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