Mohawk Laminate Flooring Review

Mohawk Laminate Flooring Review

Mohawk Laminate Flooring is the chameleon of the flooring world. Chameleons? You remember them – those small, slow-moving lizards with the highly developed ability to blend into their surrounding by changing color.

In the realm of residential flooring, where material, color, texture and style options abound, laminates (sometimes called Engineered Flooring) are the true chameleons, with the capability of looking like anything and everything they are not. And Mohawk, with 34 different laminate product lines – that offer more than 200 style options – may very well be the king chameleon.

You want teak plank hardwood in the living room? A Mohawk laminate can do that. Medium-width nutmeg chestnut in the kitchen? Mohawk can do that, too. Weathered grey elm in the bedroom? Stonewood porcelain tiles in the hall? Wide-board vintage driftwood oak in the family room? Mohawk, Mohawk, Mohawk.

It’s all about the design layer, the visible layer of the laminate flooring sandwich, on which virtually any photographic representation can be applied. That chameleon-like capacity for visual versatility provides Mohawk laminate flooring customers with a veritable forest of options.

The Laminate Sandwich

Before dwelling on the design layer, it’s important to understand the rest of the laminate sandwich. The bottom backing layer, also known as the balancing layer, provides a stable support surface for the rest of the plank. It’s a bread slice.

Atop the backing layer sits the meat of the sandwich, called the core. Made of particle board or, more typically, high-density fiberboard, the core contains the routed tongue-and-groove edges that allow each plank to connect to its neighbors.

The design layer is applied above the core, providing the image of the actual wood grain, ceramic tile, or stone pattern. Digitally enhanced embossing technology allows Mohawk and other manufacturers to create remarkable reproductions of their natural wood and stone counterparts.

The transparent top layer of the sandwich provides protection against wear, fading, staining, and scratching. This layer may include melamine resin or aluminum oxide for extra durability and moisture protection.

The layers are then laminated, or pressed together using intense pressure and heat into laminate sheets. Finally, the sheets are sliced into individual planks, and the tongue-and-groove edges are cut.

One additional layer should be noted, the underlayment. The laminate underlayment is typically a separate layer acting as the plate for the sandwich – providing a smooth and even layer on which the laminate flooring system “floats.”

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Mohawk’s Advantages

Mohawk has taken the basics of the laminate sandwich and added some technological toppings and relishes that improve its look, durability, and ease of installation.

GenuEdge™ Technology

In an effort to make each plank look as realistic as possible, Mohawk developed GenuEdge™ Technology. GenuEdge rolls the embossed design layer image over the edge of the plank, creating a more realistic three-dimensional appearance of the woodgrain.

Uniclic™ Locking System

Its Uniclic™ Locking System is an advance on the traditional glued tongue-and-groove system that laminates have typically utilized. The Uniclic technology allows the boards to physically click together, speeding up installation and eliminating the mess inherent in glue application.

ScratchGuard™

Mohawk’s ScratchGuard™ process provides increased defense against scratches and abrasion by infusing aluminum crystals in the top layer of the laminate.

Eco-friendly

Environmentally, Mohawk has been a leader in reducing its impact. The company utilizes fast growing southern pine in its U.S. facilities for the manufacture of the laminate cores.

Additionally, Mohawk relies on a majority of pre-consumer recycled content for the production of its laminates, keeping hundreds of millions of pounds of materials out of landfills each year.

And regarding environmental health, Mohawk Laminates are Floorscore Certified. The Floorscore certification system was developed by the independent Resilient Floor Covering Institute to test for volatile organic compounds emissions and to certify for healthy indoor air quality.

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Reviews & Consumer Satisfaction

As one of the largest and most reputable flooring companies in the world, there is a degree of comfort choosing Mohawk. Its products are readily available in retail stores and online. Typically, salespeople and flooring contractors are knowledgeable about the company’s lines and technologies.

It is fair to say that there is consumer agreement that Mohawk has produced some of the most beautiful and aesthetically appealing laminate floors on the market. And with its chameleon-like quantity of styles, colors and wood species designs, Mohawk is a no-brainer for someone looking for a large palette from which to choose, or for an interior designer wanna-be looking for something unusual.

The Uniclic System is another plus. It makes Mohawk’s products straightforward to install for the do-it-yourselfer, and less time-consuming for a professional installer. A money-saver all around.

Expected Cost

And speaking of money, Mohawk products are priced moderately within the laminate flooring continuum; not the cheapest, but not the most expensive either. Laminates typically cost between $1 and $5 per square foot, with Mohawk’s products generally in the $1.50 to $4 range depending on style, thickness and quality. In general, you get what you pay for with laminates, so a mid-range price means a mid-range quality product.

Quality

Regarding quality, consumers always have the last word, though. And the reviews are somewhat mixed.

Beyond the previously mentioned graphic component, when discussing quality, the focus is on the feel of the product, as well as how well the flooring holds up to the impacts of general use, including foot traffic, dents and dings from dropped items, scratches from moving furniture or pet claws, as well as the effects from water spills and fading from sunlight and age.

The feel of the product is directly correlated to its thickness, with a direct impact on sound dampening, and to the floor’s flex: the thicker the product, the greater the sound absorption and the more solid the floor feels underfoot. Most laminates are between 6mm and 15mm thick, and again, Mohawk straddles the middle ground, with 22 of its product lines at 7mm or 8mm, and its 12 premium lines at 12mm.

Durability

As for Mohawk’s durability, the assessment is more nuanced.

All of its products have received the NALFA Certification Seal. NALFA (North American Laminate Flooring Association) is an industry organization that, utilizing independent labs, puts laminate flooring through ten rigorous performance tests specific to the impacts of water, light, stains, and physical damage.

A deeper dig is provided by understanding the Abrasion Class certification system. The AC rating is the standard for gauging how well a laminate will perform in a residential or commercial setting. Each flooring product is tested and provided a moderate, general or heavy use rating. Most Mohawk lines receive ratings suitable for heavy residential traffic or general commercial traffic.

Regardless of the certifications, a quick search of the internet reveals a number of consumer complaints specific to Mohawk laminate’s ability to withstand normal wear and tear, including instances of the top layer peeling and bubbling, scratches and denting appearing with little cause, and even the color fading prematurely. Whether isolated instances or symptoms of a larger epidemic of consumer dissatisfaction is difficult to assess.

Warranty

Mohawk does provide a lifetime warranty covering defects in material workmanship related to joint integrity, staining, fading and excessive wear during normal use, but some consumers complain that the company resists making good on the warranty, faulting instead improper installation, damage by excessive water puddling, or other non-material workmanship causes rather than owning up to a flawed product.

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The Verdict

Assuming laminate hardwood is your flooring option of choice, whether Mohawk should be your laminate flooring brand of choice is dependent on your priorities.

Clearly, with its enormous selection of styles and color options, Mohawk provides a greater likelihood than many other companies of finding the unique color or grain pattern that you envision for your living room. And its embossing technology and GenuEdge wood-grain technique result in a virtual reality that is universally acclaimed.

For ease of assembly, its Uniclic System is certainly a positive consideration as well, especially if you intend to do the installation yourself, though many other brands are now utilizing similar systems.

If cost is your guiding star, Mohawk’s middle of the road pricing suggests a decent value for a decent product.

As for quality, there are some unanswered questions in this regard from dissatisfied customers, but considering the number of units this large company sells on an annual basis, there are likely many times more Mohawk customers who are quietly happy with their floors.

Dan Eckstein

About Dan Eckstein

Dan Eckstein has been writing and teaching about writing for over thirty years. He was also the Curriculum Director at Yestermorrow Design/Build School in Vermont, where all are welcome to learn about designing, building or renovating their own place in the world.

34 thoughts on “Mohawk Laminate Flooring Review”

  1. Avatar
    Michele Etherington

    I’m attempting to use the mohawk uniclic system and have never been so frustrated in my life! I have installed several laminate and hardwood floors and find this to be complete crap compared to others I’ve used, some only a quarter of the cost of this flooring. Keep shopping…. don’t be fooled by their marketing!!

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      I just had Mohawk RevWood Plus Artfully Designed in Kindling Oak installed throughout our 2nd floor and stairs and it looks amazing. I was afraid it would sound hollow upstairs because immediately after intallation it sounded horrible and our voices echoed. I instantly thought, “WTF did I just do?“ However, once we put everything back in the rooms and closets, the hollow sound went away. We took out the continuous carpeting throughout the 2nd floor and I was a bit worried that when the kids were upstairs it would sound loud downstairs, however, there’s no difference at all; it’s surprisingly very quiet. You will hear the dog’s nails if they’re longer but it sounds louder upstairs than downstairs. I mopped the floors after installers left and had no issues at all. The RevWood is extremely solid, and there’s no movement from planks at all. It’s about as solid as it gets…I really wanted a specific COREtec color that I kept going back to for over a year, however it had a high variation and much smaller planks which would have made the rooms appear smaller. I specifically chose the Mohawk RevWood because the planks are very long and wide so they don’t chop up the rooms and make them look smaller and busier as they would with hundreds of little planks. However, if you’re installing in large or open areas then plank size won’t matter as much. I’ve only had the floors for a little over a week but overall, I’m very happy with them.

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      Just have to add, I read all of the poor reviews regarding scratching, but I’ve had the opposite experience so far. I had to drag heavy bedroom furniture in 3 bedrooms across the Mohawk RevWood because installers didn’t center any of the dressers, etc. I thought for sure there would be scratches, as none of the furniture has protective padding on the bottoms yet, but when I looked there were no scratches or marks at all. The RevWood is so solid I can’t imagine scratching or denting occurring unless you really try to damage these floors. No flooring material is indescructable, even tile can crack if something very heavy is dropped on it. Hardwood floors damage even more easily and scratches are very noticeable. With some high quality laminates and vinyls, underneath the wear layer, the “wood look” goes deeper than just the surface. So if a scratch does occur, the scratch will be the same color as the surface, making it less noticeable. After looking at and researching every Vinyl and Laminate floor out there for over a year I learned what to look for and what best suited my family. Too be safe I didn’t go with less than a 20 mil wear layer, and the RevWood has a warranty specifically for pets. I’d rather overdue it than risk it; esp with animals and kids. I also chose a product that had the wood design go beyond the surface, etc. Just my 2 cents on a few things I learned over my more than a year long search for flooring. But, every household has different needs and “must haves” for their home’s flooring.

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    We had what was supposed to be a high-quality Karastan carpet in May of 2018 and it’s already showing signs of wear in high-traffic areas. What a disappointment! We’ve been told it’s normal wear. Really! We paid almost $10,000 for our full house. I hate to think what it will cost in another year. Mohawk is very difficult to work with and so was our local dealer. They’re very happy to sell you carpet but forget about filing a claim. We just don’t feel the warranty is being honored. We will never buy a Mohawk product again and will discourage others from doing so.

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      Laura with Mohawk

      Hello Jean, I’m Laura from Mohawk, and I’m so sorry to hear about your experience with your carpet. I had replied your comment below, but just wanted to note here as well, that If your claim was declined based on an inspection, you can have a second inspection done: you would hire an inspector and have them assess your carpet and send their report to Mohawk. This will reopen the claim. The inspector should be certified by either the NICFI or the IICRC. On both of those companies’ sites, you can find your nearest certified flooring inspectors. They usually have a wide radius of service. You or the inspector can send the report to Mohawk via your store. I’m very sorry again for your experience.

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    We purchased what should have been a high-quality Karastan carpet in May of 2018 and a year later it looks worn high traffic patterns. We also have a stained area in the master bedroom that didn’t come out with cleaning. We had a terrible time dealing with our local store and when I called Mohawk it was even worse. I would never, ever buy ANY product from Mohawk Flooring. They have obviously been relying on a good name they once had. Our carpet was inspected and our claim denied. We were told our carpet was showing “normal wear.” I had to see what it will look like in another year.

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      Laura with Mohawk

      Hello Jean, I’m Laura from Mohawk, and I’m so sorry to hear about your experience with your carpet. If your claim was declined based on an inspection, you can have a second inspection done: you would hire an inspector and have them assess your carpet and send their report to Mohawk. This will reopen the claim. The inspector should be certified by either the NICFI or the IICRC. On both of those companies’ sites, you can find your nearest certified flooring inspectors. They usually have a wide radius of service. You or the inspector can send the report to Mohawk via your store. I’m sorry again for your experience.

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    We put down Armstrong LVP (“luxury vinyl plank”) in our new build. In the flooring store we took our car keys and tried to scratch these planks and couldn’t do it. We have two kids, three dogs and a cat so they needed to be durable. It’s water resistant too – easy to mop and I don’t freak out about an errant ice cube like I did on my oak floors. It’s been just over a year since we moved in and they look the same as they did when we moved in – VERY happy with Armstrong LVP – do not go laminate!!!!!

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    Krista Heij-Barber

    We too installed Mohawk flooring a while ago. It’s a darker cherry with intended slight dimension. The first maybe month was good. My son was dropping his cars over and over while I was cooking. No biggie, I thought. This is supposed to be durable. NOPE!!! Tons of tiny tiny marks. A fork drop- a divot. It’s horrible! Not to mention water marks. Bubbling from a melted 1” ice cube! Various bubbling from the smallest of water. Worst worst worst decision we ever made! Scratches from chairs with felt! Don’t do it!

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    We installed 900sqft of Mohawk Canyon Lodge 3/8″ Tecwood in our main living area. We mop as directed (spray the mop head, not the floor). We wipe up spills and wet dog feet promptly. There are only 2 adults living in the house and within a month of installation the finish began peeling off the floor. To make matters worse, I sold this flooring to myself and another customer (1700 sf). The customer’s floor was installed 3 weeks prior to mine, same problems. An “independent” inspector paid for by Mohawk determined it wasn’t a factory issue but a user issue and denied both claims. I had the floor inspected by a reputable hardwood refinishing company in my area and they said the opposite of the Mohawk inspector. Keep in mind I sell this and many other Mohawk products. We are still awaiting a visit from Mohawk factory representatives, but in the meantime, I’ve stopped selling this Mohawk product. Hard to trust a company that won’t make right on one of it’s dealer’s personal floors.

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    Wayne H Stokes

    We purchased the engineered hardwood/laminate a couple of years ago. This has turned out to be one of my worst decisions… Had to glue pads to my furniture which collects dirt and pet hair like a magnate. Then we had a water leak, quickly dried, but ruined the floor.

    Now after having two extra boxes and buying three more for repairs the workman is having a difficult (expense to me) time replacing. The various lengths in both the original boxes and the three boxes I purchased do not match the lengths ruined. Thus needing to cut and groove the replacements. DO NOT BUY THIS PRODUCT!!!

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      Stove Marketing

      We purchased 30 boxes of Restoration Oak Laminate flooring (quick-step) that promotes an Easy DIY approach. I could NEVER get two boards to lie flat! I watched at least a dozen videos on how to. Called Mohawk three times FINALLY I got one 20 sqft area to lie flat. THEN in the AM all the boards had separated with gaps! For a product to be EASY? This is not true.

      I have spent five days installing 200 sqft and this physically emptied me! I was swinging a 45 oz mallet to just two boards to “seat!” I took six boards back to Lowe’s and the floor manager stated that the boards are not milled correctly! SO…. I have to take BACK 16 unopened boxes and 11 cut boxes and ends. After of course I rip up the screwed up floor I tried to install…

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    I see a lot of comments on here about water damage… Mohawk introduced RevWood Plus last year to eliminate water damage from things like plants, pets, and surface water spills. It is an amazing product

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    It would be nice If Mohawk responded to the above concerns. Having looked at Mohawk samples today, I was told that one series ( Redwood Plus?) has edges which are more water resistant.

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    My entire main floor was just installed 10 days ago. I had the advice of a very knowledgeable salesman who told me that I need not worry about wet footed pets or kitchen installation. I have been religious about running in to dry up the slightest drop of water and have put felt on the bottom of EVERYTHING. In these short ten days of this beautiful flooring being laid I have 3 of 4 boards lifting at the edges. I waited 20 years for this floor and I can’t believe this is happening. Has anyone successfully been compensated for this? The salesman told me water-proof was not necessary.

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    Terry Candrilli

    Two weeks ago I had almost $8k of Mohawk Laminate flooring installed. I have bubbling and buckling in two of the rooms ALREADY! How can this be? I obviously was advised by Empire to purchase the wrong product for my house! Now what do I do? I haven’t even done a detailed investigation of all the flooring yet and the 4 areas in two of rooms are so obtrusively standing out!!

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      Can you please tell me which flooring line you put down. I am getting very nervous because after a long search I am thinking of going with Mohawk Laminate but now second guessing my decision. Help Please!

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    FEDERICO M MARTINEZ

    We recently saw a news piece about laminate flooring and are somewhat concerned about the level of formaldehyde in the laminate flooring.

    Our home has mohawk laminate flooring. Can you tell us where the laminate flooring for Mohawk is manufactured and how the levels of formaldehyde are measured?

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    New home construction. Noticed bubbling at some edges when we first moved in 1/18. Since then have had builder correct buckling twice and now have to have them correct buckling for the third time in 9 months. Also, the floor tends to smudge easily.

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      Linda Windhorst

      I had Mohawk laminate installed six years ago. Worst mistake of my life! Even a melted ice cube causes bubbling. It’s the pits, if you have animals! I’ll never buy Mohawk laminate flooring again. Color was beautiful but quality is very bad.

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    We had it in our old home and were happy. The builder offers it standard in our new home. Looks great, lasts, easy to maintain. We lived in an old house for 10 yrs, had flooring in for 7 with no issues, other than having to replace one threshold by our kitchen door (very high traffic). New house, entire 1st floor has hickory…. I really think proper install is key. Not sure where people live, but $5k for install seems very overpriced, at least for NC.

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    Our floor is three years old. We have over 100 boards with face checking based on a vague reference to when we think we noticed the checking (looking like fine cracks parallel to the grain). An independent inspector concluded it was not a manufacturing issue, but must be mopping (even though he saw them under a large area rug!) or environmental even though his measurements didn’t support that either. Mohawk therefore offered new material but no installation. I’m not confident that spending $5000 on installation of replacement floor won’t have the same result in a year. We have had hardwood and laminates in other homes with no issue.

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    Are the above reviews referring to the mohawk regular laminate flooring or what is called the waterproof mohawk laminate flooring.

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    I agree with the others. This mohawk laminate is my only experience with laminate, and the slightest bit of water will cause bubbling and warped planks, creating an unsightly floor.

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      I had Mohawk Havermill Laminate installed about a month ago. My dog had thrown up flem when I was gone so I wiped it up when I got home and my planks were already turned up and bubbled. I was gone about 2 hours. I was told I probably didn’t need waterproof laminate at front door and hall but I bet this laminate won’t make it through the winter. I waited 20 years for new floor and hoped to be given good advice!!

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        Do not buy Mohawk cliclit flooring. The profiles that are suppose to lock into each other are not milled correctly. We have spent 6 hours on laying this floor and have to keep going back to previously layed pieces because they keep coming apart. This floor is junk. We bought Perfect Seal waterproof.
        .

  18. Avatar

    I have had a Mohawk laminate floor for several years & I absolutely HATE it. This was the worst purchase ever. If you leave the slightest bit of water (spill) on the floor, the flooring buckles. I would prefer just the plain concrete floor as to this junk. Never again will I ever purchase laminate flooring. Mohawk brand is something that is banned in my household.

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      I absolutely agree with Susan’s comment! We spent $5,000 on a Mohawk laminate floor and it was TERRIBLE! I had a plant leak a little water and the area swelled and became warped, and there was nothing we could do about it except go to the trouble of replacing that part of the floor. If you don’t get to water immediately, expect your floor to buckle, warp and look terrible, even from a little bit of water on it. We’ve only had the floor a few years and many of the seams have rough, warped edges where a little water and mud landed. What are we supposed to do, just LOOK at the floor but not walk on it? Zero for durability. Zero for use as a floor. Will not buy again!

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        We had a similar experience in a newly constructed home. Lifting along the edges, peeling, and warping. Our 2 year old floor looks like it’s 20 years old! The manufacturer first said it was from water, then the humidity in the house, then it was the dryness of the house. In my opinion this floor is only for a house in a climate-controlled bubble, no cleaning walking or spills allowed!

        I’ll never buy Mohawk again,
        Rjm

  19. Avatar

    Thank you for a very informative, well-written review of Mohawk laminate flooring. After reading your review, I have decided to buy 1400 sq. ft. of Mohawk 12 mm Jamison Chestnut Embossed Laminate Flooring from Lowes.ca and have it installed in our 1400 sq. ft. cottage in Lyndhurst, Ontario.

  20. Avatar

    I am looking for two of these vinyl laminates – winlands canyon wall and prosperous noce.

    Is there a showroom in the 11703 zip area that carries them?

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