Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Review: COREtec Plus Luxury vinyl planks – waterproof and looks like hardwood

Review of COREtec Plus | Waterproof luxury vinyl – Looks like hardwood and holds up to water

Coretec Plus Review - Waterproof engineered vinyl plank


What is Coretec Plus?

Coretec Plus Alabaster OakCoretec Plus is the perfect blend of form and function. It’s a high quality luxury vinyl that looks (and feels) real, and it’s designed to hold up in spaces that may have moisture (such as basements, kitchens, bathrooms).  Coretec looks like hardwood (the planks look like engineered hardwood…and look much more real than laminate)…in fact many of my customers don’t even realize they are looking at vinyl when they see the product – that’s how real it looks.  This is probably the most innovative flooring product of this decade.


Gold Coast Acacia Coretec PlusCoretec Plus comes in luxury vinyl planks that look like hardwood and luxury vinyl tile that looks like tile, natural stone and concrete.  Personally, I prefer the hardwood plan options as they are more stylish and look more real.  Here in the Mid-Atlantic/Northeast, hardwood is strongly preferred over tile.




gold coast acacia - coretec plus reviewThese high end vinyl planks (and tiles) are individual pieces with beveled edges and real texture and graining, so they look real (unlikely sheet vinyl or cheaper vinyls or laminate which has simulated graphics).  The planks are installed in a randomized way so they also look more like real hardwood.


Coretec Plus gives you a high end look and provide the perfect solution when you want a hardwood look, but don’t want to worry about moisture/water.  It’s a great product because you it solves many challenges at once so that homeowners don’t need to compromise.  My installers love it because it’s a great product for customers and it’s one that you can really stand behind.


clear lake oak coretec plusCoretec holds up to water and cleans up easily, so if you don’t need to worry about water issues in the kitchen (e.g. from moisture from dishwasher, spills while cooking, pet spills from water dishes).


Coretec Plus is made by US Floors, and they are a very reputable manufacturer.  They make Coretec Plus, Natural Cork, Natural Bamboo and some specialized high end oiled hardwood floors.  The product has a limited lifetime warranty and it’s GreenGuard certified.  They really stand behind their product.  US Floors was recently purchased by Shaw Floors.

Please note that this article may contain affiliate links; you can read my full disclosure at the bottom of the page.


How is Coretec Plus constructed?

coretec plus construction - 4 layersCoretec Plus is a rigid luxury vinyl constructed in 4 layers – 3 you can see and 1 you can’t.  The top layer you can see is the luxury vinyl.  It’s designed well from a color, graining and texture standpoint, so it looks and feels real.  On top of this, there is the clear wear layer (.5mm) which protects against excessive wear and makes it easier to clean.  The middle layer is recyled limestone, wood and bamboo dust and the bottom layer is an attached cork underlayment.



All 4 layers are waterproof (including the cork). 


The cork underlayment helps in a few different ways.  First, it adds a bit of cushioning.  So, the floor has a bit more give and is easier on your feet.  Also, it can help camouflage minor imperfections in the floor (note: it will not hide sloping or major unevenness…see below about that).  It also gives a tad of insulation due to the air pockets in the cork.  Cork is naturally antimicrobial so it’s resilient to mold/mildew.  And, the attached cork backing will also help with sound absorption.



How is Coretec Plus installed?

red rock hickory coretec plusCoretec Plus is floating floor, meaning that it clicks together (in the same way that a laminate is installed) and is secured at the edges of the room via the base molding/shoe molding.  You can read more about a floating floor here:  What is a floating floor?  Because it’s a floating floor (and does not need to be nailed or glued), it has more flexibility as to where it can be installed.


vinyl telegraphing sub-floor belowIt can be installed directly on top of concrete, and if you have minor discrepancies in the floor, you don’t need to worry about floor prep and smoothing the area out.  This contrasts with a glue down vinyl which does require smoothing (usually via a couple of skim coats) as glue down vinyl will telegraph all the imperfections (i.e. you’ll see all the dimples and imperfections in the floor…see picture on the right).  Because Coretec Plus is rigid and thicker than glue down vinyl, it will hide the minor imperfections in the floor.  The attached cork underlayment helps with this as well.


Coretec Hudson Valley Oak waterproofWhile I would recommend professional installation, talented do-it-yourselfers could install Coretec, since it’s a floating clickable floor.  If you feel confident installing laminate, you could probably install this floor as well.  That being said, the tricky part with all floating floors are the edges.




Hudson Valley Oak Coretec plus vinyl clickable planksThis product can be installed below grade (i.e. in rooms that are below the ground such as basements), on grade (i.e. on ground level) as well as upper levels, so it’s a very flexible product. 


Because it’s a floated floor (see above), it can be installed in any direction.  It can be done in straight lay, or diagonal and it’s not dependent on your joist direction.  Generally, I recommend following the longest length of the room as that is more aesthetically pleasing and makes your space look larger.  You can change direction of the floor in different rooms, but usually, it looks better to just choose one direction and stick with it.


Other advantages of Coretec Plus

can you believe it's vinyl - coretec plus luxury vinyl plank flooring

  • Unlike engineered hardwood or laminate, Coretec Plus does not need to be dropped off for acclimation, so this shortens the timeline
  • Coretec Plus can be installed on top of radiant heat
  • It can also be installed on top of most surfaces (including concrete, tile and hardwood) provided that the floor is even/relatively even.


Color range and styles for Coretec

Coretec Plus has a wide range of colors – they have light (Rocky Mountain Oak, dark (see Deep Smoked Oak), reds (see Gold Coast Acacia), as well as some grays/white washes (see Ivory Coast Oak, Boardwalk Oak, Blackstone Oak, Alabaster Oak, Hudson Valley Georgetown Oak).  The 7″ line has more white wash/grays.


US Floors COREtec Plus 5 Deep Smoked Oak (Sample) Vinyl Flooring

coretec plus LVP flooring smoked oak


Why is Coretec Plus better than laminate?

  • looks like hardwood but it's waterproof CortecLooks much nicer and more real.  Planks are individual pieces (while most laminates are 8″ wide with a picture that simulates several pieces together.)
  • Coretec Plus is waterproof and laminate is not.  Further, laminate warps just with moisture (and once it’s warped it can’t be fixed.  Laminate also tends to delaminate when it gets wet just from cleaning.
  • Less noisy.
  • More durable
  • Doesn’t require acclimation (so you can install it faster)
  • Disadvantage:  It costs a little more than laminate (but well worth it and lasts way longer)


What are the advantages of Coretec over Engineered Wood?

  • More durable, holds up better to scratchesweathered concrete coretec luxury vinyl tile
  • Waterproof and moisture proof
  • Costs less
  • Less noisy
  • Doesn’t require acclimation (so you can install it faster)
  • Disadvantage:  It’s not real hardwood.


What are the advantages of Coretec over Tile?

  • Easier on feet
  • Warmer on feet
  • Costs less
  • Won’t crack
  • Easier to clean


What are the Coretec Sub-lines?

Coretec Plus

boardwalk oak coretec plusThis is the original product.  It comes in 5″ and 7″ wide planks that are 4 ft long.  It’s also available in tile options which are either 12″ x 24″ or 18.5″ x 24″ for a nice brick lay.  (Note: as you go wider in the planks, it’s more important that your sub-floor is more even…the wider planks will show the unevenness more.)


Coretec Plus XL

Coretec Plus XL is a newer and upgraded option.  This line has extra wide planks (9″ wide) and extra long (they are 6 ft long (rather than 4ft).  They also have some very nice wire brushed styles.  These planks do cost more.  (Again, be careful if your floor is very uneven with the wider planks).


Coretec Plus HD

Coretec Plus HD used registered embossing (which means the surface follows the graining of the wood) for a more realistic look and feel.  The planks are 7″ wide and 6 ft long (vs. the base line is only 4 ft long).  In addition, the planks are a bit thicker (they are 8.5mm thick vs. the rest of line is 8mm thick.  These planks also have 4 sided painted micro bevel edges for an even more realistic look.  These planks do cost more.  (Again, be careful if your floor is very uneven with the wider planks).


Here are some pictures of some of my favorite Coretec Plus HD shades.

Coretec Plus HD Review - Delta Rustic Pine Luxury vinyl plank reviews - Coretec Plus HD Dusk Contempo Oak COREtec Plus HD Greystone Contempo Oak Coretec Flooring Reviews

Coretec Plus HD Review - Odessa Gray Driftwood Coretec Flooring Reviews - Coretec Plus HD Shadow Lake Driftwood Coretec Plus HD Review - Timberland Pine


Coretec One

Coretec One is a less expensive version of Coretec.  It excludes the attached cork and in my opinion, the designs aren’t as nice and look a bit fake.  This is NOT a product that I would recommend.  The cork underlayment makes a big difference.  It costs a bit less, but if you use it, you should buy a separate underlayment…and that neutralizes the cost difference.



Why does Coretec Plus XL cost more?

Cortec Plus XL has wider planks (9″ vs the basic line is 5″ or 7″) and longer planks (6 ft long vs. 4 ft for the base line).  The designs are a bit more contemporary.  All that aside, I think the basic Coretec Plus line looks amazing and it’s not necessary to upgrade (note: warranty/durability are the same).  And, with the wider and longer planks, it’s super important that your sub-floor is flat/even as it will show more (see below related to floor prep/downsides).


Buy me a coffeeDid you find my tips helpful? If so, feel free to buy me a coffee and support my blog.

Coretec moldings and trim

Coretec has matching moldings (reducers, t-molding, baby threshold, stair cap and stairnose).  Importantly, they also have matching quarter round (which really comes in handy if there are build in cabinets or paneled walls.  Note: most vinyl and look alike products don’t have matching quarter round and only 1 option for steps, so this is another plus for this product and gives it a more finished look.


Is Coretec Plus really waterproof?

coretec plus product reviewAccording to the manufacturer, it’s “100% waterproof,” so the floors can be installed in “wet areas and will never swell when exposed to water.”  Coretec is dimensionally stable and won’t expand or contract under normal conditions.


Please note that if you have a major floor or standing water, Coretec Plus (like ANY flooring) should be removed.  Standing water can do a lot of damage to your home when it’s sitting there and being trapped.  So, if you do have a major flood, I would recommend removing the Coretec Plus (carefully).  Then, let it fully dry out and then reinstall it.  (Virtually every other flooring would be destroyed, but Coretec Plus is resilient so it generally can be reinstalled.) 


The one exception we have seen to this is if you have a sewage issue.  If you have sewage, you want to remove the flooring…no matter what type it is (even tile needs to be removed).  I think this is obvious (and goes without saying), but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention it.  We did have a customer who had a sewage back up in their basement.  Half of their floor had to be removed, but the remainder was fine and then half of it was replaced.


What are the downsides and watch-outs for Coretec Plus?

coretec plus nantucket oakThe biggest downside (in my opinion) is that Coretec Plus doesn’t work well when your floors are very uneven.  Because it’s a floating floor (and clicks into each other), if your floor is rather uneven, the planks will depress/move a bit when you walk on them (in the same way that a laminate flooring or engineered hardwood floor would). 


If this doesn’t bother you, it’s not a problem.  If it does bother, then you would want to level out the floor before installing it (generally with self leveling mix and this does get expensive/adds extra costs).  Note:  If your floors are extremely uneven and you don’t invest in self leveling mix, the planks could snap apart.


mission oak coretec plus XLThe other minor downside is that the vinyl can scratch when you move heavy items (e.g. refrigerators) on top of it.  Now that happens for virtually every other flooring surface.  The thick wear layer gives it extra protection, but it’s good to avoid dragging sharp objects or very heavy items over these floors.  Also, it’s relatively simple to replace a piece of two if you need to later.


Do-it-Yourself Installation for Coretec Plus – Video

For do-it-yourselfers, check out this video from US Floors to see how to install Coretec Plus.  Soon, I will be adding links for the tools mentioned in the video.


DIY Tools mentioned in the video

If you click on the items below you can buy them Amazon. You can add them to your cart, even if you buy later.


How do you clean and maintain Coretec?

coretec plus review lux vinyl plank that's waterproof bonaCoretec Plus is easy to clean and you should use a neutral pH cleaner.  The manufacturer recommends Bona stone, tile and laminate cleaner, and you buy that on Amazon. They also have a gallon refill bottle.


Final thoughts on Coretec Plus:

coretec plus review lux vinyl plank that's waterproofCoretec Plus is an innovative product that is durable and looks great.  It solves many issues and it’s a wonderful option for areas that may get wet and have minor moisture.  You know it’s a great product when your installers love it and recommend it.  We have installed Coretec Plus in many basements (including high end $1-$2 million dollar homes), kitchens and whole apartments.  We haven’t had any complaints about it from our customers (well except for the customer with the sewage issue – but that had nothing to do with us or the product.   I highly recommend it.


Where can you buy Coretec Plus?

You can buy Coretec Plus in most local flooring and carpet stores.  I don’t believe they are available in Home Depot or other big box stores, but that may change in the future.  You can now buy some of the items very cost effectively on Amazon and I’m sure they’ll be adding the other colors soon.  They also have samples you can order on Amazon.  You can also check out other places online.   They are reasonably priced and have free shipping (which will help you for when you actually order them as shipping on flooring can get costly).


Edit:  Home Depot now has their own private label knock of product called LifeProof.  It isn’t as good as Coretec Plus, so it’s not a product I would recommend, but it certainly is cheaper.  It’s thinner (6.5 mm vs Coretec Plus is 8mm) and I’ve heard from installers that it doesn’t hold up so well to water (even though they claim it’s waterproof).  I guess you get what you pay for.  But, if price is your primary driver, you can check out their color choices here.


You may find these articles helpful:

Complementary products that will prolong the life of your hardwood floors


Buy me a coffeeDid you find my tips helpful? If so, feel free to buy me a coffee and support my blog.




Coretec Plus Luxury vinyl planks Review – the marriage of hardwood and waterproof flooring

Review Date
Reviewed Item
Coretec Plus
Author Rating

417 thoughts on “Review: COREtec Plus Luxury vinyl planks – waterproof and looks like hardwood”

  1. Penelope Ciocchi

    Hi, I am just about to spring for some coretec xl Hayes Oak for my kitchen. How do I merge them, meld in with my existing wood flooring in the dining room, which is pretty much a color match.
    I’ve seen some nice snazzy metal strips used for wood to ceramic tile. Are you familiar with them?
    Wondering if i should use those? Thanks

    1. Hi, I am planning to replace my entrance foyer, hallway and adjoining dining area with core-tec LVT. Currently these areas have parquet flooring which is looking poorly after years of coming in and out the front door. The hallway leads into the living room which has a floating hardwood floor. My question is if I used plank instead of tile, would it look like I’m trying to match the existing hardwood? Would tile be a better choice? Thanks, Nancy

      1. Nancy – Personally, I think the planks look way better and real than the tile options, and they are clearly way more popular. So, I would probably go with a plank option, BUT, I would probably contrast the color with the hardwood floors, so that it doesn’t look like you’re trying to match. you may be able to achieve this by going significantly darker (or lighter) or going with a gray (or white wash). Just make sure the 2 colors go together and coordinate well.

        1. Thanks, I was thinking of gray as my dining table and chairs are dark gray-almost charcoal gray. There’s more options as well in the planks. I fell better now about reconsidering them!

  2. Thank you for taking the time to answer all these questions, it’s very helpful! We had a sample of the Coretec plus enhanced in the Fairweather Oak. It was on our kitchen floor for a couple of days and it dented. So I’m really worried about putting this throughout my whole downstairs. Salesman says that he can’t believe it and that it must’ve been there prior to taking it home. It wasn’t. But I have 3 dogs and grandchildren running around. Any thoughts on this? It got me looking at the Republic Flooring SPC Great Oregon Oak line. The salesman took scissors to it and it didn’t do a thing. Do you have any advice on this line?

    1. I’m not familiar with that product, but it looks like a laminate, so it’s not waterproof. Basically, you have a choice to make. If scratch/dent proof is what you need, go with a laminate, but know that it absorbs water and moisture. Or, if waterproof is more important to you, go with Coretec or other LVP/EVP. These are waterproof, but they are not scratch nor dent proof. I’m here to tell you that there is NO perfect flooring. It’s a matter of trade-offs.

      But, if you’re considering a laminate, I’d strongly encourage you to consider upgrading to hardwood which is a bit more resilient to water, and you can refinish it when you get scratches or dents. And, the truth is, with dogs and a busy house hold, you will get dents and scratches over time, even with a laminate (or vinyl).

  3. We are looking for new flooring for our rental. We initially were looking at the porcelain tile that has the wood grain. Our contractor was telling us about coretec plus flooring with the big point that it was almost scratch proof and easy to keep clean. We want something that renters would have a hard time damaging, but also look very appealing. We don’t want to have to replace flooring every few years with new renters.
    Looking at reviews for the Coretec on Consumer’s Report it said that it was very durable, but the customer reviews on CR and, all warn on how easily it is scratched. We liked the Coretec HD and were talking about putting it in our home to replace the current beat up cheep vinyl the previous owners put into it. However, we have 3 big dogs and 2 busy young kids and are concerned that they will scratch it up. What are your thoughts? Porcelain tile vs Coretec?

    1. This is a toughie…no flooring is perfect.

      Where do you live? Is it warm/cold?

      I can’t imagine installing tile here in NY area, nor anywhere in Northeast/Mid Atlantic/mid West. It’s just too cold and too hard on your feet.

      Also, this depends on your subfloor. If you have plywood, or any sort of wood, the tile will crack. You would need to either install cement board or mud job and then install tile, so then tile would be significantly more expensive.

      Coretec is an excellent product, and it’s very durable, but it can scratch. But, you can get an extra box or two to fix up areas if you need to. You can also ask renters to have area rugs…which many people here do (as most people here have hardwood flooring).

      If scratchability is your main concern, and you don’t care about waterproof, go for a good quality laminate. Or, if you are planning to rent out for a long period of time, consider solid hardwood flooring which will last you much longer vs any of the alternative options (including tile). And, remember the tile will look dated over time (and it can crack, and if not installed properly it will crack).

      it’s really hard for me to answer you, as I don’t know the details of where you live nor your subfloor.

      Also, BTW, I think the is a new site. And, not sure if they are really flooring experts.

  4. Thank you for the great advice. I have a condo in Mt kisco, I think coretec in the Dakota Walnut finish is the way to go!

    1. How do you like the Coretec Dakota Walnut? I’m seriously considering have it installed in my kitchen, den, family room, living room and foyer.

  5. Can I install Cortec Plus HD over an existing vinyl floor? My den has concrete subfloor and a vinyl floor (currently has carpet but under the carpet is probably the original 70’s vinyl floor). thanks

    1. Pooneej – Yes, you can. Just make sure the vinyl isn’t peeling up. You can just click coretec plus together on top of it. But, do be aware that the floor should be level.

  6. Can you please describe what the Corvallis Pine looks like in a large room? What color is it? Would you consider it a busy pattern or a subtle pattern?

  7. The pictures online looked sort of gray with darker gray graining. I didn’t realize it had an orange tint to it. I was hoping it was a soft pattern. Do you know which of the 5″ planks are a light gray-brown?

    1. Dona – It may be your computer screen.

      In the 5″ plank, try Boardwalk oak. There are several gray options in the 7″ plank. But, they are gray, not a gray brown. You may want to go into a store and look at them in person.

  8. I just went back to the Coretec website and noticed they now have a Plus Premium line that has a 20 mil wear layer and the cork layer is 3 mm. Is this line better than the other lines? I’m still searching for the correct color. Thank you.

  9. This has been incredibly helpful, thank you! I’m ready to purchase and install coretec over radiant heat but my husband is super skeptical, he says vinyl should not go over heat and he’s afraid the floor will get ruined from the heat. Have you heard back from clients who had this installed over radiant heat? Has anyone had issues? I have the manufacturers recommendations but still hestitant…

    1. Sandy – Oh you definitely want to check this with the manufacturer. The heat probably isn’t good for this. I know you can’t use steam mops over coretec plus (or any other EVP). Not sure how high the heat gets with radiant heat, so it’s possible it’s okay.

      All that aside, this is not a great product for radiant heat due to the cork, so it will lower the transfer of heat.

      And, no we have NEVER installed on top of radiant heat, and I would be very hesitant to and would not give a warranty on that!

      Tile is the best flooring for radiant heat…by far.

  10. Looking at Coretec Plus Dakota Walnut. Reading conflicting articles about the need for an underlayment with this. This will be in a daylight basement with a concrete slab foundation. What are your thoughts about some vapor barrier or underlayment when installing it with Coretec Plus flooring?

    1. Brett – No surprises there…it depends on the circumstances of subfloor.

      Yes, you are MUCH safer putting a vapor barrier since it’s a concrete slab foundation. That’s because water can seap through the foundation…unless it’s sealed…and most basements aren’t. The water can enter via hydrostatic pressure if/when the ground gets super saturated with water. This sometimes happens in spring after snow melts and there is a larger accumulation of water. It can also happen after a period of a LOT of rain or hurricane. The water has to go somewhere, and sometimes it gets absorbed into foundation and comes up into the basement.

      Usually this is minor, but sometimes it’s a bit more. But, where this becomes a problem is when it comes up and gets stuck between the subfloor and underneath the Coretec Plus (or any LVP/EVP). And, that can cause mold (as the mold can feed off the cork…or whatever backing there is.

      If you add a vapor barrier you are safe. I hope that made sense.

  11. On the Coretec website, they now have a Plus Premium line that has a 20 mil wear layer and the cork layer is 3 mm. Is this line better than the Coretec Plus?

    1. Dona – Yes, this looks like a super new line. I haven’t seen it in person yet, but yes, I would assume it’s better given its name and thicker underlayment. You could call US Floors to find out more info about it.

  12. We are considering Coretex plus Carolina Pine for our home in VT. We do have dogs and lots of grandkids that visit for ski season. The current floor is pine and is really scratched and marked after 25 years. I have read many reviews and there is a common thread that this product will show scratches very easily. Could you comment?

    1. First, while Coretec Plus can scratch, Carolina Pine tends to show the scratches a lot less than the other ones as it has a rustic pattern. That being said, if you have Pine floors, I’d highly recommend that you just sand and refinish them. Having real wood looks better and goes more with the style. And, it will cost way less. Furthermore, if you have pine floors, chances are that your house is older and as a result, the floors are probably rather uneven, so if you do any sort of floating floor on them, they will bounce.

  13. We are thinking of using COREtec Plus Northwood oak in our house. Mainly living room and the three bedrooms. Once installed we would like to put out 75 gallon fish tank in one of the bedrooms. It weighs approximately 750 lbs. will this flooring hold up to that weight ? I’ll be the installer and looking forward to a new look.

  14. what is the best color option for not too dark and not light. but towards light over dark?
    thank you for any insight, having a hard time deciding on color, have farmhouse look

    1. Joan – Not quite sure how to answer this as there is not “best color option” – it’s a matter of personal preference. But, I would try to get one that is browner in color (ie. without red undertones and don’t go too yellow…to be more stylish). Also, I want to preface this by saying that my definition of dark and yours may be completely different. I would probably consider boardwalk oak, clear lake oak, dakota walnut. But look to see if you like them and order samples. Otherwise, if you go lighter and like yellow, choose one without the reds.

  15. Our contractor recommend this brand for our beach condo remodel. But I’ve read so many bad reviews and then the next person loves it. There are many complaints about scratching and cupping. This is a vacation rental so we need something very durable. Do these planks tend to scratch and cup?

    1. Jeanine – First, let me say that no flooring is perfect – all types have pros and cons. I’ve never had any complaints about the product from my customers…but I also advise them carefully on pros/cons and set expectations properly.

      Regarding cupping, that is NOT normal and not sure how that would happen since the product is waterproof. In fact, even after people have had floods, I haven’t seen cupping. But, I guess it could happen with incorrect installation by do-it-yourselfers. So that to me is not an issue.

      But, the product can scratch…because it’s with heavy scraping, yes, it can scratch…just like any other vinyl.

      It’s hard for me to advise you on what’s the best flooring for your situation as I don’t know where you live (i.e. part of country), subfloor (concrete vs. plywood), what rooms, or which factors are most important to you (e.g. waterproof, scratch resistant, longevity, hardness on feet, value to home, cost, etc.)

      Another consideration may be hardwood floors – that’s what most people do here in Northeast or Mid Atlantic. Solid hardwood will scratch, but it can also be sanded and refinished many times. Or, if the beach house is in an area that is warm year round and built on a slab, you could consider tile…which will not scratch (if that is important to you) and is waterproof. But it is hard on your feet, and often costs more.

  16. Thank you for your detailed response! We’re on the Emerald Coast in Florida. We are removing carpet in some areas, while there is already tile in other areas. We were advised by contractor that Coretec can be installed right over our existing tile and that the “carpet” areas can be leveled to be flush with the tile areas to have a uniform look throughout the condo. Will this work well? Will the grout lines show through the tile?

    Last question, I read complaints about the transfer pieces. That they are more like “stickers” on plastic and do not hold up. Again, thank you for all of your information. We want to make the right choice as it’s a $10,000+ decision.

  17. Hi, Flooring Girl~I like the idea of the Coretec for my elderly parents home-they want to do something like Jeannine, who commented above, putting the Coretec on top of the tile, but leveling up the areas where they have carpet, so the entire house would have the Coretec. Is that something you have done before? I believe I may have read on your blog somewhere that you don’t recommend the Coretec for the bathroom when putting it over tile-is this correct? Thank you in advance for your input! Have an awesome day!

    1. Your could definitely use it throughout the majority of the house and level it up for the areas that are lower. And, NO, I would never recommend for the bathroom! Read above. In short, you can get mold (and edges won’t work well).

  18. We have shiny ceramic tiles with 1/4″ grout that is slightly lower than the tile. We want to cover it with Rigid Core LVT. We are concerned with telescoping in the grout area. we have been told by the installer that it will be fine. Have you seen seen any issues with this?

    1. Charlene – That should not be a problem with Armstrong’s Rigid Core LVT. This does, however, happen with regular glue down vinyl which is why when you use those, you need to smooth out and prep the floor. You are welcome to call Armstrong’s tech department to confirm.

  19. I was looking at both COREtec Plus LVP and Resista Plus H2O LVP at ProSource. I was told by the salesman that Resista Plus H2O is identical to COREtec Plus but is just a private label made by US Floors/Shaw for ProSource to sell. Is that really true, Resista Plus H2O is identical to COREtec Plus in composition and durability?

    1. Sarah – I don’t know. That must be new. Check out the product colors for each and compare them side by side, and then you’ll know. And, compare the prices. Not sure which you would be paying more.

    1. No, coretec plus is not good for bathrooms with showers or bathtubs as water can seap through the edges and can trapped underneath and then cause mold. Also, you can not get clean edges around bathtubs/showers and tile walls so it looks sloppy. Tile is MUCH better for bathrooms.

  20. Thank you for this great blog! My question is about flooring trends — I’m looking to install Coretec Pro Plus Biscayne Oak in kitchen, family room and guest bathroom (no shower). It is “moderate” in shade variation — is shade variation popular now?

    1. Kathy – Yes, that’s a good choice (as long as you like it and it goes with everything in your kitchen). It looks like it may have a bit of orange tones (please check out the sample in person) and more people are gravitating towards from brown colors (without red or undertones).

  21. Hello and thanks for sharing your time and experience with us!
    I have a small slab home with well-attached asbestos tiles on a pretty flat kitchen floor. My cabinets are natural maple and I briefly get sunlight in the morning. It’s been tough to find flooring that I like. I’ve been considering CoreTec’s Dakota Walnut or Carolina Pine (sample not at the store yet), or Earthwerks Parkhill EIR (but warranty doesn’t seem so hot). I’ve struggled to find flooring that I know will go with the cabinets. While I am not a tile fan (the cleaning of it), Paramount’s Myrtle Beach tile I know will be beautiful in my kitchen. So, I am considering paying the extra and getting that. I have some foot issues so always wear shoes in the house, so this might make the cold, hard tile on my already cold, hard concrete a moot point?! Any thoughts, especially about the CoreTec options? I like the Dakota Walnut better but am concerned it will be too dark for my kitchen. Thanks!

    1. Lisa – If you have foot problems, I’d recommend doing some sort of engineered luxury vinyl such as Coretec Plus. You can also look at the RigidCore items that Armstrong has – both have cork underneath. Also, recognize that Coretec Plus has options that look like tile. (I’m not sure if Armstrong does) and you may have an easier time with tile looks.

      Bear in mind if you do real tile over asbestos tile, you would need to first do 1/2 mudjob or self leveling mix to encapsulate/secure the asbestos, so most likely that will add a bit ofer 3/4″ height to your floor. This may become an issue for your appliances (esp dishwasher and may be odd for the height vs your cabinets. This will also add a lot of extra cost.

      Generally, if you do a wood look plank, you want to contrast more with your cabinets. The 2 options you selected are a bit too close in color and have some reds, so you would probably want to go darker if you do wood look. Maybe try Deep Smoked oak (or a tile look as I mentioned above.

      I’d stay away from Earthwerks. Looks like a lower quality product as it only is 6mm and doesn’t look like it has cork underlayment (or any for that matter). Also, it has beveled edges making it hard to clean (dirt will get caught in those bevels. And, oddly enough, it looks like it only has 1 year warranty. Most EVP products have 25 years or more or lifetime warranty.

  22. Hi Debbie. Love your blog and excellent feedback~Thank you for being such a great resource!!! Here’s my question: I see that you are a big fan of the Coretec Plus. How would you compare this to Tarkett ProGen series? I need to install about 1000 sq ft in an office, light traffic~South Florida. Need to have a realistic idea of how both products will react to sun exposure. I’m looking to have something that will stand the test of time and also maintain it’s beauty over time. I was leaning heavily towards the Tarkett ProGen product because my perception is that this is a very strong, durable, waterproof product, with rigid core technology. But, you have me wondering if maybe I should consider Coretec Plus or maybe even the Armstrong Luxe. ??? Are they equals, all things considered? Please let me know your thoughts on these three, side by side comparisons, if possible. Thanks so much!!!

    1. Esther – Sorry for the delay. I’ve been on vacation Thanksgiving week. I have not used the Tarkett product, but it looks much thinner – only 5mm, rather than Coretec and Armstrong’s which are 8mm. And, it doesn’t look like there’s a cork backing.

      In the past, I have occasionally used other Tarkett products, and they have all been cheaper and inferior to the standards.

      Also, I’m sure Cortec and Armstrong’s products hold up better to the sun and have some built in protection. You can call their tech departments to get more detail on that.

  23. Hi
    Thanks for this thread. I’ve gotten a great deal of information from this Can I ask what is your opinion of he coretec Pro Plus line?


    1. Anthony – You’re welcome. I’m sure it’s good because it’s does need to hold up to commercial traffic. So, it’s probably denser and higher grade than the other lines. However, we rarely do commercial work, so I haven’t actually used it.

  24. HI Flooring Girl,
    Stumbled across your blog with a google search. THANK YOU! Very helpful 🙂
    Sully question–if we install a Coretec Plus floor, can we conceivably pick it up and move it with us?! We are renting with the hope of eventually buying the place and doing a total remodel. Being able to re-lay the floor once done is a real plus and makes a it less expensive option.
    Thanks again!

    1. Leslie – You could try this, but it can be rather challenging. You have to be super careful when removing it so that you don’t break the locking mechanism. So, I would expect to have some breakage. If the space you are going to put it into is less, it might work. But, be very careful and be prepared to buy some extra.

  25. you recommend no glue but manufacture recommends glue down if heavy objects.we are doing our kitchen, is it okay in your opinion to not glue and still be ok with a heavy fridge

  26. We are remodeling our house and plan to install Coretec HD. We have narrowed it down to Barnwood Rustic Pine and Delta Rustic Pine. We have a beautiful slate tile in our foyer that we are planning to keep. Our kitchen cabinets will be white. My family is split evenly between the 2. Any thoughts, opinions or advice to help us!

    1. Oh gosh, please don’t make me the decision maker. Both are great choices. It’s hard for me as I can’t see your space. Personally I would probably go with Delta as it’s a bit more neutral and will have more staying power…and easier to decorate with (as it’s brown as opposed to reddish/copperish. But, I can’t see the colors of your slate…there are many varieties of slate. Some have that copperish woven in and if so, the Barnwood could look perfect with it and it’s a bit lighter. Glad your cabinets are white, BTW.

  27. Barnwood looks great with our slate tile foyer. My major concern is that it will have more of a streaked look than the delta. It is so hard to tell by the sample board and by looking at pictures. We want something that definitely looks like real hardwoods. We will never remodel or replace floors again in my lifetime so I don’t want something that is trendy now but won’t be in 5 years.

  28. Hello! I’m planning a kitchen remodel and as part of it will replace the kitchen flooring (currently sheet vinyl) as well as all flooring on the main level which includes entry (currently tile) and formal living and dining rooms (currently carpet.) Think I will have to break up the tile, but wondering if I’ll also have to tear up the sheet vinyl to let level subfloor throughout? Also, I’m looking at the new CoreTex Plus Premium line with 3mm of cork backing. Has your company had any experience with the thicker underlayment (double the thickness 3mm versus 1.5mm cork on other product lines.)

    1. Rachel – I would have someone local look at your situation. It depends on what type of vinyl you have, how level your floor is and what condition it’s in as well as the type of flooring you plan to use and your subfloor. But, if you decide to use Coretec plus, it’s a pretty flexible product as it can go on top of vinyl (and most other surfaces), so then you only need to worry about how level your floor is. And, I’m sorry, I’m not familiar with the thicker cork underlayment. I would guess that it helps a bit more for floors that a bit less even and gives a bit more cushioning and insulation. I’ll have to check it out.

    1. Linda – So glad to hear that. Coretec Plus is an amazing product. No, it doesn’t have a wood-like smell. At least I’ve never noticed a woodsy smell. It’s not made of wood.

  29. I was told that the cork underlayment is not waterproof but water resistant….that is a concern for me. Also, you mentioned sewage blockages….how about if the toilet overflowed?
    Thank You

    1. Dawn – Cork is waterproof. Just looks at your wine bottles with cork if you don’t believe me.

      Not sure about toilet overflow..for ANY surface. In tile it is the worst as the grout will absorb toilet water.

      BUT, this should NOT be an issue as you should NOT install Coretec Plus (nor other LVPs) in bathrooms (as I’ve mentioned several times in the article.

      Tile is best for bathrooms and be sure to seal the grout and reseal every year, and you’ll be fine

  30. I love your blog – very helpful! What color LVP would you recommend for a home with Agreeable Gray walls (by Sherwin Williams)?

  31. Thank you for all your input and sharing your knowledge. You have convinced me this is the right product for my family.
    Here are my questions:
    I just recently bought a house that has sheet vinyl, laminate carpet and tile in the bathrooms. I was wanting to install the Coretec plus XL through the whole house. Do you think I will need to rip out all the flooring or just the carpet? My plan was to install it in the bathrooms too. Why do you not suggest it?

    1. Leave the tile in the bathroom. You do not want to put coretec there. rip up the carpet and the laminate (laminate is floating and you would never want to put a floor on top of that. You can leave and go over the vinyl.

  32. You recommend the Coretec Plus and staying away from Coretec One, but in 2020 it looks like they introduced a Coretec One Plus. It seems to include the attached cork; do you think it’s a reasonable option for low traffic residential?

    And thank you for this blog and info. I’ve reached out in the past and found your advice super helpful.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Getting overwhelmed with paint shades?

Grab these FREE paint shade planning sheets to organize your paint colors in each room.

This makes it easy to coordinate shades for walls, accent walls and trim. Print as many as you like.

Get instant access! They’re FREE!

Paint shade planning sheets
Subscriber exclusive offer
The Flooring Girl
The Top10 Flooring mistakes...and how to avoid them!
Grab It for FREE
Scroll to Top