Lowes Armstrong Laminate

Discussion in 'Hardwood and Laminates Q&A' started by Jim2705, Dec 26, 2010.

  1. Jim2705

    Jim2705 New Member

    I have decided, after much thought, to install a high quality laminate in my LR/DR as opposed to an engineered floor. I have been told that it is less expensive, easier, significantly more durable and with improved print technology, high gloss finishes and beveled edges it is difficult to tell the difference.
    Here's my dilemma.:confused:
    I went to Lowes and found a floor that caught my eye. It is a Armstrong 14mm 5" aged cherry high gloss laminate. It is called their "Beveled Edge Collection". The confusion is that Lowes has the same floor on two different Armstrong display boards with two different SKU's and two different prices. One was $4.54 sf and the other was $3.49 sf. We compared the two side by side. The floor and finish was identical and the product description on the back was the same except for the SKU and how many SF came in a box. The sales associate could not explain that and I was not able to find anything on the internet about either 14mm floor - not even on the Armstrong site. I'm worried about what they are selling here.
    The high end product from Armstrong appears to be their Grand Illusions line but they do not offer a 14mm product. Is this a private label product for Lowes? The $3.49 seems to be a good value for a 14mm/AC3 floor. Should I have any concerns here or should i go for it?

    Also, is 14mm overkill and will I have any transition height problems where the floor will meet the tile in my home or should I stay with a 10mm or a 12mm? I want it to look perfect - if that's possible.

    Your input, thoughts and advice will be greatly appreciated. If you have any recommendations on a high quality laminate pass them on.
  2. Elmer Fudd

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

    I will tell you up front. "I do not like laminate!" About 40% of my business is examining problems with laminate floors.

    Laminate was originally made for counter tops...........so my question has always been.......do you walk on your countertops? I thought not!!

    ALL laminate is moisture sensitive..........do you get water on your floor?"

    Laminate has strict floor flatness REQUIREMENTS........Is your floor perfectly flat? I didn't think so!!

    How do you clean a laminate floor?...........With water? or an expensive cleaner?..........refer back to moisture sensitivity!!

    Would you put a "picture" of carpet on your floor? Didn't think so....why a picture of wood???

    Laminate is cold and noisy!!

    OK, I'll shut up..............hope you enjoy your laminate floor!!:p

    I am not trying to be sarcastic, just having a little fun, but did I mention that I don't like laminate?
  3. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    On the flip side....laminate has been successfully used in Europe for over 50 years. If you like it buy it. It is easy to install and uninstall.

    I have not used any Armstrong. So cannot offer any opinions on that.

    I do not like laminate flooring either. (But have not had any issues either)
  4. rusty baker

    rusty baker Well-Known Member

    In my opinion and it's just my opinion, laminate flooring is like IVC vinyl, a very temporary floor covering.
  5. polestretch

    polestretch Senior Member

    I have Armstrong's Nature's Gallery in my kitchen and dining room. It held up very well through the first 7 floods, the 8th finally found a way under and buckled the floor. I love laminate for what it gives you for the price.
    I would suggest straying away from the BIG box stores and find a Mom and Pop store. They will help you in many ways that those big box stores can't.
    And remember, have it professionally installed!
  6. cproader

    cproader All over T's last nerve Senior Member

    I will not install laminate, and would not advise anyone to invest.......:ohno:
  7. Nick Arrera

    Nick Arrera Traitor

    Same here .
  8. Kman

    Kman Tile Expert I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    If someone has their heart set on laminate, or has already purchased it, I'll install it for them. I always spend a good amount of time advising them of the pitfalls of laminate installs, though. If it's already been purchased, the customer has already reaped the benefit of laminate, which is a cheap price. In my opinion, everything else is a pitfall.

    When a potential customer asks me whether or not they should purchase laminate, I ask them if they plan to stay in the house for more than five years. If they are, I tell them not to buy it, as they will not like the visible wear and tear that will show after that time. I also tell them of the hazards of moisture sensitivity like Roger mentioned.

    Sorry I can't answer your specific questions about the products you're looking at. The fact that you can't find out anything about it should tell you something. The fact that the person/company that carries the product can't tell you why there is such a difference in price should tell you something as well. :(
  9. Jason Goldberg

    Jason Goldberg Pro Member


    My name is Jason Goldberg and i am the CEO of America's Floor source in Columbus Ohio. I may be able to give you some direction here.

    Laminate is typically less expensive then engineered hardwood. The looks of laminate have come a long way and when it's installed it is a very good looking floor. However, you will be able to tell the difference once you walk on it. Most lamiantes will have a hollow sound when walking accross. Since you are looking at a 14 mm laminate the thickness will mitigate that hollow sound. I would also suggest going with a an upgraded laminate pad to mitigate it even more.

    As far as the tagging issue at Lowes, that's a brain scratcher. Welcome to the world of the Big Box. I agree with one of the otehr responses below on going with a true flooring company. You will get more accurate advise and end up with a better experience.


    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 29, 2010
  10. Carpetkid

    Carpetkid A Floor Geek

    1. Consumers are always better off buying from a local retailer than a box store. Especially if you're looking for full service (material, coordination of the project and installation). Plus, most times, your local retailer will be less expensive (for full service)than the box stores.

    2. Laminate is hollow regardless of how much you spend on the underlayment. The sound isn't generated by the thickness of the product, but buy the space betwwen the material and the subfloor. Once there's compression (walking on it) that space is colapsed and creates a hollow sound.

    3. Every transition requires a transition moulding. These mouldings are crazy expense compared to the material and create a "speed bump" at every transition.

    I hate to keep beating this drum (for you regulars), but check out Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT). In the end you will be glad you did, even you decide not to purchase LVT. It comes in the same sizes, finishes, has at least equal warranties, and long term will be a better floor.

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