If you love the look of hardwood floors but often find that the price is somewhat of a deterrent you are one of many. The truth of the matter is that more and more people are looking elsewhere when it comes to flooring options. Traditional hardwood flooring is not only expensive in the beginning but many find the high costs involved in proper maintenance to be somewhat prohibitive as well.
The good news is that technology improvements have made it rather difficult in many cases to identify the differences between hardwood and laminate flooring at first glance. Laminate flooring uses an actual photo of a wood grain that is embedded in order to enhance the natural appearance of the floor and make it look more like actual hardwood. Laminate is actually becoming a much more popular flooring option because of the advances that are consistently being made in the technology.
Laminate flooring today is one of the best selling flooring options on the market because of the vast array of choices with which it provides homeowners. You will not only find a great variety in styles, types, and options but also a very cost effective flooring option that is easy to care for and long-lasting.
On the flip side with the growth in this market not only have the design and style options increased exponentially but also the quality options. The problem is that it isn’t always easy to identify inferior quality at first glance. There are however, a few things you can do that will make the selection process easier on you as a consumer.
1) Color and Style. This is a no brainer for many consumers you obviously do not want to buy flooring for your home if you do not honestly like the flooring you are buying. With so many choices from which to choose chances are that you will be able to find some sort of laminate flooring that suits your desires for the flooring needs of your home.
2) Warranty. You will see many different warranties offered on the different flooring options you find. In fact, they range widely in ranges anywhere from 5 years to 20 years and various points between. If you are planning this particular flooring for high traffic areas within your home you will obviously want to go with flooring that is on the high side of the warranty scale. You should also consider the length of time you wish your flooring to last when making this purchase as well. If you plan to stay in your home for a very long time a 20-year warranty would serve your needs much better than a 5-year warranty. If you have plans, however, to move in the near future you might want to save money by opting for the flooring that offers only a five-year warranty.
3) Price. Most things in life come down to a matter of price. The same can be said in many cases when it comes to flooring. Laminate is considerably less than hardwood and for many there is no choice when it comes to a matter of the two. However, when it comes to the various prices of laminate flooring you should choose a price that you are also comfortable with the available warranty, the finish, the thickness, and the durability in addition to any installation that may be required.
4) Thickness. You will find a great deal of variety when it comes to the thickness of laminate flooring. The average range is between 6 and 12 mm. The truth of the matter is that thicker flooring is indicative not only of quality construction but also of durability and resistance to buckling over time. Thicker floors also feel more like real hardwood flooring, which many homeowners find to be a tremendous boon when deciding between different types of laminate.
5) Installation. Perhaps the greatest thing about laminate flooring is that it is rather simple to install. You do not need professional installation in most cases when it comes to laminate flooring and the projects come together rather quickly. You might also be interested in finding out that laminate is also a good material for use in basements where traditional hardwood isn’t typically recommended.
There are many reasons that people choose laminate as the flooring for their homes. If you keep the above points in mind when shopping you might find that you can easily make the best possible flooring choice for your home.
Rob Buenaventura has worked in the home improvement industry for several years. Learn more about hardwood flooring , laminate flooring and other home improvement tips at HomeImprovementTouch.com