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Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Posted by dijid (My Page) on
Thu, Jan 24, 08 at 16:11

Hopefully I can save someone else from that sick-to-the-stomach feeling you get when you've made a very expensive mistake. That's the feeling I have about the Armstrong Grand Illusions Laminate we installed in December.

We put in 500 sq ft in kitchen, family room and 1/2 bath. After less than 2 months, I cannot believe how scratched and dented and chipped it is. It got scratched when we rolled the fridge and oven on it on day 1. After that we became extremely careful. It got it's first chip when my son knocked a locker lock off a table. Today, my youngest knocked an 8 x 10 picture frame off a 30" high shelf and chipped a piece out 3/8" x 3/8" and almost 1/16" deep. We wanted something durable (like the 15 year old Pergo it replaced) and yet beautiful. Now we don't even let the kids play on it.

Hopefully someone else won't make this costly mistake because they've read this.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Thanks! I was considering it after reading someone else's review.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Frankly I'm surprised you had success with the Pergo! All laminates try to sell the idea that they are virtually impossible to scratch, chip or burn. In reality they all will. The key word is "resistant" rather than "proof" as in "scratch resistant" as apposed to "scratch proof". Warning others is about all you can do at this point.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

An anecdotal word about Pergo. The Pergo floors I worked with soon after the product introduction to North America is not the product being sold today. The old material was made in Sweden and was very resistant to damage.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Thanks for posting. One of the reasons I read this forum is for real life feedback.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Thanks for reading. I'd second glennsfc that the older Pergo was more durable. The trade-off is that it looked bad. Very plasticky.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Armstrong Grand Illusions WARNING/COMPLAINT/DISILLUSIONED
We also bought this laminate floor - 1400 Square Feet of it! We bought it in December 2007. I am so disappointed. I feel like I am living on a GLASS FLOOR. Weve only had the floor a few months and already have had trouble with it.
My daughter didnt completely close a jar of bubbles and somehow it accidentally spilled on the floor. The bubble solution was on the floor for no more than 2 hours when I noticed it. I immediately cleaned it up. The next day I noticed it had swelled up at the seam.
I accidentally dropped a screw driver and made a hole in the floor (the size of the tip of the screwdriver). This floor is so hard that it cant absorb the shock when something falls on it.
There are certain areas on the floor where I consistently hear a "click" sound. It sounds to me like the locking mechanism is faulty????
My daughters were playing with a Tonka Truck when we noticed it was scratching the floor. When the sunlight shines on the floor, you can see all the scratches. Now my girls arent allowed to play with anything that has wheels. How sad is that? I cant stress how disappointed I am. It scares me to think what it will look like in a few years.
The reason we went with laminate floor was because we have two young girls (3 and 5) and we didnt want to have to worry. We wanted them to be kids. Well, what a mistake!
We had searched for reviews on the Grand Illusions, but had only read positive ones. My guess is that if I had read a negative review, I would have dismissed it. But hopefully somebody will believe me and "dijid", this floor is NOT a practical floor for people with kids or dogs!
Good luck to everybody.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

oh no. Will this be the same issue with all Armstrong laminate? I was thinking of getting flooring from another line they have, the Nature's Gallery for our new home. I have baby and 3 dogs and I don't want to make a big mistake.
Any other flooring suggestions if this is not good?


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

While not having the Grand Illusions product. I do have armstrong laminate in my greatroom, foyer, master bedroom and game room. Most of it 4-5 years old except the bedroom which was installed in december. Other than one 3 in scratch from when a 150 lb bookshelf with a nail sticking through was dragged across the floor, it is in perfect shape, I have dropped hammers, tape measures, pictures have fallen, kids have spilled drinks that were not picked up for some time, the dog has tried to dig holes in it to bury her bones, nothing has shown. Is laminate indestructable, no but its pretty darn tough. You think if you used real wood none of those things would have damaged it?


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I wonder if some of the problem you are having with the Grand Illusions is due to the high shine? I have ordered laminate from Armstrong but at the advice of the sales person at the flooring place skipped the Grand Illusions due to the high shine. She suggested a high traffic area (like my kitchen) would be hard to keep clean because the shine will show everything! I found one in the Exotics collection that is exactly the same color as one of the floors in Grand Illusions but without the high shine. Hope it is okay - already ordered it! The sales lady also mentioned that if a plank gets damaged you can have it replaced - and also NEVER put laminate under cabinets!


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I've researched thousands of laminate floors throught the last two years and this is by FAR the most realistic looking of them all. You cannot tell the difference side by side with hardwood (and actually looks like a top of the line HARDWOOD..not laminate). No typical laminate planks (these are individual strips), high shine (which is indeed the look of a decent hardwood floor) and NO and I mean NO plasticky surface texture that almost every single other laminate floor has. The only one that came close is a Westwood Maple which I saw through IFloor.

The surface is VERY durable..do not let these reviews fool you. As durable as any other laminate on the market and actually much better.

The scratches as far as the shine...well real sanded and polished hardwood will do the same. Is is the price for having a great looking floor. Want cheap looking? Go cheap.

Again..if you want the most realistic laminate available on the market..this and Bruces Park Avenue are the best by far. Pergo is very plasticky..I would only use that in dark areas or where I want to save some money.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

cambro, dark colors will also show dust, foot prints and dirt a lot more than a light to medium colored floor.

Please post photo's of your floor after it's installed.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I need to get a large part of my flooring redone (from carpet) living room, foyer, master bedroom and some corridors. I was seriously thinking of getting the Armstrong Grand Illusions because of their glossy appearance. I do have kids and don't want to keep them from being kids because of a floor choice. MagicalFlowers and dijid, can you post/email pics of the trouble spots? FloorGuy009 do you have any real experience with this floor?
Thanks!


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

For Magicalflowers

We installed this product, loved the look and feel of it, paid a fortune, and expected a superior product. From day of installation we have been experiencing the same clicking particularly on the butt end joints. fWe are experiencing movement between every plank . This problem continues to get worse. We feel it is the locking mechanisms. We are getting the runaround from Carpet One and Armstrong floors and are being told that no one else has complained about this problems. Would like to know if anyone else is having this same problem? Local installers (Western Canada) are saying that they have found it necessary to stay under 800 sq.ft. and put transitions strips in every room and hallway which would not work particularly in an open concept home like ours. Haven't found any solutions yet. Would not recomend anyone spending this kind of money on this product until Armstrong is willing to address this problem


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Transitions are required in all floating floors!!!! Those that fail to do so, risk a big liability concern and loss of all profits when it comes apart. The areas must float individually from each other. When one wants to move one way and the other room wants to move the opposite, and all that is holding it is a 2'9" doorway, with a click lock, it is going to come apart!!

Just because you want a flowing non stop installation, you take all liability when it all comes apart, or buckles because the run is too great.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

This is ammusing, you rolled your fridge over it. What were you looking for, concrete flooring. ANY floor will scratch, dent, etc because of the things youve been doing to it. So far i have had my grand illusions flooring for about 6 months. NO scratches, dents, anything. The only problem with the floor that i had was that it doesnt settle to the subfloor that quickly, so if you have even the slightest bend in the subfloor; the laminte will "float". However this is only because of its extreme durablility and strength.
Anyways for the things that you want in a floor, go pour some concrete or get some granite slabs for gods sake. This product is amazing, and obviously you havent the responsibility or care for it that ALL floors require.
Bottom line, its the best laminate on the market, dont like is, lets see if you can find something better.
Good Luck, pat.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Floorguy, thanks for letting us all know that transitions are required for all floating floors so in case I float my floor, I do not make this error.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

never understand the need to resurrect months old postings. It just brings them back to the top for more to see. For the other poster, if you bought from Carpet One you have a 30 or 60 days no questions asked return policy. If its been that bad why don't you excersice that option. Know its been over that by now but it was an option to you so soon after installation.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Thank you all for sharing your thoughts on Armstrong Grand Illusions. It sounds like people are a little split on how good it is but many of you are very supportive of the product. I am thinking of using it on my kitchen floor and am curious as to the comment from cambro5 about never putting it under cabinets. I was thinking of doing that and want to understand why the sales lady recommended not to do it. If anyone can explain the reasoning I would be happy to listen.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Laminate floor must 'float'. We had our kitchen cabinets put in first. (Do be sure to tell your kitchen cabinet installers that you will be putting in a laminate floor.)

Then the flooring went in.
Then the cabinet flooring folks came back and put in molding around the bases of all the cabinets.

Hope that helps.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Thanks for the information ma-bookreader. What about the oven and fridge, is it ok for them to have the laminate under them? The more I hear about this type of product, the more I think ceramic tile is the way to go. I assume that a hardwood floor must float too so putting that down under the cabinets would not be advised either


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Armstrong Grand Illusions is the worst laminate floor to install as it shows everything that touches it. If you walk on it, it shows every footprint no matter if you are wearing shoes, slippers, socks, barefoot. It is not made to walk on. I am having it all pulled up and put something else down. We had it installed at our lake house in the living room and dining room. There are large windows so there is lots of light that makes these prints so obvious. I have tried every cleaning product on the market as well as using just water. I am on my knees cleaning the footprints several times a day. Now my husband and son jump for the kitchen to the living room area rug to avoid stepping on this floor.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

your issue is the gloss, not the product. A high gloss product will show everything. So would a very clear grained high end maple floor. You made a bad choice based on your living room windows and high gloss product. That doesn't make the product terrible, it makes you wrong for selecting it.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

susanne_2009, that is the exact reason why we didn't go with the grand illusions in our kitchen. I felt it was too shiney so I took a sample home with me and put it in the direct sunlight by the slider and sure enough, you were able to see every little flaw in it.
It is beautiful flooring and I fell in love with it but not for a kitchen with 3 kids and 3 cats.
We went with something a little duller. I would, however, put this in a bedroom, somewhere that there isn't much traffic.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

armstrong and Bruce do make a low gloss version but some retailers don't carry it unfortunately.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Despite all these warnings, we have decided to go with the Bruce Park Avenue flooring which is the same thing as the Armstrong Grand Illusions. I just haven't seen anything so realistic. We have grown sons and a cat and I just don't think it will get the abuse of a young family. It is not going in a kitchen, however, but rather in 3 bedrooms, great room, dining room, halls and 1/2 bath. All our trim is natural cherry-colored high gloss and matte flooring just would not go well. And, we'll have rugs in all rooms (seems a bit unfortunate to hide it) so I just don't see how it will be a big deal. I'll certainly update everyone on our decision, but we are putting the order in next week and it's not a cheap project.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Susanelewis, Which Bruce Park Avenue Flooring "Species" did you choose? I also agree that both Bruce Park Avenue and Armstrong Grand Illusions were both so realistic to me so I still have not ruled them out.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I am getting the Pradoo. It is so very close to the color of our trim...slightly lighter. What attracted me to this one was that the grain was not busy. I brought home the Grand Illusions Cabrueva but the grain was too busy for me with 1300 sq feet. The color tones were gorgeous, however. My only concern with the Pradoo is that it is a bit orange. However, it blends well with our other finishes and there will be rugs, furniture to break it up so I think it will be gorgeous installed.

I know there will be some upkeep with the shine, but I'm fortunate to have cleaning ladies who will have to do that!


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susanelewis- RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Susanelewis, My favorite Bruce Park Avenue Glossy Laminate was the Pradoo. Please send pictures before carpets on top and after carpets on top. I still love it in my family room but in my home office, it was a bit orange (unless I decide not to care) despite loving the grain and the coloring. The Cabrueva in large samples was a bit red. The Makore looked nice in my home office but not as great in my family room. I loved the Natural Cherry but the grain was a bit busy in a large sample. I loved the Brazilian Cherry shiny laminate but it was too red for my home office. BR-111 Brazilian Cherry looked nice in my home office so I guess they made the laminate more red than the orange tones that seem to match my office furniture better. I also liked the Mirage Maple Auburn Lock but it was also a bit orange next to my furniture but could work also.

Susanlewis, do you know when you plan to install the Pradoo? I need to finalize my decision after my busy season ends so maybe in May I will finalize what I am choosing for my three rooms downstairs. I plan to do tile in the kitchen.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Lynn, you sound just like me! I have dragged those samples everywhere in the house. I'm not sure what you mean by "...carpets on top and after carpets on top."

Remember, that you really don't want all your woods to match. I am not trying to get a perfect match to my woodwork because it really looks different all throughout my house. All of it used the same stain but because jambs are one type of wood, and pine trim is really crazy with grain and windows use another type of wood (much harder), you will get different results. Then mix in my Pennsylvania house cherry which is way more brown than red....arghhh!!!

Soooo, I went with the best of all worlds. This coordinates wonderfully with the woodwork and brings a nice contrast. In Bruce's pictures online, they actually show it with dark brown furniture and it is fine. I wouldn't really want my furniture to look exactly the same, but it does need to coordinate.

We are doing the order next Friday and I would guess that the install will be in about three weeks...close to April. What I would recommend is to get the sample from multiple retail stores (one store had a HUGE sample board with a carrying handle) and put them all together to form a rather large sample area. That really helped us to decide for the Pradoo and against the Cabrueva which looked more fake to me with the busy grain.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I'm not sure what you mean by "...carpets on top and after carpets on top." LOL, Susanelewis, you had mentioned that you will be putting area rugs on top of the Pradoo floor so not much of the floor will be showing but enough of the floor will still show that you wanted a color that went well with your trim. Hence, Before you put the area rug on top of the Pradoo, I wanted to see what the floor looked like and then I wanted to see what the floor looked like with the area rugs on top. My busy season will not end until 04-15-09 and then I will have other deadlines until the end of April so I will not be able to do anything now about my floor until May 2009 so hopefully by then you will have the floor in.

I am excited for you since it sounds like Pradoo will be beautiful in your home.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Ohhhhhhh! Area rugs....I was thrown by the use of the word "carpet"! Hehe

You must do taxes....ugh that reminds me that I have to do ours pretty soon.

Safe to say the floor should be done by May. That is unless something happens to either of our jobs..so far so good.

Also, we got our local retail store to match the online prices. In this economy, it is pretty amazing what they will do to get the job. We essentially got the price of the material from 4.99 to 3.49 which is a $2k savings. When you are ready, make sure you "negotiate" the price. The buyer has the leverage these days.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Susanelewis, any progress on your Pradoo Floor? I just finished my sales tax deadline today and now I have to finish the payroll deadline and extensions. But the flooring is back on my mind with samples on the floor as I work. But I need bigger samples.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Pictures are coming! But I'll probably post them in a different thread since the subject of this does NOT reflect my excitement for the new Bruce Park Avenue Pradoo floor that is being installed as I write this (same as Grand Illusions).


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Bruce Park Avenue Pradoo & Susanelewis

Susanelewis, I can't wait to see the pictures and I am glad you are happy with your purchase and how beautiful the floor looks in your home.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I've yet to live on my Bruce Park Avenue Makore, but am anxious to do so!!

susan, can't wait to see yours installed. Have you seen mine? Here it is.

Photobucket

Photobucket


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Awesome, brutuses! I am starting to live on mine now since the work is over (minus transitions being installed because they were custom). Did you get yours through Armstrong/Bruce? What did you think of them?


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Brutuses, Your Bruce Park Avenue Makore Floors are gorgeous! Thanks for sharing the pictures.


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Susanlewiis - RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Susanlewis, please post pics soon. I guess you are waiting for the transitions to be finished?


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Thanks Susan and Lynn. Susan, are you asking about the floor or the transitions? We bought both through a local flooring place "Perque's". We were fortunate to catch a "truckload sale" on the flooring. Can't wait to see yours.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Yes, I am waiting for the transitions...I wasn't happy when I got home today and nothing... They were supposed to be installed today. My cleaning ladies come on Wednesday and I don't want them coming after they have cleaned so I think I'll give the woodworker a call tomorrow morning.

Yes, I was talking about the transitions. I wondered how closely the transitions matched the floor. I was too afraid they would be cheaply made and not match the floor. I ended up needing custom work because of the stair nose and my slight step up from laminate to marble. What did you think of your stock transitions?


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Brutuses & Susan - RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Brutuses, I had clients here tonight that called and asked if they could come by right then instead of tomorrow morning so I had no time to clean up my samples that I had on the floor seeing how I felt after a few hours of walking by them. I like anything better than my beige carpet I am finding out and find them all looking nice. :) I had wood samples under my window for the final samples I was considering and it amazed me that they both chose the BR-111 Engineered Brazilian Cherry, the Hartco Valenza Engineered Brazilian Cherry and the Bruce Park Avenue Makore thinking it was engineered wood. They both were surprised it was Laminate.

They did not like the Amendoim or the Kempas. The man liked Hartco's Velenza's Santos Mahogany also like I do but I can't pay the difference since it is a lot more and I have enough expenses. I guess Santos Mahogany is rarer so cost more but has a nice grain and I like the fact that it only has a medium change in color. I still love the Pradoo also despite only one friend liking it but the one small sample I have is a little more orange than my furniture in my home office. Susan, I still would love to see pictures since I only have one small sample here.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Susan, our stock transitions match the floor perfectly. I don't have a photo, but I'll have to get one.

Lynn, I'm not surprised they didn't think it was laminate. Everyone who sees mine thinks it's hard wood. It is a pretty floor, no doubt about it.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Oh, I'm glad that your transitions worked out well. I just didn't get a good feeling from Bruce/Armstrong about the color matching and wanted something where I could ensure a great match. Also, where the laminate met the marble, the woodworker designed a moulding to be flush with the marble and gradually transition down a bit to the laminate. Next year we'll use this same design when we replace all our vinyl with tile.

I wish there was a better solution for transitions with laminate. I call them toe stubbers! It's too bad they have to stick up on top of the flooring like they do...I understand the reasoning, but that is one benefit of wood flooring....flush transitions...that I wish we had with laminate.

I took my pictures this evening and I'll work on them tomorrow. Hopefully, I can get that new thread up in a day or so.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Thank you Susanelewis for taking pictures. I can't wait to see them! I still have not ruled out the Bruce Park Avenue Makore (love all the pics Brutuses sent in) or Pradoo Laminate but I am considering a few engineered woods also. I am just afraid of the color change in the Brazilian Cherry Wood floors (but love Rivka's floors) and I do not like rotary peel enginereed oak floors (neighbor just installed with a pretty butterscotch stain but such a busy floor since a rotary peel cut using Bruce Glen Cove).


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

well, this is my first posting on this subject. I had Walnut Grand Illusions installed in May and I am not happy with it at all! It is only my husband and I, but i hate the way every speck of anything shows on the floor. If you drip a drop of water or any liquid and don't realize it, it shows when you walk in from another room. I put it in my kitchen, den hallway and bath. (Over 450 sq. ft.) I could live with the finish showing everything but the problem is POPPING when you walk around on it. It has done it since day 1. It sounds like glass breaking under your feet. It's so annoying. The sound is at the cross seams. An Armstrong rep did come this week and he says it is definitely in the flooring and has never seen it before.However, he has to contact headquarers so see what is to be done about it. The only thing that will fix it in my opinion is to take it up and put down something totally different. It won't be that floor again thats for sure. Waiting axiously!


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Chloe602, I am sorry about your disappointment in your flooring. I am wondering if maybe these floating floors are best over concrete from what you describe about the sound being at the cross beams? Please keep us updated on what Armstrong does for you and what you end up doing to fix the problem about your floors.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

HELP! I'm getting ready to order 2665 s.f. of the Armstrong Grand Illusions Cherry L3029. A friend of mine called me and told me she thought it was real wood and was shocked to find out it was laminate. From reading all these posts, people either love it or hate it. I'm putting it in a large great room/kitchen and also a loft. There are no children and no pets. It looks beautiful in the store. What type of underlayment should I use? I think I read somewhere that it said NOT to use a moisture barrier underlayment. The subfloor is SIPS (structured insulated panel system).


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

flytootall, Brutuses said she used the best underlayment made by Bruce and her floors feel wonderful. I loved the Armstrong Grand Illusions Cherry L3029 also and felt it looked so real that last year it was on my top contender list. What type of subfloor do you have?


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I just got 1300sq/ft installed an an open floor plan house looks great i got the fruit wood select but everywhere i walk it creaks its been over 24hours since the install but the creaking remains the installers said it is normal, anyone know how to fix this i even signed off on the installers form that i was satisfied with the install under the assumption the creak will go away with time. But i'm an idiot who didn't get that in writing, ughhh. The flooring was acclimated in the house 3 days prior to install. I'm so frustrated right now i just spent a huge chunk of money for it looks great but creaks like an old wood floor in a NYC brownstone i grew up in.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Lynn2006 - i said popping at cross seams in the floor not cross beams so no it doesn't have anything to do with my floor underneath. Armstrong got back with me and is replacing my floor!!! Said it was defective. I'm sure I'm not the only one that has complained. My installer brought him to see my floor so everyone should go back to installer and insist they help you be satisfied. They may have future business at stake. I am getting engineered hardwood this time. I wasn't happy at all with the grand illusions laminate including the gloss. You could go barefoot on it 24-7 and it would still show every spot of everything on it. Hope this helps with your decision!


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chloe602- RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

chloe602, thanks for sharing that Armstrong is standing behind their product and that this time you are going with the engineered hardwood flooring. My engineered hardwood floors are arriving in a few days! I am excited but a little nervous since I am in the middle of a few deadlines and I still have not chosen my paint color. I am so sorry for the stress you went through but at least Armstrong admitted that the product you had installed was defective. Please keep us updated on your new choice of floors and please post pics when your new choice is installed.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Lynn2006 -Have you gotten your engineered flooring installed yet? I am still waiting on mine. Hopefully will be next week. Can't wait to get this laminate up! It's driving me crazy. I think it was a blessing in disguise. At least now I got to try it and saw I didn't like it but turned out it was defective anyway. Can't wait for my new hardwod. Post pics if you have it yet and let me know how well you like it. Thanks for talking to me.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

chloe602 how did the claim process go i've the same issue only been a few weeks and i have the creaking wont go away. did you take it up with the local flooring company that installed it or did you go straight to armstrong corp on the net and filed a claim? I could use sone helpful hints on how to deal with my floors my the local florring company claim that this is normal. i think not since i'm not the only one experincing this. Did armstrong pay for the full replacement and removal with this defective product and did they charge you to upgrade to engeneered?

thanks in addvanced

tim


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Tim, sorry I'm just getting back to you. Just read your post. Your crackling will not ever go away. DO NOT settle for this! I went through my local installer. Although he came out twice before he really could see what I was talking about. I think he thought I was nuts st first because it seemed like it was worse at times than others. At night, its really bad. Once he could hear it pop under his feet all over, he said yeah I need to call an armstrong rep and have them look at it. He came within a week and said he already thought it was going to be not enough expansion room but immediately ruled that out when he could lift out the air vent without any problem. i guess it would have been tight if that had been the problem??? He said he had to contact his superiors and see what they had to say. Called back to my installer within 2 days and said they were going to replace it with any Armstrong or Bruce product. I did have to pay the difference in what I had already paid and the new floor. It was only about $350 total. They are going to start on it on Monday. I really think I'm gonna be a lot happier. Insist they have someone come and look at it because it is not NORMAL! It is too expensive to just let it go. The customer should always be happy. Let me know how it goes and good luck! If you would like to email me directly with any further questions, my email is jv4449@att.net. I keep forgetting to check this site very often.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

My problem is the installation. Trying to lock in two ends.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I have posted these videos, to document the problems I am having with my Armstrong Grand Illusions Laminate, that is now 12 days old... I am waiting to see what the final outcome is, lets' hope it is good....
When you see this first video, there are 3 more to be seen, and I will keep posting until a solution is found.

Here is a link that might be useful: Noisy Armstrong Grand Illusions Laminate Flooring 1 review


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Is there a defined gap around the entire perimeter...It just sounds tight to me...I can not see a gap on the video and it must be there after installation or it will push itself up immediately. Just my 2 cents. I would like to see a video zooming in on the perimeter instead of just the noise. Any laminate will d o this if installed too tight. These videos need to show more than just walking around for 2 minutes. One squeak is too many...show the installation.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Hi,

I cannot zoom with my camera when I video, but be assured, there is a definate gap around the whole floor. My installer used a bucketful of spacers. I do have still pictures of that, as I took pictures during the whole installation process. I am using a Canon digital camera, not a video camera, so my video capabilities are zilch almost. I agree, one squeak is too much, but I think the premise of this flooring is not good. I went to the closest Armstrong dealer to me, that actually has a 12x12 area of this laminate installed on their concrete floor, and it snaps and pops too. The younger salesman warned me about the sounds, but then the other (older) salesman said it was only because they have the large Armstrong display on one whole side of the floor that is installed, so that prevented the floor from moving, and that is why there was noise. When I did my research on this product, I never came across the noise issue, it wasn't until the day they were installing it, that I even knew to research noise, only after hearing the noise. This is the 3rd Armstrong laminate I have had on that same floor area, each getting more expensive, and it is the prettiest, but it makes noise. Not one single board or plank of any of the other laminates ever made noise, at all. I think Grand Illusions should be totally glued, as the short end of the planks are what are snapping back and making noise, at least in my opinion. My subfloor was inspected, is fine and they also used Armstrong Quiet Step underlayment, (I think that is it, it is the black one). My installer was just here, and picked up 2 leftover boxes to send to Lancaster for testing, but, how can they duplicate my house? And what about the laminate on the floor in the showroom, that makes noise?
Frustrating.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

We did quiz our rep pretty hard today...asking only to the point that we are deliberating on taking the display ... he state he has never had the issue in 5 years and has only understood that noise can occur if the subfloor is uneven (humps and dips)...That noise on the video just sounded to me like it is pinched somewhere and is lifted off the surface. This is what happens when it is pinched at a casing...or too tight off of conflicting walls. The underlay will not cause it or take it away..guaranteed. Has Armstrong sent out a rep yet? I will not order the display until I hear more about this. They brag about their locking system on the higher end Armstrong such as this. You must demand an inspection with the installer present as they may want to say it is installation. It is disturbing to me if you say the gap is adequate and it is not pinched at a casing or at some point. Please keep us posted. It will not go away..That I am sure of ..it needs an inspection. It should not have to relax, it is surely acclimated by now and if it is squeeking, I would want it replaced, because guranteed, they all do not do that. If there is a heavy display on it, it is possible I suppose that it would make some noise, but I dont even buy that. I am bugged about it...I just cant imagine Armstrong would put this out with a known issue. I am anxious to hear your next report on this, but tell the company you bought it from that you demand an immediate inspection from Armstrong.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

We took a video last night of the entire perimeter of the rooms, with me trying to keep the focus which was impossible because of the lighting not getting under cabinets, BUT there IS a gap everywhere. I told my salesperson/installer yesterday, my patience is gone. The Armstrong rep will be seeing him today, and I have asked for him to come to my house. This noise problem was pointed out to me by the salesman at the store where I saw the installed sample, (not the store I made my purchase from because my salesperson is still waiting for his new display unit) but then the other salesman said it was noisy because of the display sitting on it, so, we just thought maybe the first salesman was not as informed, because who would have ever thought to look for a noise issue..especially since I had 2 other Armstrong laminates in the very same area, since the 90's. I did not remember that little controversy until the day of installation, and my floor was noisy, like the display floor. As you can see from this forum, the issue hss been a problem for years. I have video of the store display floor making noise, but I would be hesitant to post it because the salesperson is standing there, and I don't want him to "sue" me... I am again at a standstill, and really want my floor re-done. I cannot imagine why the stuff has to be tested 700 miles away, when all you need to do is just step on my floor, and the display floor, and hear the noise. Check the warranty, I think they may have said in the warranty that noise issues aren't covered, I gave my printed out copy to my salesperson, after he and I marked it up. I need to print another one.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Floortech,

I went to your page, but you do not have an email address listed that I could send a picture to you to show the gap and the underlayment. I will keep posting, so everyone knows the progress.

Thanks


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

We put in Makore flooring in 6 months ago. We spent over $6000. to put it in our foyer, living room, kitchen and hall. It is the WORST flooring I have ever had. The sales person said that it would show dust because of the high shine. I wasnt worried because i vacuum constantly. I have no pets and only one 16 year son living at home. My children were raised to take their shoes off whenever they come in the house. Now they have to put shoes On!! Every footprint shows. Even in socks!!! Its a nightmare. This floor has caused so much grief in my home. Every day, sometimes several times a day I have to wash the floor to remove the footprints. I contacted armstrong and they said that has to be expected with a high shine floor. Baloney!! I always had high gloss wood floors in my home, when we moved to this home last year there was no basement so wood was not an option. I never had footprints show on my real wood floors. I am sick to my stomach. After all the money we spent on this floor my husband does not want to replace it but all I do is complain to him and my son when they forget to put slippers on. DONT BUY ARMSTRONG GRAND ILLUSIONS or BRUCE PARK AVENUE FLOORS!!!!!!


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Please see my videos at youtube

starting with this one, there are then 8 more to follow...

Here is a link that might be useful: Noisy Armstrong Grand Illusions laminate flooring


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

New videos about my Armstrong Laminate problems...

Here is a link that might be useful: Noisy Armstrong Laminate


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Man I just put in this floor and have the same creaking going on. Installers did a good job leveling and setting the gap just right. Now who pays for the labor to rip up and replace =(


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

My sister has Grand illusions in her garage loft and it makes zero noise. She loves it.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Summary of above posts regarding clicking problem -
May 08 - bad clicking
Jul 08 - bad clicking
Apr 09 - cust seems happy
Apr 09 - cust seems happy
jul 09 - bad clicking
jul 09 - bad clicking, armstrong agreed was defective
Jul 11 - bad clicking (videos show squeaking, armstrong commented on video)
Sept 11 - bad clicking.
(unknown date) - no clicking. tl45, when was it installed?

Several people are unhappy about the glossy surface showing smudges. My flooring is honey color ("azfelia") and doesn't show it too bad.


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RE:Bruce Engineered Flooring is making a clicking sound

We just had Armstrong Bruce engineered flooring installed. We hired some installers that came highly recommended but found out to late they had never done a glued down engineered floor.
The gaps in between are to large in some places, the Floor makes a clicking popping sound in some area's and it has dips. It says you are not supposed to walk on it for 24 hr (which I did not know) and apperantly they was not aware of this eighter and walked all over the floor. They had to move the Fridge out of the way and scratched up the floor, dropped a tool and scratched it up some more.
We are super careful and but this floor scratches and dents just walking on it lol. wished I had not purchased this Floor and used different installers.
Now I'm wondering how I can fix the clicking sound and the scratches?


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Just installed in my basement and yes it has the problems above. Looks awesome but the shine shows everything. Scratches showed up right away and I called Armstrong and they sent me instructions for replacing bad planks. What a nightmare. Easy to take up but on one board the glue made the board swell and with high gloss it stood out like a sore thumb. Now I have figure out how to replace a replacement board that has been glued down. That will take every tool I own. Too much shine shows everything and every repair so just beware. I took a piece of this floor that was damaged and put clear high gloss polyurethane on it. Believe it or not after drying it looked just like the rest of the floor. Made in China and boards click and damage very easy. Drop anything on it and your done. Go get a replacement board and hope it doesn't swell when you glue it down. I'll go engineered next time. Grand Illusions looks great but has many issues.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I wanted to post an update to my last post regarding this flooring. Turns out I installed the repair incorrectly by gluing both long sides of the board when the instructions say to only glue one side so the buckling is on me. I replaced per instructions and so far have no further issues. The other issues are minor to me including a few noisy boards which I've experienced in all wood floors I seen or owned and excessive scratches which I attribute to the high gloss and dark color of the floor I chose. No product is completley perfect, but all-in-all I am happy with this one and man it looks good. This is some of the mos realistic looking laminate you are going to find. Just make sure you install it all to spec.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I just had 610 sq ft of Grand Illusions Cruevo (spelling?) installed and found this website just a day afterward when I was looking for information about the spacing of transitions. The installer recommended that I needed a transition between the kitchen and living room which is an open area with an island separating the two spaces. The entire length is only 35 ft and according to Armstrong's website, a transition is not needed. I have noticed some crackling noises but the installer said that my subfloor was not perfectly level and that Grand Illusions is the only laminate that makes this sound. Right now it isn't too bad and he said it may disappear altogether once it is all settled down. I am majorly concerned about its durability. The installer marred the boards in front of the refrigerator when he moved it (and it has rollers) and he has to come back and replace them. I have spent about $30 on felt pads to go on everything touching the floor and hundreds more on area rugs because I just set a stool on it and it scratched the board, which is way too delicate for what I expected from a laminate. The finish is beautiful but it's like have glass and any fingerprint shows. The pro about this flooring...it is beautiful!


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

skyqueen, it might be possible to inject glue to stop the noises in the floor and also to fill some of those hollow sounding dips.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

Same problem, high end top of the line Armstrong laminate. 2 months later all the seems split, chipped etc. We filed a complaint with Armstrong and won, except they gave us all new flooring.. Yippe :(


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

We have the exact same issue; crackling and popping on nearly every step with Bruce Park Avenue Mocha Maple. When I started a claim with Armstrong, they offered to have an independent inspector come evaluate the laminate. Turns out the inspector was very biased, and he cherry picked the rooms that had imperfections while failing to document the rooms which didn't have any problems. I should have listened to my gut and hired someone on my dime who I deemed independent, rather than relying upon them.

Armstrong makes a final decision on my claim tomorrow, but so far it doesn't look good. I think they are going to try and blame it on the installation. The crazy part is that I have laminate of a different brand installed in our guest bedroom, and it has no problems whatsoever!

Hopefully they will own up to the problem, and not tarnish their reputation any further. If not, then I have no choice but to build a case, and head to small claims court to recover whatever I can. Either way, I will be letting everyone here know how they handle the situation. Fingers crossed.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

You must hire your own inspector or you will lose in court. Trust me on that. Your case is meaningless with their 3rd party report. You need one to counteract and then you have a good fightin chance.


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RE: Armstrong Grand Illusions Warning

I have some good news to report. After some deliberation, Armstrong has decided to give me a credit for the entire purchase price of the flooring materials. They will allow me to pick any flooring product as a replacement. Unfortunately, the $1600 I spent for installation will not be reimbursed, but I'll chalk it up as a life lesson.

I'm pretty happy that they reversed their decision, since originally they denied my claim completely. This is much better than taking them to small claims court, since the maximum I could have gotten back was $5000 in Florida. Plus it would have been a major headache with a ton more time wasted.

Anyway, I will *NOT* be replacing the floor with another laminate! I think I'll start another thread to get advice on which kind of Armstrong engineered/solid wood floors would be best for my home. Hopefully I will have something installed that I really love, and can enjoy for a long time to come.


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