Laminate flooring is no longer just an option to explore when you don’t want to spend money on hardwood – it’s in a league of its own.
WHAT IS LAMINATE FLOORING?
Laminate is a synthetic flooring product that replicates the look of natural wood by combining together many layers of materials using a laminating technology. To be more specific, most laminate products are created of softwood fibers, broken down and combined with a wax and resin binder, formed into panels by applying heat and pressure.
Because of its durability, low cost, and simplicity of installation, waterproof laminate flooring has become a popular choice for homeowners who desire the appearance of hardwood or tile without the upkeep or expense.
Laminate offers exceptional durability, stain resistance, and easy maintenance. It’s reliable in almost every room of the house and can stand up to everyday lifestyle traffic – be it kids, pets, suitcases, strollers, or furniture.
ADVANTAGES & DISADVANTAGES OF LAMINATE FLOORING
- Laminate flooring is affordable, quite durable, and stands up well to daily foot traffic.
- Depending on the specific product chosen, it can feel very luxurious just like a hardwood floor.
- Laminate is less expensive than other wood flooring options.
- Being a floating floor that clicks in together, it is less labor-intensive than a traditional hardwood.
- On the other hand, the traditional, cheaper laminates are not water-resistant and can get easily damaged by spills that haven’t been noticed on time.
- Just like a hardwood floor, a laminate floor requires that all furniture has felt pads attached to avoid denting.
LAMINATE FLOORING PRICES
Laminate flooring is considered one of the most affordable hard-surface flooring solutions. However, as with anything else, the better grade laminates are more expensive. Most traditional (old styles) laminates are priced between $0.99 and $2.99 per sqft. for the material alone. The newer styles that often come with a waterproof or water-resistant warranty and better overall quality cost between $2.99 and $5.99 per sqft. For product and installation, you can budget anywhere from $5.99 to $8.99 per sqft. Obviously, each project is a bit different so these numbers should serve you as a general guide.
HOW TO CARE FOR LAMINATE FLOORS?
Help keep your laminate flooring looking like new by following all manufacturer recommendations. Cleaning and maintaining laminate flooring can be simple:
- Address standing liquids immediately with a clean, non-abrasive material. While laminate has a backing layer designed for absorption, it’s best to play it safe. It is recommended to clean your laminate flooring with a slightly damp mop. The less water and/or solution used, the better.
- Sweep up spills, crumbs, dust, and dirt into piles. Use a vacuum without beater bars or mechanisms that could scuff your floor at least once a week.
- One cleaning brand we personally use and recommend to our clients is Bona Traffic.
- Laminate is durable, but not invincible. Avoid buffing machines, steel wool, scouring powder, and steam mops.