How To Choose Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring is both attractive and long-lasting. It was first introduced around 1977 and quickly gained popularity as a lower-cost alternative to wood. It now perfectly and cost-effectively simulates wood flooring, natural stone flooring, and a variety of other flooring types.

Our laminate floor buying guide provides an overview of this attractive and adaptable flooring material. Call us on 01803 615655 for information on pricing, installation and care & maintenance.

What Is Laminate Flooring

Simply put, laminate flooring is a synthetic material with 4 basic layers. Starting at the top, they are:

Wear Layer: The wear layer is a thin layer of clear, tough melamine resin. It can protect the floor from scrapes, dents, and gouges as well as withstand heavy foot traffic.

Pattern Layer: This is printed paper, much like a photograph. The image is usually real wood or stone.

Core Layer: It is water-resistant and made of dense fibreboard saturated with resin to produce hardness and strength. The thickest layer is the core layer.

Balancing Layer: This layer stabilizes the plank and also acts as a vapor barrier.

Some laminate products come with attached underlay for a fifth layer. They are a good choice if no suitable underlay is in place.

How Laminate Flooring Is Made

The layers are pressed together using high pressure (up to 600 lbs per square inch) and 400°F heat. As a result, the laminate (layered) product rarely comes apart. Large sheets of laminated flooring are manufactured and then milled into planks of varying widths and lengths. Tongue and groove edges are used on the planks to make it easier to lock them together.

Durable Laminate Floor Solutions

The melamine wear layer on “most” laminate floors is extremely tough, though some less expensive laminate products are not as long-lasting. What you pay for is what you get. Leading brands can be expected to last for 20-35 years, if not longer. Less expensive laminate will last 10-20 years.

Of course, the more you look after your floors the longer they will last, so take care and use the right laminate floor cleaner wherever possible.

Laminate Flooring Lengths And Patterns

Laminate flooring, like solid wood flooring, comes in hundreds of width and finish combinations. Finishes replicate all species of wood in a variety of shades, as well as many different types of natural stone flooring and much more.

The flooring’s length ranges from 8′ to 12′. The length of all the planks in a single pack will be the same. When installing it, stagger the pieces to offset the butt edges as much as possible.

The greater the thickness of the laminate flooring, the better. The cheapest laminate flooring can be as thin as 3mm thick; better laminates are at least 8mm to 10mm thick. The best standard thickness that you can buy is 12mm. Inquire about our expert laminate fitting service.

How To Choose Laminate Flooring

Choose a laminate based on the wear layer thickness and warranty. This will provide you with an idea of the overall quality. Then, select the pattern and style you want.

In terms of trends, laminate floors tend to follow and keep up with those of solid hardwood flooring. So right now, vintage style laminates are in, wide planks, distressed looking wood, anything in fact that looks ‘old world’. Laminate floors that mimic ceramic tile, slate and granite flooring are also very popular right now.

Flooring Torquay

Our dedicated warehouse in Torquay is open six days a week and is available to both domestic and commercial customers, showcasing all of our products with samples across all ranges. We are confident that we can find the perfect match for you with competitive prices and high quality items, as well as a dedicated team on hand to offer expert advice. Contact Direct Carpets today!

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