Category Archives: Flooring

Hardwood Flooring Offers Unique Looks In Floors

Are bare feet bad for hardwood floors?

Most parents and professional cleaners have a legitimate reason for wanting to keep outdoor shoes, well, outdoors, and that has to do with keeping the soles of our shoes from tracking dirt, grime, toxins like pesticides and industrial pollution, and traces of both human and animal waste into our homes. Outdoor shoes are even known to offer free passes to bacteria that can cause health issues, although that risk could be slightly exaggerated, according to The New York Times.

Many cultures practice shoe-free homes across Asia and the Middle East. But is the option of going barefoot — or perhaps just wearing soft fluffy slippers — at home a habit we should all be adopting? According to some podiatrists, the answer is a resounding, “no.” And it’s not because they aren’t concerned about having us invite a few germs and some grime into the house. Rather, they worry that going barefoot around the house could open up our feet to developing different types of structural injuries.

Hardwood Floors May Be Killing Your Feet

“My feet are killing me” is a common phrase we hear from patients suffering from foot and heel pain. Your hardwood floors may not actually be killing you, but they are likely irritating your feet. The days of green shag carpet—which offered shock absorption and comfort for our feet—have been replaced by stiff surfaces like hardwoods, laminates, and tile that cause more wear and tear on our feet. So if you find yourself missing the days of green shag carpet, you are not alone. Your feet miss it too!

Where do you find long stretches of concrete sidewalks, tile floors, or hardwood floors occurring naturally? The answer is nowhere. Humans have been wearing variations of shoes for thousands of years, but the increase in foot and heel pain may be related to more recent decorative changes.

As we’ve moved from shag carpets to laminates, hardwood, and tile floors, our feet have paid the price. More and more people have begun suffering from plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the tissues at the bottom of the foot and a leading cause of foot pain. This can lead to pain in the arches or heels of the foot, which worsens when the foot pronates or flattens on hard surfaces. The pain can be severe and debilitating.

Noninvasive treatments to consider:

Did you know that chiropractors can do adjustments on feet? There are 26 bones in the foot, and just like the spine, the mobility of these joints can become restricted. When it comes to the cause of plantar fasciitis, studies have shown that “Reduced ankle dorsiflexion appears to be the most important risk factor.”  This means that reduced ankle movement is an underlying cause of the pain. Improved joint mobility can minimize pain and eliminate dysfunction.

Patients have had great success with therapeutic foot taping, custom orthotics, and of course, chiropractic adjustments. Over-the-counter insoles can be beneficial, however, custom orthotics do tailor to each foot’s unique arch.

The good news though is that nonsurgical management of plantar fasciitis is successful in about 90 percent of patients. So there is hope—even if you dearly love your hardwood floors!”

 As with most conditions, conservative treatment works best at the start of foot and heel pain. See a professional sooner rather than later if you are struggling with foot and heel pain.

Wearing shoes will protect your feet against bacteria and fungi

If you’re a germaphobe, this may put you off going around your house in bare feet for life: Your floors may be clean, but they can’t really ever be completely germ free, and walking barefoot indoors exposes your feet to potential infections caused by bacteria and fungi. These organisms first infect the skin, and then they may infect the nails, leading to thickening, discoloration and brittleness of the nails. Both conditions become not only unsightly but also contribute to an unpleasant odor. 

The best way to protect your feet is to pick up a good pair of indoor shoes, which you can change into when you get home. Doctors recommend looking for a pair that provides good arch support, particularly if you already suffer from a foot condition, such as weak arches or bunions.

Wood Flooring: 5 Costly Mistakes You Can Avoid

Wood flooring is one of the top choices, as it has been throughout the years. It adds elegance and warmth to a room, and it is versatile in that homeowners can add stains for changes in color or top with an accent rug for a softer feel. Many homes that have original wood flooring can use this as a selling point, and buyers pay top dollar for wood floors that are in good condition

1. Not engaging in preventative measures

Before anyone walks across the new wood floor, make sure to take some preventative measures. Place doormats at all doorways so that family members and guests can wipe their shoes before walking into your home. Cover the legs of all pieces of furniture with felt so that they can easily slide in and out without the metal feet scratching the floors. Think about strategic placement of runners and area rugs in high traffic areas. These are only some of the ways that you can be your wood floor’s best ally.

2. Using abrasive cleaning products

When it comes to wood floors, there are certain cleaning products and chemicals that should never touch the surface. If your floor has a coat of sealant or lacquer, you should use different cleaning products than if it is unfinished.

All wood floors can be swept with a broom or dry mop, but avoid using chemicals that can deteriorate the finish or warp the wood. If you use liquid floor cleaner, apply it to the mop or cloth instead of pouring it directly onto the floor. When shopping for flooring cleaning products, tell your vendor exactly what kind of wood floor you’ve got. And then proceed accordingly.

3. Forgetting about your pets and their habits

Animals can cause a lot of damage to wood floors, whether from an accident that is left untreated or from long nails that can cause scratches and dings. Clean up any spills or accidents as soon as they happen to prevent warping, and keep their nails trimmed. See your vet on how to do this properly. Additionally, if food or water bowls sit on the floor, keep silicone mats beneath them so that spills don’t seep into the floor.

4. Wearing shoes indoors

High heeled shoes can ding and dent a wood floor, so ask guests to remove their shoes, and always remove yours when you come into your home. These shoes are more damaging when they don’t have rubber heel protectors since they can basically become chisels that make holes in the wood.

Dirty or wet shoes can also cause the floors to warp and shift, so the best option is to simply walk barefoot or in socks when walking on the hardwood. Or, if you really want to keep your feet warm, wear comfy indoor slippers. Be comfortable, and protect your wood floors at the same time.

5. Using aggressive cleaning tools

Steam mops might seem like a good way to remove bacteria from wood floors, but they can result in serious damage. Use minimal amounts of cleaning products on your floors, and always use soft towels to wipe up the floors. An antibacterial floor cleaner is a better way to eliminate germs and bacteria on the floors.

Quality And Durability Make Up These Laminate Flooring Experts

Laminate Flooring

Laminate Flooring is a popular choice among homeowners and business owners because it gives you everything you would want in a flooring material: Beauty, durability, ease of installation and maintenance, all at an affordable price

There are many benefits to having laminate flooring. It can accentuate the design of your home and create a look and feel of sophistication and elegance. Laminate flooring is nice to walk on and if you have pets, they can walk on it as well!

Durability

Other than melamine resins, some types of laminate flooring are coated with aluminium oxide. Both substances make laminate flooring highly durable. It will hold up against scratches and dents.

Stain Resistant

Laminate flooring is recommended for homes where pets live indoors. This is because its top coat is either water-resistant or water-proof completely.

Easy To Clean And Maintain

Did a guest spill wine or coffee on your laminate flooring? Simply clean up the spill with a dry, clean mop.

REASONS TO CHOOSE LAMINATE FLOORING OVER HARDWOOD

Many homeowners appreciate the aesthetics of hardwood floors, as they add quality and value to living spaces and give homes a modern, refined look. It’s also made from real wood, so it’s built to last for many years and gives your home a gorgeous appearance. Laminate flooring is made to closely resemble hardwood floors but is not made from authentic wood. However, its many benefits make it an excellent choice for new floors. What follows are some of the benefits of choosing laminate floors over hardwood.

Price

Laminate flooring is much more affordable than hardwood, as it’s not made from trees. Instead, composite wood is pressed together at high temperatures to create it, and then an image of hardwood is overlayed on top of the flooring. As a result of this process, the laminate flooring looks nearly identical to the hardwood at a fraction of the cost. Decent quality laminate costs about $3/square foot, as opposed to hardwood floors that typically cost between $3-$5/square foot for lower end oak, maple and ash materials. Higher-end wood floors go for $5/square foot or higher. The installation costs of laminate flooring are on average 50 percent less than the cost to install hardwood floors

Ease of Install

Laminate floors can be installed yourself. It requires no glue or special tools. Most laminate flooring that resembles hardwood floors is snapped together in modular pieces. This is easy to do yourself and doesn’t require a professional. Hardwood floors, however, are harder for people to install themselves because special tools and techniques are needed to do it successfully. Tools such as a floor stapler are needed and although they may seem easy to use, there’s a definite learning curve for how to operate them properly.

More Suitable Environments

Laminate flooring can be installed in rooms that are partially moist, such as bathrooms and kitchens. However, hardwood floors can never be installed in bathrooms because it will warp and crack in response to surrounding moisture. Some types of the laminate can even be installed below grade in basements. Hardwood flooring does not have this same flexibility because it can’t withstand the moisture buildup.

Pet-Friendly

Laminate flooring is an ideal material to use for flooring in a house with pets. It provides great scratch resistance against cat and dog claws. In addition, by purchasing a thicker laminate floor at about 12mm, you can avoid the click-clack sound produced by a dog’s claws. Its naturally slick surface resists damage and dings. Hardwood floors, on the other hand, tend to scratch easily and ruin its surface.

Why You Should Choose Laminate

If you’re dreaming of hardwood floors in the bathroom but having nightmares about the cost, take heart. You can get the look of wood with laminate, which closely mimics the texture, color and graining of real woods. Laminate can withstand drippy towels and stand up to heavy traffic and dropped curling irons. It also resists even the toughest stains, from makeup to nail polish.

Some manufacturers do not recommend putting laminate in the bathroom due to the worry of water damage. Review manufacturer installation instructions and warranty information before choosing a laminate floor. If you choose it for the bath, carefully follow any special directions for installation and sealing, and take the utmost care to prevent water from seeping beneath the surface.

Texture. Laminate can look like real wood or even tile. For a more realistic wood appearance, the surface can be hand-scraped, distressed, and covered with authentic-looking knots and wormholes. And you can get laminate that looks like anything from polished marble to timeworn slate.

Finish. Laminate is prefinished and available in glossy or matte coatings

Shape. Laminate comes in strips or planks that mimic wood, or squares that look like tile. They can be laid in nearly any pattern, such as herringbone or subway

Reasons to Choose Laminate Flooring

When it comes to remodeling the floors in your house, it can be overwhelming to determine which flooring is the right option for your needs. While you most likely know what you do not like, which can help to narrow down the field, there still is a wide variety of choices left for you to sort through.

Bang for Buck

As mentioned above, laminate flooring is extremely budget-friendly. However, it is also incredibly sturdy and durable, giving you the most bang for your buck. What’s more, it is nearly impossible to visibly tell the difference between hardwood and laminate, thus it offers you the style and sophistication of hardwood without the hefty price tag

Durability

Just how durable is laminate? Laminate is typically constructed of four layers of material. These materials are fused together to create a soft, comfortable flooring that is resistant to sharp pet claws, heavy foot traffic, and even cooking and water spills. It’s durability makes it a great choice for hallways, kitchens, bathrooms, and even living rooms

Installation

Installing laminate flooring is not a lengthy process, which means minimal renovation disruption. One of the hardest parts of surviving a home remodels is dealing with the constant ruckus contractors and construction projects can have on your home and daily routine. Laminate flooring can be installed fairly quickly by a professional team. If you are looking for local companies, try searching for laminate floors in Utah or whatever location you are in. This can help narrow down your search to your local area.

Care

Laminate flooring does not take a lot of work to keep clean or well maintained. Dust can be seen clearly, making it easy to sweep up. Any types of spills, from food to water to even nail polish, should be wiped up as soon as possible; however, as mentioned above, the flooring is fairly durable, so spills should not leave a stain if cleaned up relatively soon. Laminate can be vacuumed and can also be wiped clean with a damp cloth or mop

What flooring is right for you?

Laminate

laminate floors look and feel just like real wood but offer outstanding durability and strength from an expertly engineered design.

Hardwoods

hardwood floors offer the beauty of natural wood with the convenience and durability of Pergo. Choose from a variety of styles and widths with engineered hardwood or solid hardwood construction.

Rigid Vinyl

rigid vinyl flooring stretches the imagination with sixty deep looks featuring authentic texture and extreme detail, in both wood and tile visuals.

Classy Laminate Flooring Gives A Designer Feel

A Step by Step Guide to Choosing Flooring

Choosing flooring is far more complicated than just finding the best-looking product. Several other factor—moisture, durability, costs, and more—greatly influence your decision. Follow these five steps in order to reach the flooring decision that is right for you and your home.

Will Your Floor Be Installed in a High-Moisture Area?

you need flooring that is suited for a high- or medium-moisture environment, such as concrete, ceramic or porcelain tile, or vinyl tile.

Do You Need a Pet-Friendly Floor?

You will need a floor with superior wear resistance. Some flooring that appears to be wear resistant often is not. For example, site-finished solid hardwood can easily scratch. Its saving grace is that scratches can be sanded out. Instead, try a durable flooring like ceramic or porcelain tile, laminate flooring, plank vinyl flooring, or even carpeting.

What Is Your Square Footage Budget?

You will find bargain laminate flooring hovering around this price; nothing gorgeous but it has a general wood-like appearance. Sheet and tile resilient flooring can also be found in this price range. Lots of gorgeous ceramic and porcelain tile can be found in this range–but tile is truly a labor-intensive installation.

Do You Want to Install Your Flooring by Yourself?

By installing your flooring yourself, you can often cut your entire flooring cost in half. Laminate flooring and plank vinyl flooring tend to be the easiest floor coverings for homeowners to self-install. Both are floating floors, which means that each board connects to an adjacent board (not to the subfloor). Ceramic and porcelain tile installation is not as self-evident as laminate and vinyl installation. Hone your learning curve on an out-of-the-way room, like a basement bathroom.

Laminate Flooring: Reviews, Best Brands & Pros vs. Cons

Stylish

Laminate flooring is making a comeback. Recent technology has enabled manufacturers to design laminate planks that replicate wood and natural stone. The latest styles feel like the real deal, too.

Affordable

Laminate ranges in price from $1 to $11 per square foot. There’s a massive difference in quality between the two extremes. You have to be diligent when shopping around

Durable

If you have kids or pets, laminate flooring could be the solution to your problems. It holds its own against liquid assaults (though not quite as well compared to vinyl plank) and stands up to muddy pawprints like a champ

Versatile

Laminate warms up living spaces and makes bedrooms feel cozy and inviting. You can install laminate anywhere in your home. Well, almost anywhere

Allergy Friendly

Seasonal allergy sufferers take heart; laminate won’t make you sneeze. It doesn’t hold dust and dirt like carpet. It’s also resistant to bacteria and mold.

Laminate Flooring Buying Checklist

Our laminate buying checklist will help you learn what you need to know before you buy whether you buy online or at your local store. It’ll help you get all your facts straight so you can make the most informed choice and get the most for your laminate flooring dollar.

Laminate Buying Checklist

What to know.

Laminates can go virtually anywhere in a home or business but that doesn’t mean they can go everywhere. If your space will be in an area of moisture like a bathroom or laundry room, you should probably rule out laminate. You can install laminates over radiant heat and at or below grade but you must be sure to pick the right one. Talk it over with your dealer.

Which Laminate is Right for You

What to know.

Laminates sure are tough and durable—but you need to pick the right laminate for the job. If you’re laying a floor in an office exposed to lots of foot traffic, office chairs on castors and high heel shoes, you’ll need to pick a laminate with a higher AC (Abrasion Class) rating. Matching the AC rating to your needs is easy.

Which Style Should You Pick

What to know.

A properly installed laminate floor is level, even and tight fitting. It should drastically improve the look of any room. However, trying to decipher what an entire room will look like from a small sample is something most people find very difficult to do alone. Considering the cost of purchasing and installing a new floor and the fact that you won’t be doing it again anytime soon, buying an hour or two of an interior designer’s time can be very worthwhile.

Color. As a general rule of thumb, the color of an installed floor can seem darker than the sample. That’s because you may be looking at your sample near a window or in a room other than where it will be installed. It’s also sometimes difficult to imagine the color you hold in your hand multiplied by the hundreds of boards that will fill your room. Darker colors tend to absorb light and lighter colors tend to reflect it. When in doubt about color, it’s best to get a second opinion.

Grain. Every piece of wood laminate displays a grain. Some grains are bold, with swirls, bird’s eyes and notches whereas others patterns repeat, and others still display almost no grain at all. To make it even more complicated, your sample represents only one board in a floor and the other boards will display slightly different grain patterns. So, do you like a grainy floor or a floor without grain? It’s best to decide before you buy. If you find deciding too difficult, a quick consultation with a designer can help you get to know your tastes.

Laminate flooring – how to choose, install and clean your surface

Get a smart floor in record time without breaking the bank with a practical laminate option

A breeze to clean and easy on the eye, laminate flooring has improved a lot in recent years and is a credible alternative to solid wood and stone floors. It’s usually a fraction of the price of the real thing, too.

Is laminate hardwearing?

In truth, it’s not the most durable option out there, compared with porcelain tiles or engineered planks. But recent improvements in splash-safe finishes, impact resistance and scratch protection mean it will easily cope with the wear and tear of normal family life.

What are the latest trends in laminates?

Styles have become much more varied so as well as the traditional look, there are also many more unusual designs. Some designs come in interlocking planks that need no glue and just click together.

What should I look for in a laminate?

Some laminate flooring can be noisy, especially if you have pets. An underlay will help dampen sound, but also look for versions with sound insulation. Laminate is also prone to electrostatic discharges, so if you tend to get shocked by car doors and shopping trolleys, it’s worth seeking anti-static laminate. An embossed surface, with the texture of stone or timber, will also boost authenticity.

How much does laminate flooring cost?

As with most things in life, you get what you pay for with laminate flooring. Thickness is a good indicator of quality. 
It is possible to buy 6mm-thick laminate, from £5-10sq m, while 8mm-thick versions are around £10-20sq m, and 10mm-thick laminate will cost in excess of £20sq m. Don’t forget to add the cost of underlay and installation to your budget.

How to choose the right laminate floor

Choosing the right laminate flooring for your home may seem a daunting task, especially with the suite of flooring available in the Australian market. Different textures, colours, grains, plank sizes and especially price points on offer may be challenges for many customers to absorb.

What type of joining system is used?

Laminate flooring is layed floating, not glued, with an innovative, yet, simple click system, called joining system, which connects the boards to each other. Many customers would not have this on their radar but having the most superior joining system for their laminate is paramount. The best joining system in the world is the Uniclic system – easy to install and providing a gap-free finish after installation. Using glue to fix the flooring to the sub floor may not be as secure.

What warranties are offered?

Warranties are such an important part of the buying process and laminate is no exception. A 25-year warranty gives you peace of mind in the long term. While a 25-year warranty may give you peace of mind in the long term, unfortunately, many long warranties are handed out prolifically and often a lot of warranties are void by default to due to impossible environmental conditions such as moisture. At times, other warranties look OK, but there is no legitimate company to back them up – either the supplier does not look after complaints or the supplier has already left the flooring market after short term profit.

How moisture resistant is the product?

Moisture is the natural enemy of any laminate floor. In most cases, the moisture resistance of a laminate floor is determined by the quality and moisture resistance of the HDF core. The harder the HDF core, the higher the quality of the laminate flooring.

Is the product reputable?

Get an understanding on how long the laminate product has been sold in Australia and has been featured in magazines and online. Great reviews are another barometer to determine if the laminate is right for you. A reputable and long standing laminate company is much more enticing than a new company who may be a flash in a pan.