March Madness (#5) 2017 from Brazilian Direct Ltd. by Dan Cosgrove.
Growing up in Philadelphia, I loved to compete. As a kid we played four sports per year. In the 80’s my high school, Cardinal O’Hara, had 1000 per class. We were raised with core values which included honesty, loyalty, integrity and respect. I continue to live my business and personal life with this solid foundation. Cheating was never an option.
My favorite saying, I adopted while playing college football, was and continues to be “it’s not that I love to win, it’s that I hate to lose”.
I always love this time of the year (Spring) & the NCAA tournament and all it stands for. March Madness is the norm and I look forward to the best tournament in College sports.
This madness, however, is not unique to college basketball; such madness is also present in the hardwood flooring industry.
Since my 1st March Madness blog 4 year ago, we find the hardwood flooring industry in a far worse situation. Competitors have resorted to cheating for corporate profits and greed. It has shocked everyone and left thousands of homeowner and their families in harm’s way. CBS Anderson Cooper reported (2 x) on these dangerous, cost-cutting, manufacturing practices. Economic change is inevitable in any market and the last five years have been difficult for the USA economy. Although our economy is starting to recover.
We live in a marketing age full of Lumber Liquidators and Empire Today ads. Liquidators have misled many into believing Select Grade* (a low grade) is the best grade and is comparable to Clear. Empire Today promotes next day installation while, in reality, 95% of all quality ¾” hardwood flooring should acclimate in the house for 1 or 2 weeks prior to installation – Really!
Moreover, imports from China (dried to 10-12% not 7-8%) with random lengths from 1-4 feet have become commonplace and increasingly popular. Such short board lengths often results in a choppy, overly systematic, and jigsaw puzzle-esque floor that belies the natural and beautiful appearance that used to be the very quintessence of hardwood flooring. Indeed, solid Clear Grade 3/4” flooring with long random lengths 1-7 feet has been compromised replaced with 5/16” – 3/8” or even 1/2” or Formica floors with lengths 1-4 feet.
I stress that not all homes can be treated equal when it comes to hardwood installation.
A house in Florida must be treated very different from a house in Massachusetts; while FL has year-round warm weather, MA floors are exposed to a six month, hot forced air heating season from HVAC systems.
Yet these factors – and many others such as application, geographic region, and grade – are often neglected and flooring is installed on the sole criterion of price. While this may be cost-efficient and convenient in the short-run,
it is much less certain whether this flooring format will last or IF such floors should be installed in the first place.
Finally, Floating & Click floors with paltry .06 mm, 1.0 mm, 1.6mm up to 3.0mm face (thickness of wood on the top) that are designed for below grade or over concrete, are being installed 1st & 2nd floor and could literally fail in less than 3-5 years.
Lower prices and uniform-across-the-country installation methodology is appealing but did anyone ever ask the consumer IF he/she actually wanted the flooring to work?
Can someone please provide sound advice and stop the madness?
Brazilian Direct Ltd. Exceeding customer expectation since 2002, we are here to help with 30 years experience!
Mill Direct Premium Exotic Hardwood Flooring, Lumber and Decking
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1983-1987 Minwax Dura Seal Division East Coast Sales Manager
1987-1994 Duron Paints
1994-1999 Basic Coatings Regional Sales Manager
2000-2002 WFI Wood Flooring International WFI National Sales Manager
2002 Present / President Owner Brazilian Direct Ltd.