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Gregg Weaver

11:32AM | 07/02/01
Member Since: 07/01/01
2 lifetime posts
Bvflooring
We have Bruce Natural Reflections hardwood that won't stay glued down to the slab. Facts & story below. Sorry for the length but wanted to provide whatever info I had.

1) Floors were installed in Nov-Dec 2000 by a professional installer. Covers approx 900sf.

2) A no-face underlament was used ( not sure of brand, just that it was called SU1 ).

3) Bostic Best was used to glue the flooring to the underlament.

4) A multi-purpose adhesive was used to glue the vinyl to the slab. Do not remember the brand, just that it had a stock number "356" in red lettering.

5) Appropriate leveling was done before the floor was laid. Not much was necessary, though.

6) Wood was in the house approx 2 weeks before laid.

7) Within 2 months, the floor started coming up from the slab. Hollow sections appeared; some as small as your hand and one about 30sf.

A 10sf section became like a small hill as it separated from the slab. After about 6-8 weeks, it settled back down to "sea level" and has remained there for a month or so. This section is in an open room.

The 30sf section was the worst; it severely peaked ( like a church steeple you make with your hands when you were a kid ) about 3-4" off the slab. This is in a hallway.

8) The installer returned to inject glue in a couple places, but it's coming up again.

9) We finally pulled up the 30sf section to check for moisture underneath. There was nothing obviously wrong. The wood was stuck solid to the vinyl.

10) A plumber was brought in to check the house for plumbing leaks, but none was found.

11) An engineer did a foundation review and found no significant structural problems. He did a moisture test using some gizmo placed against the wood in several spots throughout the flooring. He said the measurement was 10%. I do not believe he checked the moisture of the slab itself.

WHAT NEXT? We are at a loss as to what to do. Do not want to replace the 30sf section without knowing the root cause of the problem. Plus, still have several spots throughout the rest of the floor that remain unbonded.

I have read the postings on this BB and don't see anything like this -- or, at least, nothing as severe.

Any and all advice welcomed!

Jay J

12:15PM | 07/02/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hi Gregg,

You and your Professionals have done a very thorough 'study' of the problem. The only thing that comes to my mind is the wood is expanding and contrating (based on all the other facts you gave.) Are you able to control the humidity in the house? If not, it's worth investigating. The wood will expand when the humidity is 'high', and contract as it dries out.

Beyond this, it would be good to get some sort of 'report', or consolidation, of all the facts and environment, and submit it to Bruce. You have a Warranty that should still be enforcable (ASSUMING the Installer did the job per the Installation Instructions.) If not, you have to go after the Installer for compensation (as a last resort.)

As an aside, I know it's no consolation but when you speak of an environment that consists of concrete and moisture and glue, they only compound your problems. I'm not saying the aforementioned is the problem. I'm saying that it's 'not good' for hardwood in these conditions because they, in and of themselves, reek havoc on the flooring. IF, and I say IF, you're considering a Plan B, go with indoor/outdoor or Berber type carpeting. (I'm just looking beyond your current problem.)

Perhaps others will have more to offer. Since you didn't mention anything about monitoring the humidity, it can cause the wood to do as you describe EVEN if it's nailed down.

My best to ya and hope this helps.

Jay J -Moderator

PS: WHen you find out the cause (and fix), DO let us know. This is a good one ...

Gregg Weaver

12:30PM | 07/02/01
Member Since: 07/01/01
2 lifetime posts
Jay -- thanks for the advice. I certainly will give a yell back when it's resolved. Hopefully it's not my grandkids reporting back to yours

As for humidity control, we are in Houston so there is plenty of humidity to control. We have the AC set at 78 all day, although I suppose we did not start using the AC until around April. We don't use a (de-)humidifier.

Jay J

04:30PM | 07/02/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hi Gregg,

10-4 on getting back (in 'our' lifetime ...)

Since you don't have a dehumidifier on the HVAC system, either consider that or just having a stand-alone one in the room in question. If you can rent or borrow one for a month, that should be PLENTY of time to determine if the floor is 'moving' due to excess humidity. (Again, humidity that's too high will cause your problem, among other causes as you already know.)

Normally, a home is set to 35-45% (max) humidity. 40% is optimal. Even though you have AC, that's not enough to control the humidity. And in winter, when the heat is on, the humidity levels are HIGHER. So, if you were experiencing your problem MORE during the 'cold' months, excess humidity may be your cause.

You know where to find us. Oh, be sure to read how to operate the dehumidifier.

My best to ya and hope this helps.

Jay J -Moderator

AzFred

09:00PM | 07/02/01
Member Since: 05/09/01
13 lifetime posts
No question about the humidity in Houston. Jay, I have to question your statement about higher humidity when heating an interior in winter months using forced hot air heating. I think you should agree that the interior humidity is Lower. A more realistic measure of moisture related issues is the moisture content of the flooring and then the MC/ambiant humidity.

Jay J

05:37AM | 07/03/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hey AzFred,

Well, now I'm a bit confused. I'm not clear on your 'thoughts', but let me say 'it' a different way.

The warmer the air, the more moisture it can hold.

Hence, more moisture in the air. Now, I guess from any 'pure' perspective, Winter is dryer (because it's cold outside which means less moisture in IT'S air), but depending on how tight the home is, the humidity INSIDE can be high. Baths and showers, cooking, laundry, coffee/tea, windows and doors are shut, etc., etc.. And what if the HVAC doesn't have a dehumidifier or condensate pump?

Az, don't misunderstand me. I'm not saying the humidity is so high in the Winter on the inside that it's like the Summertime humidity is outside. All I'm saying is that Gregg was experiencing his problem about 2 months after the floor was installed. (That's approx. Jan-Feb 2001. For me, that's winter, and may be for Houston too.) Based on the time of year AND all the 'aforementioned' reasons why the interior humidity in Winter can be high, looking at the humidity level in the air might help with 'fixing' the problem.

As an aside, I have an AprilAir humidifier on my HVAC system. It's set to 40%. I also have a dehumidifier. Our home is set at a constant humidity level, year round. And we have hardwood floors over an unheated basement. (The basement is uncooled too.) We have no buckeling problems. I live in SE PA where we have 4 pretty 'distinct' seasons. Humidity can get REAL high in Winter too, depending on the weather outside. So, along w/what I've already stated, I guess I have a SE PA 'perspective'. Sorry, but I can't find a SW USA 'hat' to wear. In any event, those are my thoughts. I hope they make more sense now.

Jay J -Moderator

AzFred

05:53AM | 07/03/01
Member Since: 05/09/01
13 lifetime posts
Jay, we generally find that the heating system drys the air in winter, quite dramatically, even in the northeast. You may recall the vapoizer, as a kid, would run when you were dried out from a "cold", but didn't run in the summer when the house was more opened up. As moist as Houston can get there has been a seasonal change that may affect this installation. As an aside, I'm seeing and hearing of number of what I believe to be seasonal changes now that summer has arrived across the USA. That is questions or complaints about floating floors that were installed during the moist cool spring now that the dryer hoter summer is upon us. I'm monitoring this and will into fall. I believe that 2 seasons or even a full seasonal cycle (a year) MAY be needed to totally stabalize a floor in some (maybe extreme) cases. I'm out with the jury and deliberating.;=)

Jay J

08:11AM | 07/03/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
10-4. Gregg has a 'mess' on his hands. I think it's time to make his 'case' to the Mfgr.

Jay J -Moderator

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