New hardwood floor installation need opinions and advice

Discussion in 'Solid and Engineered Hardwood Q&A' started by BCSTX, Sep 24, 2018.

  1. BCSTX

    BCSTX Member

    Recent remodel with 750 sq feet of #1 red oak wood flooring.

    The installer remodeled my stairs and told me he had a flooring professional to install my wood flooring, then did it himself. Besides damaging every single wall, window coverings oh the list goes on, the flooring looks horrible. (Gaps, shorts and loud popping noises...)
    #1 common red oak

    Pictures below.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 24, 2018
  2. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    Oh my... how bad does the stairwell look? That's a horrible installation of flooring. All of that needs to come out.
     
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  3. BCSTX

    BCSTX Member

    Stairs are ok..
    My thoughts exactly! The inspection report is absolutely 0 help.

    With $4300 of damages to my house plus all of the walls upstairs will need to be painted and patched...
    FYI that’s a leaning quarter in the gap.
    Here’s the last page of the $500.00 useless inspection:
     

    Attached Files:

  4. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    Did you halt the process? Fill,Sand,and Stain?

    The popping noise, did the inspector detail evaluate the cause? Is inspector NWFA certified?
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2018
  5. BCSTX

    BCSTX Member

    Everything is halted, attorneys are involved now.

    Yes he is NWFA certified, I found him on their website..
    Not sure if it’s common to list abnormal gaps with instructions on how to fix them in an inspection report plus he said the shorts were cosmetic.
    He told me that he didn’t hear the popping sounds when he was there (they happen sporadically during the day, most active early in the morning and in the evening).
     
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  6. Tom Potter

    Tom Potter I Support TFP

    I'm not sure what to say. The spacing is definitely unacceptable on some. As far as the sanding & filling of the gaps, I don't have experience in that field to know if its possible.i would assume that would take a hell of a lot of filler to make right. I can't see how that much filler could not create a problem when expanding and contracting. Cracking and or heaving.

    I do know that if it were pre finished it would be a complete redo. 100% unacceptable in the pre finished world.
     
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  7. BCSTX

    BCSTX Member

    Thanks Tom.
    Hopefully this will be over soon and I will have them completely redone by a wood flooring company professional.
     
  8. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I’ll say you now know many of the things that can/do go wrong. Those end joints are so close I’ve seen ceramic tile joints similar that were supposed to line up.

    On commercial hardwood jobs (basketball courts)I’ve seen placed gaps at 24” intervals, they were then urethaned, not sure if they were functional for expansion.
     
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  9. Mark Brown

    Mark Brown On The Surface Flooring I Support TFP

    To be honest, the grading of the wood is mostly at fault for the spacing of the gaps. It looks like a lot of board taper. In all honesty, that can be remedied with fill and sanding and be mostly OK. The placement of a lot of the end joints is unacceptable by any and all standards, regardless of board length. I would also be suspect of the fastening schedule and what was used, a lot of that should have pulled together with proper fastening. All things being equal, you might have a fight on your hand for a replacement however if i was to pick a side, i think i would have yours.

    Ask your installer for the documents to support his/her moisture content findings of the wood at time of install, the sub-floor as well as the ambient humidity of the building at the time of install. There are a lot of things you want to get on your side to show negligence. Did your inspector do a fastener schedule check? If not, go get yourself a ball magnet and look into it.

    One more thing, to get listed as a NWFA certified inspector isn't all that special. Its like a drivers license, not everyone should have one but we all get equal oppertunity. I cannot speak to this particular inspector, i am just being a generalist. I am NOT listed as a certified floor covering inspector, however i can tell you a lot more than some i have run across....
     
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  10. BCSTX

    BCSTX Member

    Thanks Mark,
    The “Inspector” did moisture readings, took pictures, then 3 weeks to look into his “magic ball” and type a 6 page report with attached pictures. Now I’m a generalist ;)

    My upstairs thermosts take temperature and humidity readings throughout the day, that you can download for specific time periods, I gave that information to the Inspector.
    The “installer” removed the existing laminate, carried the wood upstairs and proceeded to install it damaging every wall on the way..
     
  11. Mark Brown

    Mark Brown On The Surface Flooring I Support TFP

    Well, there is your first line of defence. If the wood was not acclimated to its living environment (no the garage is NOT the same as upstairs) then that could go a long way to explain the gapping. Second point of note, 5 inch wide raw wood flooring is a beast all its own. Very specif guidelines are to be followed for moisture content and humidity due to the fact that 5 inches is a LOT of wood per board. Then we get into glue assisted installations which for any wide plank solid wood (unless this has changed) is recommended by the NWFA. I could go on, but I won't, you have enough information to keep digging and frankly I hope you just dig your heels in. Mistakes happen, it's life. Stupid isn't a mistake though and ignorance isn't an excuse. Good luck to you!!
     
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  12. Fenix Hardwood

    Fenix Hardwood Pro Member

    Well. That looks bad , i totally agree with Mark , for solid and wider boards you will need a lot of time for acclimation, which it needs to happen inside of your home under normal leaving conditions ( temperature range 60-80 F and Relative humidity 35%-55%) Your floor installer needs to have readings ( and proof of the date and readings with pics or videos) lf moisture content on subfloor ( at least 20 readings over 1000 sq ft ) , also readings on the hardwood ( it has to be within 2% from the subfloor ) and plus all that the Relative humidity in your home should be between 35%-55% , like Mark said for anything wider than 5” boards you will need glue assisted and blind nail installation ( assuming that you have a wooden subfloor ).
    Also your installer should advice you to install an engineered flooring which works better for wider planks and requirements for acclimation and shorter time wise gapping occurs when wood is installed with more moisture content than the house , so when the wood match the house moisture it will shrink and shows gapping everywhere or if you have a radiant heating which I didn’t read that you have one

    Best of luck
     
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  13. Dan Schultz

    Dan Schultz Certified Wood Floor Inspector Charter Member

    The last two sentences on that page describe boards that were not installed tightly together, which describes abnormal gaps. They also detail an installation issue.

    By the way, a report from a NWFA certified inspector should also state an "identification of cause" after the conclusion, as the last item in the report.
     
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  14. Dan Schultz

    Dan Schultz Certified Wood Floor Inspector Charter Member

    Ah, I see you mentioned the last page of the report, but the page you posted is page 4 of 6?
     
  15. BCSTX

    BCSTX Member

    Hi Dan,
    The last pages are pictures. Any suggestions with the inspection report and the Inspector? My Attorney told me it is useless for my case.
    Hi Fenix,
    The flooring is upstairs installed on a subfloor the humidity readings were 44-47,
    no radiant heat.

    I really appreciate all of you assisting me with this, it has been an expensive and tasking ordeal. Plus I have been living in this mess looking at it daily...
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
  16. Fenix Hardwood

    Fenix Hardwood Pro Member

    Did you try Contractor State license Board ?

    “To file your complaint by mail, begin by downloading the Construction Complaintform (English. Spanish), or call (800) 321-CSLB (2752) to request that a complaintform be mailed to you. Gather all printed documentation that you have related to the construction project.”
     
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  17. BCSTX

    BCSTX Member

    Dan this is Texas so no Contractor License required for remodeling unless it is structural, plumbing or HVAC.
     
  18. BCSTX

    BCSTX Member

    Here is the report in full
     

    Attached Files:

  19. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    The report has been redacted to protect personally identifiable information.
     
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  20. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I didn’t look at it but Jim, you’re Crem de la Crem of Redactors!

    So if I were in a “situation” where a hardwood floor was going to court I think I’d hire Dan to do the report. So, fly out one day, tell the plane to wait a few hours for the way back.

    Only thing is if it would go to court would the inspector have to make appearance or would it go to arbitration first? By phone?
     
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