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CoreLuxe Flooring Reviews: Is It Worth It?

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June 15, 2021

If you’ve been looking for the best vinyl plank flooring brands, you’ve probably seen CoreLuxe pop up at least a few times. 

Made by the company formerly known as Lumber Liquidators (that’s a story!), CoreLuxe is undeniably popular. But it is actually a good product? Is it as scratch-resistant as advertised? What do CoreLuxe reviews say?

Here, we’re covering it all: what CoreLuxe is actually made of, all the options and styles it’s offered in, its pros and cons, and how it compares to other popular LVP brands. 

By the end of this article, you’ll know whether CoreLuxe is an LVP brand worth buying—or whether it’s one to skip. 

PS: want to jump straight to our “Is CoreLuxe flooring any good” judgment call? Click here!

Table of Contents

What Is Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP) Flooring?

You probably know all of this stuff already, but we’re going to talk about some technical information below—so we want to make sure we’re crystal clear on all the basics first.

So: what is luxury vinyl? It’s a high-end, multi-layer type of PVC flooring (meaning it’s primarily made out of plastic) that’s more durable than most other types of flooring you can buy. 

Additionally, luxury vinyl is waterproof, affordable, and one of the most realistic hardwood floor alternatives on the market.

Broadly speaking, it comes in two forms: 

  1. LVP (which stands for Luxury Vinyl Plank)
  2. LVT (which stands for Luxury Vinyl Tile)

The only difference between them: their shape and appearance. LVP typically mimics wood planks while LVT typically mimics stone or ceramic tiles. Many people use one term or the other as a catch-all; we generally say “luxury vinyl plank” or “LVP”.

Rigid Luxury Vinyl vs. Flexible Luxury Vinyl

Luxury vinyl can be made with a rigid core or a flexible core. These days, however, rigid core luxury vinyl flooring has become the norm (and for good reason). It’s more durable, more comfortable, and feels more realistic. Have you seen people mention EVP flooring before? That stands for Engineered Vinyl Plank—which is just another way of saying rigid core luxury vinyl.

Types of Rigid Core Luxury Vinyl: SPC, WPC, and Pure Vinyl

And to make things even more complicated, there are different types of rigid core luxury vinyl. This is super important when discussing CoreLuxe and other vinyl plank flooring brands, because the best vinyl plank flooring options generally come with specialized cores.

The most popular types of LVP cores are:

  • SPC (Stone-Polymer Composite), which combines powdered stone and PVC for superior strength and durability.
  • WPC (Wood-Polymer Composite), which combines ultrafine wood powder and PVC for superior comfort and insulation.
  • Pure Vinyl, sometimes called “vinyl foam”. This type of core is rigid, but not nearly as durable as SPC flooring or as comfortable as WPC flooring.

What Is CoreLuxe Vinyl Plank?

OK! Now that we’ve gotten the basics out of the way, let’s talk about CoreLuxe flooring specifically. 

CoreLuxe is a rigid vinyl plank brand sold exclusively by LL Flooring (formerly known as Lumber Liquidators; we’ll get into that in a moment) that comes in tons of wood floor colors and designs. There are also some tile looks, but not nearly as many. You can think of it as LL’s flagship in-house LVP brand.

CoreLuxe Is Made With an SPC Core

See? This is why we wanted to go over the basics first. Because it’s important to note that CoreLuxe flooring comes with an SPC core—meaning that it’s made (at least in theory) to stand up to heavy traffic and wear.

And it Comes in 3 Collections

We’ll go into each of these in detail below, but it’s important to note that CoreLuxe comes in 3 different collections. 

  1. CoreLuxe
  2. CoreLuxe XD
  3. CoreLuxe Ultra

Simple ol’ CoreLuxe flooring is the more budget collection, while CoreLuxe Ultra is on the premium end (with XD obviously between the two). It’s worth mentioning, though, that all 3 collections do feature an SPC core.

Who Sells CoreLuxe Flooring?

If you’re a fan of comparing prices, you might be disappointed—there’s only one place you can buy CoreLuxe flooring. 

CoreLuxe Is Exclusively Made and Sold by LL Flooring

That’s right—as we mentioned above, you can only buy CoreLuxe from LL Flooring. The company also manufactures the product in its own factories overseas.

LL Flooring Also Sells Tranquility, Another Line of LVP

To avoid confusion, we should mention that CoreLuxe isn’t the only LVP brand that LL Flooring sells—they also make Tranquility

Tranquility vs. CoreLuxe: What’s the Difference?

So what’s the difference between Tranquility and CoreLuxe? Tranquility is LL’s budget line—and it doesn’t offer anywhere near as many styles. 

If you’re looking for peel and stick vinyl plank flooring, though, it might be something to consider. There are some flexible self-stick options sold under the Tranquility brand.

Who is LL Flooring? They Used to Be Called Lumber Liquidators

If the name LL Flooring doesn’t sound familiar, it’s probably because the company used to be called Lumber Liquidators.

Yeah. That Lumber Liquidators. They changed their name in 2020—officially, to “better reflect” all elements of the company, but more likely to escape some really negative press.

Now: it’s important to note that we’re not trying to bash Lumber Liquidators (er, LL Flooring) here. We just think it’s really important to why the company changed its name, because it reflects on the CoreLuxe flooring reviews you might read.

Lumber Liquidators Sign

The Lumber Liquidators (LL Flooring) VOC Scandal

So: why did Lumber Liquidators get a bunch of bad press, and how does it connect to CoreLuxe flooring reviews?

In 2015, a 60 Minutes investigation found that people who bought Lumber Liquidators’ laminate flooring between 2009 and 2015 were getting sick. The company was sued and, in 2019, they were forced to pay a $36 million settlement after it was determined they had knowingly lied about their floors’ formaldehyde levels. 

For context: the best laminate flooring should have only trace amounts of formaldehyde at most. Completely non-toxic laminate flooring options have none at all. So it’s not as if Lumber Liquidators had no other option.

Then, in 2020, the company had to pay another $30 million for a 2018 lawsuit regarding defects with its bamboo flooring. The company said its bamboo was moisture resistant, when in fact, it was not.

Oh, and as if these lawsuits weren’t enough, the U.S. Department of Justice also fined Lumber Liquidators in early 2016 for illegally sourcing hardwood from China and Russia. 

So it’s no surprise why they change their name to LL Flooring. But this also means that CoreLuxe flooring reviews may be skewed by this press—so keep that in mind when you’re going through common complaints.

And CoreLuxe Flooring Is Still Made Overseas

Despite LL Flooring now branding itself “your local flooring company,” it still sources its products from outside the United States. Full disclosure: this isn’t a bad thing, as plenty of great flooring companies source their products from outside the US. 

But given LL Flooring’s history with quality control from overseas factories, it’s another thing to keep in mind.

There Are 3 Lines of CoreLuxe Flooring

Ok, now that we’ve talked about who makes the product, let’s talk about CoreLuxe flooring itself! As we mentioned earlier, it comes in three collections—all of which have SPC cores.

Budget Line: CoreLuxe

Price: $1.80 to $3.00/sq. ft.

LL Flooring doesn’t call its regular CoreLuxe line a “budget option” but the specs read that way. You can find 6 and 12-mil wear layer options here, of which we’d recommend the thicker option. 

Why? Anything below 12 mils is generally meant for closets or other very-low traffic areas. Otherwise, the products have generally good reviews and about 25 styles overall. Just know that we wouldn’t purchase a 6-mil option from any brand and expect it to hold up to foot traffic.

Pro tip: a mil is a thousandth of an inch—much smaller than a millimeter, which is a thousandth of a meter!

Standard Line: CoreLuxe XD

Price: $2.10 to $3.40/sq. ft.

CoreLuxe XD is the standard collection. It offers the most styles (about 35) and a notably thicker wear layer at 20 mils. 

CoreLuxe flooring reviews really recommend this line over the budget option. The price difference is minimal, there’s a wider variety of wood and stone looks, and the thicker wear layer can handle way more abuse.

Premier Line: CoreLuxe Ultra

Price: $3.00 to $4.00/sq. ft.

CoreLuxe Ultra is by far the best LVP option that LL Flooring sells. While it’s a bit pricier and offers fewer styles (17), the 28-mil wear layer is up there with what some of the best vinyl plank flooring brands offer.

Not All Wear Layers Are Created Equal, Though

A quick point about wear layers: a thicker option doesn’t exactly mean a better option. High-end products tend to have scratch-resistant aluminum-oxide or ceramic bead-infused wear layers—but budget brands generally stick to pure polyurethane, which isn’t anywhere near as durable. 

CoreLuxe does not specify what its wear layer is made of, meaning it’s probably a lower-end option. High-quality wear layers (like Armstrong’s Diamond 10) are heavily advertised, generally. 

Tip: Sort by “Wear Layer” on LL Flooring’s Website to Find What You’re Looking for

LL Flooring’s catalog isn’t hard to look through, but we noticed the only easy way to look at specific lines of CoreLuxe flooring is to sort by wear layer thickness.

How Do You Install CoreLuxe Flooring?

CoreLuxe flooring is relatively easy to install—or, it’s supposed to be (see Disadvantages of CoreLuxe Flooring below). We’d still recommend hiring a professional to make sure you don’t accidentally void your warranty, but you could call CoreLuxe do-it-yourself flooring at a stretch.

There are 2 primary ways to install CoreLuxe flooring:

CoreLuxe Can Be Glued Down

A decent percentage of CoreLuxe comes as glue-down vinyl plank flooring (and some products can be nailed down—though doing so could ruin the waterproofing). Glue-down vinyl is probably the most secure LVP install method, but it can be tedious. 

Or Click-Locked as a Floating Floor

What is a floating floor, you ask? Easy: it’s any type of flooring that simply uses gravity and friction to stay in place over the subfloor (and what is subflooring?

Most often, this means click-together flooring systems, in which planks snap and lock together to create a seamless surface (and a seal against water). 

If you’re worried about the disadvantages of floating floors, you can relax—many floors are floated these days. Even some of the best engineered wood flooring brands offer snap-lock surfaces, which is why the average cost to install engineered hardwood floors can be so much lower than it is for solid hardwood.

One more note: CoreLuxe does not make loose-lay vinyl plank flooring.

Does CoreLuxe Need an Underlayment?

According to the LL Flooring website, CoreLuxe comes with an attached felt pad—but the company does recommend the use of an underlayment as well. Just be sure to read the warranty info carefully—sometimes, using an improper underlayment can void it!

The Advantages of CoreLuxe Flooring

CoreLuxe flooring reviews suggest there are some things to love about the product. Most notably: 

It’s Noticeably Sturdy (The Planks are Thick)

Lots of CoreLuxe flooring reviews say the product is noticeably sturdy. This is a good sign, as SPC floors can sometimes be a bit on the thinner side. CoreLuxe planks, on the other hand, seem to be plenty thick.

Now, we should caveat this by noting that the 6 and 12 mil varieties do have durability concerns—but with a 20 mil wear layer, it should stand up to even the most durable wood flooring. And bonus: since it’s waterproof, you can even use it as mudroom flooring.

CoreLuxe Comes in Many Wood Looks and Styles…

CoreLuxe is primarily sold as a fake wood flooring option, and it does a great job of mimicking different hardwood species. Oak, maple, teak flooring, you name it.

Additionally, depending on how you install it, you can also use CoreLuxe to mimic classic wood floor patterns. A great installer can glue the product into a herringbone parquet flooring design; you can even mix dark and light wood floor planks into a 3D pattern. 

Or, if your wood floor designs of choice lean more towards farmhouse looks than townhouse looks, you can use CoreLuxe to do mixed-width patterns—the product comes in options that mimic both narrow and wide plank wood flooring.

All of that to say: whatever your favorite types of wood flooring are, you can probably find their looks in a CoreLuxe plank. Ebony flooring, ash flooring, the list goes on.

…And There Are Some Authentic Stone Looks, Too.

CoreLuxe flooring has a good amount of stone looks too, including a few styles that mimic types of tile

If you’re debating between tile vs. wood floors, an LVP option like CoreLuxe is worth looking into as a middle ground.

CoreLuxe Flooring Reviews Confirm That it’s Waterproof

More than a few budget LVP brands have trouble with waterproofing, but CoreLuxe isn’t one of them. Many CoreLuxe flooring reviews praise it as true waterproof vinyl flooring

With all the wood looks CoreLuxe offers, this makes it a great option for achieving wood floor bathroom looks without having to rely on water-resistant wood flooring (which is never quite as water-resistant as you’d like it to be).

It’s Easy to Clean and Care For

Compared to the best hardwood floors (or even the best engineered wood flooring, for that matter), LVP is a breeze to take care of. 

CoreLuxe flooring reviews are mostly positive in this regard too. We would recommend looking through the floor’s warranty guide before using any special cleaners, but it should be easy to clean and care for.

CoreLuxe Flooring is GreenGuard Certified as Low-VOC

On that note, CoreLuxe is also GreenGuard certified as low-VOC vinyl flooring

VOCs, or volatile organic compounds, are substances commonly found in flooring and other processed products that are harmful in high concentrations. As such, much of the flooring industry has moved towards making low-VOC flooring

This is super important to note given LL Flooring’s, er, issues with chemicals in the past.

But its Biggest Perk: CoreLuxe is Affordable

At $3 to $4 per square foot, even CoreLuxe’s premium option is affordable, at least compared to other floors. For example, top-shelf wood flooring costs can touch $20 and higher per square foot once you factor in installation. 

And since the cost to install vinyl plank flooring rarely exceeds a couple of dollars per square foot, it’s never going to approach the cost of buying hardwood floors

The Disadvantages of CoreLuxe Flooring

Up until now, we’ve been pretty firmly on the CoreLuxe train. Unfortunately, there are some notable issues with this product you should know about that pop up in lots of CoreLuxe flooring reviews. 

Only CoreLuxe XD and CoreLuxe Ultra Have Lifetime Residential Warranties

Ordinary CoreLuxe doesn’t offer a lifetime residential warranty—which is super unusual for any LVP rated for regular foot traffic. 

We’re not even talking about the best vinyl plank flooring brands here. We’re talking about any LVP brands that are meant to be walked on. This is just the first of the product’s durability concerns.

And CoreLuxe Doesn’t Even Have a Commercial Warranty (of Any Kind)

More bad: regular CoreLuxe doesn’t have a commercial warranty at all (and the XD and Ultra lines’ commercial warranties are mediocre at best). 

This suggests that even the premier CoreLuxe products aren’t meant for high-traffic areas. And regular CoreLuxe? Forget about it.

All CoreLuxe Products Are Susceptible to Temperature Changes

And here’s where things start to get bad: all CoreLuxe products are sensitive to temperature and humidity changes. 

Now, vinyl plank isn’t a great outdoor flooring option in general, unless you’re putting it somewhere that has some climate control (using it as sunroom flooring, for example). 

But a conspicuous number of CoreLuxe reviews mention issues with changes in temperature—swelling, warping, things like that. And we’re not talking about outdoor vinyl flooring, here—we’re talking about normal, inside, run-of-the-mill flooring.

Not a great sign.

Some CoreLuxe Flooring Reviews Say It’s Surprisingly Hard to Install…

LVP is supposed to be some of the easiest flooring to install, but there are more than a few CoreLuxe flooring reviews that complain that it’s actually hard to install. How so?

…The Most Common Complaint: the Click-Lock System Doesn’t Work Well

Most negative reviews have a common complaint: the interlocking tabs don’t always seem to work. This wouldn’t be a big deal, except you have to use the tabs in order to install the floor correctly (and create a watertight seal). 

To be clear, if these tabs don’t work, the floor is either useless or has to be glued down. 

Many Buyers Complain That the Floors Scratch Easily

Another major flaw: some buyers, particularly those who didn’t buy CoreLuxe Ultra, say that CoreLuxe is not scratch-resistant flooring. This likely has to do with the thinner wear layers of the budget and standard CoreLuxe lines (and whatever they’re made of).

So it’s Pretty Clear that CoreLuxe is Not Very Durable

When you consider the bad warranty, thin wear layer, and scratch issues, it becomes pretty clear that ordinary CoreLuxe is not very durable.

Reviews of the Ultra line are much more positive, but again: we’d stay away from standard CoreLuxe.

Some CoreLuxe LVP Products Have Hazardous Chemical Warnings

LL Flooring says it’s working hard to make sure its products are safe but some products in their catalogs have chemical warnings like “may contain lead.”

It’s great that LL Flooring is trying to be transparent—but it’s also worth noting that lead is associated with a ton of health problems. It’s unclear whether other brands also contain lead, but considering LL Flooring’s recent history, this is a bit alarming.

CoreLuxe Has an Upsettingly Short Lifespan, According to Reviews

Another concern: the cheaper CoreLuxe lines have short lifespans. As in, 5 to 10 years maximum. If you’re looking for a floor that’ll last at least a couple of decades, this isn’t it.

CoreLuxe flooring reviews definitely favor the Ultra line, which allegedly has a lifespan that’s similar to top LVP brands (15 to 25 years). But again: you might be throwing away some money if you opt for a cheaper line.

Vinyl Flooring Isn’t the Most Environmentally Friendly Option in General

It’s true—vinyl doesn’t really make for the most environmentally-friendly flooring in general. Some brands are partially recyclable, but the fact remains that vinyl is purely synthetic (i.e. not sustainably sourced)

This is one of the biggest disadvantages of vinyl plank flooring. If you do want something eco-friendly, we would probably recommend hemp flooring or a sustainable wood flooring option—pine flooring, Douglas fir flooring, something like that. 

Only a Few CoreLuxe Products Are Compatible With Radiant Heating

Only some CoreLuxe flooring products can be installed over radiant heating systems, or the same systems used for heating wood floors. If this is something you want, be sure to read the warranty first. Otherwise, you could be replacing your floors much quicker than you’d hoped.

LL Flooring’s Previous Lawsuits Are Concerning (To Say the Least)

LL Flooring goes out of its way to highlight its floors’ low-VOC certifications and so on, but its history with hiding chemical concentrations is pretty concerning. Since you can only buy CoreLuxe flooring from LL Flooring, you have to take their word that their products are as safe as they say.

So with all of that in mind, how does CoreLuxe stack up against other popular vinyl plank flooring brands?

CoreLuxe vs. LifeProof Flooring

CoreLuxe and LifeProof vinyl flooring (which is exclusive to Home Depot) are actually pretty similar. Both range between $2 to $4 per square foot and offer a similar range of wear layers and style choices.

LifeProof has okay reviews (for the most part), but CoreLuxe Ultra (not the standard or XD line) may be the better product—especially given its SPC core. 

CoreLuxe vs. SmartCore Flooring

SmartCore flooring, Lowes’ in-house LVP brand, is pretty similar to LifeProof and CoreLuxe in terms of price and wear layer thickness. 

SmartCore comes in both SPC and WPC varieties (while CoreLuxe only offers the former) and enjoys generally positive reviews—though there are concerns that its SPC floors aren’t as durable as they should be. 

CoreLuxe vs. NuCore Flooring

NuCore flooring is exclusively sold by Floor & Decor in the same price range as the options above.

NuCore has pretty mixed reviews outside of Floor & Decor’s website (which disables reviews) but it’s also slightly cheaper: $1.80 to $3.80 on average. It has a thicker wear layer than most CoreLuxe lines (except Ultra) but its core layer is only made of pure vinyl—not SPC or WPC. 

Again: with box store brands, you really get what you pay for.

CoreLuxe vs. Stainmaster Luxury Vinyl

In our Stainmaster luxury vinyl review, we determined that the product barely worthy of the “luxury” moniker. It ranges between $1 and $3 per square foot, but customer reviews highlight a significant number of durability concerns (that its paper-thin warranty doesn’t cover). 

One thing worth noting: Stainmaster and CoreLuxe are the only two LVP products here that are vulnerable to temperature changes (though Stainmaster is notably worse off). 

CoreLuxe vs. Proximity Mills

If Stainmaster is inferior to CoreLuxe, then we can probably say that Proximity Mills is superior to CoreLuxe. It’s sold in a similar price range and also comes with an SPC core—but it offers more collections, durability, styles, and eco-friendly qualities than CoreLuxe does. 

Proximity Mills can even be partially recycled, which makes it about as close to eco-friendly flooring as vinyl can be. Plus, their products are FloorScore-certified as either VOC-free or low-VOC (depending on the collection), and they’re all completely and phthalate-free (which CoreLuxe isn’t, or at least doesn’t advertise). 

CoreLuxe vs. COREtec

COREtec is a tried and true LVP brand and the original creator of WPC flooring

COREtec offers wear layers as thick as 30 mils and a price to match. It costs between $6.90 to $10.20 per square foot, more than double CoreLuxe’s top line.

Our COREtec flooring reviews note that the product is exceptionally solid in terms of warranty, durability, and so on. It’s clearly a better product than CoreLuxe, but the price may be an obstacle for many buyers (Proximity MIlls is similar in performance and notably cheaper). 

CoreLuxe vs. Pergo Extreme

Pergo is (maybe) more well known for its laminate products, but its Pergo Extreme line of LVP is actually pretty decent. 

In our Pergo Extreme reviews, we point out that there are other brands worth checking out, but the $2 to $7 price range means there are plenty of options for both budget and performance buyers.

As for how Pergo Extreme compares to CoreLuxe, the former is the better overall product. Customer reviews of both products are mostly positive, but Pergo doesn’t suffer from the same installation woes that CoreLuxe has. 

So: Is CoreLuxe Worth It? Only the Ultra Line Seems to BeBut There Are Better Options for the Price

The bottom line: CoreLuxe’s upper-tier collection—aka CoreLuxe Ultra—is a decent budget brand of LVP. But: for the price you’re paying, we just don’t know if it’s worth it.

For the same price, you could get something like Proximity Mills (more durable and eco-friendly) or heck, even a waterproof laminate like RevWood.

All of that to say: CoreLuxe doesn’t really seem to solve any of the problems with luxury vinyl tile, like its environmental issues. Usually, these can be overlooked for the benefits of getting a long-lasting, super durable floor—but according to CoreLuxe reviews, the floors don’t seem to be that long-lasting. And unless you buy the upper-tier collections, they don’t even seem to be that durable! 

All of that to say, we probably wouldn’t get CoreLuxe for our own homes. But don’t take our word for it. Do your own research with the people who know floors best—local flooring retailers. There are tons of flooring stores near you that can help you find your perfect LVP floor!

And if you’re not quite ready to shop (or if you’re still looking for more flooring ideas), get some inspiration from the articles below. We’ve got info on everything from waterproof hardwood flooring to the pros and cons of cork flooring—and everything in between.

Whatever you choose, thanks for reading and good luck finding your perfect floor!

About The Author

Christian Southards

Take any subject and there’s a good chance Christian has written about it. From marketing and international relations to wildlife (hobby!) and sports, Christian writes, edits, or helps publish just about everything that’s resigned to written form. His love for home design and remodeling began with his first job working for his uncle’s property management business.

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