Hardwood or Laminate Flooring – Which is Better

Many a times, household owners have to choose between laminate and hardwood floors. Undoubtedly, the difference between the two is quite confusing. Below are the pros and cons of both the floors so that you can easily decide which one to lie in your house and thus increase its curb appeal.

If you are confused between hardwood or laminate flooring then read on below to know the advantages and disadvantages of both the floorings

Fundamentals

It is a synthetic flooring product, which is designed to imitate the real wood. Its core layer is manufactured from fiberboard material and melamine resin. Also the top layer has textured real wood image.

This wood floor consists of several layers of plywood or simple wood.  The top layer of this type of flooring consists of solid sawn wood lamella. Also, these wooden planks are produced from single pieces of wood. Laminate floors are only an imitation of hardwood floor whereas solid hardwood flooring is manufactured from real wood.

Aesthetics and Appearance

Undoubtedly, the difference between laminate and hardwood floors is extremely obvious in terms of aesthetics. Real wood has textured variation of wood grain, whereas in laminate flooring imitation of the wood textures is imprinted onto the floor surface.

Geometry

Hardwood planks usually have an overlapping edge treatment such as groove, shipshape or tongue. This overlapping allows the planks to easily contract or expand while providing immense resistance to warping. But in older homes, edges of hardwood planks are simply butted together. Laminate floorings have specialized grooves and tongues.

Nowadays, when you lay laminate floors, you’ll see that a special clip is installed between the boards to hold the planks tight to one another.

Moisture

No doubt wood is an organic breathing material and responds to temperature and fluctuations in humidity. Therefore, engineered and solid hardwood floors should only be installed in those places where humidity levels are monitored. That is why it is not recommended to install them in bathrooms, kitchen or basements.

Easy To Repair

No doubt laminate flooring does not repair easily. If they are installed using glue, then it is difficult to repair them. Moreover, they cannot be refinished or sanded. Also, the new pieces of laminate floor may not match the rest of the floors due to age, wear and sunlight exposure.

Where as hardwood floors are easy to repair when compared to laminate floors. If a only a part of the surface is damaged, then it can be repaired by staining, sanding and refinishing the area where as if the entire surface is damaged, then you can easily sand or refinish the entire floor.

Durability

Everyone knows that hardwood floors last for generations and generations. Moreover, hardwood floors can be repaired more easily when compared to laminate floors. Hardwood floors are subjected to more wear and tear in high traffic areas when compared to laminate floors.  Whereas laminate floors has a hard top layer made of aluminum oxide and melamine resins.

Therefore, they are more resistant to staining, fading and moisture damage. Moreover, many reputable laminate flooring companies and manufacturers offer 10 to 25 years of warranty on its finish.

Installation

Laminate floors are easier to install when compared with hardwood floorings. That is why people also call it as DIY friendly floors. To install it you just need some special gears like pull bar and tap block. The issue arises while installing laminate floors is of cutting the boards. Many people cut the planks with wood saws.  While cutting it, you have to be extra careful not to chip off the top layer of laminate floors which has embedded photograph of finished woods.

On the other hand, hardwood floors are only installed by professionals. It entails walk behind sanding equipment, expert knowledge of moisture content in wood and hundreds of other fussy details. For residential hardwood flooring, it is advised to seek help of a professional installer.

Longevity

Laminate floors have a short life span when compared to hardwood flooring. You ‘all need to repair your laminate floor after 20 years, where as hardwood floors can go on for generations.

Wrap Up

This comparison will help you decide which floors to opt for your home.

Salman Zafar

Founder at Blogging Hub
Salman Zafar is the Founder of Blogging Hub, and an internationally-acclaimed blogger, journalist, consultant, advisor and ecopreneur. His areas of expertise includes waste management, renewable energy, waste-to-energy, environment protection, resource conservation and sustainable development.
Salman is a prolific environmental writer, and has authored more than 500 articles in reputed journals, magazines and websites. He is proactively engaged in creating mass awareness on renewable energy, waste management, sustainability and conservation all over the world.
Salman can be reached on salman@cleantechloops.com

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