Printing Defects Laminate
Printing defects also known as printing error, occur with laminate flooring just as printing defects occur with other printed products such as wallpaper. A statement we often hear is, “What do you mean printing defects, this is wood flooring!” Some of the components of laminate floors are composed of wood but laminate is neither a solid wood floor or and engineered wood floor. Most laminate flooring is partially made of wood products such as paper and high density fiberboard. HDF is which made of wood residues (sawdust, shavings and wood chips). The wood grain you see is a decorative layer that is printed on paper. With printing, printing defects will occur.
Printing defects (errors) are caused by such problems as colorant drips, drags, starvation and leaks.
A printing defect known as drag lines can occur as an error occurs as the paper is running through the rollers and bars of the printing press. The colorant may have become scraped when wet and colorant came in contact with the rollers of the press, resulting in lines that may be blank.
A printing error can also occur when ink runs out or the color level becomes low. With this printing defect part of the pattern may appear faded or the printing error may have resulted in no color on a portion of the pattern.
The printing defect in photo 1 consist of a solid spot on the laminate floors printed design. There is absolutely no question that it is a manufacturing printing error. While it is a manufacturer related defect it is an obvious printing error and the plank should not have been installed. Highly visible defects such as this are called “visual defects.” Visual defects are manufacturing errors such as printing defects that are visible at the time of installation. The manufacturer will often pass visual defect problems on to the installer as the plank should not have been installed. The manufacturer may only cover the cost of the replacement board and only if reported in a timely matter.
In photo 2 the printing has lines in the pattern that are faded and other portions of the pattern lines that appear to have no colorant on them. This defect is often lighting dependent and sometimes very difficult to see during installation unless in just the right light. The laminate manufacturer may or may not recognize this printing defect as a legitimate claim for plank replacement. Severity and location are usually important considerations for this manufacturing error.
Rosanette Luther says
This is exactly the question I had. Unfortunately, our defect looks like a dirty shoe print on about 1 of every 12 tiles and dirty streaks on about 2 of every 12. So about 1/4 of our floor is discolored. Yes, the installer should have noticed, but did not. Very disappointing. I want to complain to the manufacturer. If they send replacement tile, how much of a hassle is it to switch out tile? Thank you.
Terry Weinheimer | Kevin Weinheimer says
Some tiles are easier to switch then others. Who is the manufacturer of your tile and which style is it?
Great article. I searched long and hard to find any information about this and there isn’t much available. My sister has had her home floors replaced with Pergo Outlast Plus Sand Dune Oak from Home Depot. She has found a flaw that was in every box she’d ordered from HD, and has filed a claim. Mohawk is claiming that this is an intentional flaw and “part of the floor design”, but clearly it’s not. They are refusing to do anything about this or provide her with a refund or provide any more flooring for the damaged boards.
Can you please help us with suggestions as to how best to handle this? She is extremely upset that her new home now has floors with a flaw in many of the boards. Thank you!
Terry and Kevin Weinheimer says
Nancy, perhaps you can describe what you see as a flaw. Often, some grades of a real wood floor have characteristics that look like flaws. Since the pattern laminate floor is an image of real wood, it may be a characteristic. The Oulast product is designed to give the appearance of real wood. Mohawk describes it as including a good selection of more distinctive wood looks, for example gray tones, whitewashed, cross sawn or varied grain patterns.