COREtec Vinyl Flooring Review (Shaw Industries)

COREtec vinyl plank flooring is a quality-engineered, rigid-core vinyl floor manufactured by Shaw Industries that costs between $4.49 to $11.59 per square foot, not including installation.. With its wood plastic or stone plastic composite core (WPC or SPC) and attached cork underlayment, COREtec is waterproof, quiet, and comfortable. Although more expensive than some brands, customers appreciate the scratch-resistant durability and extensive style options. Our flooring pros found them easy to install and their strong warranties give peace of mind.

Last Updated: September 21, 2023, by: Greca Fotopoulos

This is our updated review of COREtec Flooring, once again our team of home flooring pros have put the different COREtec collections under the microscope and continue to be pleased with what they’ve found. Read on to discover who manufactures COREtec, how it’s constructed and the styles and options available. We look at pricesinstallation and cleaning before finishing with our conclusion.

Further Reading: Vinyl Kitchen Flooring | Bathroom Kitchen Flooring | Best Vinyl Plank Flooring Brands

coretec lvt flooring in bathroom


The COREtec brand was originally created by USFloors. In late 2016 USFloors was acquired by the flooring behemoth Shaw Industries Group (aka Shaw Floors). COREtec is one of their biggest and most successful product ranges.


There are now four different COREtec collections which we will take a closer look at below. Each collection offers different features and styles, but all of them share a similar construction.

Let’s take a look at this concstruction:

  • A UV acrylic finish and wear layer (or proprietary coating) of at least 0.5 mm/20 mil (rated for commercial use) protects the durable and resilient luxury vinyl top layer.
  • A luxury vinyl design layer – the wood or stone textured image that mimics the look and feel of the real thing.
  • The core structural layer that is 100% waterproof and gives the plank or tile its strength. Depending on the product this core is either a mineral compound or a polymer product.
  • A balancing layer is added on two of the collections to provide extra stability.
  • The final layer that sits against the subfloor is an integrated cork underlayment which works both as additional soundproofing and is resistant to mold and mildew.
  • Either Lifetime Limited or 25-year Limited warranties on all COREtec products for residential use.
  • All COREtec products have achieved the GreenGuard Gold Certification for low chemical emissions, so COREtec is one of the safest EVP products currently on the market.

Note that different COREtec ranges have different warranty conditions, so its worth checking before you buy.

All COREtec flooring is waterproof and suitable for installation above and below grade, including basements and bathrooms.


Now let’s take a closer look at the different product lines in the COREtec flooring range:


Coretec Allegiant walnut wood look vinyl plank

This is the main collection of COREtec products for regular residential use. Within this collection are 3 ranges: COREtec Classics, COREtec Enhanced and COREtec Premium. Understanding the different ranges is a bit complicated at times, but essentially the difference is in looks and construction.

Here’s a concise explanation:

COREtec Classics – The starter grade if you will, great realistic design layer with micro bevel edges (meaning hardly noticeable edges) for a “seamless” look.

COREtec Enhanced – Taking it up a notch, the enhanced range has an enhanced painted bevel, which basically means the bevel between the planks is deeper and has been highlighted, creating a more realistic wood plank look.

COREtec Premium – As the name suggests, the premium line is the most realistic. Here the bevels are pressed, which is to say pressed down during production rather than milled which gives them the most natural looking edges. The premium range also uses EIR (Embossed in Register) which is a production process that stamps a texture into the surface of the plank giving it the look and feel of real wood.

Another difference you will notice between flooring ranges is the *price.

COREtec Classics retails from $6.19 to $7.79

COREtec Enhanced retails from $7.29 to $8.99

COREtec Premium retails for $9.09 to $10.79

*Prices taken from the COREtec website late 2023 and reflects the national average prices at the retail stores that stock COREtec.

We rate COREtec floors highly and from our customer research we know homeowners rate them too. Nevertheless, vinyl plank flooring in the $6 to $11 per sq/ft price range is pretty steep considering other flooring types available at this price, like hardwood or tile, not to mention other quality LVP brands.

NB. Although the newest collections of COREtec floors are expensive, take a look at our pricing section, because there are deals to be found on older, discontinued lines.


COREtec Garamond Oak brown vinyl plank

COREtec Scratchless is a smaller range, currently 18 styles, and as the name suggest the focus here is on their propriety wear layer coating with “Advanced Scratch Resistance”. While they don’t give much away about their magical scratch resistant technology they they do back it up with an industry first 30 year residential scratch warranty. That’s impressive and important for homeowners. Take a look at customer reviews of different flooring brands and complaints about scratches are the number one bugbear for many buyers.

All 18 styles are wood-look and come in trendy wide planks.  a standard plank width is 5″ and the Scrathless range comes in 7″ and 9″. Plank length varies, either 33″ or 48″ inches long. It’s also worth mentioning that the Scratchless range all have a textured EIR (embossed in register) finish  that is molded to give a more realistic look and feel of real wood.

COREtec describes the Scratchless range as having a strong mineral core which means it is an SPC vinyl floor or Stone Polymer Composite floor. For further clarity on this new breed of LVP please read our SPC flooring post. As is becoming more common, although COREtec is a vinyl plank floor some of it’s products, including the Scratchless range, are made without use PVC.

COREtec Scratchless prices are $9.09 and $9.69 per sq/ft


Coretec Iona stone look vinyl tile

Stone-look vinyl tiles are becoming harder to find, with most LVP brands focused exclusively on wood-look plank. So COREtec score points with us for their beautiful range of stone-look tiles under the name COREtec Stone.

Another small but beautifully curated line, there are 18 stone-look times to choose from, in either 24″ x 12″, 24″ x 18″ or 36″ x 18″ tile sizes. Like the Scratchless range they have a mineral SPC core giving them extra rigid support and durability. They are waterproof, as is the entire COREtec range of floors.

COREtec Stone prices range from $9.99 to $11.59 which makes them some of the most expensive COREtec products available. That said we love the good looks of this stone-look flooring, which mimics really high-end, premium stone flooring. As you can see in this image.


Coretec Brookfield Maple wood look vinyl flooring

Finally we come to the COREtec Pros Series collection which is their toughest, most durable flooring line, intended for commercial use or in a high-traffic residential setting.

This product line is seriously tough, with an extra thick SPC core (COREtec describe it as super-dense!) making the floors harder, more stable and dent resistant. Most homeowners want a durable long lasting floor but exactly how much durability does you home flooring need. We recommend the Pros series for serioulsy busy households , with multiple, kids, pets and guests.

Looking now at the styles and size options: It’s clear from our testing and experience in the field that the COREtec Pro series is very similar to the COREtec Original  collection but with the upgraded, premium durability features. In fact as you dig into this Pro series you see that it too is split into the same three basic ranges: Classics, Enhanced and Premium.

At the time of writing this is how those three ranges break down:

COREtec Pro Classics – 20 wood-look planks, 17 of which are 43″ in length, with 3 a little longer at 73″ . All are 7″ wide and prices starting at $4.49 and rising to $5.99

COREtec Pro Enhanced – bear with us here because COREtec have decided to challenge us by having four types of COREtec Pro Enhanced floors!

  • Enhanced (standard) – 13 wood-look styles, eleven are 7″ wide by 43″ long and three are 9″ wide by 73″ long. Prices range between $5.99 and $6.49
  • Pro Plus XL Enhanced – 5 wood-look styles all larger 9″ by 73″ planks and priced at $6.49
  • Pro Plus Enhanced HD – 3 wood-look styles all 7″ by 43″ and priced at $7.29

Although the durability of the COREtec Pros series will be above and beyond what most households need, and although the denser SPC core will make this flooring less forgiving under foot, some of you may have noticed that the Pros series, is actually cheaper than most of the other lines and collections we’ve discussed, so definitely worth your consideration!

COREtec Pro Premium – A little more straight forward, the Premium range consiist of 9 wood-look styles, all 7″ wide by 48″ long and all priced at $7.79 sq. ft.


To finish off your COREtec flooring project there is also a good range of moldings to match each style of floor. The moldings are 94” long and are available in Quarter Round, T-Mold, Reducer, Baby Threshold, Stair Cap and Stair Nose.


As we’ve stated above, the national retail price average for the latest COREtec flooring collections is, between $4.49 and $11.59 with the majority of products in the $6 to $10 price range.

There is a second option to consider. COREtec lists its very latest collections on its site. Those are the collections we’ve been reviewing here and they’re the most recent products. However if you take a look around online and at your local flooring stores you will find that many retailers still stock COREtec’s older flooring collections. Still great quality but now at a reduced price.

Flooring Inc, Build and Products Direct are just three online retailer where we’ve found older lines of COREtec listed for sale and prices ranging between $4.49 to $7.69.

If you want to find a local retailer then the easiest method is to us COREtecs local store finder


COREtec floors have a great reputation as one of the best EVP rigid core planks available but we wouldn’t blame you if you found the price tag a little hard to swallow. There are other quality rigid core products competing for your attention, as you can see in our table below showing how COREtec prices compare to other leading brands.

Brand Price per square foot
DuraLux Flooring $1.39 – $3.49
CoreLuxe Flooring $1.39 – $4.79
Smartcore $2.00 – $3.70
LifeProof $2.59 – $3.22
NuCore Flooring $2.35 – $4.49
Congoleum Triversa $3.40 – $6.00
Mohawk SolidTech $2.11 – $6.29
Pergo Extreme $3.05 – $5.99
Mannington Adura Flex $4.00 – $4.39
Mannington Adura Max $4.39 – $5.99
Mannington Adura Rigid $4.39 – $4.99
Karndean Korlok $4.35 – $6.99
COREtec Vinyl $4.49 – $11.59


You won’t find many negative online reviews from dissatisfied customers, although many buyers mention the high prices. Overall our feedback has been very good, with customers delighted with the good looks and durability of COREtec floors. The odd negative reviews we’ve seen are typcially related to installtion which isn’t usually a problem with the flooring itself.

“We installed COREtec in our kitchen and we love it so much we’re now considering extending it through into our laundry and pantry areas.” Katy, Florida

“We couldn’t decide which brand of vinyl plank to choose but our installer reccomended CORETec. That turned out to be a good decision. The flooring went down easy and everything looks great, we love the color.” Tony, Wisconsin.

“We ordered COREtec Cairo Oak for our remodel and installed it thoughout, in the kitchen, living room and bedrooms. Our contractor found it super simple to install and it looks amazing. We have pets, including dogs so the extra durability was important.” Casey, Minnesota.

“Installed COREtec calypso oak in both our bathrooms, no problems and it’s holding up well. We’re thinking of installing more in our bedrooms.” Bruce, Wyoming

“I installed the Waddington oak COREtec enhanced plank myself in my living room and through into our sunroom. Installation was very straight forward. Check your boxes on delivery because if the edges get damaged in transit you’ll need to replace them. These are great floors.” Tony, California


Our home flooring pros were unanimous that installing COREtec products is pretty straight forward. You can hire a professional contractor to do the job or save yourself that cost and do it yourself. Let’s look at the important features of COREtec installation.

  • Easy to install. As with many LVP/EVP products on the market, COREtec is easy to install and can be done by an experienced DIYer. The instructions provided on their website are very detailed and even tell you what tools you’ll need.
  • No acclimation needed. One big advantage is that you don’t need to wait for COREtec products to acclimate to the local environment; however, the company do recommend that when you install COREtec you keep ambient temperature controlled to around 70°F (21°C).
  • Floating Floor Method: All COREtec products can usually be installed as a floating floor but should always be installed with the direct glue-down method if heavy furnishings or loads are going to be used on the floor; the company naturally recommends using their own brand flooring adhesive.
  • Additional underlayment not  necessary: COREtec luxury vinyl tiles have an integrated cork underlayment on each plank so, depending on your floor, you may not need extra underlayment.
  • Compatible with radiant heating: COREtec can also be installed over some radiant heating systems.

Assuming instructions and recommendations have been followed carefully, the robust 4 to 5 layer construction will result in a great floor that lasts a long time.


Because COREtec floors are waterproof, they are just as easy to keep clean as other non-porous flooring such as ceramic tiles. To keep your COREtec floor looking its best here are our top tips:

  • Vacuum or sweep with a broom regularly to remove dust and debris; be sure to use a vacuum cleaner that is optimized for use on hard flooring surfaces.
  • For more stubborn dirt and spills, you can then mop with a suitable floor cleaning detergent such as Bona.
  • Use felt pads under furniture legs, and be careful when moving furniture around to avoid scratching your floor.
  • LVT floors can be susceptible to discoloration when in direct sunlight, so consider adding drapes or blinds in rooms that get the most sun.


Over the years COREtec has grown to become a major player in the Luxury Vinyl flooring market, offering very comprehensive collections of products to suit every home.

We think that COREtec Plus is a good quality vinyl tile brand and well worth your consideration. For areas with heavy traffic, such as the kitchen, COREtec Pro products are worth investing in.

COREtec is a trusted brand and COREtec customer reviews on several prominent flooring and renovation websites show customers have been happy with the look and feel of their COREtec flooring.

On the whole, those customers that have had a negative experience with the product have also agreed that the product was badly installed in the first place. In fact, as with many flooring products, it is highly recommended that you work with a tried and trusted flooring installer.

If you have any COREtec flooring reviews of your own that you would like to share please leave them in the comments section below.

About the Author:

Greca Fotopoulos

Greca is the lead style writer at Home Flooring Pros (more), with a BA in Technical Art, she’s focused on flooring trends, flooring ideas, and flooring brand reviews.

“There’s nothing more satisfying than creating a home that you love. The hardest thing about this job is trying not to covet all the great floors I get to review; if I could remodel my home every month, I would!”

9 thoughts on “COREtec Vinyl Flooring Review (Shaw Industries)

  • May 12, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    Have you found a cleaning product that works? We just had our Coretec flooring installed and from what I have read the marks are from a powder they put on the flooring so it doesn’t get scratched when it is shipped. I have washed the floor 4-5 times with Bona and plain water and our feet are still leaving marks! Thanks for the help!

  • March 8, 2022 at 9:21 am

    I am going to renovate my kitchen. I like the samples of coretec that I viewed, however, am concerned about placing coretec under my oven and cabinets. Will it warp due to heat?

    • July 25, 2022 at 8:51 am

      Nope. Mine have been in the kitchen or in direct sunlight for two years and they haven’t warped or faded.

  • December 18, 2021 at 9:22 am

    In your COREtec review you mention COREtec Pro – Galaxy but don’t give much detail. One flooring outlet says it is commercial application grade while another outlet no longer installs it due to too many claims. They maintain it is not a good choice for residential installation but it is featured by another.

    Can you please expand on your thoughts regarding the Galaxy line? And how do these compare the Lowes Smartcore line? Thank you.

  • March 5, 2021 at 2:32 pm

    We brought the Coretec Pro Plus 7″ Biscayne Oak. We had it installed from the place we purchased it and it is horrible. Some how they ship the boxes with a fine talcum powder that wont clean off. It leaves streaks if you try to clean it. Had the installer back several times to show them the issues. The installers boot prints are still showing up on the flooring. Cant get the foot prints removed. I wish I could post pictures of this mess but if you consider buying the darker flooring ask for a full sample and do the rub test. It will show up and white residue. The small samples don’t have this powder. Our sales contacted Coretec and asked about the powder coating, they said it is on most of the dark flooring so they don’t scratch during shipping. That’s great but how to you removed that dang thing off the floor. We have another installer coming in to try to clean and fix the mistakes the other installer did.

  • August 9, 2020 at 8:05 am

    I am thinking of getting luxury vinyl plank also for my living room. I have a piano. Is this a mistake or does it need to be glued down or what?

  • July 27, 2020 at 5:38 pm

    I’ve installed the Cortex flooring throughout our home and and it is very dull in appearance. What products can be used to give it a nice appearance and should I be concerned with build up?

    • April 23, 2022 at 7:53 am

      I was wondering the same thing!

    • September 17, 2022 at 12:35 pm

      I’m disappointed how my floors look & feel to my feet.. they don’t feel clean because of the powdery residue & they look really dull


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