Homerwood problems

Discussion in 'Hardwood & Laminate Sales and Installations' started by Steve Olson, May 2, 2018.

  1. Steve Olson

    Steve Olson Hardwood/Laminate Guru Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    I did an install of Homerwood last year, this is my original post: Homerwood with inconsistent widths

    The solid wood was returned, and replaced with 5/8" Engineered Hickory, also by Homerwood. The subfloor was damaged badly from the demo, the previous floor, a 3/4" solid Maple Mirage product, was nailed down, but at every point where the nailing gun could not be used, the flooring was glued down with Taylor MS. Lots of delamination at those area's, 3 layers an a few places. After all options were reviewed, the use of 1/4" arctic birch was used, to bring the engineerd wood up to the height where a large gap would not be present at all the door case millwork, kitchen cab's and island, etc. The areas that were damaged were flat trowled with Taylor MS, then stapled to spec. Aquabar B was used as underlay paper.
    What was noticed during the demo, was that the existing floor was cupped badly. At the time, I hadn't done any tearout, so I checked the moisture with my Protimeter, and ir read form 10-14 percent. The house was built on a down slope, so I check under the house, and the ground was very damp, and the owner commented on how wet that area got during the wet season. The shop and home owner discussed the proper course of action, and that it would be down asap, which of course, it never was.
    So after demo and seeing the method of install, it seemed logical that lack of expansion cold also be the reason for the cupping.
    So, the new floor was installed, 1 1/4" staples, over the 1/4" UL. The job was started roughly in the middle of the job, one, so I could be sure that going around large island work center came out perfect, and 2, running it in opposite directions reduces the amount of expansion, based on the wood floor only expanding in the direction of the fastener.
    Customer had one squeaky board, right between the island and sink, that he noted right after completion, but when I went down to check it, it was gone. So, spring, summer, and fall passed into winter, and the owner said the squeak was back, and the floor was also squeaking in other areas. Shop owner called his distributor, who sent out an inspector. In summary, he stated that it was popping because 3/8 CDX was minimum spec as a UL, 1/4" Artic Birch UL was used, and that in places the staples were not 3-4" on center, at least in the one picture where you could see his magnets. The temp at floor lever was just below 60, and the moisture level was 10.3%. He also noted the damp ground in the underside of the house.
    I'm having a tough time believing that those 2 items could be the sole cause of the problem. I admit to being a 4"-6" OC stapler, but have only ever had one other problem, in 38 years, with popping, and that turned out to be a problem with the fit between tongue and grove being too loose. I can't copy the pics he took, as I only have a copy of the document. But what I'm looking for, is to get a true independent inspector to look at it and give his findings. I have nothing at stake here, but from reading the inspectors statements of facts given by the home owner, there was a lot of details left out.
    Can I get a referral to such an inspector? I have pic's I took of the subfloor, temp and humidty readings, also took ics of the finished job, but deleted them at the end of last year.
  2. Mark Brown

    Mark Brown On The Surface Flooring I Support TFP

    To be honest I have always been against using anything other min 1/2 inch ply under hardwood for anything and that gets screwed. Every time it comes up on the forum I just stay mum about it, but that's my 2 cents. Fasteners I won't drive anything under inch and a half for 18 gauge. As for the nailing schedule none of us nails every bloody 3 inches lol.

    Moisture is a tad high in the wood hey? But nothing crazy. How bad is the popping? Localized or everywhere??
    I have a hard time believing it is anything other than climate, but now curiosity has gotten me
  3. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I’d say Dan Shultz is about the best out there.

    I’m having a time trying to understand how moisture travels with the different adhesives. I have Advantech laying on ground outside and I flip it over and it’s always curling upward, very interesting to see, same thing occurring in hardwood floors, moisture under, dryer on surface.
  4. Steve Olson

    Steve Olson Hardwood/Laminate Guru Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    1/4" was used to bring the 5/8" to he same height as the previous 3/4" solid. Customer did not want a gap under all the door casings and trim. A underlay any thicker, would of brought the installed height above the height of the thresh holds at the main front entrance, and rear sliders. I just cant see the logic in the statement that 3/8" ply is fine, but not 1/4". I've been tracking moisture content in the subfloors in or area since 91 or 92, when I bought my Protimeter. In almost every case. the subfloors are 6, or less. New construction framing usually measured 9-14. I also use a temp/RH display on site so I can document the daily temp/RH.
  5. kylenelson

    kylenelson You'll find me on the floor I Support TFP Senior Member

    It’s bs that 1/4 isn’t acceptable. Skirting the real issue.

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