Since 1977, high quality laminate flooring has been a viable affordable option for homeowners look for low-maintenance, cost-effective flooring solutions.
Why has this flooring option become so popular over the past few decades?
Well to sum it up, it is:
- Usually a cheaper flooring option
- Simple and easy to install as long as you have a few simple tools
- It comes in many different designs and styles
Generally, many of the laminate floorings are so easily installed that you don’t even need floor adhesive. So, what is left? Just knowing what to look for when choosing high quality laminate flooring. Well, here’s your guide. If you are wondering what to look for and what to avoid when you are looking for your laminate flooring, then this guide will help you.
Choosing a laminate flooring could be the best decision for your home or commercial environment.
Before we begin, you need to ask yourself the following four questions. Knowing the answers to these questions will help you to choose and know what to look for when choosing high quality laminate flooring:
1. How frequent are you going to be using the floor?
Factors like pets, the possibility of things falling on it, liquid or damp area, etc. are all things to keep in mind. Naturally, if you know that your area is going to be used more than you will need to invest in a more durable laminate option. Become familiar with the Impact and Abrasion ratings. This is usually listed as IC and AC ratings.
2. How do you want your floor to look?
High quality laminate flooring comes in a large assortment of shapes and colours. You can even get laminate flooring that looks similar to wood and other natural materials. Pay attention as well to the actual size of the slats. These will also give the floor a unique visual characteristic.
The colour, or tone, of the laminate flooring will need to match the rest of the furnishings if you are to attain a good visual aesthetic. You can find laminate flooring options that provide an antique, contemporary or even rustic style.
Here’s where we get a little bit more technical: when choosing your high quality laminate flooring look at the technical finishings and characteristics as well. If you are aiming for something that looks like a wood replica then pay close attention to the way that the laminate surface is finished and what type of chamfer it has.
You can choose from an oak finish to a more metallic or resin finish.
3. Will your floor be exposed to any types of more extreme temperatures?
Does your floor have a heating system underneath it? If it does, then you will need to look at making sure that you have the correct underfloor system. Having the correct underfloor will allow a proper flow of the heated air up into the floor.
Don’t have a heated floor? Then you could look for an underfloor with a certain amount of insulation.
4. Will your floor be exposed to elements?
One of high quality laminate flooring’s traits is that it is durable against the sunlight. However, if you floor is exposed to full sunlight then it is best to opt for a high quality laminate flooring.
Now that you have the basics covered, you can look at examining your different options. Generally speaking, there are two different types (or styles) of high quality laminate flooring.
The Two Styles:
both styles come packages almost identically. But the difference between them lies in their inherent design:
1. Engineered Wood
2. Plastic Laminate
Let’s expand a bit on what exactly engineered wood is:
This is a type of flooring that has been constructed by sealing together many layers of actual wood. The last layer, the one that will receive the most punishment from foot traffic, is coated with an acrylic finish.
Now let us look at Plastic laminate:
This is a type of flooring with the following constitution:
- last layer: melamine
- centre: fibreboard
- top layer: it natural grain print usually covered and protected by hard plastic.
- last layer: melamine
Many people want to have the engineered wood simply because it is natural and pure wood. However, the price tag is usually considerably higher and the plastic laminate does a good wood personalization. Especially since the plastic laminate can be extremely cost effective while still maintain a high quality.In fact, the engineered wood as a hardwood as the top layer that is prone to scratches and damages. However, the catch is that although it may scratch easier, the laminate flooring cannot be rejuvenated as the wood can. Damages and scratches to the hardwood finish can be fixed and the wood can go back to looking relatively unharmed, as long as you don’t need to rejuvenate it more than twice, maybe thrice. The good news? You can find the most affordable engineered wood laminate flooring right here at AC flooring! Now you can get the highest quality, at the lowest price.
Are you looking for a high quality laminate flooring that can withstand plenty of traffic as well as some moisture? Then rather opt for the more economical plastic laminate flooring option. You can obtain the aesthetic of wood yet pay less and the floor can endure more.
A note on the Finish
Although you may think that the way your floor looks, or how you can brag about it, is the most important thing- it really isn’t! Your floor needs to be able to be appropriate for your lifestyle and for your area.
- Do you live in a sandy area, perhaps close to the beach? Will you be seeing lots of beach sand being carried in through summer sandals?
- Or do you live in a more forest-ey area? Are you likely to see children come stomping through the front door with gumboots, dripping umbrellas, and muddy footprints?
- Choose a floor that has an interesting and detailed grain pattern. This will help your floor to look cleaner for longer!
- Flooring with a varied grain pattern, a low-gloss finish or distressed or hand-scraped patina will look much better, much cleaner, much longer than flooring with a glossy, monolithic grain pattern.
- Or is your lifestyle fairly quiet, and will be that way for the future to come? If this is the case then don’t worry yourself and just find a high quality laminate flooring that you like the look of.
When choosing your high quality laminate flooring, look for thinner planks. If you use wide pieces than you need to make sure that your floor underneath is 100% flat. If your substrate is not completely flat then look for narrower planks.
Generally, high quality laminate flooring will let you know how uneven a substrate they can tolerate. However, if you know that your substrate is not perfect then use narrow planks- just to be on the safe side. Wide planks placed over uneven surfaces will highlight cracks and you will even be able to feel the unevenness underfoot.
Did our guide help you in your search for high quality laminate flooring? Pop us a question if you need extra help or information. Here at AC flooring solutions, we are always happy to help out. Head on over to our shop and find the best deals on high quality laminate flooring!