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Calibamboo / Inferior Product and Awful Shipping

1 San Diego, CA, United States Review updated:
Contact information:

Decision to purchase was based upon CaliBamboo's claims that their hardwood had a 2000 Janka hardness rating. We purchased approximately 2000 square feet covering three large rooms and a staircase.

What has arrived (partial shipment stretching six ridiculous months now) looks terrific. I don't know about the durability yet since we have yet to set foot in our addition stemming from delivery issues.

The product was ordered about six months ago...paid for upfront I might add. The bulk of the materials were delivered within a reasonable time frame, but no one bothered to contact me or the general contractor to notify us of the short shipment (mistake 1). When contacted, they notified us that they would be receiving the missing items from China in a few weeks and that we would be expedited to receive items soon thereafter. The weeks came and went and no contact to either me or GC again (mistake 2). Turns out the shipment from China arrived in SoCal and did not pass QA (which I really appreciate having read other reviews, but shouldn't QA happen before the expense and time of shipping?????). The revised delivery to me was an additional eight to 10 weeks (mistake 3 perhaps). When I was told this, I went thermonuclear...this is/was not acceptable in any way as this severely impacted my schedule and budget. By ordering from these clowns, I added an additional expense of ~$4500...not immaterial when considering that represents about 40 - 50% of my original order. We are coming up to the deadline for when it's supposed to be delivered...and I'm betting that not only will it not arrive on time, but that they won't notify me (so I'll call of course), they won't apologize and they won't offer any discount.

Think I may contact Amex and dispute the charge.

I think that they should stay out of the sun and surf and get some business savvy.

Update: Just called and apparently I refused UPS delivery on June 17th. I am starting to believe in wormholes since apparently I keep doing bad things in this alternate universe. What a [censored] I was to refuse the delivery...did the other "me" know that I needed the delivery. Seriously, WTF? Why would I refuse a delivery?
I'll update again soon.

Update: Customer service rep said that they would re-ship a different order and when the original order that was "refused" ultimately turns up, to refuse it.

Update: Missing material finally arrived. Contractor showed me that the underside of the bullnose of the stair tread is unfinished still. In order to finally complete my project and wash my hands of this awful company, I'm having the treads reworked locally.

  • HomeOwnerRI's Response, Oct 23, 2018

    Happy that I didn't buy this product! Thanks for the heads Up After reading numerous reviews I Will NOT buy this bamboo flooring.

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Comments

  • Ca
      15th of Sep, 2010
    +1 Votes

    My experience with Cali Bamboo was the same. I was repeatedly lied to regarding the shipping and delivery dates of my flooring order. Over the span of nearly five months, I was told that my order had been shipped, but was lost - the lost shipment was recovered, but was damaged beyond use - a new order would be sent as soon as new inventory arrived (they were out of stock?) and that was pushed back repeatedly due to delayed shipping from China and QC issues. I finally had enough lies and I demanded my refund (I had paid in full). I spent another two weeks waiting for my full refund, which only came after threats of legal action. This company is bogus. I agree with the previous poster: Cali Bamboo is run by a bunch of deceiving clowns. If you are considering buying from this company, save yourself a mountain of grief and go elsewhere.

  • Du
      9th of Feb, 2011
    +3 Votes

    Calli is a disreputable company that uses a hard sell to suck you in and doesn't stand behind their products after the sale. LISTEN TO THE WARNINGS! I should have. This is a direct quote from their customer service rep: "If we had to honor all our customer complaints, we'd go out of business." !!! My local supplier (Eco-Friendly Flooring, Madison, Wisconsin) said, "If any customer was that unhappy with my product and was willing to pay the shipping to return it, I'd give them a full refund. " And Yanchi from Build Direct - is so confident of their product they will give a full refund if returned in 30 days AND they'll pay the shipping. Wish I'd known how little confidence Calli has in their product before I gave them my money. My story: I really wanted a floating floor so I could use a 6mm cork acoustic layer under. I also wanted a solid hardwood and liked the look and feel of strand-woven bamboo. My local supplier, Eco-Friendly Flooring, is trustworthy & has years of rave reviews from local residential & business customers. But she was out of their solid, click-lock, floating floors & I was just so stuck on the idea. So I bought Calli's - letting myself be sucked in by their hard sell. The stuff comes and is basically standard, tongue&groove boards - slightly thicker, but in no way "engineered to be floating floors." The boards have the slight warping typical of hardwoods. So when glued together, there'd be significant cracks. That's when I got into a back & forth with the service rep who said "all sales are final" and "If we had to honor all our customer complaints, we'd go out of business." My contractor called in a friend of his, a flooring expert with more experience using bamboo, who said he'd go ahead with the glued floating floor. So I did it. It looked great at first - despite many cracks due to the warping, but no more than one would get with any nailed down hardwood floor (where such cracks are the norm). The problem is that the installation didn't hold up. The glue bonds simply could not hold. The warping in the boards made a good glue bond along the length and ends of each impossible to achieve. Some boards rock from side-to-side as if they were floating in an ocean of molasses. Others have ends that press down. The whole thing is a royal mess. Maybe these boards can be floated in small spaces over a super subfloor with no underlayment, but they CAN NOT be used as Calli sold them to me to be used. Calli even sold me the underlayment - and certainly knew the area of floor I was covering, AND I talked to them at length about all that plus our climate issues (very dry winters & humid summers). "They are made for that kind of installation" "I have the exact same thing in my condo" "Our bamboo have been used in your region many times" and on and on went their sell. So they knew exactly what they were selling me. DON"T LET YOURSELF BE SUCKED IN. Go with a supplier that takes returns. That is a supplier that trusts their product. Calli has no faith in their stuff so why should you?

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    +1 Votes

    @duped3 Find our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430! We need your testimony.

  • Js
      17th of Oct, 2011
    +5 Votes

    I am a pretty smart person, and I checked reviews before ordering. But I did it anyway!! They really do market their product well, but once they get your money, you will never get help from them again. I thought if I paid attention to detail, I wouldn't have problems, but Cali screwed up and I discovered the anti-Christ of customer service. They will tell you exactly what you want to hear and never, ever follow through. They set deadlines for themselves that they couldn't even keep, and after I finally reached somebody after weeks of trying, I told her that as a customer service department, they should at least have the courtesy and respect to call me and let me know what's going on. She was so sympathetic and totally agreed - and I never heard from them again. They are LIARS!!!

  • 88
      19th of Oct, 2011
    +4 Votes

    thanks - I think I'll pass on purchasing flooring from these people.

  • Fl
      27th of Jun, 2012
    +2 Votes

    they will never warranty product, always some other issue installed incorrectly, environmental or improper care is always their answer they truly don't care

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @flor prof Find our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430! We need your testimony

  • Ra
      19th of Mar, 2014
    +3 Votes

    Agree wholeheartedly! Once they make the sale, I can see them laugh all the way to the bank not caring whole they suckered! Of course you have to pay up front. Add an unfortunate sucker to your list, Cali.

  • Na
      27th of Mar, 2014
    +4 Votes

    My situation is exactly the same. If I didn't know better all of you wrote parts of my experience. It has taken well over 5 weeks to obtain a refund. Given the delivery of the product went terribly (dates kept pushing out) I cancelled the entire order. Now my struggle is getting a refund. Fortunately my bank is involved hopefully this nightmare will be over soon!

  • Sc
      29th of Mar, 2014
    0 Votes

    I did not have any of the issues that others have had. They did get here on time, no delivery issues. My only issues was the installers, which had nothing to do with Cali. I think they just were not really professional installers. I got the natural fossilized click lock flooring. Quite heavy, very solid. Tough as nails. One commentor made a mistake on the hardness rating - Cali's site says it's 5k+ - twice as hard as what I found at HD, Lowe's, Lumber Liquidators.

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @scottieb0623 Are you still happy with your floors? If you’ve had buckling, gapping, cupping or chipping trust me it was not at your installers fault. Find our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430!

  • Me
      19th of Jun, 2015
    Best Best Advice +5 Votes

    I have had my eucalyptus flooring from Cali Bamboo for less than a year. Any amount of liquid that seeps down into the cracks will swell the wood. I reported this problem to customer service and they blamed the humidity in my house and will not warrant their product. I live in a very dry climate. I asked if they would send someone to inspect and they will not. It seems like it would be important for them to come look at the damaged flooring instead asuming why it's happening. The floor swells when water is spilled on the floor even after it's immediately wiped up because it seeps into the cracks and there is no way to dry it there. So I have a brand new floor that I thought would last the lifetime of my house (50 year warranty). but it's turning to trash in less than a year. I would NEVER recommend this supposedly green product...how green is it when I have to tear out my floor and start over????

  • Oh
      29th of Jun, 2018
    0 Votes

    @Melissa P. H. Do you still have your Cali eucalyptus flooring and has the company made things right with you?

  • Ch
      17th of Aug, 2018
    0 Votes

    @OhioMavenGirl Cali Bamboo does NOT make things right with their customers. They think they can simply cut them out and move on. I have filed a complaint with the San Diego BBB - I highly suggest it.

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    +1 Votes

    @Melissa P. H. Please find our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430! We need your testimony

  • Pi
      17th of Dec, 2015
    +3 Votes

    I agree with all the complaints about the company Calibamboo. I purchased about 2, 000 sf of the Java strand woven bamboo click lock floors in 2013 and when we installed them they didn't click together. The company who touted their customer service, basically blamed my installer when it obviously wasn't the installers fault. Then the proceeded to avoid my phone calls and emails and refused to accept the responsibility that their product was defective. Luckily, I bought the flooring from Lowes who honored their warranty policy. If they didn't, I would have been out over 5k and would still have to get new floors. Instead, I purchased a different type of flooding from Lowes and I think the nightmare was actually a blessing in disguise. I love the floor I have now!!! I had such a horrible experience with Calibamboo that ill wouldn't want another person to go through that. That's why I'm taking time to write this review. Don't do it unless you have lots of time and money!

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @Pinao I hope you can find our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430! We need your testimony

  • Ma
      31st of Jan, 2016
    +4 Votes

    Nuff said. I was planning on buying about 2, 000 sq. ft of this-but just changed my mind after reading this and /link removed/ Gotta love the Internet. Thanks

  • Mi
      10th of Jul, 2016
    +2 Votes

    I bought the Cali Bamboo from Lowe's in Indiana, it was the fossilized java antique wide click with the intention of floating the floor. The Lowe's flooring "expert" told me to use roofing tar paper for my vapor barrier. No#1 problem with the floor. Doing everything Cali recommends for installation after a month the floor started to get gaps ( of course Cali said were installation issues my fault not Cali's), and after about 3 months the gaps became close to 3/8 of an inch in places ! I went to Lowe's and they contacted Cali and the rep told the Lowe's flooring assistant manager that they would call in the next few days to schedule a Cali rep to come and inspect the floor . No phone call, so I called them and was told they don't send reps from their company but you need to hire your own and have them send Cali a report. I made a tool to tap the floor gaps closed, but they opened back up in about a month. I went around and around with Cali Bamboo and then they told me to send 5 boards back to them for inspection / evaluation . I took 5 boards up from my already installed floor and sent them to Cali. I contacted them after about 2 weeks because I hadn't heard from them. They said nothing was found wrong and was going to have to send the boards to China for inspection ( BS) that would take 2 months, so they are going to replace the order with the "new" design boards. I was told they don't pay anything for installation even though their product is the problem and that I'd have to take it up with Lowe's . I contact Lowe's and they tell me if I would have paid them to install they would come out and take it up and install, but seeing how I installed they were not responsible. I told them I had purchased the product being a "quality" product and that they should stand behind it or charge it to Cali. No luck there but they did refund my money because I told them I was tired of the lies from Cali. BTW this went on for 9 months! Some how Cali Bamboo is still in business!

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @Michael Clapp Check out our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430! We need your testimony

  • Pa
      8th of Sep, 2017
    0 Votes

    3 months after I installed the Cali Eucalyptus flooring, click and lock, the floor shrunk 1" along the 20 foot wall. I followed Cali instructions and even let it acclimate for 3 weeks in the room and stacked per their instructions. This past summer it regained about 3/8 " expansion but still has a gap. Cali has contacted me thru Lowe's and said they will send me more boards to replace and hope it doesn't reshrink again. I am now checking to see if the width is bowing or warping.

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @papajack Hey you need to Find our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430! We need your testimony

  • Sc
      16th of Nov, 2017
    +1 Votes

    I ordered their bamboo flooring 4 or 5 years ago. Looks great, no problems, except for the [censor] installers. Last time I had water damage, none of the flooring was warped, and the cork underlayment saved my bacon. I had no problems with receiving the order. The flooring is as hard as a rock. The Janka rating is 3393 lbs. to 5407 lbs..

  • Nw
      29th of Jan, 2018
    +2 Votes

    So glad I did some research on the reviews on Cali bamboo. Have seen way more negative then positive. I almost bought 2, 000 sq ft of it. Thank you so much for the comments. You helped me save money and a major headache.

  • Sa
      11th of Mar, 2018
    0 Votes

    Oh man! I went through Lowe's and ordered Cali Bamboo click lock flooring and had it installed by Lowe's subcontracted installer 1.5 years ago. A few months after the installation I had to have 5 planks replaced as they cracked. I decided to go ahead and order and have installed more of the flooring in our living room. I went through Lowe's again. Right before the new wood was to be installed, I noticed a 17 foot 1/3 " gap in the area that was previously installed. I showed this to the installer and and he freaked out and refused to install the new flooring in the living room. I spoke with Lowe's installation and told them the story. The tried to force the installer to install it but there was no way they were going to do it. So, I had to carry all of the boards to my garage, requiring 36 separate trips up and down our main stairs. Lowe's would not do this for me. I have spent the past 3 months trying to get something done about the gap in the original installation. Lowe's is no help whatsoever as they are trying to blame Cali Bamboo. Cali Bamboo is trying to blame the installer. They now say they have to have an inspector come out and take a look at the floor. I have a whole series of emails from them saying the problem is an "easy fix" and that we will not have to pay for it. I am so tired of their lies, lack of attention, slowness, and poor customer service. I have spent almost $9, 000 on the flooring thus far and am very dissatisfied, to say the least. I did my homework 1.5 years ago before choosing Lowe's and Cali Bamboo. Today, when I Googled Cali Bamboo a lot more negative information popped up. Today I contacted Lowe's corporate office and filed a complaint and am going to try to call Cali Bamboo corporate headquarters and speak to a CEO (if I can get so lucky). I am going to contact an attorney if nothing moves forward with this claim. My advice - DO NOT BUY CALI BAMBOO AND, WORSE YET, DO NOT PURCHASE IT FROM LOWE'S AND HAVE IT INSTALLED BY THEM.

  • Oh
      29th of Jun, 2018
    0 Votes

    @sandra ameel Sandra,

    Your horror story is almost identical to mine! Only mine started one year ago. I too, pride myself in researching every major investment; consumer products; hired help that takes my graded earned cash. I never had a nightmare, as I have had with this deceptive company!

    I also have invested $16, 000 worth of money into my floors in both material and labor. I also had my click and lock floors installed with two different kinds of methods: floating only and floating with glue on the tongue of every board. The glued boards are holding up much better. I am experiencing big gaps; lifting; movement in the unglued areas, and minimal movement and gapping in the glued ones.

    After beating myself up over this epic fail, I have deduced the following: CaliBamboo intentionally uses deceptive marketing tactics to attract novices and consumers unfamiliar with exotic wood to gullibly purchase their products! It isn't until AFTER you buy the wood, do they provided you with the 15 + pages of instructions and a startling disclaimer that instantly makes you have buyer's remorse! Their disclaimer is buried in the pre-installation section. It reads as follows: "controlling flooring moisture content is important for success. Bamboo, like all hardwood species is hygroscopic; it's size and shape changes naturally with the absorption or release of moisture. The amount of movement varies depending on the preventative steoos, taken at the time of installation (i.e. acclimation, moisture barrier application, etc.) and the stability home environment t thereafter. Care should be taken to control fluctuating levels of moisture indoors."

    How many of us would agree that this statement should be on their website and made visible on the CaliBamboo display in all Lowe's Home Improvement Stores? How many of us would have purchased it, after seeing this?

    My case did get reviewed by two floor "independent" floor inspectors, only for them to side with Cali and blame the early failure on my professional installers! So, my hubs and I have to pay again for deconstruction and reinstallation of 3 large areas!

    My next recourse is to contact the California Attorney General's office and to make an appeal for help and reimbursement. For anyone else in my predicament, please do the same thing! Write to the Cali Attorney General and plead your case! I have done this before in Ohio and I got a check 6 months later from the defendant, whom I had written about!!!

  • Li
      26th of Jul, 2018
    +1 Votes

    @OhioMavenGirl I am going through the same thing with Cali Bamboo. We have had the flooring for almost 2 years and have had nothing but problems. When the flooring first started gapping, they said it was installed wrong, that we needed T-Mold spacers (which btw were like having speed bumps throughout our house). They sent us more wood and the T-Molds, told us to follow the gap instructions, and have it re-installed. We did everything they said to do. The addition of the T-mold spacers destroyed the aesthetic quality of the floors.

    2 months later, the same things began to happen. Large gaps in the floor throughout the house. This time we hired a new contractor who re-installed the entire floor for a third time, this time without the T-Molds since they obviously had no impact on the problem and were a tripping hazard for our elderly parents. Within a few months, the gapping began again.

    I called Cali again and filed another complaint. We are at the point of waiting for one of their inspectors to come to the house. We have another 2 weeks to go until they arrive, and now our flooring is buckling from swelling in multiple areas. Some of the wood is actually snapping from the pressure.

    If you have written to the Attorney General, can you share their response and/or their contact information. I would like to do the same.

    Thanks!
    Elizabeth

  • Oh
      26th of Jul, 2018
    0 Votes

    @Lizzer Hi Elizabeth

    California's Attorney General -Xavier Becerra has several offices. I will be sending my compliant via certified mail to the San Diego address, since CaliBamboo's corporate office is located in San Diego.

    That address is: 600 W. Broadway Street, Suite 1800, San Diego, CA. 92101-3702. A p.o. Box office is also listed at: P.O. Box 85266-5299, San Diego CA 92186-5266. Their tele# is (619)738-9000.

    I hope that you get a more favorable outcome with the "independent" floor inspectors, than we did. It was 2 hours of wasted time! They faulted my installers, not their deceptive advertising practices and labor intensive/unrealistic installation instructions. Should you want to compare notes, e-Mail me at jansolt6@gmail.com.

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @sandra ameel See our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430! We need your testimony

  • Wr
      14th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    @sandra ameel Make sure you Find our Facebook page, Cali Bamboo Class Action Participants https://m.facebook.com/groups/2064655650512430! We need your testimony

  • An
      1st of Aug, 2018
    +2 Votes

    I had ordered calibamboo natural in 3 3/4" for an upcoming project. I put 1/2 deposit down which I was told would hold the flooring as long as I needed it which I warned would be in a few months.
    They lost 7 of the 14 boxes, and didn't have more. They convinced me that I could use the wider on the one level of the building which I compromised and used the 3 3/4 on the upper levels.
    This is where I will caveat: they do not indicate the specifics on the box and if you open it, they will not accept it unpacked. In addition: they require the flooring to be unpacked and to breathe before the installation. Therefore, in my case, the contractor unpacked the wider planks and then the thinner. The last box was the wrong color and they cannot replace it because they lost the correct color. And they will not accept the unpackaged flooring even shrink wrapped. I am left with a pile of wood that cannot be used for this project. They suggested I resell it or donate it as if that is my skill. I have lost over $2000 and have a load of wood in my way and is useless to my project. It was, in their conversation, our fault for not knowing that our last boxes would be the wrong product rather than theirs for sending and not labeling the incorrect one.

  • Ch
      16th of Aug, 2018
    0 Votes

    Absolutely incompetent, disinterested and insulting service from Cali Bamboo. They absolutely loved taking my payments, yet hated delivering the correct flooring and anything resembling problem resolution. Don't look to CEO Doug Jackson or Supervisor Ashley Dawn to respond to a complaint. They'll let their infant staff do that. And do it poorly.

    They sent me the WRONG flooring, which happens to weigh about 400lbs, promised to expedite overnight delivery of the correct flooring via Fedex Freight. What they didn't tell me was there is no such thing with the freight unit of Fedex. So, when it didn't arrive as promised, Fedex tells me it wasn't even shipped out until day 3. Isn't that so sweet? It was shipped out the day after it was to arrive. Must be a special kind of Cali timing or sumthang?

    Calling their awesome customer service team is such a joy. When you ask for a supervisor, they'll just keep you on hold and transfer you to 3 other people who are NOT supervisors. It's called the game of merry go round. Thinking maybe you'll get so fed up, you'll hang up. Not me, I love a challenge. Finally, I get to Zoe Brodsky, the ding-dong who made the overnight promise, and she was just as flaky as could be. Trying to prevent me from speaking to her invisible supervisor. I was just rude and pushy enough to spur her into action and whaddya know - a promised refund as a "courtesy". She couldn't say "Hey, we screwed you, lied to you, let you down - so to make amends for our immense stupidity, it's free!". Nah, the ego machine needed to make me feel they were going above and beyond by giving me a freebie.

    As of this writing, no refund has been forthcoming. SHOCKING, right? No response from the CEO or even the dude who sold me the floor.

    Integrity and righteous sense of honesty does not live among these heathens. Oh, about that 400 lbs of flooring taking up residency in my living room? Zoe tells me I can just do without as I like. Since it's ugly as cow poop, I'd like to shove it up her @$$, but I guess I will just use my super human powers and carry each 51lb box to the dump. Thanks, Cali - you're just super duper poopers!

    UPDATE: Within 24 hours of this review, the VP of Cali Bambo, Alexandra Gerritsen, emailed me that she was cancelling my order by ordering Fedex to return my flooring to them. I have paid in full, NO REFUND has been issued and she is clearly retaliating against me because I had the nerve to complain to her inferior organization. She states I can buy the flooring from their suppliers if I want it. That would cost me time and a 20%. What a DESPICABLE company!! I have now filed a complaint with the BBB in San Diego.

  • Ti
      17th of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes

    Is the class action lawsuit facebook page anything real or just a place for people that have had issues with Cali Bamboo to hope something might happen? There is nothing about the group that I could find other than the title and the listings and members.

    Cali Bamboo stranded flooring is terrible. The first time we installed it the contractor didn't follow the spec and Calie said that was why it cupped like crazy. The contractor did it over at his expense, completely to spec, and it failed just as fast in exactly the same places. Cali hired an inspector to write a report saying is cupping due to sunlight. But it's cupping in places that have no sunlight expsoure, and is completely flat in the room that has the most sunlight. Cali has refused to answer most of my questions, and they consider themselves done with it. It was a big mistake to go with Cali. They are selling a defective product which will cup even if installed to spec. Something should be done about bad actors like Cali Bamboo.

  • Ho
      31st of Oct, 2018
    0 Votes
    Calibamboo - Calibamboo Flooring
    Wakefield
    Rhode Island
    United States

    I was considering an install of this flooring, after reading many reviews on (their website). However I have learned that this type of bamboo flooring, Fossilized bamboo is loaded with issues not only saved me the Headache and dissatisfaction...Reading about the Company that makes this product is inferior too.! Thank All who gave me a heads up!

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