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Laminate Flooring Floats on Wave of Popularity

Mar 29, 2008
Imagine having the warmth of wood or the bold look of stone gracing your home at a fraction of what you thought it might cost. Though it may sounds too good to be true, believe it. With the introduction of laminate flooring products to the North American market, homeowners have taken to this Swedish invention in a big way.

Popular in Scandinavia and other areas in Europe, before being introduced to American consumers, laminate flooring has proven to be a durable, attractive and environmentally friendly alternative to traditional floor coverings like carpet.

Many reasons account for the growing popularity of laminate flooring but one of the biggest is the ease of installation. Unlike solid wood or engineered wood flooring products which are usually nailed or glued to the sub floor, laminate flooring floats on the sub floor. The individual strips or planks of many laminate systems snap together while other systems do require the application of small amount of adhesive along the joints. Floating allows the floor to expand and contract with changes in temperature and humidity.

Laminates are manufactured to achieve very precise, uniform dimensions so the individual pieces are always straight and very tight joints are formed when the flooring is properly installed. The flooring pieces are usually installed over a padding material. The result is a system that can be installed by many weekend home improvement buffs though some installations may necessitate the skills of a professional installer.

Another benefit to laminate flooring is the available variety of styles and patterns. You can choose from popular flooring patterns like wood to flooring that closely resembles stone, tile and even marble. This gives homeowners and home decorators a number of options when trying to establish a suitable look and feel for a given living space.

Still another reason that laminate flooring has gained in popularity is durability. In fact many manufacturers offer a twenty five year wear guarantee with several starting to offer a lifetime guarantee against wear and fading. Many laminate flooring products can be used in areas of the home that are not recommended for wood flooring products.

The increase in warranties would seem to indicate a growing confidence on the part of major producers in their products. The increase in durability means that you can enjoy the benefits of your laminate floor for many years without having to consider replacing carpet.

As if there were not enough reasons to think about installing laminate flooring, there are several other important things to consider. As with most hard flooring products, laminate flooring is easy to clean and keep clean. Regular use of a duster and a damp mop can keep your looking neat and clean. Laminates can be a health conscious alternative to carpeting since virtually all dust and dirt and can be removed. Laminate flooring requires no waxing and no waxing means less work and no need to periodically remove the old wax. Not needing to wax your floor means fewer chemicals around the house like harsh strippers and cleaners.

Carpeting needs regular cleaning with a vacuum and should be extraction cleaned periodically. Damp carpeting can be a breeding ground for bacteria and then there is the issue of how to safely dispose of the waste water which can contain alcohols, enzymes, bleaching agents, dyes and butyls combined with any chemicals, soils and grease removed from the carpet during the cleaning process.

Another environmental upside to laminate flooring is being able to achieve the rich look of wood without the need to harvest old growth hardwood trees needed to manufacture solid wood and engineered wood flooring products.

So for all the right reasons, laminate flooring is an option to consider for your home.
About the Author
Mitch Endick is a staff writer for the quality online store FineWebStores.com.
Shop for Area Rugs and Bamboo Rugs for your home or office. Please visit FineWebStores.com today.
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