We had a very similar experience. I noticed also that there was a suprising number of defective planks. The defects ranged from slightly upturned corners (which weren't immediately noticeable, until the floor was down) that reveal themselves in certain light, to small chips in the laminate (we used those planks for special cuts), to small raised bumps in the laminate. If you install yourself, you'll save a ton of money, and probably end up with a better result. But Pergo is definitely NOT scratch resistant.