Laminate flooring is among home builders and homeowners’ most popular floor options. It offers the look of natural hardwood, stone, and tile floors at an affordable price. Laminate flooring has a variety of styles and is easy to maintain. It also provides several health benefits, such as low formaldehyde emissions and allergens.
Laminate is one of the most durable flooring options around. It’s made of a dense core or base layer of plywood or high-density fiberboard, which makes it strong and stable. A high-resolution, photo-realistic image of wood, stone, or metal sits below the wear layer, emulating the look of natural hardwood or tile. Some types also have a backing layer or underlayment to promote moisture resistance and soundproofing qualities.
Durability largely depends on the amount of traffic it sees and adherence to its manufacturer’s maintenance recommendations. You’ll want to pay close attention to the laminate’s AC rating (abrasion class/criteria), which measures how it holds up to wear, staining and fading.
A higher AC rating is often accompanied by a textured surface for better slip resistance, making it a great choice for active households with kids and pets. It also comes in a variety of styles, including wood-look and tile-look options. Unlike other types of flooring, laminate is highly resistant to stains and moisture. This makes it easy to clean and maintain.
Laminate floors can be cleaned using a vacuum or broom. They can also be wiped with a mild cleaning solution and a damp microfiber mop.
Regular maintenance is important to help keep your laminate looking great. Sweep or vacuum regularly to prevent dirt and grit from building up, and quickly wipe up spills.
If there is a sticky residue on the floor, try the solution of 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water, sprayed on small sections, and then wipe off quickly.
Scuff marks from shoes can be difficult to remove, but you can get them out by buffing the area with a microfiber cloth or a tennis ball.
Permanent marker and pen isn’t a big deal on laminate, but if it does, use acetone or nail polish remover on a paper towel to wipe it away.
Laminate flooring is available in various styles, colors, and finishes. It can imitate various materials, including wood, stone, tile, and concrete.
Regardless of your chosen material, laminate planks are easy to maintain, only needing regular sweeping or mopping with mild detergent and water. This makes it a great option for those with busy lifestyles or kids prone to making a mess.
In addition, it is eco-friendly and does not hold dust or odors like carpet or wood floors. This is a big benefit for allergy sufferers.
There are two basic types of laminate flooring: engineered and plastic laminate. Both are manufactured from snap-together planks about 1/4 in thick that are made from a wood-like core layer topped by an image layer.
Laminate floors are a favorite of DIYers, especially because they’re easy to install. The planks snap together with an interlocking tongue-and-groove system, eliminating the need for nails or grout.
Before you start installing your laminate flooring, remove any baseboards and trim around the room’s perimeter. This will make it easier to place the laminate floor over existing drywall, tile, or wood flooring.
Begin by laying down the first row of planks in a straight line against a wall, using spacers to maintain an expansion gap between the laminate and the wall to accommodate the natural movement of the laminate due to temperature and humidity changes.
Then, start laying the rest of the rows one at a time, matching tongues to grooves and ensuring the end joints are staggered by at least 6 inches. This helps keep the floor from buckling and makes it more attractive.
Laminate floors are a type of flooring made from several layers of materials that are fused together. The top layer is a photographic image of wood, tile, or stone, which is then sealed with a clear protective layer. The other layers consist of a core made of high-density fiberboard or particleboard and a bottom layer that provides stability and moisture resistance.