Lifeproof vinyl flooring Butt joints separation

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Joined
Jan 29, 2024
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I would like to hear from everyone that has installed or had professional installation of Lifeproof flooring purchased at Home Depot. I installed it in Feb 2022 & in three weeks a joint opened up far enough to raise the edge of the adjoining plank. I submitted a claim to H D in March & they sent a replacement box. I didn’t use it as over half of the floor would have to be removed to replace the two planks & I wanted to see if more joints would separate in time. Four more joints are starting to separate now. I submitted another claim as it has a lifetime warranty which they send an inspector. His report points to installation rather than a poorly designed locking mechanism of the joint. When I installed it, it went down easily without any issues and looked beautiful with all joints completely flat. It is thermal changes that are causing the separation at the Butt joints (short ends) because the locking mechanism is not enough of a positive lock to hold the planks together during normal thermal cycling. If I don’t get satisfaction from the manager of H D I plan on filing in small Claims Court. I would like to get support from others that have had same issues with Lifeproof.
 

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I’ve installed quite a bit of Lifeproof floating floors and I have nothing bad to say about the product. Plenty of other things to gripe about but not the flooring product itself.

Some things I’ve seen are long joints that seem to be clicked together but aren’t 100% fully engaged. Walk on it for a bit or throw some thermal expansion into the mix and the joints separate, which I see in your pictures, and that of course will break butt joints.

Or maybe there is a dip or hump in the floor that is significant enough to cause some movement in the floor. Same thing happens, the joints can open up.

Read the lifetime warranty and you’ll see what is and what is not covered by it and what voids it.
 
With Cortec and most others, once you rock or click the plank in place, it must be given a few taps along the length to fully engage the lock. This must also be done on the end joints.
It may only move the thickness of a sheet of paper when tapped, but it's not optional, it's a must. I don't know if that product requires it or if you did tap them. Let us know.
 
With Cortec and most others, once you rock or click the plank in place, it must be given a few taps along the length to fully engage the lock. This must also be done on the end joints.
It may only move the thickness of a sheet of paper when tapped, but it's not optional, it's a must. I don't know if that product requires it or if you did tap them. Let us know.
Thanks, I did tap them using a 3/4” block of wood.
 
Well, I’ll say it. It’s an installation issue.

Either too aggressive when seating your end joints or the subfloor wasn’t flat enough. I only looked at one pic and can tell it isn’t a manufacturer issue. The product is fine.


I’m surprised they even gave you another box to try to repair them. I wouldn’t count on them doing much if anything more for you. The warranty is as good as toilet paper for a DIY installation.

Don’t mean to be rude about it. Just want you to know how it is.
 
Well, I’ll say it. It’s an installation issue.

It’s always an installation issue even if the issue is you shoulda gone home for the day😂 I feel kinda lucky for bailing outta the industry right as SPC was coming on strong and taking over as the next latest and greatest thing. I swear that stuff created more problems than it solved.
 
Floor or substrate flatness or should I say lack of flatness is probably the number one cause of flooring failures for click flooring.
The locking joints are very small on many of these floors. The smallest amount of flexing will destroy these joints. The industry standard at one time was I belief, 3/16 of an inch over a10 foot radius. With these thinner plastic planks, flatness is more important than ever.
Up and down movement is the only reason I can think of for those end joints to fail that badly.
 
It’s always an installation issue even if the issue is you shoulda gone home for the day😂 I feel kinda lucky for bailing outta the industry right as SPC was coming on strong and taking over as the next latest and greatest thing. I swear that stuff created more problems than it solved.
Is the life proof a drop lock? Kinda looks like it with how beat the butt seams are on this one.
 
I have the same issue with my LVP. It has only happened to a few, but unfortunately, right in the area where it is the most noticeable. After 4 years, as a homeowner, having my LVP installed by a professional company, I've learned "NEVER AGAIN" in my house. My next big project will include ripping all of this crap out of my house, and laying porcelain planks in thinset. The last full wall to wall porcelain plank install that I did still looks wonderful after 10 years.
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