1. What is Audacity?
Audacity is a water-resistant laminate flooring, that combines the durability and the realistic wood look of laminate with water-resistance of luxury vinyl. The result is a beautiful and truly multi-functional flooring with click that can:
- Resist household spills;
- Be wet-mopped for easy maintenance;
- Installed in bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms;
- Be installed over 300% larger areas than traditional laminate floors without unsightly§1
transition strips in between areas and rooms – up to 4000sq.ft / 400sqm.
2. Why Audacity vs. regular Laminate?
Compared with regular laminate flooring, Audacity has a much more stable core, which means you can:
- Install it over an area of up to 4000 sq.ft / 400sqm without unsightly transition strips in between areas and rooms;
- Wet-mop it and steam-mop, unlike regular wood fiber-based floors such as laminate;
- Install in full bathrooms, kitchens or laundry rooms.
3. Why Audacity vs. Resilient & Vinyl-based floors (e.g. Luxury Vinyl or WPC)?
Typically, resilient and vinyl flooring have certain advantages to normal laminate, such as its waterproofness, but with Audacity it is no more relevant, as Audacity floors can now also be wet-mopped, installed in moist areas and resist household spills. Apart from the above, Audacity also solves the issues related to standard vinyl products:
– The Audacity flooring is resistant to high temperature variations, e.g. in sunny rooms or rooms with large windows;
– The flooring is extra resistant to stains, e.g. spilled coffee or wine;
– Extra resistant to scratches and wear, e.g. from your pet’s untrimmed claws;
– Features a thick (total thickness is 12mm), rigid core – which means no more telegraphing of small subfloor’s imperfections;
– Deep synchronized surface for a more natural and authentic wood look & feel.
4. How is Audacity flooring constructed?
Audacity consists of five layers of materials bonded together under extreme heat and pressure. Absolutely no harmful glues or toxic chemicals are used in the bonding of our products, ensuring safe and worry-free flooring for your family. The mentioned above layers are:
1. The first component is the wear resistance layer. While a standard CE laminate is usually provided with an AC3 wear rating, not compatible with a commercial use, Audacity comes with an AC4 highly resistant, commercial rating. This means you don’t have to worry about high foot traffic or your kids & pets having fun in the house. However, you should keep in mind that no floor covering is impervious to damage;
2. The second layer is a decorative paper. This layer provides the beautiful and unique look that will compliment your interior;
3. The third component is Audacity’s high density, extra stable and 100% natural core, made of wood fibers. The floor’s core is protected against moisture with a special, factory-applied coating;
4. The forth layer is the balancing layer – this moisture-resistant backing layer guarantees a perfectly balanced board that will not cup or bow when properly installed and maintained;
5. The fifth later is a pre-attached 2mm pad, providing additional comfort and sound absorption. This also means you don’t need an additional underlay.
5. I’ve been hearing news about the danger of formaldehyde in laminate flooring. Is Audacity safe?
Formaldehyde is a naturally occurring substance not only in all wood, formed by elements
found in our environment like carbon, hydrogen and oxygen, but also at low levels, usually less than 0.03 parts per million (ppm), in both outdoor and indoor air. While formaldehyde is naturally occurring, high levels can be harmful to humans.
All Audacity floors are subjected to rigorous tests that are designed to ensure that all products abide by the highest standards and do not harm indoor air quality. This makes our floors safe for you and your loved ones.
All Audacity floors in the United States are in full compliance with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) Airborne Toxic Control Measure (ATCM) 93120 Title 17 Phase II standards for formaldehyde. All of our sources for composite wood components have been tested by an independent, third party CARB-approved certifier and confirmed to meet the exacting standards of the state of California. We also regularly check our certifications to make sure they are updated and that all requirements are continuously being met.
In addition to this we have taken steps for certification by another third party, the FloorScore. It is an industry-independent organization that aims to protect human health by enhancing indoor air quality and reducing people’s exposure to pollutants by certifying products for extremely low chemical emissions.
All Audacity products worldwide are certified by the FloorScore Program which requires that products undergo independent, scientific testing and ongoing monitoring of their chemical emissions. Only products that meet its stringent emissions standards qualify for certification. These standards are based on established criteria from key public health agencies.
1. How easy is Audacity to install?
With its rigid core and a convenient tap-down click system, Audacity flooring is easy and fast to install, and thanks to floor’s rigidity, it only requires a minimum subfloor preparation (subfloor should be leveled to 3/16” / 5mm within a 10ft / 3m span). A do-it-yourselfer can click together a living room size floor in about a day, and start enjoying it immediately.
2. In what rooms can I install Audacity floor?
Audacity flooring can be installed in any room inside the house where the floor is solid and flat, including full bathrooms, laundry rooms and basements. Special precautions should be used when installing in moist areas, such as bathrooms or laundry rooms, by adding a silicone sealant in the expansion spaces at the perimeter and all vertical interruptions. Audacity should NOT be installed in rooms with sump pumps or floor drains, or in motor homes, boats or planes.
3. Can Audacity be installed in Kitchens and Bathrooms?
Audacity floors are water-resistant; however, special precautions should be used when installing in moist areas such as kitchens, bathrooms, by adding a silicone sealant in the expansion spaces at the perimeter and all vertical interruptions.
4. What does the Water Block Warranty guarantee?
Water Block Warranty guarantees that the Audacity flooring will not be damaged from localized topical moisture resulting from a normal household spillage, e.g. from wet shoes, liquid spills or dripping while exiting a bath tub or shower, provided they are removed within 72 hours. However, flooding is NOT covered by the warrantee, which means standing water must be avoided at all times.
5. Are there rooms that are inappropriate for an Audacity floor?
Very few: a room with a floor drain, sump pump or one that is exposed to the elements.
6. What are the elements of an ideal installation?
• Ensure that the subfloor is flat and level (3/16” / 5mm within a 10ft / 3m span).
• The subfloor moisture level must be max. 2.5% moisture content (CM method).
• Crawl space and/or basement should be ventilated and dry. A minimum 6-mil / 0.15mm poly sheeting should be used as a moisture barrier.
• Acclimate Audacity in the room in which you intend to install it a minimum of 48 hours before the installation.
• For floor surfaces exceeding 4000sq.ft2 / 400sqm2 and or lengths exceeding 80ft / 25m and overlaps to new rooms and floor surface which do not join symmetrically, use expansion joints to divide the floor sections. • For installation instructions and tips, please see our detailed Audacity Installation Manual.
7. Do I need to acclimate Audacity floor before installation?
For the best result, it is recommended to acclimate Audacity floor prior to installation. Keep the boards in room temperature for at least 48 hours in unopened package before you start the installation. The room temperature must be between 60°to 95°F / 15° to 35°C before, during and after installation. Relative Humidity Levels of your room should be maintained at 30-65 %.
8. Does the subfloor need to be leveled prior to installing Audacity?
Although Audacity is very rigid and can hide minor subfloor imperfections. However, the subfloor must be clean and leveled to 3/16” / 5mm within a 10ft / 3m span.
9. How do I determine the direction in which to install my Audacity flooring?
Install parallel to incoming light from any windows or if lighting is not a concern, parallel to the longest wall in the room.
10. What is the recommended expansion space for Audacity floors?
The recommended expansion space for all Audacity floors is 1/2″ / 10mm for all vertical interruptions, be they the walls, moldings, pillars, HVAC vents, flooring receptacles, masonry, toilet flanges, pipes, etc.
11. How large is the area that Audacity can be installed over before having to use transition strips?
Audacity installation allows up to 65ft / 20m, in either direction, with no unsightly transition moldings needed as long as the flooring can freely move. Or a total of 4000sq.ft2 / 400sqm2. Make sure to respect the 1/2″ / 10mm expansion space around the perimeters of the room.
12. Do I need to install a molding for each door opening?
As long as you are within the limit that does not require transition strips, those transitions are fortunately not required either. Audacity installation allows up to 60ft / 20m, in either direction, with no transition moldings needed. Make sure to respect the 1/2″ / 10mm expansion space around the perimeters of the room.
13. Over what types of existing floors can I install Audacity?
Audacity floors can be installed over most existing hard surface flooring, including wood, concrete, and vinyl sheet. You can also install over tiles, as long as it is NOT a floating installation.
The exceptions are laminate, floating floors of any type, loose lay, and perimeter fastened sheet vinyl. These types of flooring should be removed prior to installing Audacity. The existing floors still have to meet the level requirements, which is no more than a 3/16” / 5mm difference in a 10ft / 3m span.
14. Does Audacity require a moisture barrier?
Moisture barrier needs to be installed over concrete substrates. In the case installation is done over a wood substrate on or below-grade a vapor barrier must be installed if there is not a vapor barrier existing in a well-ventilated crawl space. A minimum 6-mil / 0.15mm poly sheeting should be used as a moisture barrier.
15. Can I install Audacity over radiant heating system?
Yes, Audacity is compatible with water-based floor heating systems. You should ensure the radiant heat surface temperature doesn’t exceed 81°F / 27°C.
Due to the speed of sudden temperature changes, which has the potential to negatively affect laminate flooring construction, it is not recommended to install over any electrical radiant heating system.
For detailed instructions regarding the installation over water based heating systems, please refer to Audacity Installation Manual.
16. Can I install Audacity on a wall or ceiling?
Yes, you can. Many designer use Audacity for partial wall installation because of the unique and highly realistic color available in the Audacity selection.
For wall and ceiling installation the planks need to be fully glued down on the substrate. For this job, we recommend Taylor 2091 (for commercial applications) and Henry© 650P glues.
Note: The Audacity warranty does NOT cover wall installation
17. Are Audacity floors suitable for wheel chairs or motorized chairs?
Audacity floors can be used in homes where wheel chairs are needed, but Audacity should not be applied to ramps. We recommend that you glue the joints when motorized chairs will be used.
18. Can I install kitchen cabinets directly over my Audacity floor?
Do not install your kitchen cabinets directly over your Audacity floor. The floor’s quality can be guaranteed as long as the floor can move freely.
19. Why does Audacity have a pre-attached backing?
The pre-attached backing provides a natural sound barrier and extra joint support for noise resistance attributes versus traditional laminates or click vinyl planks. And best of all – you will not need to use any extra underlayment!
20. Should I add an underlayment if my Audacity floor comes with a pre-attached foam backing?
No, if your Audacity floor has a pre-attached foam backing, which means no additional underlayment should be installed.
Note: Adding an underlayment to Audacity with a pre-attached foam backing will void your warranty.
1. How do I clean and maintain my Audacity floor?
• Clean the floor regularly. For general cleaning, use a dust mop or vacuum with the correct hard surface attachment – never a rotating brush, floor scrubbers, jet mops, buffers or similar products;
• If necessary, the floor may be cleaned with a damp or slightly wet mop / microfiber cloth and a laminate cleaner. Avoid using too much water and never pour the bucket of water / solution across the floor; be sure to squeeze the water out of the mop before mopping, and rinse the mop frequently. Allow the floor to fully dry after cleaning;
• Audacity floors must never be waxed, polished, sanded or refinished, and never use a jet mop when cleaning. Do not use detergents, abrasive cleaners, soaps, waxes or polishes;
• To protect from scratches, place walk-off area rugs or mats inside exterior doorways to collect small bits of gravel. We recommend using felt protectors on the legs of furniture and replacing plastic or metal casters with rubber wheels. Replace plastic or metal casters on chairs with rubber wheels and lift rather than slide heavy objects across the floor.
2. Are Audacity floors easy to clean?
Yes, ordinary vacuuming or sweeping is usually sufficient to keep the floor clean. If needed, the floor may be cleaned with laminate cleaner.
3. Can I use a steam mop on my Audacity floors?
The use of residential steam mops on Audacity flooring is allowed. Use at lowest power with a suitable soft pad, and do not hold a steam mop in one spot for an extended period of time (longer then 5 minutes). Refer to the steam mop’s manufacturer instructions for proper use.
4. How do I remove difficult challenging spots?
For chocolate, grease, juice and wine stains, use lukewarm water and a non-abrasive cleaner. Nail polish, tar, markers, crayon, lipstick, ink and cigarette burns can be removed using nail polish remover or denatured alcohol. For candle wax and chewing gum, scrape carefully with a blunt plastic scraper.
5. How durable is Audacity flooring with pets?
While no similar flooring is guaranteed against scratching or loss of gloss, the surface of Audacity is textured with a medium graining and a tough wear layer for durability. We warrant that Audacity wwill not stain from pet (domestic cat or dog) stains, including urine, feces and vomit, providing it is cleaned within 24 hours.
6. Do I need to wax my Audacity floor?
No, it resists staining, is easy to clean and requires no waxing. Waxing is not compatible with this product and using wax will void warranty.
7. What type of chair protectors can I use on Audacity floor?
Support furniture with wide-bearing, non-staining floor protectors. Ideally, the protectors should be at least one inch in diameter, made of non-pigmented, hard plastic and rest flat on the floor. Non-staining felt protectors are also acceptable. Casters with a minimum 3/4″ / 20mm flat surface width or floor protectors are recommended for all moveable furniture. Make sure any metal protectors are rustproof. Replace your narrow-dome furniture rests with widebearing ones.
8. Which kind of rugs can I use on Audacity?
You can use any type of rug on Audacity floor. The most important question is which type of backing the rug has. We recommend to not use rugs with a rubber or latex backing, as these could permanently stain your Audacity floor.
9. Is Audacity scratch proof?
Audacity floors feature AC-4 scratch resistant commercial rating, which is highly scratch resistant but not scratch proof. Here is some information that might help you to prevent or minimizes scratches down the road:
• Use felt pads on the bottom of all chairs/tables/sofas;
• Change all plastic or metal casters on rolling furniture to rubber casters;
• Do not drag heavy furniture across the floor;
• Trim pet nails frequently.
10. Can Audacity be easily repaired or replaced?
To repair scratches, small chips and dents color fill kits, wood finish repair sticks or putties are easy to use. If significant plank damage, an option may be to replace a plank. Plank replacements can be challenging to the average do-it-yourselfer, we recommend you contact your retailer or a flooring professional who has the proper tools and training for plank replacements.
11. Can I refinish or recoat my laminate flooring?
No. Laminate flooring cannot be refinished or sanded.
12. I'm not happy with my floor. How do I make a claim?
If you feel that you have a warranty related problem, you should take your original purchase receipt, back to the retailer where you purchased the floor and file a warranty claim with that store. The store will then contact us to begin the warranty process. An inspector may come to your home to evaluate the conditions and determine what caused the problem. Once an evaluation is completed you will be contacted with the results. The whole process could take up to 20-30 business days, depending on the circumstances, although most issues are resolved much faster.