Laminate or Hardwood Floor?

It is never easy when you have to pick between hardwood flooring or laminate flooring. Both hardwood floors and laminate floors have many advantages and inconveniences. It is important to make sure what is the best for your situation and your house to make the most of it. And, of course, to avoid any expense that you’ll regret in the future.

Hardwood Floors

A great advantage of hardwood flooring is that it is natural look it gives. The room will have a lot of  charm with hardwood floor. You can find hardwood in more and more species, colors, and the last considerably longer than what they used to. If you take care of it properly you hardwood floor can last for hundred years.

Photo by anselm

You can find two types of hardwood floors:

  • Solid wood floors, which can be prefinished and unfinished
  • Engineered wood floors, which are prefinished and some times unfinished

If choose unfinished hardwood floors you will then have to sand the floor to make sure it is smooth and remove any overwood.  You’ll be able to apply color you want but it might take a few days to be ready. Hardwood floor will give you room a unique look with different pattern on each board and it’ll be fully authentic.

Prefinished hardwood floors, on the other hand, are fairly quick and can be installed in a day and is much less messy. But you won’t be able to choose the color you want because it will be the manufacturer who decides the colors he wants to sell. Usually he will also add products to make it more resistant.

Hardwood has a few inconveniences. You can’t clean with water because water can dull the finish and damage your wood floor. The color of your wood floor can also be affected by sunlight over time. If you think your wood floor has been damage you can always use wood floor finishes to the restore the original color or to repair small scratches.

Laminate Floors

Firstly be aware that laminate floors are not real wood, therefore they are much more resistant to scratches, sunlight and stains (but they can be scratched by dragging heavy objects or animals).

Laminate floors come in three different types:

  • Installer (not very common anymore)
  • Glueless floating laminate floors (which is the most common laminate floor)
  • Factory glued floating laminate floors (isn’t much used any more)

Most laminate floors use the floating installation method. This method consists of laminate floors resting on the subfloor. The subfloor  must be leveled in order to properly lock the planks easily. A great advantage of laminate floors is that you don’t need to polish or to wax it.  Plus if you choose glueless laminate floors you’ll be able to do it on your own instead of having someone to come over and do it.

Unfortunately laminate floors are not as unique as hardwood floors. The pattern is usually the same for each plank and the color are usually limited. Don’t try to refinish or resurface your laminate floors. Doing so will ruin you floor because laminate flooring is composed of a thin surface that reproduces the look of hardwood.

It is hard to make  a full comparison of hardwood flooring and laminate flooring  because hardwood flooring come in many species, finishes and construction type. Therefore it is very hard to comapre each of them. Your local flooring store should be able to help you and give good information because he will know each product he sells.

Woodfloors-online is a hardwood flooring distributor and contractor. Find all your laminate flooring and laminate flooring underlay  on woodfloors-online.

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