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Which Is The Most Durable Flooring Material For Stairs? Laminate, Engineered Hardwood Or Hardwood?

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Posted by: from Richmond
2/1/2012 at 11:53:39 PM

My very unskilled, unprofessional, expensive but claimed to know how to anything handy man just finished the laminate flooring in my living room and dining room after 7 days of work on a 450 sq ft space!!! Not only was the work terrible (because he did't level the uneven wooden floors, halfway through the job his helper had stop tapping each piece of laminate and stopped applying glue), after checking with several laminate contractors, I realized I was overcharged by $400!

Long story short, there remain 14 steps of stairs to be finished. I used a dark brown laminate in the living room but used a maple colored (Pergo) laminate in the hallways. I love the warm maple laminate but despite a pricey $2.54 per sf, it chips easily. Now I am unsure if I should continue to use the same Pergo laminate for my stairs. Can anyone suggest a more durable option?

By the way, can someone tell me where I can post a review for this horrible contractor so other people do not have to go through the same emotional and financial stress as I did?

REPLIES (3)
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Date/Time2/2/2012 at 12:42:48 AM

Hi Anna, sorry to hear about your experience with the handyman.

Just something to think about before "skinning" your existing stairs - building codes dictate that the stairs should be the same rise from top to bottom with only a very small variation allowed. If you put something over your existing stair treads, the bottom step will become higher and the top step will become lower - could be out of code. I know you are probably going to live there and would put up with that to get the ambiance you are looking for but if and when you go to sell, a good home inspector may pick this up.

Having said that, my vote would be for new hardwood treads and risers - stairs take a lot of wear and you want something that can stand up to it and be refinished as needed, probably more frequently than floors.

I am sure there are many more opinions out there!

Good Luck with it!

Jim Kuzma

Kettleby Handyman Services

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Date/Time2/2/2012 at 8:30:42 AM

Hardwood would be your best option. I have seen laminate used on stairs, the edge banding (like a transition strip) used sticks above the stair surface and is not very durable. It is also not a very good look.

As far as complaints, the BBB is the best place. Everyone has heard of them and has access to there data base. Also any web site they are listed on that has a review section. Google his name and they should show up.

I'm very sorry you have to go through this, but the more bad press he gets the better off everyone will be.

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Sourcewoodfloors in Norfolk
Date/Time9/11/2015 at 4:21:17 AM

Engineered wood will be the best option as it allow a great combination of durability, strength and elegance.

Enjoy your stairs !

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