Products & Certifications

How can a floor that was supposed to be more stable start curling?

VGN-swatchQ: I have a vertical grain bamboo floor that I was told would be stronger and more stable than hardwood. After it was in for a few weeks, some of the boards started curling upward at the ends. I was told there was too much humidity in my home, so I turned off the humidifier.

Now, the boards are shrinking and leaving gaps. I am very disappointed because I did my research and purchased a brand that was supposed to be the leader in quality. Can you shed any light on whether this is a common problem or an isolated incident?

A: You are not alone. While I would not call your situation a common problem, it is not an isolated incident.

Carpet padding can now be held to the same standard as carpet for indoor-air quality

green-labelAt last, a moment many of us have been waiting for has arrived.  A testing program is now available for carpet padding that will actually ensure it does not emit unhealthful levels of chemicals.

A lot of people think we already have this through the CRI Green Label program for testing pad.  But the CRI Green Label Plus program that is used for carpet is far more stringent, and soon, we will be able to look for this label on carpet padding, too.

The Carpet & Rug Institute (CRI) and the Carpet Cushion Council announced earlier this week that the Green Label Plus program is being opened up to pad manufacturers.

 "This offers cushion manufacturers the opportunity to qualify their products according to these more stringent standards and provide additional assurance for consumers concerned about indoor-air quality or potential VOC emissions," a CRI spokesman told TalkFloor.

009For some homeowners, the perfect porcelain tile doesn’t look like tile at all At first glance, this floor looks like hardwood. It does on second glance, too, which often is not the case with vinyl wood-look products. Even upon third inspection, most people don’t imagine that this floor is porcelain tile. This look is increasing interest in a product that already was popular because of its durability and ease of care and maintenance.

Gray or brown, this hardwood floor blends seamlessly with home’s bold natural colors 018The color of this stained Maple floor is called “Jellybean.” When you look at it in natural daylight, it is gray. Put it under artificial light, and it takes on a deep brown. But no matter where you look in Brittany’s new  Milford, OH, home, this floor from Mirage Hardwood is the perfect background for her sky blue and terracotta walls, and her kitchen backsplash tiles that look like they were painted with watercolors. These colors are just spot-on.

Long-term recycling solution for polyester carpet becomes pressing with increased sales, but national director says: “The glass is half-full” Mohawk Plastic BottlesIt has been observed throughout history: Cleaning up one mess often creates another mess. To clean up a mess, carpet manufacturers have been recycling billions of discarded plastic bottles into polyester (PET) carpet every year. But discarded PET carpet is not recyclable. And it now accounts for 30 percent -- up from 4 percent in 2007 -- of the used carpet headed for landfills. Because 35 percent of the residential carpet market is now PET, which is cheaper but not as durable as recyclable nylon carpet, carpet manufacturer Mohawk has announced Continuum – it new, proprietary PET carpet. The proprietary process results in a more durable, cleaner PET carpet, the company says.

Medical problems caused by negligent hardwood flooring manufacturer put focus on compliance with California Air Resource Board (CARB) standards Carb II CompliantConsumer complaints of severe allergic reactions to flooring -- followed by news that one of the nation’s largest flooring retailers was importing floors that exceeded limits for formaldehyde -- should call our attention to the term, CARB Compliant. Small amounts of formaldehyde occur naturally. But excessive amounts can be emitted from certain glues. Excessive amounts of formaldehyde are carcinogenic.  Flooring manufacturers who are supposed to comply with California Air Resource Board (CARB) standards, should no longer be using adhesives that exceed standards. But how are consumers supposed to know?

Carpet recycling industry sees dramatic rise in this non-recyclable carpet fiber SAMSUNGWe like to tout our diligence in carpet recycling, particularly when Natural Interiors® affiliates divert 2 million pounds of carpet from landfills annually in Greater Cincinnati alone. But it’s possible that we are painting a somewhat rosier picture than reality allows. Yes, post- consumer carpet recycling has grown into a successful industry over the past decade.  But this national business success is focused largely around nylon, and to a lesser extent, polypropylene. Unfortunately, 30 percent  of carpet sent to recyclers this year will be made of polyester (PET). That’s up from 4 percent in 2007. PET is not recyclable because, unlike nylon, there are not products of value that PET can be turned into.

Properly done, seams should not be an issue in linoleum installation Forbo QA1Q. We are remodeling an older home and I was "sold" on Marmoleum, until I kept coming across questions about repairing seams which have buckled. I want to use it in the bathroom floors, but I am really hesitant since reading all these questions about repairing the seams. Have you had questions on this and/or how do you feel about using Marmoleum in the bathrooms? Many thanks! --  LM Sequim, WA A. Dear LM: If you are using Marmoleum sheet goods that are installed by a contractor who is properly trained, you should have no problems with seams that need repair.

Water-based stains offer better indoor-air quality and a different aesthetic, but applying them requires an experienced professional There is a critical question you should put to your hardwood flooring contractor if you are planning to finish your floor with a water-based stain: Does he know how to apply it? The question is easily overlooked. Most of us would assume this knowledge is a given. But applying water-based stain requires a different technique than what is used with traditional oil-based products. And so can applying a water-based polyurethane over the water-based stain. If you try to use these stains like traditional products, you most likely will not be happy with the final appearance of your floor. And you will face the costs of refinishing in order to fix it.