chip the edges. Only use the tapping block you can get aggressive with it.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 1:31AM
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Well...after purchasing 1200 sq ft of Dream Home - Nirvana (Mountain Pine) we went online to do a little home work on how to put this stuff together and came across these discouraging messages. We probably will still put this down but we have no idea how this is going to go. We know it will be challenging but we are up for it, we just dont want to put it all down and say "crap" why did we do that! Anyone have any words of wisdom or encouragement?

    Bookmark   August 6, 2008 at 9:24PM
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We just purchased and installed 1100 sq ft of the St. James Collection Bond Street Teak (a walnut color) from the Dream Home series at LL for $2.39/sq ft. Maybe its the series I bought, but there was no frustrating tapping involved, just throwing down the moisture barrier, taping the seams, putting shims against the walls, and snapping the planks into place one row at a time (of course there were cuts at the end of the rows). The only tough part was the prep work because we had to take up 170 sq feet of tile (let me know if you need advice on that), cleaning up all the dust, and waiting 72 hours to let the packages acclimatize.

We got samples from other manufacturers and the quality was not there--most cost twice as much with half the warranty, they were thin, didn't look durable, some didn't come with the padding attached, had fakey looking grain patterns, and the wood colors just weren't believable.

I really do have a Dream Home now!

    Bookmark   January 5, 2009 at 11:41AM
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We just purchased 400 sqft of the Utopia oak flooring for our game/garage floor. It was the cheapest of all at 69 cents a sqft but with the recommendations from the LL sales person the floor went down just as it should. I am legally blind with macular degenaration and for me it was a simple snap and tap installation.
The recommendation I can give to 1st timers "like me" is to purchase the LL tool kit along with the extra tapping block otherwise you could damage the edges or chip the laminate. I found that if you slide the panels back and forth when attaching the panels everything comes togeter just fine. Now I have a "Dream Home" game room that all of our friends and family love.

It is really Simple just follow the directions from LL and Dream Home, you can't Go wrong.

By the way, there are alot of "How To" videos on Youtube to check out, they really helped me!

Tedd Herndon
White Water, California

    Bookmark   January 6, 2009 at 5:59PM
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To Jamie78730, I have been researching LL and have settled on the same flooring. I've been looking for a darker floor that wasn't oak or too red in color. I'm looking for more of a chocolate/dark brown shade and from what I can see on LL website, St. James Bond Streak Teak seems to suit my needs. Now that you have had it installed for a few days, are you still happy with it, any cons? After reading all the negative posts, I'm really nervous about using LL. Any tricks on installation you can share? I would love to see pics. We are going to install in our kitchen, breakfast and dining rooms after we tear up our linoleum and hardwood floor. We are hoping by putting down one material, it will make the rooms flow together and look larger. Thanks for any information you can share on your experience.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2009 at 8:17PM
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Please see my post regarding your post of LL Dreamhome Laminate flooring.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2009 at 8:22PM
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We just installed the first half of 650 sq ft of Dream Home Nirvana French Oak. It was our first installation of flooring and went in very easy without much effort. The planks fit tight, and it's a lot better quality for half the price of Pergo. ($1.69 sq/ft from LL with the padding on the planks.) Our house is a whole different place. A couple of tools help. An electric miter saw (for angles), table saw (for ripping), and a jigsaw (for small cuts) were an immense help. I found all three on Craigslist for less than $100 total. I couldn't imagine doing this with hand tools or just a skilsaw. Also, the install kit is a necessity. Also....don't be intimidated by stairs. They are easy, and make a great impression. They do take a bit of time though. If anyone has questions, feel free to ask. Like someone else said, when you start you feel really dumb. When you're done, you feel like an expert.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2009 at 10:37PM
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I am contemplating putting in a Dream Home product, specifically, the Nirvana Canary Island Pine. This product is a little different in that it is only 3 1/2" wide planks rather than the 7 5/8". I like the smaller planks because it gives a more natural look, although it's a little more expensive. My question is, has anyone had any experience installing the smaller planks? If so, what can you tell me about it? Is it easier or harder? Any suggestions? Thanks in advance.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2009 at 1:22PM
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I heard great things about the Dream Home St James Rosewood Laminate - it's around $2.40 sq/ft I think....It is one of the nicest laminates I have seen and we are considering it for our home. It's probably the nicest thing I have seen in our budget so far - my concern is scratching since it has a more glossy finish but I haven't seen that many reviews on their products until this thread.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2009 at 6:31PM
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Just installed 800 sq ft of Dream Home Nervania French Oak in my daughters home, purchased from LL on sale for $1.29 sq ft. Same specs as comparable Pergo from Home Depot for 1/3rd price. Didn't plan on installing it since I'm not a carpenter, just an average joe homeowner. Installation was another $1.99 a sq foot, so figured I'd try myself. Bought the yellow bucket of installation tools from LL for around $30.00. No problem installing it whatsover, just follow the direction's. It looks beautiful. Time consuming part was removing the carpet. I read all the previous reviews posted here, and there are some stupid people out there including the guy that claims he's a carpenter by trade. Don't hire him for sure! I've had some of those so called experts knock on my door.. Do it yourself with confidence.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2010 at 11:48PM
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There are reviews on the LL website. The reviews for the higher priced product are mostly positive. As the price decreases, so does the positiveness of the reviews.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2010 at 1:46PM
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purchased from ll dream home 12mm nantucket beech laminate. It's going into a hair salon and really concerned about noise even if it does have 3mm underlayment attached. Anyone know how the sound is with this? Should I lay another underlayment with it.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2010 at 2:49PM
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I have used Armstrong and Bruce 8mm products, now looking at the Dream Home St. James 12mm. Advice from my experience...if you want pre-bonded underlayment, consider 10-12mm thick planks, and the wider the better. There will be gaps in the underlayment under the plank joints, making the joints "work", as the planks "roll". Fewer joints and stiffer planks are manditory!!! Also look for density in the pad - foam compression will "work" the joints, too!

    Bookmark   February 8, 2011 at 1:51PM
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I have not installed this brand, buy I have installed others. It seems to me the problem most in this thread had is they built their floors BACKWARDS! You don't tap on the tongue side. You cut the tongue off the first row and put that side against the wall. Ignore everyone who talks about tapping on the tongue side. They can't follow instructions.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2011 at 12:10AM
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I installed 120 SF Pergo about 3 years ago and have just purchased 190 sf of Dream Home toasted chicory 12mm laminate. I was brushing up on installing as I had problems with the first few rows of the Pergo. One thing I thought I remembered was that the tongue is cut off of the first row and placed against the wall. After reading the posts and listening to people trying to snap it by tapping the grooved side into the tongue I can only guess pieces had to be scrapped. Not sure how this brand is supposed to be installed but I think Mark has it correct in his post. You can install the remaining pieces by tipping the board at a 30 degree angle. Set them in the tongue and snap them in. I also found that creating the whole length of each row by putting all of the butt joints together first and then snapping the whole length into the previous row works well. This may take help to align the length of the whole row to the previous row. Found that I did very little tapping which seems to throw everything out of square. Also full length 1/2 inch wood spacers also help. The small ones in the kits when used on the ends seem to cause floor to flex out of square.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2011 at 11:07AM
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one thing you should know about LL is that all of the products they sell are not straight from the mills. they are full of crap. most of there products are mixed qualities relabled that is why some of you say its good some say it sucks. everything they get is imported from somewhere purchased by a company and then relabled so getting a warranty claim is not going to go well for you. try using the internet for your research, instead of asking other people (who are mostly sales people) look at website ratings on products and compare and you will not like what you find about most companies and so called brands. try finding dream home anywhere or any one of the products that they sell for that matter. the big problem is people want it cheaper and cheaper and cheaper, then you wanna complain. next research first because cheaper isnt better. bruce and armstrong are not bad, im a big fan of quickstep and columbia. quickstep is one of the highest rated laminates and patented the uniclick system, easiest install in my opinion, made in europe where laminates where founded by the way. so again do your research there is more to a floor that just the look, with laminates you have the finish and warranty but also the attachment the core is a big one especially with spills. most cheap laminates use less resin in the core which can make them absorb moisture faster than others as well. but also the company is a big deal, check out the reviews on LL, you will see some pretty nasty things. anyways thought i would put in my two cents!!!!

    Bookmark   March 7, 2011 at 11:43AM
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I installed 600 sq ft of the Dream Home Charisma this week. Any other contractors/handymen may want to avoid pricing installation based upon other products installed previously.
This was a nightmare for me. The install took at least three times as long as the last job I did. (Sam's club $1.29/ft perbacked). Although it looks fine, when a job is this difficult, I am never happy with the results.
As for hints. I liked locking entire rows at the tilt angle, then tapping them with a hammer and scrap piece of flooring. Watch for separations throughout the project.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2011 at 11:19AM
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We just purchased this flooring for living room and dining room. Other than the daily dust mopping, it is not bad. Lately though, because we are still in the throws of remodeling, I have noticed spots and other stuff accumulateing on the floor.

Rather than walk every three millimeters to wipe up spills and such, does anyone know of proper cleaning methods for this stuff? The flooring place recommended a spray bottle of stuff for occasional spills but nothing else. Suggestions?
thank you

    Bookmark   April 17, 2011 at 9:31AM
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i recently perchased 1000sq ft.of dream home french oak. big mistake. LL was no help at all. the boards were very warped,and chipped after laying. and it can't be cleaned with out leaving streaks. and seems LL they have never heard this from anyone before.wish I would have checked the internet frist.this stuff is garbage, I USED COLUMBIA CLICK 8YRS AGO AND IT IS STILL BEAUTIFULL.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2011 at 3:52AM
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This is an update to a 3 y/o post. I'm now ready to say that this was a great purchase and I LOVE my still new-looking flooring. I've had no problems with it; no creaking, buckling, scratching, etc. Cleaning is a breeze...light dustmopping for little used areas, and Swiffer for kitchen and laundry areas. We did place felt pads under all the chairs and tables to prevent possible scratches, but I'm not sure that was necessary. I have no regrets, given the negative reviews I've read. I still maintain, though, that if are someone who won't read and follow directions, or you do not have experience in installing this type of flooring (or doing any other major project) you should hire a contractor. It isn't worth the savings to do it yourself if you have to purchase more product to fix your mistakes!

    Bookmark   June 12, 2011 at 11:49AM
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Hello all,

I'm considering installing about 900 sqft of DreamHome Nirvana in Boa Vista Brazilian Cherry color. After reading all the posts I am confident that if I follow the directions I will have a beautiful floor.

But I do have one question that I do not see and answer to. The instructions for install state that if the floor will be more than 27ft wide or long in any direction a t-spacer needs to be used. For those that have installed this flooring what were your largest dimensions. Mine will be about 29ft, and I fear that if the expansion gaps at the walls are not perfect I will have binding and possible peaks in the floor.

What do you all think? I would like a seamless look and feel t-spacers will break up the floor too much.

Thanks, Adam

    Bookmark   July 9, 2011 at 3:21PM
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just discovered that Dream Home laminate is made in CHINA. I then made the decision to go with Pergo because it is made in the U. S. I also believe that Dream Home is an inferior product.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2011 at 6:58AM
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before you buy the laminate flooring be sure and ask if it is pet stain resistant. the salesman who sold me the stuff never got into specifics such as if you spill a cup of water or your dog has an accident on it it will buckle if not cleaned right away. this stuff is not what was presented to me. i asked the sales man if it was pet resistant and he said yes. of course i have no proof so i am out of luck. you have to pamper this stuff and the warranty only covers the finish. be carefull when ordering. i would have been better off with carpet. the sales people are misleading and dishonorable

    Bookmark   November 4, 2011 at 7:19PM
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I installed two rooms of Nirvana French Oak three years ago in my beach cottage and it has held up well. The cottage has no heat in the winter and still the flooring has held up well.
So last week I decided to pull up the old carpet in our year round home and put down 200 sq ft of French Oak. I bought the product from L.L. (laminate is not returnable at L.L.) then read the reviews here. That night I had a minor panic attack thinking what if the product is really as bad as some people make it out to be.
Not to worry. The flooring is down, it looks great and it was extremely easy to install. I found the locking system to be almost foolproof. I'm very pleased with how nice the project came out.
The only negatives I have to say is 1. I didn't know it was made in China and 2. a few pieces did chip as I tapped them in. I might have been at fault there, not sure.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2011 at 6:47PM
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Looks like this thread is testing time! :) Yeah, I bought DreamHome St. James Toasted Chicory (12mm). Installed 650 sq. ft of it on top a slab (used the vapor barrier & went to town). Like others, I found it cut well with a compound mitre saw, table saw for rips, and a jigsaw for small notching.

I'll also say that, given cuts...dusting can build up. I cut outside and swiped each board before entering the house, making sure I got the tongue & groove well. Since it's thicker, it was more prone to not doing a solid lock. So, I also used the plastic seating block kit. The tapping affirmed there was a little extra that had to be forced to seat perfectly. You won't always see those differences either. But, you could hear them in the taps once they were properly mated.

Two years's holding very well. This particular one is a larger width plank and beveled all around...looks like a wood plank, except no realistic texture. Love the look though. If you're having issues, please also post the thickness of your makes a big difference. I won't use anything but a 12mm+ from now on. Sounds like wood when you walk on it.


    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 12:55AM
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I would really love to know how the thickness effected durability and sound!

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 12:07PM
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Has anyone posted on how to clean this laminate flooring? We just put in two rooms of barnwood laminate and notice it gets filmy if we wipe it with a wet cloth to clean small areas/spills. Can I use plain water to clean it with a string mop?

    Bookmark   September 16, 2012 at 9:42PM
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We installed the 12mmm african mahagony from dream home a couple of years ago in our living and dining rooms and again in our master bedroom last year. I am a recovering (former) contractor and these were my 7th & 8th floors using LL products, but the first laminate flooring I had ever personally installed, though I had many projects where it was installed by my flooring subcontractors. I was hesitant to use laminate flooring in the first place because we have teenagers and dogs in house. However the look we wanted would not have been affordable in the least. After doing some homework and talking to the manager at my local LL, we decided to take a chance on dream homes african mahogany 12mm. We have a really damp crawl space, so I opted for a vapor barrier (I actually used 40 lb. roofing felt, butt joined, seams taped with vinyl duct tape. This gave us a little extra cushioning with the moisture protection and was much less expensive than the stuff they sell at the stores. We had a whole bunch of living going on in that house and we were very pleased with how the product preformed. So much so, that we decided a year later to install it in our master bed, with one exception. The damage that can quickly occur from spilled drinks and puppies is the only downfall of this floor and something that it has in common with any other laminated or engineered product. So, after talking about it with a LL techie, we decided to install the master using glue on the top of the joints, which we did. It was messy if you let it get away from you, which I did a couple of times. Seemed to solve the problem. I would give you an update but a couple of months ago our house burned and it is being rebuilt. would we use this product again? Yes. In fact we will be installing it wherever we do not have tile. And we will be gluing the tops of all the seams.
The best cleaner we found for it was at wall mart and was the cheapest. The trick is to use one towel or cloth to get the dirt up and a clean soft cloth to dry/buff. For every day dusting get yourself a "MINT" or "REVOO" floor cleaning robot. Best $200 you'll ever spend.
As for those who had problems installing it...
The guy using the sledge hammer was "trolling".
Any one who had trouble with this either a) did not read the directions or b) shouldn't be playing with tools in general. One last thing, laminate floor installation kit (usually under $29) has all the spacing blocks you need plus a tapping block and pull bar. Read the instructions on those too and you should have no trouble. and another last thing...Lumber Liquidators have always done me right. The only time a person walks out with factory seconds or remnants are when they buy them. They are clearly marked, but may not have gotten read either. No flooring supplier can or will warranty a product for anything other than obvious manufacturing defects. On 8 jobs I only had one problem. There was a flaw in the top coat of some Brazilian Rosewood 3 1/4 x 5/8" solid pre finished hardwood by Bellawood. It affected 3 boxes out of 50 or so. The sales guy swapped them out no problem.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2012 at 11:49PM
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This was our first time installing laminate flooring. After struggling with 2 or 3 rows of St. James Kings Forest Maple 12MM and reading about others using a 3 lb. sledge hammer as a tool, we were ready to give up. My wife came up with an idea and it works great. We line up all the boards for one row the length of the room being VERY careful to line them up parallel. Then both of us carefully lift up the row and slowly insert it into the tongue of the previous row. When all of it is in place, pushing down slowly will result in it snapping into place. Any crevices that appear from misalignment can be gently tapped into place with a hammer and small block of wood. The room is 14 by 11 ft. and looks great. We are ready to do the next room. The hardest part was moving the furniture out of the way, laminate installation was easy. We have 2 more bedrooms and the hallway to install.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 10:04PM
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Finished laying Dream Home Nirvana Plus on Saturday. Job went well and Wife was pleased. Floor was beautiful with tight joints and a warm rich color. While replacing furniture Wife dragged a plant with a plastic saucer under it and made some scratches across the middle of the room. Scratches are not too bad, but raised suspicions.
I moved the recliner. which has plastic pads on it to find that in just 4 days the laminate is worm through the "warm rich color" . Wife says the salesman said that this stuff wont scratch with anything but a knife .LL warrants it for foot traffic for 25 years, so I guess you are supposed to keep it covered except where you walk. I have some question about it's longevity since the recliner wore through to white in 4 days. DON'T BUY NIRVANA UNLESS YOU ARE DOING WALLS.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 10:07AM
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Joshbee had it right. See quote below.

"""" Posted by joshbee (My Page) on
Sun, Aug 19, 07 at 23:18

I FIGURED IT OUT!!! Someone give me a fricken medal!!!!!!

OK check this out - I bought this crap too boo made in china whatever its cheap and plentiful. Like all the other posts I spent like 3 days getting the first 3 rows in but then I figured it out...

Are you ready (oh I am so awesome...) Build your first row... Then build your second row on top of it. That's right - right on top of it. Use painters tape to temp weld the seams and working with one or even two people slide it forward and then lock it in - but don't push down yet. Check everything three times - make sure it's ready to seat. Then even hinge it with the painters tape. Then you just move from left to right and it all clicks into place.


We had similar problems at first, but then used spacer blocks around the perimeter; we also completely assembled a row (lengthwise) and then taped the joints before snapping the completed row into place. This allowed us to not exert any forces on the floor that would cause previous rows to slip back and forth. Using this method, the job went fairly quickly. Also, a rubber block and puller bar are EXTREMELY useful.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 8:03PM
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We had this product professionally installed. HATE it. Six months after it was put in we started seeing areas delaminate. Some were high traffic some were low/no traffic. A couple of areas were briefly (picture running for paper towels before the spilled glass settles). But other areas exposed to moisture often (by sliding glass door) show no problems. We contacted the company through LL. We had pictures and were polite and calm. Their answer was our area was either to wet or too dry ad it wasn't their problem that we had almost 1000sf of this flooring that looked like crap. I will never use LL again. We had Laminate flooring in our last house (SafeLoc) it looked as good the day we moved out as it did when we put it in 5 years earlier. We did not get it from LL.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2013 at 4:25PM
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I have use anothet laminate but i heard a lot of good think about LL

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 5:32AM
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Thank you all for the great info!

I'm planing to replace my floors with the Lumber Liquidators Delaware Bay Driftwood can any one share if they had any problems with scratchings or any other problems after installation. Hows the ware and tare?

    Bookmark   January 25, 2015 at 9:01AM
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LL is predominantly all garbage, go to a real flooring store. Seconds, end runs and cheap imports.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2015 at 10:09AM
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Just finished a LL Dream Home flooring job all by myself in the great room hallways and office. It was not easy but my goodness it is a solid and beautiful floor. It is the "Warm Springs Chestnut" flooring. The box says that it is formaldehyde compliant to California standards. But my concern is the reporting that has been going on in the media lately about LL flooring having a problem with too much formaldehyde being used in the manufacturing process and causing many health problems. Does anyone have any thing that you can add to this that can be backed up with facts. I hope I have a safe flooring because like I said, it is beautiful. It is also very tough. Believe me, I have dropped tools on it that would and should have scared it and it took the beating. Beautiful or not, if the problems exist, I will take it to the dump.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 11:36AM
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Sophie Wheeler

With faux certifications, the only way that you can know is to have it tested. Or risk your family's ealth.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 11:49AM
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I had NVP Delaware Bay Driftwood 10mm installed in two bedrooms in my condo in Toronto. Bought from LL. Had seen it in a friend's place and thought it looked wonderful. Great customer service. I had them install. Looks fabulous until I got a call from a friend about the 60 Minutes segment on the unacceptable amount of a formaldehyde gassing off the boards. I remember finding it curious that the boxes that the planks came in were marked as "Made in Austria?" Wow, and yet so cheap... Tomorrow I will be setting out a testing kit to determine the amount of formaldehyde in the air (it will take three days of testing but can I even trust the results?). Who to trust now? People tell me not to take chances with health and to simply pull up the boards, dump them in the landfill and start over.

What an expense. What are other people doing? I should have bit the bullet and put in hardwood.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 5:23PM
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Sorry you are in the same pickle that I find myself. Where did you get the test kit. I am also going to take a sample of the flooring to a chemist that runs a private lab a see if he will take a look at it. A chemist friend of mine is checking with him. But my wife has noticed that I have not been feeling well since I did it. Bad cough, headaches and a constant runny nose. I just contributed it to a slight cold. I wore a mask when I cut the boards but the dust was floating in the air. Will let you know what I find out. Also would be interested in what your kit results is. Thanks

    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 10:09PM
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Mike Bistro

siobhanstevensonatgmail I bought the NVP Delaware Bay Driftwood a few weeks ago I am wondering if it did come from Austria? What are the results of the test?

    Bookmark   March 11, 2015 at 5:18PM
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Hi, has anyone received their test results for the Delaware bay driftwood?

    Bookmark   last Wednesday at 9:10AM
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