When you decide that laminate flooring is what you need in your home, you
still are just on the cusp of decision making. Laminate flooring encompasses
everything from light wood appearances to stone and tile styled products. Sure
laminate is tough and attractive, but do you know what you should really be
considering when you choose your laminate floor?
You’ll soon discover that some laminate floor is textured and some is smooth.
If you have a busy household with a lot of foot traffic and pets, strongly
consider textured laminate. The smooth planks might be more visually appealing
in the store, but they will show every piece of dust, dirt and dog hair which
lands on top. Sure, you can sweep it up in a matter of heartbeats, so it’s not a
make-or-break decision, but going an extra day before dusting might be appealing
enough to go with a bit of texture.
Again, color can have a lot to do with the feel of your laminate flooring and
what shows up. The darker the flooring, the more dirt and dust will show. It
seems wrong, but since dust and dirt aren’t getting ground into the flooring
like with carpet, the particles sit on top of the floor and are easily spotted.
Dust especially is light in color, so it shows up like a homing beacon on dark
laminate flooring. Picture a dark vehicle that is obviously in need of a wash.
Dark flooring though can make a home appear statelier and warmer while light
colors are more contemporary and lighten a room considerably.
Naturally you’ll want to select a pattern of flooring that suits your needs
and your design plans. Stone
laminate flooring might be perfect one place while wide plank designs more
suitable someplace else. Don’t be afraid to try something new – just be very
sure it is what works for you since you’ll be enjoying it for the next fifteen
or twenty years at least.
There is a wide range of prices in laminate flooring. Not surprisingly there
is also a wide range of quality. While there is not really a poor quality
laminate since all laminate is graded on durability, some flooring choices
appear more “real” than others and the texture and feel of the
flooring under your feet is different as well. Less expensive laminate flooring
options are thinner with fewer layers or less padding beneath your feet, but can
still be very attractive and last for more than a decade. More expensive
laminate will appear almost identical to real wood floors, and will have a bit
more give under your feet.
Finally, you’ll want to consider durability. There are multiple AC
grades / ratings of laminate floors The heaviest grades, namely AC4 and
AC5, are rough under bare feet and suitable only for commercial purposes. The
first two grades are best for homes and residential foot traffic. When selecting
a laminate, don’t be fooled into thinking that higher grades are better for your
home – the opposite is true. For once, you want one of the lowest grades
available, although the absolute lowest might not last as long in your home due
to the limited amount of traffic the flooring can withstand.