Armstrong Alterna Reviews

Discussion in 'Vinyl Flooring Q&A' started by Rose Ann, Mar 26, 2014.

  1. Rose Ann

    Rose Ann New Member


    I am a consumer looking for feedback from anyone who has Alterna groutable vinyl tiling. I am considering it for my kitchen re-do, but have not been able to find anyone who has actually lived with it for a time. Is it worth the money? Does it clean up well? Does the grout stay 'clean'? I am looking for something with a tile look but a softer feel underfoot.

    Thank you to anyone who can provide some feedback.
  2. jbom

    jbom Pro Member

    Alterna is a great option. The grout dries kinda like a plastic. Making it very hard to stain. I have been in the industry for 15+ years now, the majority of it as an installer. The last couple of years I have transitioned into sales and have been recommending this product and products like it due to my experience installing and have actually done my own house with it. I have a young daughter and a couple of pets. this floor takes the daily beating and shows no worse for wear. It has been down about 2 years now. As a bonus if you do damage a tile (which is hard to do in the first place) you just have to heat it up with a paint stripping heat gun, this reactivates the glue, take the tile out and replace with a new tile. For this reason make sure that you order approx. %10 more than you need for cuts and to have a few left over for replacement if needed. Hope this helped.
  3. Rose Ann

    Rose Ann New Member

    Thank you so much for your quick response! I keep hearing that the product sells well, but haven't been able to find any feedback (save an occasional negative one) from the homeowner.
  4. jbom

    jbom Pro Member

    The negative comments you are finding are probably in relation to the tile "chipping", I personally have not had any issues with the armstong, but have had experience with the duraceramic chipping to the point where I don't recommend it. Another option would be Adura made by Mannington. Alterna and duraceramic are Vinyl composite tiles whereas the Adura is a PVC. Adura is impossible to chip. but your prep has to be near perfect.
  5. Rose Ann

    Rose Ann New Member

    Any thoughts on putting it down under or around an island/cabinets? Will it withstand the weight of granite, etc or should I worry about it cracking?
  6. jbom

    jbom Pro Member

    You should be fine if you want to install all he flooring first and build cabinets on top. However keep in mind that most cabinet guys like to build the cabinets first as its easier to get a level cabinet working from the sheathing up, rather than the flooring. (alterna has some texture to it) this makes it hard to level a cabinet. probably eaiser to cut the alterna to the cabinet. than try to level cabinet on top of alterna
  7. ScribeRight

    ScribeRight Pro Member

    Armstrong makes a nice tile and holds up well

    Attached Files:

  8. mrusse02

    mrusse02 New Member

    I had the same problem when we were shopping for flooring. We wound up getting Armstrong Alterna a year ago, and I was determined to provide others with the type of follow-reviews I was looking for. If you go to the Armstrong website and look for the May 17, 2013 review for "Armstrong Alterna Mesa Stone Fieldstone" you'll also see where there is a follow-up review on there that I added in March 2014. (Hopefully the following link will work for you.)

    There is a mistake on the follow-up though because it says friends saw ours and also got some for their home. They did it a few months ago - not "a couple of years ago" as I apparently must have written.

    Good luck with your floor, whatever you choose!

    Mesa Stone - Fieldstone | D4115 | Luxury Vinyl
  9. tinker1121

    tinker1121 Member

    100% vinyl Shaw

    I have not read good things about the Duraceramic either. The Armstrong is nice but they don't make a pattern or color that I think goes well with my granite choice.

    You said that Mannington and Armstrong are "vinyl composite".

    I am considering Shaw Array Resort Tile and they describe it as 100% vinyl where others are not.

    Does anyone have experience or have installed the Shaw? I am ready to order it but would love some opinions on it. I have a Duraceramic sample of Sierra Slate in Warm Pewter that would be great with my granite but afraid to order it, in fact probably won't thus my determination to find info on Shaw.

  10. Jackreed

    Jackreed jackreed Charter Member

    DuraCeramic has gotten a bad rap on the internet in my opinion. I think a lot of it was how it was taken care of. I don't believe it was all manufacture related.

    With that being said I would not be afraid of installing it. Have installed a lot of it with only one customer having problems. It was the way it was used and maintained.

    If that is the pattern that works best I would not be afraid to use it.:yesss:
    • Like Like x 1
  11. :mad:We installed ours five years ago . We hate this and so do the house keepers . The acrylic grout failed after two years . The surface gets filthy fast and is impossible to mop . The surface wore through in front of the sink ..I spent most of my time preparing the floor with luan plywood and leveling cement.It was perfect for any floor at that point. After gluing the floor down with the most expensive glue I ever bought that was sold by Armstrong the nightmare began .When grouting I did small sections at a time . I never had such a hard time in my life .. Once the grout hit the surface it became almost impossible to wipe off..They said to use masking tape as not to let the grout touch the flooring. I found that method to be impossible . Eventually I removed the grout .The only way we live with this floor now is by applying after market stripper sealer and polish. This floor will soon be removed and hopefully forgotten . If any want sample picture I will post some... Warning to all pro installers If you want happy customers stay away from this product.
  12. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    You use the word "impossible" liberally, yet you did it. I don't know what is so impossible about mopping, I don't know how the grout could be "almost impossible" to remove if you were using fresh grout, 2 pails of water and sponges as directed and I don't know why applying tape to the seam edges was so impossible for you.

    You are a DIYer and, based on your installation experience, believe professionals will find it impossible to satisfy their customers with the quality of their skills and experience. :hu:

    If you need help, that's what we are here for. Post pictures of your problems and maybe our pros can help solve them. I'm sorry you became so frustrated, after 5 years, that you felt it necessary to reply to a 2-year old topic to warn others about this horrible product. :(
  13. Sample pictures

    :mad: The picture shows the poc marks in the print with imbedded dirt. These can't be mopped out . To clean this floor you need a boat brush.This floor requires mopping often as it is a dirt magnet. The tile to the left shows the finish worn off . This happened two years ago . The tile laying on the top is a replacement tile I saved in garage . I did not have paper between the sheets and the direction arrow stained the tile and it cannot be removed .. The topic post wants to know if the floor is easy to clean. The answer is no . The tile is easy to cut when installing and that is the only advantage . Two buckets and a sponge ??? The application requires a special float many hours working a small section...I suspect you probably use water based grout because once this grout touches the tile it not going to come off with a sponge and water. A two year old post is not old and a five year old floor should not have to be replaced .. Go ahead keep installing this floor and wait for the law suits to start coming in

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  14. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Administwative Asst. Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    Brian, I have personally installed thousands of feet of this, all but one job was with grout. The initial learning curve may be steep, but following directions helps tremendously.
    It has been out 6-7 years (guessing) and from what the sales reps say folks love it.
    As far as I know no one makes a self-cleaning floor, it takes effort and following directions, 99% of people are happy with how this floor cleans.

    Just sayin!!
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. I have laminate and ceramic floors that are much older . They only require a light sweeping and mopping . These floors also get heavy usage . It was a year after we installed this floor that I noticed mopping would not clean this floor as it has built in holes and crevices . Only a scrub brush with lots effort will clean this floor. After the scrubbing the lop will turn to black mud and has to dumped several times. We mop at least twice a week and the house cleaners come once every two weeks .They also hate this floor. I am posting because I am during my yearly scrubbing sealing and polishing that's not recommended by Armstrong. It is the only way I can make the women and the cleaners stop complaining. Most women want a new floor when the old floor gets to hard to clean. This floor gets dirty fast and mopping won't clean it . It has been less than five years and maybe I will rip it out... I can't see any one using this floor in a commercial application This is the kitchen floor by food prep area and sink . It is shot only four years . Look at the filth in the poc holes ans it was just mopped

    Attached Files:

  16. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I think you need a wet vac with squeegee attachment. It sounds like you cannot get dirt up. Mops usually slosh it around and are the most ineffective cleaning tool made. Go ahead rinse it out in a dirty bucket? Doesn't make sense does it? I was in the Navy, swabbed many decks, had many "inspected" also took Janitorial classes and know a bit about cleaning supplies.

    What has been designed for Tile(ceramic) cleaning? Have you seen Stanley Steemers design? It is pretreated, lightly manually scrubbed, light pressure cleaned and extracted with vacuum attachment.
  17. Thanks maybe i try it
  18. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    Also, the right cleaner helps. Not sure what Armstrong recommends but I love Once N Done, mostly for ceramic, but I think it's for vinyl as well. Steam mops are no good for anything but ceramic. Basically nothing for laminate that gets it wet, same as hardwood. There's a bit of science in cleaning chemicals, if you find it a little fascinating and learn how they work it helps in all situations.
  19. kwfloors

    kwfloors Fuzz on the brain Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    They, cleaners, all have a ph level that has to do with them.
  20. j248

    j248 Pro Member

    Water and or watered down windex with a 3m scotch bright pad will
    Get rid of the grout caked on there.

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