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Laminate Flooring




What is Laminate Flooring?

Briefly? Laminate flooring is made of synthetic floor planks composed primarily of milled wood leftovers, and topped with photographic images. These are protected by tough, clear top layers and stabilizing bottom layers. Laminate floors usually simulate wood or tile.

Relatively new in the overall flooring field, laminate flooring was invented in 1977 for two main reasons. A lot of people wanted the look of hardwood, but could not afford it. Additionally, people who wanted the wood flooring look needed more durability than many hardwoods can provide. While laminate floors are not considered to be real wood flooring, they are still primarily comprised of wood material, and replicate very realistic hardwood flooring looks, as well as ceramic tile and stone looks.
 

Why choose a laminate floor for your home?

 

What can your floor look like?

There are two broad categories of laminate looks. Laminate Wood Flooring is the most popular style, being the reason this product was invented in the first place. Laminate Tile and Stone Style Flooring is designed to look like floors made out of tiles of stone, right down to the grout lines. The surface can have a high gloss, “piano” finish, a softer, matte look, and even hand-scraped textures. A properly installed laminate floor will be stable, snug from plank to plank, snug with trims and moldings, level and even. It should look smooth overall, despite any textured finishes.

Wood Style Laminate Wood Style Close Stone Style Laminate Stone Style Close

 

Where can’t you put some laminate floors?

It can be installed over both concrete and wood, both above and below grade, and into almost any room in any home, but can laminates really go everywhere? Well no, not quite. If your basement regularly floods, you should avoid laminate, and it can never be installed outdoors. There are some things to consider, environmental as well as aesthetic. The big three are the subfloor which would be under the laminate, a room’s moisture levels, and the expected wear and tear.

Install it yourself?


 

Installing laminate flooring: should you do it yourself?

Because of the prevalence of click together, floating floor installation systems, it is very possible that you could do a laminate flooring installation by yourself. It is not only likely to be very easy to do, but there is also a wealth of online information on how to install laminate flooring. All laminates come with installation instructions. We are producing an increasing number of videos demonstrating the click together systems and other installation issues, and there are plenty more out on the web.

 
 
– – – –
David is a Writer at Floors To Your Home (.com), as well as the PPC Manager, a Marketing Strategy Team member, a Researcher, Videographer, Social Strategist, Photographer and all around Resource Jitō. In my spare time I shoot and edit video, explore film history, mix music (as in ‘play with Beatles multi-tracks’) and write non-fiction for my friends. Connect with me on W. David Lichty’s Google+

 
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– – – –
W. David Lichty is the Content Guy at Floors To Your Home (.com). In my spare time I shoot and edit video, explore film history, mix music (as in ‘play with Beatles multi-tracks’) and write non-fiction for my friends. Connect with me on Google+

 
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4 comments on “Laminate Flooring
  1. Joyce says:

    What the best underlayment for installing laminate floors over hardwood?

    • admin says:

      It’s a similar answer to your other question. What your subfloor is made of has little bearing on the question, wood already being a normal subfloor option. The issue would be with whether you’re doing a first floor or an upper floor. If it’s an upper floor, you might want to go with something on the thicker side, and maybe a felt over a foam, to help eliminate any hollow sound that could come down through the ceiling of the room under.

  2. Joyce says:

    Would it be OK to install my laminate flooring over my badly stain hardwood after a good cleaning? Can’t afford to left my house for 2-5 days/ $$?

    • admin says:

      If your hardwood floor is not a floating floor then yes, it could be, as much as installing laminate over any subfloor is possible. If the hardwood floats, then it would have to come up. We can’t install floating floors on top of floating floors. Otherwise the important factors for the installation of any hard surface flooring are that the surface underneath it is level, flat and clean. As a very general rule you want to avoid any variance – slope, dip, bump, chip – greater than 1/8″ over any 10 foot span of the floor. If your badly stained hardwood meets, or can be made to meet, the specific installation standards listed in your documentation then it should go over the hardwood just fine.

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