Laminate floor problems

Written by stephanie daniels
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Any type of flooring can develop problems with age, and improperly installed flooring can cause problems fairly quickly. It's important to know the common laminate floor problems in order to make repairs or prevent issues down the road.

Chipped Corners

Chipped corners on individual pieces of laminate flooring typically results from improper installation methods. Using a mallet on locking laminate flooring is unnecessary because the pieces lock into place, and tapping them into place can cause chipped corners and edges. Hammering pieces into place with mallets or regular hammers can chip and cause indentations on the edges.


The high-density fiberboard that makes up the middle section of the laminate floor pieces can swell if subjected to water. If the middle section goes untreated with water resistant chemicals or varnishes, the entire laminate floorboard section may swell and crack open.


Gapping may occur with exposure to cold temperatures, causing spaces between individual laminate floorboards. Gapping may also occur with improper installation.

Mold and Mildew

Another laminate floor problem from excess water exposure is the growth of mould and mildew. This problem may be more evident as a musky odour present in the room with laminate flooring. This signifies that mould or mildew is growing underneath the laminate floor. Remove floorboards to clean mould and mildew, which can cause health problems.

Out of Alignment

When laminate floor pieces aren't aligned with one another, it looks sloppy and unprofessional. In the case of printed laminate floor or a faux hardwood laminate floor, out of alignment pieces exaggerate the fact that the flooring isn't actual hardwood.


A common laminate floor problem exists when the laminate floorboards begin to push against one another and rise at joints. This problem, called peaking, happens when there is a lack of expansion space between the pieces of laminate flooring. This is often a result of improper installation where no gaps exist under floorboard to allow the pieces to spread without leaving wide, exposed gaps.


Warping differs from peaking in that the laminate flooring pushes up or curves down. In both cases, the flooring curves rather than peaks to a point. Warping is most often a result of water damage in liquid or steam form. This problem is usually only remedied by replacing the warped pieces.

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