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Laminate flooring is made of layers of different materials that are fused together with high pressure. There is a layer that resists water and a layer that consists of high density fiberboard. Another layer is made to resemble wood flooring, a stone floor, or other materials. The top layer is a clear coating of cellulose and resin to protect it.
Pros of Laminate Flooring
One of the reasons laminate flooring is so popular is the ease of installation. This is especially true of the newer kinds, where the tiles lock together and some brands have a layer of glue that only needs to be moistened. Most people who typically handle small DIY projects, can handle the laminate floor installation process.
Laminate flooring is also much cheaper than hardwood or stone flooring but gives a similar quality look. This can add value to your home and may also help the resale value.
Durability is also a major plus of laminate flooring. The coating is very hard and usually comes with a 10 year warranty. It is scratch resistant, stain resistant, and always easy to clean.
Since it resists moisture very well, you can install laminate anywhere. It can be installed in bathrooms and kitchens as it will stand up to moisture better than a wood floor.
Last is it attractiveness. Laminate flooring can add a lot to any decor and can complement any style. It can add warmth and a homey feel to any room.
Disadvantages of Laminate Flooring
Many people believe that one drawback of laminate flooring is that it simply is not hardwood. Some believe that people can tell the difference. When selling a house, laminate is usually preferred over carpeting but real wood is generally most preferred.
Laminate flooring can also be noisy. When you walk across it there is sometimes a hollow sound, especially with certain types of shoes.
Laminate flooring is hard and slippery. Companies that make this kind of flooring are working on this problem to add a layer that will help avoid slipping and improve grip, while still maintaining lusture.
Another major drawback to laminate is that it cannot be refinished. Once it begins to show wear, it will need to be replaced. If you do not like the look of it, you can't sand it and re-stain it like you can with a hardwood floor.
Laminate flooring will also warp when exposed to a large amount of moisture or standing water and again in that case it cannot be refinished, it must be replaced.
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