Many times during the wood flooring installation process you need to fit the flooring around a forced air heat vent, and of course it’s easier to keep the line straight with the edge of the flooring. However, when doing so, how will it look when the vent is seen from the angle of the louvers?

The installer on this job didn’t consider that: You can clearly see the subfloor and how far off the vent is from the actual duct opening. When you slide the wood grill off the frame, you can clearly see we have lost over 50 percent of the airflow efficiency for heating and/or cooling! This will have a direct impact on the client’s comfort within that room—and, in this case, it created a reason to call for a wood floor inspection. But it doesn’t take a wood floor inspector writing a report to know the installer took a shortcut when installing this wood grill frame. If there is no more of this specific flooring available to make the necessary corrections, this careless error could even require a full floor replacement. Obviously, this cost would be the responsibility of the installer since the issue is installation-related.

These are lessons most rookies will learn as they go along learning the trade. In most cases, shortcuts never pay off in the end. In fact, they usually will cost you a great deal of more time and money than the amount you “saved” by taking the shortcut.

Roy Reichow

Roy Reichow has 44 years of experience in the wood flooring industry as a wood flooring expert. He holds all NWFA certifications including Inspector and Commercial Inspector, and is ranked one of the top three certified professionals with the NWFA. Roy has served on the NWFACP board of directors as well as past chairman. Roy founded National Wood Floor Consultants Inc. (NWFC) in 2001, a wood floor inspection/consultation firm. NWFC services include mediation, arbitration and litigation consulting and expert testimony for wood flooring design, flooring construction specifications, insurance and installation compliance claims. NWFC has extensive experience and expertise in performing wood floor evaluations/inspections including forensics, diagnostics, and investigations related to design, installation and construction defects.  Roy has authored many articles published in Wood Floor Business magazine as well as other trade publications. He is a national presenter at various conferences and leads educational seminars for wood floor professionals.