Laminate flooring is becoming increasingly popular for 3 main reasons – it is economical, the ease of installation and its durability. While all three are important, it is the last that becomes especially important, in a high-use work area like the kitchen.
What laminate flooring do you offer?
- Laminate floors are among the most economical types of flooring.
- High quality laminate floors are resistant to water and humidity which makes them ideal for kitchen use. Not only does laminate flooring not warp or crack due to high humidity levels, it is also stain, crack, scratch and fade resistant.
- Because laminate flooring is not as hard as stone or ceramic, the chances of breaking plates and glasses, when thrown away are reduced.
- The transition from zone to zone is easy because the thickness of 7 to 10 mm (about 1/3 inch) of laminate floor makes it easy to touch with other types of floor.
- Laminate flooring is available in a wide range of designs and patterns. It can look like wood, natural stone or ceramic finish. Laminate floors offer looks that range from rustic to contemporary and sophisticated and as flooring is available in both slab and tile form, you have even more variety and flexibility in decorating options. your kitchen.
A few things that laminate flooring does not offer
- Laminate flooring does not have the same perceived value as natural flooring and does not add value to your home.
- Unlike hardwood floors, laminate floors cannot be refinished or resurfaced.
- While the life expectancy of a laminate floor is 15 to 30 years – on par with other manufactured floor materials, it is less than that of natural materials such as, stone and ceramics.
- Laminate floors require an underlay to be used to eliminate the possible “hollow” sound that can otherwise occur when people walk on them.
The cost of laminate flooring
The price of laminate flooring depends on several factors including the quality of the laminate, the design and size and the manufacturer. Prices may also vary by location and retailer. Among the best known laminate flooring manufacturers are Shaw, Mohawk, Pergo, DuPont, Armstrong, Bruce, Mannington, Kronotex, Alloc and Wilsonart.
The price for a laminate floor can start from $ 3 square feet and up, including the bottom. Of course, the more expensive laminates will usually perform better and last longer. Remember that a kitchen is a high traffic area, where moisture is around and spills and stains are common. It is advisable to get a high quality laminate that can withstand heavy use. Top quality laminates usually have waxed edges to prevent water from seeping into the subfloor.
How to buy laminate flooring
1. Get the help, if possible, of an interior decorator to find the right laminate flooring for the size and decor of your kitchen.
2. If you want to make your kitchen look lighter, or make a small kitchen look bigger, use a light colored laminate that reflects more light and gives the feeling of spaciousness. However, make sure that the laminate flooring you choose fits into the overall design of the kitchen.
3. When you go to the store carry a plan and the measurements with you so that the sellers can help you with the cost.
4. Look for laminate with higher AC ratings. The AC rating determines the laminate’s ability to withstand bumps, scratches, burns and heavy use.
Installation of laminate flooring
Laminate boards and tiles usually have tongue and groove edges that lock together. Some laminates simply snap into place while others need to be glued together. The laminate floor is floating on the substrate which is usually plywood, cement or simply the existing floor covering. It is not attached directly to the ground below.
While laying laminate flooring is best done by a professional, a competent handyman can also do the job. The floor needs to be cleaned and made as flat and smooth as possible, before work begins. A thin foam under layer is placed first to reduce laminate movement and sound. You may also need a damp proof membrane. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions not only for the best fit and finish, but to keep the warranty valid.
Maintenance of laminate flooring
- Follow the manufacturer’s maintenance instructions.
- Vacuuming and damp mopping are usually the only daily cleaning you will need.
- Wipe up any spills immediately.
- Do not use abrasive cleaning products as they can damage the laminate.
How to get the best price on laminate flooring
BuildDirect seems to be one of the best places to buy laminate flooring from. Besides the best prices, their customer-friendly policies make shopping from them a pleasure.