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So the time has come. After years of faithful service to your family, you’ve finally decided to repay your trusty home by decking it out with the floor it deserves. Or maybe you’re in the midst of preparing a house for sale, and you want to lay down a floor that’ll increase its value.
Whatever your reason might be for seeking out a new floor, the following scenario ordinarily ensues: you head on down to the local flooring shop where you’re introduced to a whole bunch of flooring options by your friendly local flooring consultant.
Stone floors. Natural timbers. Vinyls. Bamboo. Corkwood. The variety is seemingly endless.
Although some catch your eye with their beauty and you even entertain the thought of making a purchase at times, something holds you back. Then you find one that ticks every box on your must-have checklist: laminate flooring.
Durability: tick. Affordability: tick. Appearance: big tick!
There’s just one little big problem. There are so many laminate flooring options available, how do you know which one you should pick? Well, that’s where you need proper research.
Read on to learn about the top three factors that typically complicate decisions around buying laminate floors, and find out how to filter through the options to select the most suitable laminate floor for your home.
The Looks Department
There are few flooring options that please the eye quite like a good laminate floor, but you should beware: with so many options available to you in terms of style and design, it’s important that you select a floor that matches or, better yet, enhances the interior of the space in which it is to be installed.
This is because the tone, colours and textures you choose in a floor can either make or break the colour scheme and overall design of the room. You might pick a floor that resembles a natural hardwood with gorgeous woodgrain effects, or a sleeker option in a dark rich brown with a hard, mirror-finish. Both great floors, but whatever you pick, you should make sure it complements its surroundings.
Your choice will have a lasting impact on the aesthetic value of the room in which it’s installed, so it’s imperative that you consider the Looks Department when choosing a laminate floor.
Choose the Tough Stuff
While their gorgeous appearance is a huge reason as to why these fantastic floors are gaining popularity across Australia, it would be folly to suggest it is the only reason why they’re becoming so popular.
Another attribute that increases the value of laminate floors is that they are also extremely hardy and tough-wearing. They’re perfectly suited to high traffic areas that are likely to experience prolonged use and lots of foot traffic.
Yet some laminate floors are tougher and therefore last longer than others. This is mainly due to the thickness of the product that you choose. The thickness of the laminate typically dictates its durability and the length of its lifespan. In other words, the thicker the plank, the longer it will last.
To determine what laminate floor best suits your needs, make sure you inspect its AC rating. This is a rating system that is used to advertise to consumers the thickness of the laminate product which they might be interested in buying.
AC1 is ideal for spaces that are likely to experience a low volume of foot traffic, such as bedrooms, whereas AC2 is customised for a medium level of foot traffic. AC3 is perfect for rooms such as kitchens and hallways that are likely to see a lot of use over the years. And finally there is the AC4 and AC5 models which are typically only used in a commercial context.
So, when you’re selecting a laminate floor, the smarter option is usually to select the Tough Stuff. A thicker laminate usually translates to a longer lifespan because it is better able to stand the test of time. Further to this, as an added bonus, the thicker the model, the more likely it is to resist bending and to muffle sound (which is great if you live in an apartment!)
Pick the Right Type for You
The third factor you need to consider when buying a floor is what type aligns with your needs and values. For example, Engineered Wood gives the truest impression of a real hardwood floor with a natural appearance, although it can be most costly and has a layer of hardwood across the top, which makes it more susceptible to damage such as scratches.
Or, maybe you’re after a laminate that can be installed in a high-moisture or humid area. If that’s the case, then you’ll want to opt for a laminate floor that can resist water and spills such as the Swiss Krono AquaStop variety. This range is specifically designed to stop water and spills in its tracks, making it highly suitable for water-prone areas such as kitchens and bathrooms, or the entryway to houses.
Then again, maybe you’re after something that is lower on the price spectrum, but still good-looking enough to enhance the appearance of the space in which it’s fitted and durable enough to withstand a high volume of foot traffic.
Of course, should any type of laminate plank be damaged, it is a relatively easy process to pry it up and lay down a matching replacement, but if you select the right type of floor from the get go, you may save yourself from any trouble in the future.
Laminate floors are a high-performing, versatile and visually appealing product that are likely to suit any interior in which it’s installed. Whether you’re looking for an uptown look for your home, or something that’s long-lasting and affordable, laminate floors are up to the task of satisfying your needs.
Nevertheless, to maximise your outcomes of picking the best possible laminate floor for your home or property, you should always take into account its appearance and matchability with the rest of your home, as well as its thickness, and the type that best suits your needs (as we’ve outlined above).
But at the end of the day, you should always make sure that you choose a reputable retailer, such as inFloorings at the Rockdale Showroom, who will give you professional advice free of charge, as well as the best service available in the industry. You can know everything there is to know about laminate floors, but if you select a trustworthy source for your products, you can rest assured that you will receive the best quality, service and advice available.
Don’t risk spending your hard-earned money on an inferior product; engage the services of a flooring company with a good reputation, and know that you’ll be well looked after.