Saturday, May 25, 2013

From carpet to laminate

Shortly after we got back to Salt Lake, Jim tore out the ten-year-old, light blue carpet that was original to our rig. Then a local craftsman/handyman installed laminate flooring.

We bought the rig used in 2010; the owners before us had a "no shoes allowed" policy and the floors were pristine.  But we're living in the motor home nearly full time and have a very sheddy (is that a word?) dog who refuses to be brushed.  Instead, Cooper removes loose fur by rolling on the carpet. Add the fact that (as Jim says) I have a "bad wing" -- meaning I can't provide the right-armed muscle needed for our canister vac to provide a good carpet cleaning -- and we often have a dirty carpet. Jim does a great job -- but it's time consuming and a hassle. 

We really like the look and easy care of laminate but I was concerned about its weight. Our motor home weighs 11,000 pounds with fuel, oil and coolants. We can safely carry another 3,000 pounds.  That 3,000 pounds includes clothing, food, tools, lawn chairs -- anything we want in the motor home including us -- and it quickly adds up. The laminate we used weighs 35 pounds a box, and we used two boxes plus two pieces from a third box.  Subtracting waste pieces, our new floor probably weighs 60 pounds while the old carpet and pad weighed only 15 pounds.  So we're looking for items to leave home that will counteract the increase.  Or going on a diet.

After installation we had a thought: will the movement of the motor home cause the new flooring to shift or buckle? An RV web sites I belatedly read said leaving a one-fourth inch space around the perimeter of the flooring would solve that, since the boards "float" over the subfloor and that quarter inch allows for movement without damage. We only have an eighth-inch space.  Could be a problem.  But it looks great, we did what we did, and we'll see how it works.

I looked through the thousands of photos I've taken for a 
pic of our old blue carpet.  This one of Cooper sleeping 
on our laundry bag is the best I have. Behind Cooper is 
foam rubber we insert into the rig's sky lights for insulation 
when it gets cold.

Handyman extraordinaire Glen Gutterson installs the new
flooring.  Glen remodeled our basement a few years ago and
did a great job.  Other than ripping out some wall paper 
and installing new cabinet hardware, this is the first major
remodel we've done to the rig. 
Jim said the tear out job was
easier than expected, and fortunately the plywood sub
floor was flat and smooth.
We kept our old kitchen-area vinyl flooring;  here the laminate butts
up to the vinyl.  We looked for  laminate at Lowe's, Home
Depot, Lumber Liquidators and Costco.  We bought
Costco's "Golden Aspen" for $32.99 a box.

Finished product as seen from the dining area.
And, Jim and grand daughter Mia at the front of 
the rig.


  1. Bev and Jim, WOW! Also great pic of Jim and grand-urchin. Question: how much does a case of IPA weigh.

  2. I don't know. There's never a completely full one in the house or rig,