The Right Flooring Choice- Hardwood, Laminate Flooring, Tile, Vinyl or Eco-friendly
Piano finish laminate flooring, carpets, vinyl, tile, and other flooring options may all be under consideration for replacing a current floor. Durability, beauty, affordability, ease of installation, and variety of selection should all be reviewed when selecting the best choice.
The floor of your home is part of every step, every meal, every bedtime story, and every breath taken in your home. Elegant or worn, decorative or plain, expensive or secondhand, your current floor sets the tone for beauty, efficiency, and healthfulness for you and your family. By the time most people get around to looking at their floors to see if they need replacing, they have been needed for some time. Floors are something we take for granted until stains, smells, curling edges, compressed areas, and other problems bring it to our attention. Most floor coverings are hardwood, tile, vinyl, or laminate flooring. Understanding the pros and cons of all these different options helps you to select the best product for you and your family.
High Gloss Laminates -- Budget And Eco-Friendly
Laminate flooring is a manufactured alternative to other materials. Today's planks are fast becoming the most popular floor replacement material. Piano finish laminate is easy to install, even for beginners, easy to clean, and it comes in nearly every wood grain imaginable, as well as in stone and tile designs.
Using wood that might otherwise have found its way to landfills, high tech resins are combined to create thin planks that are adhered together in layers that provide flexible strength and durability. Next, a photographic appliqué is applied to the plank before it is sealed with a tough, clear top coat. That appliqué has traditionally been of various wood grains, but is now available in products made to look exactly like stone or tile, too. Laminate flooring is easy to keep clean, offering dirt and grime nowhere to hide. The planks are easy to install, even for the beginner, making it a beautiful, affordable option that has gained in popularity. Piano finish laminate planks can offer the beauty of wood at a fraction of the cost.
Comfy Carpets Often Hide Allergens
Many families opt for carpeting for their main living spaces. Carpets, while they provide soft, sound absorbing comfort, also hold onto dirt, dust, grime, odors, and allergens. Carpets are one of the biggest causes of indoor allergies in the home today. Also, carpets do not last as long as many of the other alternatives. For example, inexpensive carpets are designed to last 10-15 years, whereas affordable, laminate flooring can be expected to last 15-25 years. Also, carpets require frequent vacuuming and periodic steam cleaning to remain useful and attractive. However, even with all these pitfalls carpets still tend to be one of the most popular flooring choices due to the warm atmosphere and comfort they add to a room.
Pricey Hardwood Requires Maintenance
Hardwood floors have been a favorite for countless centuries. They are elegant, beautiful and timeless. Unfortunately, they are not budget or eco-friendly. When wood was abundant and inexpensive, home owners thought nothing of covering practically every flat surface with wood in one way or another. Floors, wall panels, and more were rich with wood grain hues. Today's environmental awareness has taught us that living trees are valuable investments in breathable air, stable landscapes, and even in maintaining a healthy climate. Installing hardwood floors means cutting down trees. It also means spending substantial amounts of money on professional installation and regular sanding and resealing to maintain its appearance. Unlike laminate flooring, wood is also susceptible to scratches, gouges, stains, and sun bleaching, making it a less desirable material than it once was.
Vinyl & Linoleum Often Doesn't Last
Vinyl and linoleum have been inexpensive favorites for some time now. The self-sticking squares have found their way into countless studio apartments and first-time home buyers' budgets. Unfortunately, that affordable convenience comes at a different kind of price: short-lived usefulness. Vinyl and linoleum have a tendency to curl and peel at the edges. They are also subject to staining, sun bleaching, heavy traffic compression, and yellowing. Although vinyl and linoleum may initially seem budget friendly, their lack of durability often leads to sooner than expected replacement costs, which is something budget-conscious home owners often can't afford. However, vinyl and linoleum may be appropriate choices for small space rooms that don't see much traffic, such as a laundry room, utility closet or other area.
Tile And Stone Are Beautiful, But Expensive
Castle walls stand as a testament to the durability of stone. Stone and tile floors can be beautiful monuments to stability, strength, and beauty. They also cost a lot to buy and install. Stone masons are professionals and they command top rate wages. The natural stone, as it becomes harder to find and mine, is becoming more expensive. Tiles can range from inexpensive to collectable works of art. In both cases, installation is expensive. Additionally, it is important to purchase additional tiles and stone blocks at the time of initial installation because these materials often chip and crack and will need partial replacements over the years. However, if budget is of no concern, stone and tile can both be beautiful flooring options.
Choosing the best flooring option can sometimes be a difficult decision. When making the final choice, be sure to weigh the pros and cons of each material, and keep in mind maintenance costs and product durability for long-term use. Whether you choose laminate flooring, carpet, tile or another material, once the renovation is complete you'll be proud to share your home with family and friends.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Harmen is a writer for Best Laminate, a leading provider of laminate flooring. Piano finish laminate planks come in every style, to fit every budget.