Blog written by Quality Red Tag Floors in Edmonton
How Laminate Flooring Improved In 2021
We have all seen laminate flooring. Each person has their own unique experience with laminate. Some people love it, and other people have had not so great of an experience. The first thing to understand is that not all products are created equal. Discuss with your sales representative the different ratings and qualities of the laminate flooring that you are looking at. Some companies will provide a free onsite flooring estimate Edmonton.
In this article, we aim to discuss the positive aspects of choosing laminate flooring in 2021. There are many features that have improved laminate flooring over the years. These improvements are what make laminate a great 2021 flooring option for all levels and rooms of the house!
Let’s get started!
Improvements in Core Density
Laminate flooring historically has been known for issues like expansion and low resistance to moisture. It is not uncommon to see older style laminates with issues like gapping between planks and swelling around the joints. Example of laminate floor swelling below.
Improvements in the density of the core play a huge role in the quality of laminate flooring. A good laminate flooring Edmonton will have a high-pressure core (HPC). A high-pressure core is similar to a traditional laminate core, with the difference being in the amount of material that is compacted into the same space. Take a 12mm laminate with a normal MDF (medium density fiber) core for example and put that against the 12mm laminate with a high-pressure core. The difference will be apparent in both the weight and feel of the product.
Another benefit of a denser core is it provides significant improvements to the sound-dampening qualities of the product. This is an important feature and should not be ignored. A noisy product can be annoying both in the room that is installed and between levels of the house. A quieter product can pay dividends on your daily enjoyment of a flooring product. Pair this with a sound reducing underlay and the results will change your life!
Benefits of a higher-pressure core
– stronger joints
– more solid feel when walking on it
– higher water resistance to swelling and water damage
– better sound reduction
Locking System Is Stronger Than Click Vinyl
The locking system on higher density products is of course stronger. This ties in with the previous improvement of a higher density core. Better core = better joints.
The higher density core plays a huge role in keeping the joints engaged, and your product firmly attached together. The joints are significantly improved on laminate because of the high-pressure core. The types of laminate to avoid are those with a lower density core. More commonly known as MDF core. A medium-density core does not provide as stable or strong of a product.
The other main advantage to stronger joints is not only will they stay together better, but they will also perform better under stress. The stronger joints will provide better stability over flooring imperfections. These minor defects in your subfloor would typically need to be patched and prepped, but with a stronger laminate, many times you can float right over the top of these areas.
Benefits of a stronger locking system
– less chance of gapping
– easier installation
– floatability over flooring imperfections
– install over longer distances
Warmer on the foot
Everyone hates a cold floor. Well, almost everyone. But it goes without saying that a warmer floor is generally more enjoyable, especially through the cold winter months that we experience in Edmonton, Alberta. Thicker denser laminate provides not only a barrier between the cold floor underneath but provides excellent insulation value to keep your floor warmer in the winter, and cooler in the summer.
Laminate is highly scratch resistant! Many people who have had the benefit of a higher quality laminate can attest to this. With the highly durable ceramic top layer, laminate is one of the best performers in the industry when it comes to resisting scratches and everyday wear.
One thing to know when shopping for laminate is how to differentiate the wear ratings on laminate. Laminate is rated with an AC rating (abrasion criteria). AC1, AC2, AC3, AC4 are all options.
AC1 = Low traffic residential
AC2 = Medium Traffic Residential
AC3= High Traffic residential
AC4 = Medium Traffic Commercial
Using the above as a quick guide, you can see that AC4 will perform the best when it comes to scratch resistance. Try to always look for the AC4 rated or higher as a commercial rating for traffic is an excellent rating for a busy household.
Ever see a gorgeously textured hardwood? The kind that is hand-scraped and distressed? Something about the imperfections and textures of a hand-crafted hardwood draws the eye and creates a cozy warm feeling.
Laminate, while is not a solid wood product, does have a highly dense wood-based core. This allows manufacturers to include a lot more texturing in their products. One of the more amazing processes is the hand-scraped style laminate. The result of hand-scraped style laminate is stunning and often looks more expensive than someone would guess.
The benefit of laminate is that it provides texture that is far more realistic than can be done on other products.
This is a newer more foreign benefit. Water Resistance in laminate is something that may take some getting used to. We have all seen at some time or another the ugly bubbling/swelling effect that happens when water comes into contact with a regular laminate flooring.
With new technology, manufacturers are providing water-resistant laminate flooring. This expands the opportunities in both color, texture, and style. Take the open concept, for example, you would require flooring that can go throughout the whole main floor. This includes the kitchen and bathroom. Finally, there are water-resistant laminate flooring products that can go throughout the whole house!
Large Improvements to Laminate
The list of the improvements that we have covered creates a strong argument for laminate in the home. With an array of choices on the market, it’s important to know the difference between your standard laminate and your higher quality product.
We believe that laminate is a great choice throughout your whole house and should definitely be considered as an option when beginning your flooring search. Be sure to ask the laminate flooring store in Edmonton, about the pros and cons of all products that you shop for so that you can make an informed decision.
As we work to keep you informed, happy renovating!