Lauzon wood flooring - Very happy! - Pics

LaurieSeptember 4, 2009

DH and I did a DIY install of Lauzon engineered flooring last month. We live in So. Calif. and our house is on a concrete slab. Last Summer, we had our kitchen remodeled. DH did the subway tile back splash and also the porcelain tile floor. The old kitchen had sheet vinyl flooring that came out into about 1/4 of the FR. The remainder of the downstairs was carpet except for the front entry which was ceramic tile.

Many days and hours were spent getting the slab smooth & ready prior to the wood install. After a lot of research we decided to order Lauzon's Next Step Engineered wood: Red Oak Natural, Select & Better, 3-1/4" width and Square Edge (No bevels). Lauzon requires their square edge product be glued down and not floated. A floating install would have been a lot easier, but we had no choice.

Before installing, we painted the walls. We're not finished painting, yet. Still need to do the LR and upstairs. The install took many days and was extremely challenging for us. I have a GREAT deal of appreciation & respect for all professional floor installers!! The new base boards were a nice finishing touch, especially since our old ones were about 2-1/2".

We purchased enough wood to do the LR, but will take a little break..maybe Jan.? Now, I need to figure out which kind of dry dust mop/dry swiffer/dry micro fiber mop to get. Also, I want to look into getting a vacuum that won't scratch wood floors. All of the hours, late night walks to our community jacuzzi, Aleve & Tylenol, were worth it.

I love the feel of the new floor on my bare feet : ) Thanks to all Garden Web members for advise & support!

BEFORE

AFTER

BEFORE

AFTER

BEFORE

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keagle

Lauire 2008 your floors look great! You guys did a great job. Enjoy!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 9:23AM
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msgreatdeals

WOW what a difference. Looks great! Love those wide baseboards. Ours is being installed right now. I know what you had to go through. Enjoy!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2009 at 9:30AM
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susanlynn2012

I posted on the decorating forum but I again want to tell you that you and your husband did such a professional job installing the square edge beautiful Lauzon floors and they really have enhanced your home. I also love the wider trim so much and the new paint colors. Thanks for sharing.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2009 at 12:59PM
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susanlynn2012

Laurie, did your husband also install that gorgeous trim? I love it! You are blessed to have such a handy husband and to also be handy.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2009 at 1:32AM
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Laurie

kge9, msgreatdeals, & Lynn - thanks so much for all of your kind words. Its fun to share common experiences and the joys (& frustrations) of enhancing our homes : )

kge9 - what are you using to vacuum/clean your amendoim wood floor?

msgreatdeals - keep us posted on how the Dyson is working on your floors. I'll keep an eye out for more pics of your floor and that most exotic looking beautiful cat!

Lynn - I can't wait to see more pics of your floor. I saw the one office pic on the Dercorating site but it focused on the white pole. I wish I had the ability to zoom in and see the floor! Your trim & baseboard look fantastic and the wall color is so soft & neutral. When you post pics, you should show at least one with your little dogs in it : )
I know how you feel about being anxious to get all your furniture & things back into place. We are almost done (FR still needs some furniture relocatiing & some wall pics put back up). Next weekend you should be feeling a lot better when they get the painting & the floor finished!

    Bookmark   September 6, 2009 at 1:48PM
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keagle

I've been using a microfiber mop to sweep. Then I spray Bona on a clean microfiber mop and go over the floor. My installer told me to get the Bona kit. I didn't but I got the spray bottle of Bona which I use sparingly. I got it in Bed Bath and Beyond with a coupon. I've had solid red oak in my kitchen for about 15 yrs. and have always used a microfiber mop for sweeping. In the kitchen I use to damp mop with plain water and if needed a little soap on stubborn spots, since the kitchen needs more maintenance. Now I've been using the Bona or 1 part vinegar to 10 parts water and then damp mopping. I also dry the floor with a towel if I'm using the water/water and vinegar.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2009 at 5:11PM
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workerbee-peonies

Hello

Your floor looks great and the baseboards are beautiful. We are now in the process of choosing a floor for our downstairs-we have a raised foundation and the new family room addition is slab. We have been looking at Lauzon now for awhile in anticipation of the new flooring. We are also looking at the straight edge because I don't want to see dirt in the micro bevels. We have decided to have an installer do the flooring since it is about 1450 square feet and on two surfaces and we want it installed on a diagonal. It will be very costly but we are afraid to mess up the expensive wood.
Are there any suggestions you have to ask the installers we are currently getting bids from? We are looking at Hard Maple, Yellow Birch, Betula Antique and Brazilian Cherry. Also did you use all of the products Lauzon says you need to use to keep your warranty?
Thanks and we live in the OC.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2009 at 10:09PM
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susanlynn2012

Laurie, I still love your floors and LOVE your new baseboards. The wall color is great also.

I promise I will post lots of pictures as soon as my October 15th deadline ends. I love my new floors, despite the poor installation and the quality of some of the BR-111 boards. I really love having the always dirty and always smelly (rust was underneath all the file cabinets) wall-to-wall carpets gone. I love having some color on the floors since I do not plan to use area rugs due to my allergies, my little dog's Skeeter's allergies and my littlest 4 lb. Maltese, Lexi's marking problem on rugs and carpet. I also like the bigger base molding and my new two room home office set-up and family room set-up that I designed myself which surprised me since I like the way it came out. I still need help on finally adding some pictures.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2009 at 1:21PM
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Laurie

kge9 - It's helpful that you posted your cleaning routine in detail and good to know it's worked well on your red oak in the kitchen for 15 years. I have still only used a microfiber cloth & the dry swiffer. Only a couple times I've needed to use a lightly damp paper towel to get something off the floor, followed by a dry towel.

workerbee-peonies - I can tell you that Lauzon mills an excellent product. There were hardly any boards with any flaws..we were so amazed about that. I haven't heard many people complaining about their micro bevels and I would have been fine with having bevels, but dh felt strongly about wanting the straight edge.

The most important thing imo is to make sure that the sub floor is FLAT. Dh spent so many hours on his hands & knees with the straight edge of a long board marking the floor where there were high & low spots. Then, we used something called Henry's featherfinish to smooth out these inconsistencies in the flooring. We also used a layer of Bostik MVP (moisture vapor protection)over areas that we wanted extra protection from possible moisture issues.
We used Bostik Best adhesive for glueing the floor down. I think we went with Bostik products instead of Lauzon's because we can readily get them from a nearby flooring supply store. When we ordered the wood , mvp & adhesive online (through a wood flooring co., not Lauzon), we ordered the amount of mvp & adhesive that we thought we'd need. But, wanted to be able to get quick access to more (of the same kind) quickly in case we were in the middle of install and needed more. We ended up buying an extra container of adhesive about 3/4 of the way through the install process. So, we were glad we found a place only 15 minutes away (We live in Irvine). I called Lauzon before ordering anything. They said Bostik was a good product to use, but they have to recommend their own. I did not get into the warranty issue.

There are some pro installers on this forum. They will have suggestions for things you should ask. I am just an average home owner who has limited knowledge.
From my experience:
Ask your installer what steps they do before installing. See what they say first.
See if they say: test for moisture, check the flatness & smooth out the floor. If they don't mention any of these things, go on to the next installer.
Ask if they have installed a glue down floor (Lauzon's straight edge can not be floated) and if you can have references of people in your area who's floor they have installed.
The trowel type & size (VERY important) for the mvp and for the glue/adhesive is very important, too. Read the install instructions on Lauzon's web site.
My dh is a civil engineer and is very good at math and loves to plan ahead. This made for very little "waste" of wood. He was able to cut off the ends of the wood and use them in other places. I have heard that installing on the diagonal is challenging and may cause more "waste". See if the installer has ever done a diagonal floor.
I'll probably think of a dozen more things that are important, later on.
Bottom line.... IMO installing is VERY time consuming and physically exhausting. Don't base your decision on the lowest bid. Go with the person who gives you detail in how they prep the subfloor & do the install. If they say "we use our own glue & trowels and don't seem to care for Bostik's or Lauzon's glue..or if they don't want to use the same type & size trowel Lauzon states as a "must" in their install instructions...be concerned.

Keep us posted on your flooring progress!

Lynn - Thanks, and after Oct.15th I want to see your floor pics! Don't forget to show your little dogs in one (at least) of the pics : )
I know the feeling you are talking about...getting rid of our old stained carpet was such a relief!
Are you using any kind of pad/felt/rubber feet or anything on the floor between your file cabinets & the wood?

    Bookmark   September 27, 2009 at 2:58PM
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susanlynn2012

Laurie, I put felt pads underneath the file cabinets, desks, chairs, supply cabinets, lamps, and even surge protectors that were scratching the floor. I bought new wheels for hardwood floors for my two desk chairs but these are after a few weeks scratching the floors despite paying over $70 for the two sets, so now I had to order bigger 3" rubber wheels that will cost me with shipping almost $200.00 for 10 wheels.

I do love the floor despite the cost being so much more than I ever imagined due to the cost of moving the files and file cabinets as well as the furniture, renting the POD, and the cost of hiring professional to move everything back into the three rooms to make sure my floor was protected. Also the cost of all these felt pads and wheels and new surge protectors that go directly into the wall for those areas where I did not need a long cord to go with the surge protector. I even bought new wheels for my TV stand as I have decided to not buy a new TV stand until I buy a new flat screen TV in the next two years. I hope to do so next year but I still have to buy pictures for the rooms and renovate my kitchen next year especially the laminate floors. I want to look at the tile you used since I love it so much.

One of my clients who has become a friend stopped by and loved the floor so much and could not believe it came out so beautiful. I decided to not show him the floors and the areas where it was installed wrong since the other areas feel just like a hardwood flooring.

I can't wait to have time to post pictures and I will post pictures with my little dogs also that are so cute and lovable.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2009 at 9:37PM
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workerbee-peonies

Hi Laurie

Thanks for the tips on the installers. We have had 5 guys so far and only one gave us the quote using Lauzon products. We asked all of them about the warranty and referred them to the Lauzon sites. We live in Costa Mesa and our house is 45+ years old and we have expansive soil also to deal with. We are waiting for one more bid and then will ask for references. My husband wanted to do this himself but I prevailed so I hope all works out. I really understand about the leveling part. That worries me a little with the square edge but it looks great down. I am waiting on 4 5" plank samples now to compare. Your pics look so great. Can't wait for ours to be finished. Will keep you posted.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2009 at 11:37AM
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Laurie

If they don't use Lauzon products, I highly suggest Bostik.
The specified trowel for the adhesive for our size board width (3-1/4") was 1/4" x 1/8" x 1/4". For a 5" width board, it may be different. It was very difficult to find, but I finally did. I located both Bostik products & specific trowel at Big D Flooring. There's one in Irvine & one in Lake Forest, & more cities I'm sure. You are welcome to come over to our house and see our floor. Hopefully, the installers will have references for you and you can see their work and hear what their customers say.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2009 at 3:55PM
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susanlynn2012

Kge9, thanks to your post, I bought the Bona Kit and now I have a dust mop to sweep and a microfiber mop to clean with the Bona Hardwood floor cleaner. The kit was missing a bottle of the refresher and the floor cleaner was leaking. I called, and this week, the order will be corrected. I tried what was left in the bottle that did not leak out and it seems to work very well. Thank you!

    Bookmark   October 3, 2009 at 1:03AM
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keagle

Lynn, can't wait to see picks of your floor.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2009 at 10:13AM
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