Not everyone has the kind of money or time it takes to replace hardwood floors every ten years as interior design trends change. In fact, most would agree that hardwood floors are a massive investment to which one must commit for at least the next few decades, with refinishing coatings needed every couple of years. Fortunately, flooring solutions have come a long way and there are newer options for anyone seeking that classical wood feel without breaking the bank. Wood laminates are one such solution, and they have become a household name as the demand for them has grown. Many homeowners are also curious about the cost to install laminate flooring, but the price of such a project does not only come down to the product alone. In this article, we break down the advantages of wood laminate flooring and factors that influence how much they cost to install.
Do Wood Laminates Come with Any Benefits?
Wood laminates are a highly sought-after product that looks (and is sometimes even textured to feel) like real wood flooring. The cost to purchase, install, and maintain laminate flooring, however, is significantly more affordable. It is considered one of the most economical flooring solutions. Apart from saving money, there are other benefits to introducing wood laminates to your home, including:
- They’re great for high-traffic areas. Wood laminates are exceptionally durable and resistant to damage from scratches and impacts. This makes them ideal for homes with children and pets.
- They are also resistant to stains and fading, and newer designs fair well against some moisture and humidity too. It is always wisest to steer clear of humid and damp conditions when installing your wood laminates, however.
- This floor solution is one of the most customisable as there are plenty of options from which to choose. You can select a style according to the hue, pattern and texture you prefer, and having them replaced once interior design trends evolve is not difficult.
- No wax, varnish, or specialised chemicals are needed to clean wood laminates. All it takes is a barely damp mop or micro-fibre cloth to wipe up any mess.
Why Do-it-Yourself Doesn’t Always Work
Some homeowners try to install laminate flooring on their own in an attempt to lower the cost of the project. This may have the opposite result, however, as DIY installations are not always as simple as they are touted to be. The process should not have to be complicated, but for many homes, it is not as easy as ripping out the old carpet and laying down laminate planks. Specific tools are required, such as a jigsaw, pull bar, tapping block and mallet. Not having the right set of tools or expertise could also drive the cost up because laminate flooring that hasn’t been properly installed will not last very long and may need fixing soon. It is always a better option to hire professional installers who will make quick work of the job and leave you with a perfect finished product.
The Sub-floor Must be Level
When determining how much it would cost to install laminate flooring, many homeowners overlook the preparation of the sub-floor, that is, the floor beneath your current carpet, planks or tiles that support the structures above it. Wood laminates rely on a flat surface, which means that screeding the sub-floor might be necessary. Even ceramic and marble floors might not be laid 100% flat and will need to be checked for unevenness. For a wood laminating flooring installation, a 2 mm surface variation is the acceptable maximum. The extent to which the sub-floor is prepared will influence the cost of installation. Another factor in the cost is what type of underlay is used beneath the wood laminates, and your professional hire will ensure you select the right kind for your home.
Moisture is Detrimental to Wood Laminates
The inner core of laminate flooring is made from wood composite material, which should not come into contact with moisture, or it will swell and warp. More advanced wood laminate products are watertight and keep moisture out for the most part but should still not be installed in humid rooms or areas that may experience water damage and dampness. Before installing wood laminates, the level of moisture must be assessed, and corrective measures, such as installing moisture barriers, must be taken. This will also be a determining factor in the final cost but will ensure the product lasts a long time without any issues.
We Will Help You Determine the Cost to Install Laminate Flooring
Wood laminate products come in boxes of different sizes, and vary in the size of the individual planks. This is what makes accurately measuring the area of the room a challenge. Here at Top Carpets and Floors, the cost to install laminate flooring is a lot more transparent thanks to our cost estimating tool beneath each online product listing. For a more accurate quote, however, we recommend having one of our consultants come out to help you measure the room themselves and assess the work to be done.