I installed around 1,100 square feet of this flooring into our dining room, living room, kitchen, a sitting area, two halls, and two bedrooms.
We wanted a wood floor that was dark, but not too dark as very dark floors, as per numerous reviews, are very hard to keep looking clean. We came across this on an end-cap at Home Depot. We liked that the tone is a bit more “cool” than warm (or reddish).
The color of this is Brown Earth or Saddle (it goes under both names). I will say that now that it is complete, the finished floor looks very nice, and I get a lot of compliments on it; however….there are two big issues with this product:
1. It fairly easily scratches and dents. Our dog was scratching the floor badly. My wife (bless her) found a product (Soft Paws) where she glues these rubbery covers on her nails, and they work well. With that said, this floor scratches easily with all kinds of stuff. Perhaps in the long run it’ll just look acceptable and weathered/worn. This to be determined. Maybe this is just the deal with hardwood floor. I will say I’m disappointed that the coating isn’t more scratch-resistant (not just the wood).
2. This is the big one. This floor is very, very, very poorly milled. The tongues and grooves are not tight or consistent. The quality control is just flat embarrassing. So our finished floor has a number (a couple of dozen) of very bad creaks and squeaks in the floor…
Take a look at the picture below. These are the “cast off” pieces for just a single 12 ft x 11 ft bedroom. Even tossing out this many pieces of poorly milled/inspected pieces, I still have 2 bad creaks/squeaks in that room. It’s a joke.
I find it very disappointing. Frankly I’m at a loss as to how to fix all these creaks and squeaks. These are NOT subfloor related. These are situations where a single board has a creak.
Some people will blame this on me and on my installation. I really have to dispute this. I’m an experienced woodworker of 15 years. I’ve redone a kitchen, done plumbing, electric, drywall, put in tiled floors, laminate floors…all without issue.
If you look at my floor, the direction is straight as an arrow. Down a 35-foot hall...dead on. 15 feet to one wall….parallel to wall. 25 feet out to other wall…parallel within ¼”. I put in integrated floor grates (see picture) that I stained and polyed myself. The base and shoe are cut, caulked, and painted very nicely. As part of this flooring, I for all intents and purposes I did over 50% of a kitchen remodel as all base cabinets and electric and plumbing and gas and cabinets were taken out and put back. All of my transitions look great….to carpet, to tile, around two fireplaces, to a stairway.
In other words, I have very good DIY and woodworking skills. I just don’t buy that this is my fault. I can’t imagine this not happening even had I paid to have it installed.
So, what was my alternative here? Did I inspect each piece before laying it? Yes I did. This flooring is poorly milled. Period. This is NOT due to the normal cupping, bending, and movement of wood. I get that. Those things cannot by avoided. This is something different. Just sloppy tongues and/or grooves. The killer is there’s really no way to always know this unless you go over every single piece with a caliper? What is that? What kind of product do you have to verify so closely because the quality is so poor and the size varies so much?
Anyhow, I’m very disappointed. Would I buy this floor again? NO. I would not.
I wish I would of gone with something engineered and more consistent. I guess the question now is, can I salvage this? Can I fix the creaks and squeaks without making it worse?
I hope this was helpful. If you do install this floor, I would be very, very, very careful to make certain to inspect all pieces to probably a ridiculous level.
Feels Like Wood, Looks Like Wood
Scratches Easily, poorly milled, dents easily