Inexpensive Interior Improvements

Installing vinyl plank flooring.

When looking to spruce up your home, there are literally dozens of ideas that can make an impact that won’t break the bank at the same time. Of course, you still need to live by the old adage, “You get what you pay for,” so you also don’t want to purchase materials that are inferior.

Changing the Flooring

Vinyl Tile

On the inside of your home, changing the flooring can make a tremendous difference; and if you are doing the job yourself, then the labor savings will help cut down on the overall cost of the job. One of the simplest floors to install is vinyl tile. Often called a “peel-and-stick” floor, you can easily cover a bathroom, laundry room or even a kitchen in only a day.

The cost of these tiles vary depending on the thickness and the manufacturer. While this is an easy do-it-yourself job, this is also where you need to be aware of “cheap” vs. “inexpensive.” Vinyl tiles that have a thickness of 3 mil or less will be very affordable, but they won’t last very long either.

Wear and tear of higher traffic areas will mean that you’ll be replacing the floor again in a very short time. The thing you want to look at with vinyl tile is not the price, but the thickness. Tiles that are from 6-12 mil will handle high traffic areas much more easily.

trafficMASTER® Allure Vinyl Flooring

But, for a really easy and affordable do-it-yourself job with a twist, you should really check out this new floor by trafficMASTER®. Their product is called Allure Vinyl Flooring. It looks like a very high end hardwood floor and the vinyl planks stick to each other, so no messy adhesives are used.

In fact, the manufacturer claims that only a razor knife is needed to install this floor. It comes in three finishes – light oak, hickory and cherry – and can be installed on top of any existing hard surface, such as vinyl or concrete.

The best part is the price. It only costs $1.69 per square foot, which means an average 12’ x 12’ room would only cost around $250 in material. This is a product exclusive to the Home Depot.

Carpet Tiles

Carpet has long been a favorite material for flooring since it’s comfortable on the feet and helps create a welcome feeling in a room. But, installing carpet is usually a job best left for the professional installer, and this is where the cost of a improvement project can really skyrocket.

Here’s a great inexpensive alternative for carpet. A carpet tile, such as this one manufactured by Legato, can be installed by practically anyone. In fact, they were designed specifically for the do-it-yourselfer. Each carpet panel is just under 2’ x 2’ and is straight on two sides and features unique wave edges on the other two sides that interlock.

The material that holds each panel to the floor is the specialized padding manufactured into the back of the panels that grips the floor, keeping each panel right where you set it down. It requires no glue, adhesives, or nails and you can install it wall to wall for the look of traditional carpeting or make your own area rug to define a conversation area.

However, easy installation is only part of the story. Since the carpet panels are precisely engineered, they can be moved at will. So if your children are drawing with permanent markers and get ink on the carpet, you can simply lift out the stained panel and replace it with a new one, or you can switch it with a panel located under a sofa where the stain won’t show.

There are twelve colors available and, the material will run about $2.67 per square foot. That means an average size room (12’x12’) would cost under $400 in materials.

Ceramic Tile Grout Cleaner

Ceramic is also another low cost flooring if you can install it yourself. In many cases you may already have ceramic, but it just doesn’t look as good as it used to. The tiles may be fine, but the grout lines are dirty and dingy.

If attempts at cleaning have failed, here’s a solution that costs very little. Most home centers will carry a grout stain that can be either applied by brush or with a handy built-in applicator, similar to applying shoe polish. Grout stain is a high performance sealer that extends grout joint life and reduces daily maintenance to a minimum.

A grout stain can help bring back the original luster of the grout line and can make a world of difference in the appearance of the floor. You can usually find these stains in a variety of colors and sizes, even up to a gallon.

However, a little bit goes a long way, so this is definitely an inexpensive transformation. For a bottle of grout cleaner and a ½ pint of grout stain, you’ll spend just under $20.

Faux Finish Painting

Moving from the floors to the walls, one of the most dramatic changes a room can experience is a simple coat of paint. But here’s another idea, take only one wall in a room and make it an accent wall by applying a faux finish. By only painting one wall, you save both time and money. Plus, there are new tools available to make this job a breeze.

Practically everything can be done with a roller, which means a wall can be completed in a matter of hours or as soon as base colors are dry. Even the faux work can be done using a specially designed roller. Most of the faux specialty tools will run between $5-$10, or you can save a few dollars by applying the faux finish with a rag, piece of sponge or even a wad of plastic wrap.

It looks great and it’s really not as difficult as you may think. But, if you want some training, you can even get that for free at some of the larger home centers. Very often they will offer demonstrations and training at no cost during the weekend. Add the cost of some paint, and your project can still come in under $50.

Ceiling Fans

Next, we turn our attention upward. Many homes are equipped with ceiling fans, but over time they can become dirty, ragged, and somewhat distressed. Here’s a fabulous fix-me-up for your fan that will only cost a few dollars.

Remove the fan blades and clean them of any dust and dirt. It may be that the blades are reversible, which means you have a totally different color on the other side. Another possibility is to simply purchase a set of replacement blades. You can buy packs of four or five starting around $12.

Even if yours aren’t reversible or are a color that you don’t like, you can paint them! Take a little sandpaper and rough up the surface of the blade after you clean it. Wipe it down once again to remove any lingering dust from the sanding. Then, using a good quality spray paint – any color you choose – coat the blade with a thin layer of paint. Wait for that coat to dry, then apply a second coat. This will make a dramatic change in your ceiling fan.

For an even larger effect, install a new light kit at the bottom of the fan to completely alter the appearance. Most of the newer fans today either come with a light kit or can accept one. This is such a minimal cost for an impressive change.


  1. I bought and paid $40 per box for the Allure flooring for my kitchen. I used 8 boxes. It has scratch marks ALL over it. I’ve only had it about 2 months, and it looks terrible. Nothing I read on the internet said that is was easy to scratch, in fact, it said that it was very durable. It is only me and my teenage son and we have not pets, so I don’t know how we could’ve made it look so bad. Can anyone tell me a way to make the scratches less noticeable.

  2. Linda,
    This is discouraging news for me. I just bought $1000 worth of this flooring – the oak – for a new renovation of offices and a guest room / hallway. I had not heard ANYTHING bad about the Allure product until your posting. Which color did you get? I am very surprised to hear this. Have you called anyone – Home Depot or TrafficMaster? It may really be a manufacturing defect in the lot that you got. It sure is worth a couple of phone calls. I have not yet installed mine and could return it, but I am thinking that your experience is unique. You really should investigate a bit further. Check out this forum.:

    read post #34 – she did a durability test and then tells how to clean it up…

    Let me know how it goes for you.


  3. I have just finished laying a 10m x 3.6m room with the Trafficmaster Allure flooring and when I finished it looked superb and I was so proud of myself. A few days later however, I am experiencing a 1mm shrinkage in length on some, not all of the planks, which I laid pefectly according to the instructions. Now I am not so impressed and i have taken the matter up with the supplier who promises to get back to me next week with an explanation. Have you heard of this happening with anyone else and if so what is the cause?

  4. We laid 450 sf of the Allure Cherry 5 days ago. It looks beautiful, I have had no shrinkage of the planks, we had them onsite for more than the 48 hrs the instructions advise. Maybe it is a difference in the weather and or humidity.

  5. How did you lay the strips out. I want it to look like random boards but not sure how to cut them to look that way. Any advice?

  6. to alice: cut random starter planks such as 12, 16, 18, 24, 32″ pieces. start full plank; run length of room, next row starts with one of your random cuts, and continue after this fashion. drop-off cuts at end of runs will be random and should be returned to head of run as leads to eliminate excessive waste, and to maintain random pattern. can be reached at:

  7. to Andrew: linear shrinkage in planks is usually due to acclimation deficiency. my rule when installing hardwoods, laminates,etc., is to have product stored in home, stacked in a manner which allows air flow around product, and to allow acclimation for a full day longer than manufacturer specs.

  8. dutch,
    We stored our planks in the house before we used them. Now we are getting shrinkaga. We live in Maine and the weather does change. Do all planks shrink and expand according to the weather?

  9. we put down 320 feet of allure in i guess its oak or hickory it is so nice except it does not seem to shine enough it is next to vinyl tiles that are the same color but parquet and the tiles shine a tiny bit more how can i bring up the luster on the allure can i use rejuvenate on it or will that take the guarantee away also we laid it to look like real wood by cutting every other one at the start of the row

  10. I put this in, had no problems with shrinkage or anything else, but after cleaning, I noticed that it felt too slick to walk on. Anything I can do now, or do I just wait for it to wear off?

  11. Orange Glo has come out with a new product for laminate flooring. I have not used it but I have used the hardwood cleaner and restorer and those products are great. The laminate flooring is sold in the blue bottle. I saw it on

    I know you’re not supposed to wax laminate flooring, at least mine your not. I have Dupont laminate in my kitchen that looks like travertine and it’s wearing well.

  12. I’ve had the Allure Oak in my kitchen & dinette for more than a year and love it still. We put it over old peel & stick tile, that was swept & cleaned before & during install. I only sweep or use a Swifter to clean it. We have 3 dogs, one a 70# mix breed & 2 Jacks barrelling through this area several times a day. I’ve used scraps & tried staining & have found nothing that a spray cleaner (I use Awesome from the Dollar Tree) won’t take it off – even permanent marker, or a Mr. Clean Magic eraser (once for a scuff or tar, we’re not sure what it was). The first thing I noticed was that I didn’t slide when coming in with snowy shoes or water spills. A “smoothed” area that occurred when I dropped my end of the fridge too soon after install, has disappeared. A friend of mine installed her same flooring on a 97 degree day with high humidity and there was slight shrinkage, only on the ends of the planks, after she put in a/c & the weather cooled. I’m planning on installing one of the in-stock Allure in a guest room and a special order (yes, different woods and also tile looks are now available by special order for $1.99/sf in 24 sf boxes!) barnwood in the dining room we are now remodeling. I would recommend pads on chairs & tables, etc. While the flooring is resilliant and resistant to scratches, it’s not impervious to same. I work at a Home Depot in the flooring dept. & if anyone is having problems with the product, please go in or call the Home Depot where it was purchased. My before & after pics in the store have been a sales tool since I took them in for show & tell in November of 2006. As far as I know, any product applied to add shine will void the warranty, and probably make the floor slippery. We even have a customer installing the Allure in a bar, although it’s not currently rated for commercial use. When we got it in the store & I installed it, there was very little info on the Internet at all.

  13. You arent supposed to clean them with anything more than a damp mop floor anyway. My floor is white therefore does show dirt more than a wood floor. I use swiffer and water most of the time. It never was shiny so I never had that concern. Mine is Dupont Elite tho,I have no idea about the allure. I wamted stone and at that time thats all they made was the travertine by Dupont..that I could find locally.

  14. On the subject of faux finishing, I have done this professionally. Another simple cheap trick to “fix” a wall that is not quite smooth without breaking the bank or your back is to add sand or the larger texture bits to the paint depending on the condition of the wall. In a perfect world the wall would be replaced but when money and time doesnt allow that, it does work well. You can do a sponged effect over that when it dries as well if you want something even more dramatic. I have stenciled and painted on textured walls before and it’s surprisingly pretty and anyone can stencil with very little effort. Thats my two cents this week;)

  15. Someone installed ceramic tiles in my kitchen, but did not put down the sealant.
    Now the grout is dirty. I’m going to try your suggestion on grout cleaner.

  16. As far as I know, any product applied to add shine will void the warranty, and probably make the floor slippery. We even have a customer installing the Allure in a bar, although it’s not currently rated for commercial use. When we got it in the store & I installed it, there was very little info on the Internet at all.

  17. I am considering installing this product in a basement play room. Did you get any more info on the scuff problem or the mold problem?

  18. We installed the Allure about 5 months ago and now notice many scratches on the floor. I thought this was a durable product?!? We have a 3 year old but no pets and nothing that should mark the floor so easily. The scratches are right in the middle of the floor so replacing the planks is not something I want to resort to. Anyone have any tips on what to do about the scratches? Thanks!

  19. I would like to convert a closet approx.2’x5′
    into a powder room – just a sink & toilet.
    Anyone have an idea if it can be done and, if
    so, how to go about it. Thanks!

  20. I purchased the allure floor from Home Depot in Roanoak Texas on 3-29-08. When I purchased this floor I asked how long until delivery. They told me 7-14 days. I have now been waiting for 2 1/2 months and still havent received it yet. Every time I call I get a different story on why my floor is not in yet. The manager Kevin has tried his best and has been very helpful. The woman that works in the flooring dept Kathy is rude uncooperative and just plain doesnt care. I dont really want to cancel my floor because it is just what I wanted. It just looks like that is just what will happen.

  21. I am really interested in installing the Allure in my kitchen and family room. However, I have two large dogs (100+ pounds each) and 4 children (ages 6-15). I really need something durable. What are your opinions, should I use this product or opt for the more expensive laminate flooring?

  22. I have heard unfavorable comments on the allure flooring. I have used the Dupont laminate and have had it installed in a high traffic kitchen with a large english sheepdog for three years. I love it. i have to be careful not to get it really really wet when I wash it, or let it soak which is a habit of mine but besides that I love it. We used the travertine ( stone) which really mimics the stone well when its down, but I presume the wood Dupont would wear as well. That is the only type I have used to date.

  23. Just installed Allure in the living room over sealed and painted wood subflooring. Went down great, looks great, Fingers crossed it will stay great. Husband hates home improvement projects, and he had an easy time of putting this down, we are even able to return the two extra boxes we purchased “just incase” (always get 10% extra, they say) because there was virtually no error planks. Just need the trim now. Wish this product had some sort of application for a staircase. I hate that I am going to have to carpet the stairs leading up to the living room. Oh, well!

  24. I purchased the Traffic Master Brazillian Cherry from Home Depot in January 2007. We were in the middle of a remodel when I had to have back surgery. THe flooring was stacked in the heated/cooled room until July 2008 when we re-started finishing the room. When we started removing the planks from the packaging, we found almost all planks have cracks in the wear layer. You can actually feel these, not just see them. Now im afraid that if I lay this floor the cracks will really open up. Has anyone seen this problem?

  25. Am installing Allure flooring right now. Have laid African Mahogany in living and dining room area, directly into cyprus tile for kitchen and entry. I have a small gap between two of the tile planks and I want to lift it and replace that plank, but don’t want to lose the adhesive bond when I put another plank down. I will have adhesive on the new plank, but the existing plank (with adhesive strip facing up) will be wrecked. My question is, does anyone have any suggestions for products that can be used to bond these planks together?

  26. The fine print on this product is that it is available exclusively from Home Depot. That should be enough for you to run for your life. Any product that scratches, shrinks, is slick and cracks, sucks and that is all you need to know.

  27. I have been reading your posts and there are two groups. Some of you hate this stuff because it scratches and shrinks. Some of you love it. My hunch is that the difference may be which of the specific planks you laid. I am thinking of mixing the hickory with the slate. I want the center of the room to be tile. So, has anybody laid hickory or the slate? I want to lay this in my kitchen, living room dining room, and family room. My mom, who has lots of accidents, is moving in with us instead of a nursing home so I need to work quickly and have somehting that is waterproof…any suggestions?

  28. I just finished laying the Hickory 2:30 a.m. Thanksgiving morning in the kitchen/dining area. It looks good so I guess that it’s to early to tell whether it will last. I wished the the “wet look” could be kept, as the floor should be mopped a 2-3 times to remove wax residue from the paper lining it was shipped with.I think that it is more appealing (the wet look) and more of what you’d want the floor to look like. Home Depot is now selling 2 Allure brand cleaning products. One satin finish and the other “Glossy” yeah right!.

  29. I recently installed Dupont Real Touch Elite (ivory por). I love it as it looks like ceramic tile even with the texture. I still havent found the bestway to clean it. I have tried vinegar and water which looked dull.. Ditto with spray windex which also looked dull after it dried. Any ideas to clean it but maintain its luster?

  30. I just put the new traffic master allure flooring in my bathroom. love the look. we put pvc piping under sink and husband dripped a few dropps of that purple primer on floor. now I was wondering how or can it be replaced we have extra pieces and it is an 3 planked end piece it is the ceramic tile looking stuff can uyou help

  31. Did anybody get rid of scuff marks? We put the Trafficmaster Allure flooring in two unused bedrooms (the bamboo) in ’08. Looked FABULOUS until the first guests came. There are marks all over the floors from luggage rollers, high heels, etc and I can’t get them off. There are even marks where an inflatable bed was slid into place on a dust free fanatically cleaned and virtually new floor! I’ve tried vinyl floor cleaner (by Tarkett) and erasers. Neither worked, and the problem is the entire room needs to be “de-scuffed”. We were so smug about such a great look for such a cheap price. Looks like we got what we paid for…

  32. Is this “allure” product safe? I’ve read comments re: odor remaining after installation and unsafe chemicals used in product. Does anyone know anything about this? I need to replace carpet in basement (concrete) floors, approx 1000 sq.ft. and not sure about this product. Your comments are appreciated.

  33. In December, 2009, we installed Allure flooring in our kitchen, dining room and bathrooms. We purchased it from Home Depot and they installed it for us. So far so good! We really like it! We didn’t notice any odor remaining after the installation. However, I’m still confused as to how to clean it. Has anyone tried the wet jet swiffer? Is that safe to use or would it cause some type of problems with the floors later on? Directions indicate that abrasive cleaners should not be used. Any hints on how to clean the allure flooring would be very much appreciated.

  34. We just installed ours a few weeks ago in our kitchen and it looks great!! I also have questions about cleaning it because I’m hesitant to use the Swiffer Wet Jet, after reading the floor manual. If anyone has experience with this, I’d love to know. Thanks!

  35. I laid the hickory m kitchen, dining room, and living room. I really like the looks of hit but i have 2 labs and 3 boys, my has scratched very easily and scuff marks that i can’t get off.

  36. I am question your post Danny. You say that the pile and stick vinyl tiles look for a thickness of 6-12mil and then you tout the great Allure flooring which is only 2mil. Is Home Depot paying for the great review on the Allure?

  37. My husband and I installed hardwood floors in our home but we needed something durable for the kitchen and family room as well as front entrance way. I thought this product was going to be fantastic. We had all hardwoods as well as the allure installed by a professional. However, half way through the install process in the hallway, I told the installer to STOP!! I also have ceased all installation in my family room because this product is so soft that it shows these horrible shiny scuff marks all over from anything. You can probably get scuff marks from your owm feet. I have never ever seen anything quite like this and am calling Home depot in the morning for either a full refund or they go to court. I have had to pay for installatin on floor that looks ten years old after not even using it..just basically walking on it and bringing a few grocery bags left shiny marks all over. There are areas that have a mottled appearaance or worn. This is a horrrible floor and Home Depot should not even sell a product that claims to be so resilient. It is not! I am having my new appliances brought in next week and just shudder as to how it will mark the floors putting them in. This is by far the worst product I have ever seen. I bought the milano grey that is a plank flooring that is supposed to appear to look like a grey bamboo. It does not look or feel like wood in the least. Very disppointed and do not buy this cheap cheap product!

  38. I’ve been reading the commentaries on this product and am really suprised. I live it Houston, Texas and have installed this flooring in all rooms except the kitchen, 2 baths and one bedroom. I haven’t had any product decomposition, shrinking, etc and few aberrrations to the surface such as scratches. I’m very active with home imporvement projects, landscaping and enter and exit the house constantly. I also have 50 lb dog. I’ve been quite pleased with this product. It’s easy to clean, doesn’t hold stains and not in the least bothered by water. It’s very forgiving of unlevel substrates (as long as there are not sharp projections or sharp cracks). It’s a breeze to install and looks as good as any laminates I’ve seen. It’s more durable than roll vinyl flooring and vinyl squares, well one can crumble them with one hand. I’ve been able to remove scuff marks with just very mild detergent or water.
    If a section needs replacement it can be carefully done. Another advantage is that if it ever has to be removed it’s a sinch. And for a budget shopper, it beats most other options hands down. It’s the most practical flooring option I’ve seen in a long time…

  39. I just finished laying 10 boxes of the ALlure Sedona tiles and like the looks except a few places where I left a thin gap, like 1/64 inch between pieces. Is there any type of grout or caulking recommended to close these tiny places in?


  40. We bought 13 boxes of Allure flooring. It went down easily. Looked great until we put the table and chairs back in the kitchen. We put new felt pads on the chairs. We didn’t even sit in them and it left marks when you move it. It mars easily and you can’t get the marks out. The other problem is the odor. It’s been a month and it smells. I tried baking soda and water, vinegar and water and 3 layers of the sealer they sell. It still stinks. Neither my friend or my daughter can stay longer than 10 minutes as they have asthma and can’t breath because of the odor. We have headaches every day. We left the doors and windows open but we live in OH and it’s time to use heat. I called the company and Home Dept. I sent pictures of the floor and they say they never spoke to me. So now I’ve written letters to mail to Home Depot, Halstead International and my credit card company complaining of the problem. I wish we could rip it out, get our money back and never ever hear the name Allure Flooring again. If you are thinking of buying it don’t and save yourself a lot of problems and headaches.

  41. Just purchased and installed Allure “American Walnut” from Home Depot. I’ve noticed many shiny scuff marks that won’t come off. The most frustrating thing is that non abrasive things such as plastic knee pads caused what appears to be permanent damage. I haven’t contacted Home Depot yet, but how can this product continually be sold without disclosing this apparent flaw? My wife just moved her photography business into a new office and the floor is starting to look horrible without even opening for business. (Expletive)

  42. We also bought and installed $2500 worth of Allure American Walnut flooring from Home Depot. DO NOT BUY THIS PRODUCT. We’ve only had it for 6 months and it looks horrible! Don’t believe the product info….it scratches super easily and because of the dark color it shows every scratch, scuff mark, etc, and they don’t come out. Its so thin so it shows every little bump and seam in the floor. We sanded and rolled before we installed it, and that still didn’t help. It looks absolutely awful in natural light…I’m so sad about all of the scratches.

    Did anyone else have this problem and is there anyway to make the scratches less noticeable??

  43. We installed Allure flooring, Hickory planks, and are absolutely DISGUSTED! It is NOT what the company says it is! It scuff and scratches so easily, and these marks can not be removed. The company claims it is ”super heavy duty”..NOT!! It looks horrible! People should get together and sue this company for false advertisement!! Home Depot should be ashamed for selling this as well!

  44. I am honestly thinking about going after MetroFlor Corp / Halstead International the makers of Allure Traffic Master Flooring. I purchased 3000 SFT. of the product and after 6 months it looks like crap. I have scuff marks all through out the house. If you would like to email me my email address is Please email me and maybe we can help each other.

  45. I installed about 3000SF of the Allure Flooring and wish I never had. The scuffing is absolutely horrible. I called and complained with Halstead International but of course they are doing nothing but giving me the run around. So much for their 25 year warranty.

  46. I had Allure Teak Traffic Master from Home Depot, installed in September, 2010 in my kitchen, breakfast room and 2 small hallways. I have some residue that actually looks like very, very fine sand particles. I can clean it one day and it has the same residue the next day. There are only 2 adults in the house and no pets. I have not yet used the one step cleaner soft satin finisher that I also bought at Home Depot. No one there at Home Depot or the installers gave me any suggestions about caring for this. I would appreciate any comments about the sandy residue.

  47. My husband and I bought 900 sq ft of african wood allure. We have bulges the end of some of the planks because didn’t smooth out. We also had

    bad scratches and rubber or skid marks all over. Had I ad it to do all over again I wou have never bought allure flooring.

  48. Same thing here. Scuffs marks are impossible to remove. It is just my husband and I. Has anyone found the solution to cleaning this floor? I haven’t. I didn’t realize the Allure product was a Home Depot only product. Would have avoided it altogether. It looks terrible.

  49. I have had the same problem with my allure flooring it looked great{Walnut} when I first installed it in my Newly renovated Mancave!! until the first get together for the Superbowl!! Scuffmarks everywhere which the one step aplication sold at HD does not get out!!I mean come on I spent 650 on a 20 by 14 size room and expected the floor to look good for a long time since it is so durable yes durable to deep scratches maybe but scuffmarks all over the floor from sneakers is ridiculous and makes it look lousy!!

  50. In order to get a better picture here of the line of products, is the scuffing happening to the wood planks alone or is it appearing on both the wood planks and the “ceramic” tile planks?

    I noticed they had a new product out this summer. It might be helpful here if everybody listed the product name they used (for better or for worse) so that we know which ones to stay away from or if it’s just the WHOLE Allure product that is bad.

  51. I have ceremic tile with the appearance of wood grain it is medium brown. it looks real nice and I’m pleased with the look. It has been in the house for about 5 years.It is in my kitchen dining room and bathrooms and also in all the hallways. I just installed lite natural oak wood flooring in my living room, adjacent to the kitchen,dining room and hallways. My home has a open look an I really think I made the wrong choice. It has given my home a scrambled look. I am not happy with the look of my home. I really, need HELP!!! I am so disappointed in my floors Thanks so Much!

  52. I’m in love with the Allure African Wood planks, so I picked up a sample to bring home. While at the store, I also liked one of their ceramic designs, so I picked up a sample of it and brought both of them home to test them out. I am HUGELY disappointed in the African Wood… A light brushing of the back of my fingernail left NUMEROUS scuff marks that were VERY obvious. I have taken various objects and applied light to hard pressure, and, even something with a dull edge left a HUGE scratch in the sample. The ceramic sample did show one scratch, but so far it has passed my fingernail test, as well as some other objects I have attempted to scratch or scuff it with… That may be because the pattern doesn’t let a scuff be as noticeable though.

  53. I only put 150SF Cherry in my kitchen area. I love it!
    WE don’t allow shoes in the kitchen, so no scuffing. I would not entertain the idea of using Allure in a large room, with direct sunlight. I have heard complaints about imperfections etc, when the light glares on the product. It’s great in the Utility room and/or kitchen. I laid the cherry over 12 x 12 tile…looks great!

  54. I used the Sedona Allure tiles for a small bathroom project. I find that I need only one more tile to finish, but Home Depot is saying that they only sell the whole box and not a tile or two for repairs. A whole box is a little over kill. I am looking for advice on if one can purchase one or two tile somewhere. If so, where?

  55. I installed this product (Hickory) in my living room, dining room, entrance way and two bedrooms. I am very disapointed as well. Not only do I have scratches from furniture (you have to make sure you have felt pads under EVERYTHING) but the colour is wearing off on heavy traffic areas and shows white. Very obvious since the floor is a dark colour. I did purchase extra so now i have to remove about 15 pieces and replace after only 3 years. I am going to call them to discuss but the last time I called them when i first did the install (some pieces were manufactured badly) they explained how to remove it and sent me some glue so I am sure I will probably get the same answer. Not happy!

  56. i purchased traffic master allure for my kitchen and living room n dining room…i love it .. but it is dull…i bought bruces spray and i have a spray wet mop but it looks dull, what should i do?????

  57. we bought allure flooring for about 840 sq. foot less then a year ago. we spent a lot of money and was told by the flooring guy at home depot that this was the best product ever. well as of today it is scratched..dented..nicked and even dull in some areas. some of the planks have shrunk. I an totally disgusted. And have to look into the warranty ( which is never fun )

  58. We purchased 73 boxes of Allure. What a nightmare. Scratches, separation, buldging, odor, white marks from shrinking. What were they thinking when they produced this stuff? They say it stands up to heavy traffic. Only if you wear fuzzy slippers all the time. I am working with Halstead on a solution. We’ll see if their solution is the same as mine. Can you put this stuff in the landfill? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

  59. I picked up a small sample of this Allure resilient plank flooring at Home Depot and the rest of the day my eye lids were swelled and my face itched and my throat was severely itching so bad I was miserable. It was later in the day before I realized it was the flooring. I took the sample and rubbed it directly on my face and I broke out in a rash and my eye lids swelled up again. The sample I picked up had a very strong chemical odor to it, which I assumed would dissipate after being laid, but now I am not so sure. I have read accounts all over the internet about folks complaining of the odor and headaches, ect. I certainly had a bad reaction. Please save yourself grief and buy REAL wood or use tile or stained concrete… something more natural and avoid this ‘made in China’ stuff… who knows what is in it. It isn’t worth poisoning your house and your family and pets!

  60. We put Allure down about 8 months ago in our kitchen and dining room, both high traffic areas. We have had no problem at all. I was ready to purchase real wood but didn’t want to be the floor police, panicking at every spill and scrape. Then I thought about the laminates, but I have had that before and got swelling between the planks from water. We have grandchildren, cats and dogs and one cat is very old and has occasional “accidents.” I am so glad I decided to buy Allure. It is waterproof and perfect for our lifestyle. Our dogs have not scratched the floor at all. And by the way, have you looked at real wood floors with dog scratches? Not pretty. Nothing is perfect, but for us, this has worked very well. We bought the cherry and it is very pretty. If I had any complaint, it would be that I would like a shinier finish. When wet, the “grain” shows more and I think it looks prettier. But all in all, I love it. Also, my 16 year old grandson and I put the floor down from start to finish!

  61. We just had this Allure Flooring laid on Tuesday and already had the man from the company (the middleman) come out at see all the scuffs and marks left by the men who laid the floor. The entire floor (2 rooms) are scuffed horribly and they could not remove the scuffs. They tried. We made Home Depot aware of the problem as soon as the men left so we could not be blamed. We’re waiting to hear back as to how this will be resolved. I want this brand new floor repaired or out of here. I wish I had done more research before buying it. I wish salespeople were more honest. We’re both very disappointed.

  62. We installed the African Allure flooring and I hate it. It scratches, scuffs and looks terrible after less than 12 months. Good luck with the warranty. They will not back this product. Home Depot should be ashamed to sell such a horrible product. My home has high traffic and this flooring needs to be replaced. I would not recommend this to anyone.

  63. I installed Allure flooring (cherry) in my home aprox. 5 years ago…. and LOVE it!!!!…… However, I recently noticed that the finish is staring to wear in random places, exposing white bits here and there (as if the top layer has been scraped off). My question is: What product can I use to cover these white areas? Does Allure (or someone) make a stain that will adhere to this flooring? I tried a sharpie pen (as the white areas are very small….. but VERY noticeable on a cherry colored floor. Unfortunately, the sharpie pen just doesn’t adhere for very long. Any ideas?

    Thanks for your response!!!

  64. Wow. Horrid experience. I June I had TrafficMaster Maple Honeytone vinyl flooring installed by HomeDepot. My plan was to have the entire house done, however, on the very first day some of the short ends began to buckle. I pointed this out to the installers on the second day and was told it would settle. By the end if the second day, more were buckling. On the third day I requested the installers stop before continuing with the dining room and kitchen.
    I felt I needed additional confirmation and promise that the floors would settle and immediately spoke with the HomeDepot representatuve. This turned out to be a game of cat and mouse. Weeks later a rep from the installation company came out. I showed him the tile that cut my toe and hebsaw my toe and the sharp edge of the buckling tile. He noted the buckling at the short ends, as well as peeling of the top layers on some of the tiles. He stated it was a product problem and he would get in touch with the manufacturer. Another game of cat and mouse began.
    The last I talked to HomeDepot I told them I did not feel I should continue to pay for the floors until this was resolved. I was told they (homedepot), “didnt care because they already had their money”, and that they would call the manufacturer again.
    A few weeks later I recieved a call from the manufactuer and they saud they would call me back for an appointment within two days. That was almost two weeks ago. My floors are even more buckled and the peeling is much worse. Having these floors installed is the worst thing I’ve ever done.

  65. We purchased the Allure cherry several years ago and installed ourselves. It constantly scuffs just from walking on it and the scuff marks DO NOT COME OFF. Also have shrinkage even though acclimated and installed as directed. DO NOT BUY THIS PRODUCT!

  66. First: If you look at the BBB, for Halstead International, you will find that it has an “F” rating. Best rating is an “A+”.
    I am a retired general contractor who has been doing commercial remodeling for over 20 years in Phoenix. Total building background is 44 years. I installed the Allure planks and after two months seams opened up and now, around two years later they still are opening.
    The floor is concrete, it is flat, dry and clean. Had ceramic tile on it prior to this product and had no cracking in the tile or the grout.
    Halstead had an “inspector” come over and with a tape measure and a level said that the floor was out of level by 1/4″. This was in an area where the floor has not yet separated. Where the separations are located, is where the floor is absolutely flat and level.
    Halstead, if you go through the multiple reporting sites, you will find that they offer every excuse possible. They even blame it on humidity….in the Arizona desert???
    Home Depot will not warranty it either, they sent it to Halstead. Kind of like a dog chasing its tail. If you look at Home Depot pn the BBB they amazingly get an “A+” even tho, there are 4100 complains +. Money talks.
    Mean while, we are sitting here with over $4,000.00 in bad flooring and even Home Depot Cares, does not care.
    I have been a good long term customer at HD since 1986 spending in the millions of dollars with my business and personal and this ordeal has moved me to no longer do business with them. Sad when I have been totally loyal to them and now they do not return the same.

  67. Thanks, Danny!

    A lot of people on here are commenting about Allure. Many love it and others have had some issues with the product. It may be helpful for others who are considering that flooring to actually take a look at the official Allure support center at There is a lot of installation and maintenance advice on there as well as solutions to common problems/issues (i.e.- scuffs, scratches, seam separation, etc). Hope that helps!

  68. This is terrible. I thought this TrafficMaster flooring was the right choice after reading so many great reviews on the Home Depot website. But the shiny scuff marks left by the flooring installers (random subcontractors hired by the floor installation company that does the work for HD) are being joined every day by more and more scuff marks. We are trying to get this house ready for the market, and I’m sick to my stomach after reading so many comments here about the similar problems others are having. We have tried testing floor waxes on a sample board but they do not really hide the scuff – they just make the scuff even shinier. I’m even more sick reading how HD & the manufacturer have treated those with complaints.

  69. I got installed allure african mahagony few years ago too and my experience is good so far. There are no scratches, although we are not using it heavily at our home.


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