This article talks about the various types of laminates, their uses and their benefits from the point of view of the consumer. It will help you choose the type of laminate best suited to fulfill your needs and preference.
What are Laminates?
Laminates are a type of surfacing material made from layers of kraft-paper fused together under high pressure and temperatures. Laminates can be used to surface a number of base materials such as wood, plyboards, fiberboards and particleboards. They are regularly used on shelves, cabinets, furniture, worktops and walls. Laminates have gained phenomenal popularity in recent years and can be found in one form or another in almost all modern constructions – commercial, residential as well as retail.
Types of Laminates
A consumer can choose from a wide range of laminate categories before selecting the product that best meets all of his needs and preferences. Some of the most popular types of laminate sheets available in the market are as follows:
High pressure laminates – These are made from selected decorative papers and kraft-paper infused with phenolic resins and melamine. They are pressed and hardened under heat and high pressure.
Postforming laminates – These are a perfect choice for interiors as they can bend up to a radius of 6mm, making corners look seamless and attractive. They can be post-formed without compromising the pattern or grain.
Antibacterial laminates – These laminates retard the growth of bacteria and germs on any surface. Thus they are widely used at clinics, hospitals and commercial restrooms to prevent the spread of infections and diseases.
Unicore laminates – Made with multiple layers of decorative papers, these laminates are bright-colored and have a single color throughout. They are used on high-end furniture and fixtures, particularly in commercial spaces.
Digital laminates – Digital laminates allow you to transform any picture, logo, symbol or design into laminate sheets that can surface your interiors. They allow you to personalize and customize your living or work-space.
Antistatic laminates – These are used in electrostatic, high-risk areas as they are manufactured with state-of-the-art technologies that allow these laminates to drain out static charge. This minimizes the risk of spark forming and causing damage to sensitive fixtures.
Uses of Laminates
According to their unique properties, different types of laminates are used for a wide range of purposes. Some of the purposes for which laminates are commonly used have been mentioned below.
Interior decoration – A decorative sheet of paper is used as the top layer of most laminate sheets. This means that laminates can be availed in a wide range of colors, textures and designs. This feature of laminates makes them perfect for the purpose of interior designing and decoration.
Exterior cladding – The revolutionary GLE technology, used by most reputed manufacturers of laminate clads, makes laminates perfect for external use. GLE technology makes the exterior surfacing panels or ‘clads’ resistant to moisture, ultraviolet radiation, corrosion, high impact, climactic turbulence and acid rains. This helps make buildings low maintenance and structurally robust.
Surfacing furniture – Laminates can help make furniture and fixtures more durable as well as aesthetically appealing. Laminates can replicate the look of any material, such as wood or metal, at a fraction of the cost. They make furniture resistant to scratches, dents and abrasions while also enhancing the ease of maintenance.
In the affluent nations of western and northern Europe, great importance is laid upon the visual and aesthetic appeal of buildings, be they residential or commercial. To buy high quality compact laminates in a European country for the refurbishment of your property, you should check out the websites of the best laminate suppliers in Europe. From their online catalogues you can then select the type of laminate sheets that best suit your needs and preferences.
The author of this article is an experienced architect. He has to his credit quite a few impressive commercial establishments. He has recently taken up the hobby of blogging where he provides information and advice to the readers based on his valuable experience.