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Cali Bamboo
Cali Bamboo won't own up to defective flooring San Diego, California
13th of Jan, 2011 by User176551

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My
wife and I ordered 800 square feet of flooring, glue, and underlayment from
Cali Bamboo on November 1, 2010 (order #159132). We bought the flooring for a
floating, glue-together installation. We were excited about the flooringit's
beautiful, extremely durable, and comes from a highly renewable source.

We received our
order on November 9. Per instructions, we placed the boxes of bamboo in our
home, open and stacked in a criss-cross pattern. We let the flooring acclimate
for six days. Our installer began work on November 15.


He immediately
noticed that the boards had a slight banana bow that made it difficult to fit
them together without some gapping (about 1/32"). He recommended we go
with a nail-down installation at considerable added cost. We asked him to
consult with Cali. He called Cali to and spoke with an installation specialist,
who dissuaded him from nailing down the flooring and told him to use blue
painter's tape to hold the boards together until the glue dried. He did, and
the flooring went down with minimal gapping (again, about 1/32" to
1/16" between boards). This concerned me, but I decided to live with the
gaps as the flooring is gorgeous.


We left to visit
family in California on Thanksgiving. We were gone 10 days. When we returned,
we were shocked to discover that several of the boards in our new flooring had
pulled completely apart. Several of the small gaps had widened to at least
1/2". In one spot, we could see the underlayment under the boards.


I emailed
Samantha Savitch, a Cali customer service rep. She told me that I would need to
hire a National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) inspector to determine if the
separation was the result of faulty product or installation. We hired an
inspector that Savitch recommended, Terry Weinheimer from Eugene, OR. He
inspected our floor on December 11. He found that the banana bow caused gapping
throughout. He stated that in his opinion, Cali Bamboo was responsible in some
part for the separation due to the bowed boards.


I sent the
inspection to Savitch. According to Weinheimer, she called him shortly
thereafter and was very upsetshe even threatened to report him to the NWFA for
implying that Cali bared some responsibility for the problems we're having.


Savitch then
presented Weinheimer's report to another inspector from the NWFA, Drew Kern,
who concluded that the separation is "100 percent" installation
related. In his brief message, hestated that if the flooring wasn't fitting
properly, it should have been nailed down. (Again, we were told that
glue-together was the best route for installation.) Savitch stated that Cali
bares no responsibility for the problems we're having and offered a 15 percent
discount on any future products we may order to finish the job.


I was present
during installation of our flooring. Our installer used all the glue Cali sent
us for the job and applied the glue evenly to the joints. Weinheimer found that
the boards in our order, including the boards that weren't installed, were
bowed.


I believe the bow
or perhaps contraction led to the gaps we're experiencing in our flooring.
Since the floor opened up, the gaps have gotten worse (up to a 1" gap in
some places) and have appeared in several other spots. We've been living with a
large gap in our flooring and exposed underlayment for two months.


We purchased Cali
Bamboo flooring because we believed it would be the best material for our
house. We thought that because it is made from old-growth bamboo it wouldn't
expand or contract as much as other bamboo flooring. We were confident that
Cali would stand behind their product if we had any problems.

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