Pets & Laminate

krycek1984September 17, 2010

Hey all! I am considering putting laminate hardwood floors in my master bedroom. There is carpet in there right now. The main reason I'm getting rid of the darned carpet is because our doggies have accidents sometimes while we're sleeping and it's getting to be a huge annoyance.

I know laminate floors don't react well to moisture. If one of our dogs pees and we don't get to it 'til morning (so maybe 6 hours max), would that be enough to soak through to the inner core and cause swelling?

We have laminate floor in the hallway and haven't had any problems, but no one pees there (of course - the carpet is much more alluring).

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Yes, I would not do laminate, we have replaced laminate in one instance, for that very same reason. I would look to either a floating Fiber Floor Vinyl floor, or DuraPlank by Congoleum or Nafco permastone Plank. The Floating Fiber Floor will require little floor prep the same as Laminate. The Urine will swell the joints on ceramic flooring..guaranteed.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 12:37AM
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Well, another option is actual hardwood. We have hardwood downstairs and a few times they've had an accident down here and we didn't catch it right away and it was no big deal. Nothing swelled, etc. I'm sure if you leave it on for a day or two it will permanently stain.

I HATE carpets. Carpet + dogs and cats = not a happy homeowner! I dream of the day I can have hardwood floors throughout.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 2:10AM
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Oh I so agree that carpet is not pet-friendly. I really don't believe that laminate is a problem in your situation IF you buy a high quality laminate. The product we bought has a moisture-resistant backing so spills should not cause a problem if you get them within a reasonable time.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 8:38PM
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NO WAY..if a laminate is left with urine on a joint overnight it will swell the joint. High grade Low grade mid grade..I dont give a darn. They all have wax impregnated joints and the urine will eat it up like brake fluid. Susanelewis is big time wrong here and if your pets piddle on it over night on a joint it will go down through it, thus why pet urine is not warranted against laminate damage. I watched a laminate floor get destroyed with pet urine. They all have moisture resistant backings.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2010 at 11:33PM
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It's kind of ironic because I was considering the laminate so that the dog and cat nails don't destroy it! I found our laminate wood in the hallway to be quite durable.

I agree that laminate is not a good idea in the bedroom though where it could potentially sit all night.

So, either I end up swollen fiberboard or scratched up hardwood LOL.

I'm thinking maybe some good quality strand-woven bamboo could do the trick. Hardwood, not engineered.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 3:25AM
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Had a similar problem. We had hardwood floor installed in our bedroom and our dogs had accidents sometimes which kind of messed up part of the flooring. We did not want to get one of the standard pet mats as it wouldn't allow the flooring to shine through and it is difficult to clean (start smelling after a while). The best solution turned out to be a custom cut chair mat for hardwood floorings which fit perfectly in the space. It it see-through and can be cleaned easily if necessary.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 12:14PM
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I don't have a dog, but my daughter-in-law's dog had an accident on my floor and it sat there for a couple hours until discovered and there were no repercussions to our floor.

According to Bruce flooring you can install my laminate in a bathroom! If you anticipate that a pet will have an accident in an area then I would think that you would treat it as if it was installed in a location where there could be potential water:
Bruce�Lock Installation System: 100% silicone caulk must be used around the entire perimeter and 3/32àbead of glue on the top of the tongue ONLY. Full bathroom installation for residential use only.

Cheaper laminates do not have a good locking system on their planks. That is why I mentioned to purchase high quality laminate where you can install it in an area with potential humidity or moisture.

However, the best policy is to protect it from even reaching the flooring..whether it is wood, laminate or carpet. Obviously.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 11:27PM
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Must clear it up once and for all...Dont want to get in a peeing match with anyone here(pardon the pun) but it is WHAT IT IS. 1st of all cheaper laminates do not have cheaper locking systems. Unilin is and maybe still is considered the best locking system. Many have come up with new systems that are just as good. the big thing today is the drop n lock or bruce calls a similar one the half lock. They all have there own version of a locking system. In a brand..the locking system rarely changes from a high end bruce to a low end bruce. To discuss bruce, many many many experts in the field consider their quality control on hardwood at the bottom of the heap. As far as bathroom installations concerned, the bruce laminate will blow up just as fast as any if you have sloppy kids or sloppy users. Let that shower curtain open after that laminate floor moved a 32 of an inch away from that laminate and boom..your floor is shot...guaranteed...or at least a repair in the tub area is in order. Also unless your water source is coming from an acidic volcano..the water from your tub is not the same as a 10 year old dog who is not aloud to drink after 6 oclock. Also, for the laminate to swell, I do not feel that once , twice, or thrice will cause the issue. it would need to be a semi regular situation and it will destroy it. I have been involved deeply with about every manufacturer out there and they will tell you the same thing. now, if you believe the warranty will cover it, no way..instant abuse when there is pets involved and I love pets and will never go without them. And now a little story about armstrong..I once went out on a claim with an armstrong rep on a piece of vinyl(high end) that was wearing rapidly. The rep inspector was only interested in looking at their carpet which had nothing to do with the vinyl to see how much dog hair was in the carpet. We get out in the car and he says i will right this up to abuse as did you smell the dog in there. Hey I understood where he was coming from, but just didnt feel the customer was getting a fair shake at all. The customer accepted the denial of the claim. I can tell you one nightmare story after another from every manufacturer. Now what I always tell customers regarding laminate is that the price you pay only affects the realism of the laminate. A higher end laminate will perform basically the same as a lower end laminate as long as it is not imported junk. You pay for the bevels, Registered embossing, and overall realism in the look. Just like the thick laminates...its all about the wear layer, not the thickness of the core. We sell the thicker ones all the time because of the psychological affect it has to the consumer, but its the wear layer that counts. Just some info. Sorry, I'm in the mood for writing tonight.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 11:54PM
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I have to admit my Park Avenue laminate has fooled even contractors into thinking it's wood! So that was worth those extra bucks. Passed the first pee test, too!

But, I would never put it in a room with a shower... that I agree is insanity.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 12:29AM
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Well, obviously, it would be ideal to prevent the accidents in the first place...but, after all, they are called accidents..we can't control them!

I suspect once we take carpet out they will be much more hesitant to have semi-regular accidents - doggies just love a good piece of carpet to pee on for some reason.

For example, they never, ever pee on the hardwood floors on the first floor.

I am not sure what we'll do. Hardwood will drastically increase the price we'd have to pay, and if I wanted to do the entire upstairs, it would cost a bundle.

We have cheap laminate in the hallway and I love it. But is it right for the rest of the upstairs or our master? I don't know. It's an old late-Victorian, the entire first floor has beautiful hardwood. So I'm not sure the whole upper floor being laminate wood is really a good ide insofar as historical continuity or matching goes.

We'll see. You've all given me a lot to think about. I'm cheap. LOL. But I also don't want to make a costly mistake.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 12:55AM
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Good luck...hopefully we've helped and not confused you too much.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 10:33AM
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If this is a historic house, as much as I love my laminate, I wouldn't get it with the rest of the home being hardwood. If you cannot afford it now, wait a bit until you can do it right. Carpeting and laminate were the same price installed a year ago when I got bids so I will never go carpet again. However, hardwood was a LOT more so with 1300 sq feet to do, we decided we'd just put a little extra into a really nice laminate that looks unbelievably realistic. Perhaps engineered wood? That might be a better compromise for you...real wood but at a lower cost factor.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 2:50PM
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Aren't I going to run into the same problem with engineered wood? That if urine sits on it long enough it will swell the fiber board under the real wood finish?

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 3:13PM
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I also have a problem with my dog having accidents, and my laminate has swelled in the places he has had accidents. My laminate is the cheap laminate that was sold at cosco. But, it is in perfect condition except for the aforesaid issues with swelling.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2010 at 9:47PM
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Does anyone know if engineered floor would have the same swelling issues? I hope not, otherwise I will have to pay for hardwood! lol!

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 1:11PM
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I removed my carpeting and installed Pergo laminate. Before installing I bought a box and layed it in the middle of my living room for 4 months. It was run over and barfed on without any problems. I would not install a $1.00 sf laminate, but my Pergo was $3 a sq foot and holds up great, no scratches no chips. It's 8 mm with attached backing.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 8:24PM
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If it were me and I had this problem, I would call a reputable engineering flooring manufacturer and ask him this question. That is true for laminate and hardwood as well. Because the bottom line is that if you have serious damage to the flooring and have to replace it, you will want to know if the flooring has failed (warranty claim) or if you should entirely avoid that type of product because they don't recommend it at all.

The best prevention is research, research, research. This forum is great for information, but we all have limited experience with many issues. Some posters are in the business but even among them, you get disagreements.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   September 20, 2010 at 11:15PM
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I believe it will ruin an engineered floor as well. My 1st post tells my recommendations. You do not want any hardwood or laminated product with your issue. Pergo means nothing. We sell it along with many others. I am a hands on individual and have my nose in every claim, complaint, or dissatisfied customer a just a plain nut many times. Pergo, Wilsonart (which is no longer selling laminate) Quick step, alloc, Shaw, there all the same. 3 buck 5 buck 1 buck..(Just not the imported garbage or the sams club junk...Attached backing is inferior in our minds compared to a high density felt or cork. But no hardwood manufacturer..engineered or not will warrant pet issues. Good Luck

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 12:12AM
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Well, it's a moot question now...apparently the entire upstairs is hardwood under the carpet! So nothing new is going on, I will just be refinishing the hardwood. Yay!

echoflooring, you sound so negative about ANY flooring with dogs! There must be one type of flooring you would recommend to a person if they came into your store and asked for flooring that could withstand occasional accidents. Hardwood has generally worked very well for us as long as we didn't let a urine stain sit for longer than a day.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 12:51AM
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This is for Echo FLooring
I was thrilled to find your response.
I can see you know what your talking about.
Please tell me what I can do....!!
My puppy piddles if I am gone for a few hours or sleeping and when I wake ...I will find the seams are swelling,.....!!!!!!
Should I wax the floors or have them professionally sealed or can I seal the floors myself..Lord I hope I can find you again...
I have not been able to find anyone who really knows...!!!!

    Bookmark   January 3, 2012 at 2:49PM
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I know this is old, but I have to point something out, in case someone else reads this old thread. The fact that a flooring can be installed in a bathroom does NOT mean that it is okay for there to be any standing water on it for any length of time (let alone urine standing on it.)

We just installed engineered hardwood. It can be installed in the basement where there may be moisture issues, and the manufacturer says that it can be installed in bathrooms which see moderate moisture from showers and baths. It should NOT be installed in children's bathrooms, which have a lot more splashing than (most) adult bathrooms. The engineered wood is actually BETTER than hardwood when it comes to moisture, by the way. But neither of them do well with standing water or urine. Both floors can be ruined (or at least require serious refinishing. It's not just a matter of the joint in engineered (or laminate) disintegrating.)

I'm pretty sure that there is no manufacturer of solid hardwood, engineered hardwood, or laminate flooring who is going to say "yes it is okay to install this where you know urine may stand on it all night, and if it fails, your warranty will be valid." I'm not even sure a manufacturer of sheet vinyl would say that.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2012 at 5:40AM
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