Costco Vs. Sam’s Club Laminate Flooring For Your Home

Laminate flooring has become an increasingly popular flooring option for homeowners in recent years. Its durability, easy maintenance, and affordable price point make it a great value.

Two major players in the laminate flooring game are Costco and Sam’s Club. But which warehouse club offers the better deals and selection when it comes to laminate flooring?

This comprehensive guide will compare and contrast laminate flooring from Costco and Sam’s Club to help you make the best choice for your home renovation or remodeling project.

A Brief Comparison Table

FeatureCostco Kirkland SignatureSam’s Club Member’s Mark
BrandKirkland Signature (Costco)Member’s Mark (Sam’s Club)
Thickness12 mm and 7 mm options12 mm, 10 mm, and 8 mm options
Wear LayerAluminum oxide infusedAluminum oxide infused
Warranty25 years residential25-30 years residential
StylesOak, maple, cherry, exotic woodsOak, hickory, maple, slate, tile looks
Attached UnderlaymentYesNo
Prices$0.99-$2.99 per square foot$0.88-$2.99 per square foot
Professional InstallationNoYes, for a fee
Quantity PurchasesLarge bulk quantitiesCan mix and match smaller batches

Overview of Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring typically consists of four layers fused together under high pressure:

  • Bottom backing layer: This layer is moisture-resistant and provides stability.
  • Inner core layer: This layer contains the laminate image and is made from melamine resin and fiberboard materials to provide rigidity.
  • Decorative layer: This layer has the color, texture, and appearance of materials like wood, tile, or stone. Photographic applique technology is used to create realistic visuals.
  • Top transparent wear layer: This layer protects against scratches, stains, and fading. It’s made from melamine resin impregnated with aluminum oxide for durability.

Laminate floors are completely synthetic, making them a resilient and budget-friendly alternative to solid wood, engineered wood, vinyl, porcelain, or natural stone floors. Easy click-lock installation systems allow DIY-friendly assembly. Most laminate floors require no glue or nails.

Costco Laminate Flooring Overview

Costco Laminate Flooring

Costco offers a selection of laminate floors under its in-house Kirkland Signature brand.

Kirkland laminate comes in both 12 mm and 7 mm thicknesses. The thicker 12 mm boards are more rigid and durable.

Costco’s laminate floors feature aluminum oxide-infused wear layers to protect against scratches and everyday wear.

An attached cushioning pad reduces sound transfer for quieter footsteps. Most Kirkland laminate floors have a 25-year residential warranty.

Kirkland laminate floors mimic popular hardwood looks like oak, maple, cherry, and exotic wenge wood. Gray washed and weathered finishes create an aged, timeworn appearance. You can also find tile and stone inspired visuals. Plank lengths range from 47.2 to 59.1 inches, with widths of 3.66 to 7.08 inches for realistic variables.

Costco’s laminate flooring is made in the USA. It meets CARB Phase 2 compliance for formaldehyde emissions. Prices range from $0.99 to $2.99 per square foot.

Costco Laminate Flooring Pros:

  • Good value for the quality
  • Extensive selection of wood-look finishes
  • Long 25-year residential warranty
  • Thick 12 mm boards for durability
  • Pre-attached underlayment for noise reduction
  • Easy click-lock installation
  • Low VOC emissions and CARB compliant

Potential Cons to Consider:

  • Limited to Kirkland Signature brand
  • Must buy large quantity given warehouse setting
  • No professional installation offered

Overview of Sam’s Club Laminate Floors

Sam's Club Laminate Flooring

Sam’s Club sells laminate flooring under its Member’s Mark brand in partnership with flooring companies like Shaw Industries and Mohawk. You can choose from three available laminate collections: Estate Collection, Premium Collection, and Value Collection.

Sam’s Club laminate flooring comes in 8, 10, or 12 mm thickness. The Estate Collection features the thickest and most durable 12 mm boards.

Sam’s Club laminate mimics oak, hickory, maple, cherry, and exotic wood looks. Distressed finishes and wire-brushed textures capture the character of reclaimed wood floors. Slate, travertine, marble, and concrete visuals are also available. Plank lengths range from 47.2 to 59 inches.

All Member’s Mark laminate has aluminum oxide-infused wear layers. The Estate Collection features the thickest wear layer at 12 mil for enhanced scratch and stain resistance. Most collections have a 25 to 30-year residential warranty and a 5-year commercial warranty. Floors meet CARB 2 compliance standards. Prices range from $0.88 to $2.99 per square foot.

Sam’s Club Laminate Flooring Pros:

  • Wide range of wood and tile looks
  • Various quality tier options
  • Thick 12 mm boards with 12 mil wear layer for durability (Estate collection)
  • 25-30 year warranties
  • Low CARB 2 emissions
  • Professional installation available

Potential Cons to Consider:

  • Large quantity purchases in warehouse setting
  • Value collection has thinner 8 mm boards

If you love this flooring, watch how easy it is to install it!

Comparing Quality, Warranties, and Cost

The Kirkland Signature and Member’s Mark Estate laminate floors are fairly comparable in quality, thickness, and wear layer durability. Both product lines offer thick 12 mm boards and excellent 25+ year warranties.

Costco’s Kirkland brand has the edge for attaching cushioning pads for noise reduction. But Sam’s Club offers professional installation services while Costco does not.

When it comes to value tier floors, Sam’s Club has a leg up. Their Premium and Value collections start at cheaper price points than Costco’s laminates. The Value collection 8 mm thickness is also superior to the 7 mm low-end Kirkland floors.

Both warehouse clubs require large quantity purchases that may influence cost savings. But Sam’s Club allows you to mix and match small quantities of different laminate flooring styles to customize your order.

Here is a direct cost comparison on mid-range oak-look laminate flooring options:

  • Costco 12 mm English Oak Laminate: $1.99 per sq. ft.
  • Sam’s Club Estate 12 mm Oakmoor Laminate: $2.19 per sq. ft.

The Kirkland signature oak laminate is slightly cheaper per square foot at Costco. But Sam’s Club laminate pricing includes free shipping on orders over $1500.

Pros and Cons of Laminate Flooring

Pros of Laminate Floors:

  • Durable and scratch-resistant surface
  • Easy DIY installation
  • Wide range of colors and styles
  • Affordable price point
  • Easy maintenance
  • Hypoallergenic and low VOC emissions
  • Water resistant
  • Thicker boards provide rigidity and noise insulation

Potential Cons to Consider:

  • Not real wood, less value than hardwood floors
  • Not suitable for wet areas like bathrooms or laundry rooms
  • Shows scratches over time on dark colors
  • Expands and contracts with temperature changes causing gaps
  • Heavy furniture can dent thinner floors over time
  • Can appear artificial next to real wood or stone

Installation Tips and Consideration for Laminate Floors

Installing laminate flooring is a DIY-friendly project, but proper technique is required for best results:

  • Give the floors 1/4″ expansion space around all edges and fixed objects.
  • Stagger joints at least 6″ between end rows. Avoid “H” joints.
  • For joining planks, tap together gently rather than forcing.
  • Use tapping block against planks to fit joints snugly without damaging locking edges.
  • Inspect for defective planks and moisture issues before installing.
  • Acclimate floors to room environment 48 hours before installation.
  • Install proper vapor barrier underlayment and foam underlay for noise reduction.
  • Follow manufacturer’s instructions for use of transitions between rooms.
  • Avoid heavy rolling loads which can damage locking joints. Use soft swivel casters under furniture.

Shopping at warehouse clubs allows you to buy large quantities of flooring for the entire home. Have a plan measured out room-by-room before purchasing materials. Leave an extra 8-10% margin of error for cuts and defects.

Hire a professional installer if you want your new floors perfectly fitted. Expect to pay around $3 per square foot for installation service.

Maintaining Your Laminate Floors

Follow these tips to get the most life out of your new laminate floors:

  • Sweep regularly and use damp mop to clean. Avoid excessive water.
  • Use interior and exterior doormats. Don’t wear shoes inside.
  • Apply floor protectors and felt pads under furniture legs.
  • Avoid abrasive cleaners, bleach products, and steam mops.
  • Use broad floor protectors under rolling chairs and heavy furniture.
  • Pick up spills quickly to avoid discoloration and swelling.
  • Maintain 35-60% humidity levels indoors.
  • Refinish minor scratches with laminate touch-up kits.
  • Deep clean annually with laminate floor cleaner.

Following the manufacturer’s care instructions specific to your floors will ensure they stay beautiful for years. Contact the company if you encounter defects within the warranty period.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Which is better Sam’s Club or Costco?

Both warehouse chains offer high-quality laminate floors with similar warranties and features. Costco Kirkland floors provide great thickness and durability at a slightly cheaper per square foot price point compared to Sam’s Club Estate collection. Sam’s Club has more affordable value collections and professional installation available.

How much does Costco charge to install laminate flooring?

Costco does not offer professional installation services for laminate flooring. You need to install Costco Kirkland floors on your own or hire an independent flooring contractor. Expect to pay around $3 per square foot for labor on installation.

What is the warranty on laminate flooring at Costco?

Most Kirkland Signature laminate floors at Costco come with a 25-year limited residential warranty that covers defects, premature wear, staining, fading, and loss of gloss finish. Normal wear and tear or improper care are not covered. Make warranty claims through Costco’s member services.

How much extra should you buy for laminate flooring?

Plan to buy 8-10% more laminate flooring than your exact measurements. This accounts for minor cutting waste during installation and having spare planks on hand for repairs. Purchasing extra boards lets you replace damaged planks under furniture or appliances down the road.

The Final Decision

Ultimately, the brand of warehouse club matters less than the specific product line and style you select for your home’s laminate floors. Evaluate the quality, thickness, warranty, finishes, and pricing that best fit your needs.

Costco’s Kirkland Signature 12 mm laminate provides a great combination of durability, noise insulation, and value. Sam’s Club’s Estate collection matches Costco on quality but also offers professional installation.

For the lowest budget options, Sam’s Club also has more affordable value tier laminate.

Either warehouse club will provide quality, affordable laminate to transform your home’s floors with a beautiful wood, tile, or stone look. Follow best practices for careful installation and care to enjoy your new laminate floors for decades to come.

Ralph Wade

Hey...Ralph is here! So, did you find this article useful? If so, please leave a comment and let me know. If not, please tell me how I can improve this article. Your feedback is always appreciated. Take love :)

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