Flooring contractors have to deal with a lot of problems on the job. One of the most frustrating things about being a flooring contractor is getting complaints from customers about a job. It’s even more frustrating when the problems are caused by improper care of the flooring by that customer. Flooring contractors who are called in to evaluate problems must become familiar with typical problems caused by consumers.
Here are just a few examples:
- Dents: While hard surface flooring is some of the toughest around, it is still susceptible to heavy objects being dropped. Dents can occur when the customer drops or drags something heavy on the flooring surface, like an appliance or big piece of furniture. Even dropping a heavy metal object can cause a dent that is tough to repair.
- Scratches: Customers who complain about scratches in the surface of the flooring must look at what kinds of activities they’ve been doing recently. From moving furniture to the claws of a pet, scratches on the flooring surface are all too easy to do.
- Gapping and cupping: Customers who use humidifiers or overheat the home may see gaps in laminate or hardwood flooring. Conversely, the flooring planks can also cup, or swell up on the sides and joints. If floors are installed during the months when it is more humid, the moisture content is higher and the flooring expands or cups. Cooler, drier months can lead to gapping. Running the furnace constantly, often done in cold weather, can lead to gapping and cupping.
- Proud edges: This happens when flooring pieces next to each other are different heights. While some proud edges are tolerated, within millimeters, many times the proud edges are caused by over wetting the planks. The moisture causes the plank material to swell. Proud edges can also be caused during the milling stage, but if the floor planks were once even and now they aren’t, moisture is usually the culprit.
Customers have a responsibility to take care of the flooring that is installed, and poor maintenance or misuse of the flooring can lead to problems. When customers are unaware of the problems they cause, they may blame the installer or the contractor. Education is the key to having satisfied customers, beautiful floors and happy flooring contractors.