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Man says wood flooring 'looks like oil'

6:53 PM, May 30, 2013   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A Jacksonville man said he spent thousands of dollars on wood flooring for his home, but watched helplessly as some of it turned black.

Gary Smith rarely winds up and plays his old Victrolla phonograph. He wound it up to demonstrate the antique to First Coast News. He said what isn't so lovely because of the wood flooring it sits on.

"It's very frustrating," Smith said as he sat in his living room.

Smith showed FCN paperwork where he paid roughly $8,000 to have the wood flooring installed throughout his home in December 2011.

He told FCN he enjoyed it for almost a year until September 2012. That is when he said black blotches began appearing in some areas in the floor.

"It looks like oil is what it looks like," Smith explained.

He called the On Your Side team for help after he claims he got nowhere with the installer or manufacturer.

"I think there is something wrong with part of the wood when they put it in," Smith said. "They might not have known it."

About the flooring, Smith said "I want it replaced."

David Bradshaw, the owner of Abbey Carpet and Floor, who installed Smith's floors, tells FCN they "Feel for the customer." Bradshaw echoed a statement released by Mohawk and added if Smith corrects the moisture source, they will be willing to work with all three parties to figure out how to work toward replacing the flooring which could include a discount on labor and wood.

Esther Perman, a spokesperson for Mowhawk Flooring, released a statement saying:

"Yes, as he (Bradshaw) explained, an independent third party source was sent to the Smith home to inspect and assess the damaged floor, and it was determined that the damage was caused by moisture and was not due to any product defect or installation error, and therefore is not covered by the warranty. I'm particularly happy to hear that Mr. Bradshaw also was able to provide valuable advice about protecting and preserving a hardwood floor to prevent such issues. If the consumer wants to hire his own certified independent expert, Mohawk is willing to review those findings, as well."

Smith said "Then, they said 'You have a water leak under.' As he explained the conversation, Smith said he has with the independent contractor. "I said 'No, I don't. All my water pipes are in the attick.'"

First For You how can you avoid this?

1) There are waterproofing systems that can be put under the floor.

2) You can choose another type of floor like linolium or tile. Some of which can mimic the look of wood.

3) You can contact the National Wood Flooring Association.

First Coast News

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