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Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring has grown in popularity, much in part due to its ease of maintenance, affordability, and decorative appearance. Designer laminates are used in commercial and residential spaces to provide a captivating environment. First developed and introduced by the brand Pergo in the 1970s, this type of flooring is relatively new. There are many design and style options offered in Toronto by The Floor Shop.

What is Laminate Flooring?

This type of flooring is constructed in layers. At the very top is the wear layer, which protects the design layer from scratches, wear, fading, damage, etc. Next, is the designer laminate itself. It is made of high-resolution images of natural materials, such as wood. The middle layer is the inner core, and is made from high-density fiberboard and reinforced with a special type of resin to increase durability and moisture resistance. Below the inner core is the “backing” layer, which is constructed to resist moisture to prevent board warping.


Why Choose a Laminate Flooring?

This type of flooring is an inexpensive alternative to a hardwood floor. If your budget won’t allow you to invest in a traditional hardwood floor, whether solid or engineered, laminate is a great option. Don’t assume that it’s a “cheap faux wood floor”, as modern technology allows for it to have a remarkably realistic appearance. It’s extremely difficult to tell the difference between solid hardwood and laminate wood. Designer laminates appear to have the same stain, graining, and texture as hardwood.

Laminate flooring is very versatile. There is a place for it in any type of setting, from country to contemporary. Cleaning it is an easy process compared to cleaning other hard surface flooring. However, it’s not recommended to mop laminate floors – at least not with traditional mops. Stick with dry cleaning methods with the occasional wet cleaning with specialized mopping products that don’t leave excessive water. Keep protective mats at entryways to keep dirt and moisture off of the flooring.

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What styles & finishes are available?

Laminate flooring comes in a variety of styles, including hand scraped, high gloss, and embossed. An embossed finish adds an extra layer of detail that allows the floor to look better and realistic for a long period of time. The hand -scraped technique includes a texture design that resembles the natural look of worn hardwood. It’s a rustic and somewhat bold look that looks great in a traditional country home. For a contemporary look, high gloss is a great choice for a finish, as it provides a highly sleek and modern appearance. The reflective elements allow for it to give off an extraordinary shine.

What is the difference between direct pressure (DPL) and high-pressure (HPL)?

This refers to the number of layers in laminate flooring. In short, more layers mean better durability. DPL is more common and less expensive, as it has three to four layers, which are fused together between 300 – 600 pounds per inch of pressure and around 300 degrees F.

More layers add extra protection. HPL laminate floors have five layers. The top wear layers and backing are treated separately and then fused together onto the core. To fuse the layers together, 1300+ pounds per inch of pressure is required.

While laminate flooring installation is an easier DIY job than other types of floors, you still might want to consider assistance from the professional installers at The Floor Shop. Look over our flooring gallery for some ideas for designer laminates.

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