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Author Topic: Laminate Flooring - good choice for a bus?  (Read 1669 times)
Brian Diehl
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« on: December 03, 2013, 07:28:35 PM »

I have been planning to use a laminate flooring product for the bus the entire time I've been converting.  I'm finally looking to install the floor and thought now was a good time with all the sales.  I purchased a box of this product: http://www.menards.com/main/flooring/vinyl-flooring/vinyl-planks/shaw-citadel-floating-vinyl-plank-5-91-x-36-84/p-2201412.htm and read the instructions that came with it. 

I was surprised to see a requirement for the room temperature to be maintained between 65 and 85 at all times.  Really!  No one's house ever gets above 85 in the summer or below 65 in the winter?Huh  So, I called Shaw and the customer service rep was really nice, but had nothing further to add.  She couldn't even tell me what would happen if the flooring got colder or hotter than their recommended temperatures.  Even more, she said they had NO solid surface products they rated for outside these temperature extremes. 

So - what to do now?  I checked out a bunch of products @ Lowes and each one I looked at had similar ratings of 65 - 85 or 65 - 90.  I even thought I would look at sheet vinyl and it was the same.  I know people put sheet vinyl in their motor homes and it works.  Is there any reason why I would not want to use this snap lock vinyl wood plank in my bus?  Is it really going to be a problem? 

I want a low profile wood flooring look to my finished product.  This appears to fit the bill both in $s and in looks.  I've played a bit with laying it out and it is super easy to assemble.  Is there a better product out there that will work better for a motor home environment?  I know I could go with ceramic tile, but I did not design things for the height of a tile flooring design.  Besides, I don't want the weight of ceramic.  I could go carpet, but find that a bad choice for the type of back woods camping my family does.  Too many muddy shoes and dog feet!

Thanks in advance for any thoughts on this.

Brian
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Nusa
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« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2013, 07:38:59 PM »

My understanding is that narrowish temperature range is for installation purposes, not forever. The product and the room need to be at that temperature before, during, and for 48-hours after installation to ensure proper curing of adhesives. The clarity of instructions probably varies depending on who wrote them...especially if it was written by someone whose first language was Chinese.
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TomC
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« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2013, 09:33:58 PM »

It appears that the floor you have listed is a floating floor. I personally do not like floating floors-they are loud and clunky with shoes. Plus-if you're ever in a roll over accident (hopefully never), do you want a floor that isn't tied down to the bus? I have solid oak strip tongue and grove glued to the floor that I installed in '94. Still in place, still looks good. Highly recommend the flooring you install be glued down. Good luck, TomC
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Jon
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« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2013, 03:34:27 AM »

I suspect the manufacturers are attempting to protect themselves. Humidity and temperature extremes can have a significant impact on how much a floor expands or shrinks and since they cannot control how tight flooring is between walls or how expansion and shrinkage can affect the fit and appearance they express limits so there is minimal size shift.
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Jon

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« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2013, 04:29:57 AM »

Marine grade vinyl plank flooring is better @ more $$$ but what you bought will work good, me I like the Earth Werk glue down type vinyl plank better it's tough stuff
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goutoe
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« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2013, 07:11:52 AM »

I used the laminate floating floor in my home, honestly I haven't been very happy with it, it started to buckle in one area I don't know if was temp. or humidity. my bus has oak tonge and groove flooring in the kitchen and bathroom, it has been in for 20 yrs and still looks and wears great, temp extremes don't seem to effect it.>>> John.
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Mike in GA
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« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2013, 07:52:28 AM »

We used a high end laminate that looks like wood. Product name is Amtico. Requires a good underlayment and their own adhesive. Rather expensive, but it is extremely resilient, and looks great. Not for everyone.
http://www.mannington.com/commercial/Colorway.aspx?id=2772
Hope that helps.
Mike in GA
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sledhead
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« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2013, 10:08:00 AM »

As a floor for the coach it is about the best you can put in for normal use and will hold up much better then hardwood ( due to scraches ) not as cold as cerramic with less weight . Mine has been in for 7 years with out any problems . When you install it make sure you leave the proper gap they recommend for expansion , contraction and you will have to put some trim over the gap to hide it like the size of door stop on edge or somthing like . The only problem with laminate is it hates water . keep it dry

dave
« Last Edit: December 04, 2013, 02:14:21 PM by sledhead » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2013, 11:08:16 AM »

He using vinyl planks and not the laminate flooring right ? the engineered hard wood seems to hold up good the temperature and humidity doesn't seem to affect it like the laminate flooring
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Oonrahnjay
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« Reply #9 on: December 04, 2013, 11:59:57 AM »

   As a floor for the coach it is about the best you can put in for normal use ... 

     Exactly what kind of floor (brand name would be real good if you've got it) did you use, Dave?   Many thanks,   BH   NC    USA
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Bruce H; Wallace (near Wilmington) NC
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« Reply #10 on: December 04, 2013, 12:19:45 PM »

I installed laminate flooring in our bus, front to back. It is light, easy to install, looks great, is very easy to keep clean and is very tough. We've been very happy with it - except as Sledhead says, keep it dry!  A little spill or shower spray, etc. is OK, but if it gets soaked and left wet for a short time (as in leaving a window open in a downpour) it will swell. Our slide room leaked one night while we were asleep. The water sat on the floor for a couple of hours. The first time this happens, it will usually shrink back to size as it dries and almost look as good as new. The second time, it won't ever look the same. I think if I had it to do over, I'd look for an all-vinyl product that is impervious to water. The problem is that will never look as nice as this laminate 'maple' flooring. See the floor project at our blog.

http://mightybus.wordpress.com/2011/03/
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sledhead
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« Reply #11 on: December 04, 2013, 02:32:02 PM »

This is very close to what I have  http://www.homedepot.ca/product/caramelized-maple-laminate-flooring-122-mm/836736  very easy to use . Go to   READ MORE under the   Our Buying Guides are Here to Help     it tells all about laminate flooring . Now after reading about the vinyl plank flooring you have , it looks better than the stuff I have .      dave
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« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2013, 03:49:52 PM »

Just about all WalMarts have the vinyl planks in the clothing areas fwwi good stuff
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Oonrahnjay
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« Reply #13 on: December 04, 2013, 03:52:21 PM »



     Thanks, Dave.
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Bruce H; Wallace (near Wilmington) NC
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« Reply #14 on: December 04, 2013, 04:18:08 PM »

We used the vinyl plank from HD in the bathroom.  It holds up fine. However, I am not a fan of laminates due to the water issue as well as fear of scratching.
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Brian Diehl
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« Reply #15 on: December 04, 2013, 07:28:43 PM »

Right - this is a vinyl plank, not a laminate. 

I see the issue with a floating floor and a crash.  However, most of the floor area will be support by objects bolted down to the frame through the floor.  So, in reality not much of the floor will be truly floating and probably won't go anywhere.  At least, that is my thinking at the moment on the matter...

I started researching the Earth Werks brand.  Interesting so far.  have to find a dealer ...

Thanks.
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georgemci102a2
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« Reply #16 on: December 04, 2013, 07:54:08 PM »

The earth works was my first choice,but every time i tried to order it they were out and didnt know when they would have it in my color.I went with the(thick free floating) flooring in the gally and head area only and have no problems yet.Some people thought it was real tile.As for crash goes,i wont be thinking about my flooring.Probably just scream OH MY at the end......... George.
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« Reply #17 on: December 05, 2013, 04:05:52 AM »

Brian our bus has a wood laminate floor and it has held up up perfectly. Of course I don't know what kind but it's been in there since 2004 and no issues with temps or scratches. And we have a dog too.
Fres
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Fred Thomson
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« Reply #18 on: December 05, 2013, 10:55:40 AM »

We used laminate (not vinyl) wood flooring which is made of a composite wood/paper fiber with a nice bamboo top.  Like Jim and Dave said earlier - it holds up great, takes a beating, has been in 90-100 temps with no AC (stored outside) and cold temps (in the teens) and it looks the same as the day it was installed.  

Like Jim and Dave said - get water in it (soaked) and it will never dry out and with any humidity at all it can easily mold if it gets soaked.  You won't see the mold until you pull the boards apart.

Brian -  I'd go with a vinyl laminate tile like what you are looking at.  Don't worry about the temps.  Its the same vinyl they use for siding on houses.  I'd leave the laminate in the bus for a day or two before you install so there is no temperature change when you install it.  Do it on a dry day and use a good vapor barrier underneath and you'll be fine.

-Sean


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« Reply #19 on: December 05, 2013, 02:47:57 PM »

Brian  I have  water radiant floor heat 4 zones and when on the road and the heat is on the temp can go up to 180 deg. if I want lots of heat and have had no problems with the laminate at all . 

dave
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Brian Diehl
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« Reply #20 on: December 05, 2013, 05:00:54 PM »

Thanks guys for all the thoughts.  I'm probably going to move forward with the vinyl plank.  I may glue some of them down to help combat the flying floor syndrome mentioned earlier.
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