Laminate Flooring in Virginia
Often confused with luxury vinyl flooring, laminate flooring is similar to luxury vinyl planks in its look and method of installation. The critical difference is that its core is made from wood byproducts bonded with resins. The top surface is a hard, transparent plastic wear layer that covers the printed design layer. The overall thickness for laminate flooring planks ranges from 6 mm to 12 mm.
Despite its close cousin – luxury vinyl – taking over the housing market as a more popular, modern choice, there are still many pros to choosing laminate flooring. Below, we break down the key features and benefits to choosing laminate for your home.
Appearance & Comfort
Laminate flooring allows for deep, realistic three-dimensional embossing on its surfaces, with accurate images of the material being portrayed—wood, ceramic, or stone.
Though laminate flooring does not feel like wood, it does have a warm feeling, especially when coupled with premium-quality underlayment.
Durability and Maintenance
Laminate flooring is durable and low-maintenance, but can be susceptible to water damage.
Virtually all laminate flooring uses a fiberboard core. Because this core is a wood product, it will soften and swell if exposed to water. The fiberboard core will not resume its original dimensions after it has dried. Additionally, the wear and design layers sometimes peel away after the core has become waterlogged. Properly installed laminate flooring, with tight seams and good baseboards or moldings, can tolerate pooled water, but only a short period of time.
Because of this, severely water-damaged laminate flooring must be replaced and cannot be repaired. This should be taken into consideration when making the choice between laminate and luxury vinyl.
For family bathrooms or other areas where standing water is likely, laminate flooring is a poor choice.
When it comes to stains, laminate flooring is pressure-laminated with several layers, the top being a clear aluminum oxide layer that is superior for stain resistance.
Care and Cleaning
Laminate flooring is best cleaned first with dry methods, such as with a dry mop or broom. If you need to wet-clean laminate flooring, you should use only a damp mop that feels almost dry to the touch.
You can also opt for a laminate floor cleaner or organic, homemade alternatives such as vinegar and water to gently clean and disinfect your laminate.
Cost & Lifespan
Laminate flooring ranges from about $1.00 per square foot for 7 mm-thick planks to about $5.00 per square foot for 12 mm-thick planks.
This pricing is similar when comparing laminate to luxury vinyl plank flooring – so pricing is not a huge factor when determining which may be best for your home.
Laminate flooring warranties typically range from 10 to 25 years, but is dependent on how well you maintain your floors.
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Laminate flooring is still a very popular flooring option for homes in Virginia. Taking over the hardwood flooring market with something durable, yet less maintenance and lower-costs, laminate flooring makes a great choice for the heavily trafficked rooms in your home. With its durability, economical pricing, and simple maintenance, it’s a very popular choice for people who wish to improve the look of their home. And with the multitude of design options available, laminate provides a number of attractive looks and finishes.