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Old 09-13-2011, 09:47 AM   #1
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Laminate Flooring: which is best?

I was wondering which laminate flooring is the best as far as being durable and water resistant. I really don't want something that is going to pucker and swell if it gets wet. Also I plan to just put floor covering between cabinets etc.

I have the back bedroom gutted to fix the floor and I don't want flooring to cover up leaks that might be under the beds at the back. I want to be able to inspect the rear floor periodically for water damage. The rear end up to the end of the end cap seems to be the area where water gets in and areas you want to be able to inspect. Most of my rot was caused by the bumper seal failing. All this is going to be coverd by the beds and the night stand so no need to cover anyway.

I am also wondering wheather to put the flooring in perpendicular to the long axis of the trailer or parellel to it. I have seen it done both ways.

Perry
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Old 09-13-2011, 10:12 AM   #2
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Perry

I am a home inspector and the best looking thin hardwood flooring I have seen is Kahrs. I think that it would make a great floor for a trailer because it is thin (15mm), it is a floating floor (no adhesive or nails) and it is an engineered wood floor (it can be refinished). It also seems to come in a lot of differant finishes, so you can get just the right look. It is not cheap, but after all your hard work to repair the sub floor and chase down the leaks, I don't think you want to cut corners on the finished floor IMHO. This is still on my list for our Tradwind.

Here is the link:

Kährs - Floors that will last generations

PS- you say your bumper seal was leaking. What is the bumper seal? How did you fix the leak? and how did you find the leak? also how do you know that it is fixed? Thanks.

Dan
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Old 09-13-2011, 10:18 AM   #3
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I personally think all of them are not a good option for your trailer!!! I would look at other types of flooring that not "floating!" Plus these types of form are high in VOC, something that is not recommended in tight spaces. Hope this info is helpful and not discouraging!

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Old 09-13-2011, 10:25 AM   #4
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Correction- I meant 7 mm thick, not 15 mm.
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Old 09-13-2011, 11:19 AM   #5
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I personally think all of them are not a good option for your trailer!!! I would look at other types of flooring that not "floating!" Plus these types of form are high in VOC, something that is not recommended in tight spaces. Hope this info is helpful and not discouraging!

Todd
Our trailer is ok for flooring at the moment - original factory sheet flooring - but much as I like the looks of wood, I tend to agree with you.

I think you can buy sheet vinyl flooring these days that dies a pretty good job of simulating hardwood, I believe that would be my choice.

Matter of fact, I would probably also remove the carpet at both ends of the trailer and do the whole thing in vinyl as well. Wood and carpet sure look nice but vinyl seems to be the most practical.

When we bought our last trailer, an "Award," the previous owner had just installed a hardwood (not laminate) floor. It looked great when we bought it, but after a couple of years it looked pretty rough - mostly due to water spillage in the galley area and I think our fridge leaked a bit at times.

Over time, joints in the wood tended to open up, water got in and mold or mildew caused black areas. Had we kept the trailer it would have been my intent to remove it and replace with vinyl sheet flooring.

Brian.
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Old 09-13-2011, 11:30 AM   #6
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Where any kind of moisture is a risk, I don't recommend laminate floors at all. They are essentially MDF, which soaks up moisture when exposed to it. An engineered wood would be a better option, but it is, I think, too heavy for most trailer applications. Better options are sheet goods, such as vinyl or linoleum. I'm a big fan of linoleum because it is all natural (wood dust, linseed oil and jute).
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Old 09-13-2011, 11:49 AM   #7
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I installed engineered antique heart pine floors in my 34'. Looks great, no problems in performance. I have a vabpr barrier between the subfloor and the eng floor and nailed the flooring at the tongues. No glue.
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Old 09-13-2011, 12:12 PM   #8
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The bumper on my trailer and probably most air streams has a flat plate on top of it. When it rains water funnels up between that plate and the back of your trailer. If the seal is bad there, the water from the plate funnels water into your sub floor and rots the wood and corrodes the frame and possibly the C-Channel area. This is one of the leading causes of frame separation and you combine that with the extra weight of rear bathroom models you have serious issues. I am glad that I have a rear bedroom model. I can't imagine the pain it would be to remove a complete bathroom to get the the floor. Removing the twin beds was bad enough.

I am going to seal the new floor with polyurathane and caulk the heck out of it with Vulkem and probably put some holes in that plate for drainage.

Perry

Quote:
Originally Posted by TouringDan View Post
Perry

I am a home inspector and the best looking thin hardwood flooring I have seen is Kahrs. I think that it would make a great floor for a trailer because it is thin (15mm), it is a floating floor (no adhesive or nails) and it is an engineered wood floor (it can be refinished). It also seems to come in a lot of differant finishes, so you can get just the right look. It is not cheap, but after all your hard work to repair the sub floor and chase down the leaks, I don't think you want to cut corners on the finished floor IMHO. This is still on my list for our Tradwind.

Here is the link:

Kährs - Floors that will last generations

PS- you say your bumper seal was leaking. What is the bumper seal? How did you fix the leak? and how did you find the leak? also how do you know that it is fixed? Thanks.

Dan
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Old 09-13-2011, 12:23 PM   #9
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Yeah I was looking at some of the flooring options this morning at Lowe's and most have MDF cores. So what happens when you come in the trailer with wet feet and it soaks the MDF and it puckers up and looks like crap or God forbid you have a leak. I will definately be soaking samples if I go with laminate flooring. I think vinly or linoleum would show every bump and dip in the floor. I would have to put some underlayment down with that.

Perry

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Originally Posted by cameront120 View Post
Where any kind of moisture is a risk, I don't recommend laminate floors at all. They are essentially MDF, which soaks up moisture when exposed to it. An engineered wood would be a better option, but it is, I think, too heavy for most trailer applications. Better options are sheet goods, such as vinyl or linoleum. I'm a big fan of linoleum because it is all natural (wood dust, linseed oil and jute).
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Old 09-13-2011, 03:20 PM   #10
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I am also wondering whether to put the flooring in perpendicular to the long axis of the trailer or parallel to it. I have seen it done both ways.
Perry
I put my bamboo flooring in across the trailer because there was less waste because the board lengths were compatible and there were no fancy fitting cuts needed. If the board lengths had been longer than 30", I would have laid the floor lengthwise.
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Old 09-13-2011, 04:09 PM   #11
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Perry, This is what we used a couple of years ago...don't know if this pattern is still available...check posts 26 & 27

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f36/...tml#post577743
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Old 09-13-2011, 05:07 PM   #12
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Mexray,

That was a beautiful job you did on that floor. Either you lifted the furniture, or you make sublime cuts

BTW, you called it "Prego". Did you mean "Pergo"?
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Old 09-14-2011, 09:44 AM   #13
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Perry

Thanks for the response on the rear bumper leak.

I went to the local dealer that sells Kahrs engineered wood flooring. I learned that the thin (7mm) wood flooring that I was planning on using was no longer available. Bummer.

I told the salesman that I was planning on installing the flooring in a travel trailer and that I did not want to use laminate flooring. He agreed.

He recommend a high end vinyl wood flooring made by Konecto. They had some installed in the showroom floor it looked terrific- just like wood (see photos below). He recommended it because of the resistance to moisture and that it is a thick floor that will wear well and does not need any barrier between it and the plywood subfloor. It is 4.5 mm (3/16") thick and the strips are about 6" wide by either 36 or 48" long. There is an adhesive strip that holds floor together. Cost is about $5.37/sq ft and I will need 4 boxes (88 sq ft) to do my Tradewind. It is a floating floor, so you need to leave about a 1/4" gap around the outside edge that will get covered with moulding. I think that this is the way that I will be going now. There are a large selection of wood shades). Has anybody used this flooring in an Airstream.

Dan
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Old 09-14-2011, 10:16 AM   #14
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There has been a lot of discussion about Konecto and a similar product called Trafficmaster. DO a search for both and there will be pages of reading for you. I have trafficmaster in my house and am disappointed because the adhesive strips didn't perform as advertised for me, however I know many people have had no issues. I may have had a bad batch.
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