How to Buy Discount Laminate Flooring – Understanding Floor Ratings and Reviews
By Rika Susan
A discount laminate flooring installation can be a hugely rewarding DIY project. Not only are these floors much more affordable than real hardwood, but they are easy to install and often come with lengthy warranties. When browsing through your local home improvement store, you are sure to ask yourself: ‘How on earth am I supposed to know how to choose a quality discount laminate flooring product? What do I need to look for?’.
Let’s see if we can give you some easy-to-follow buying guidelines.
1. Check The AC Rating
- Quality laminate flooring ratings and reviews should always mention the AC rating.
- Remember that this isn’t a brand-wide rating. It is specific to each line the manufacturer produces.
- AC refers to the Abrasion Class. This gives you an indication of the floor’s ability to withstand certain traffic levels, scratches, burn marks or its vulnerability in terms of impact.
- Don’t even consider buying a discount line without an AC rating, as you won’t have any idea of how it will hold up in your home.
- For residential purposes, you will usually opt for an AC rating of between 1 and 3.
- AC1 refers to a floor that can tolerate only light traffic, as in a bedroom.
- AC2 is a bit tougher and will be suitable for use in a dining or living room.
- AC3 is for heavier residential use and is the most popular choice.
- You can also opt for a higher rating, but then the surface may be quite rough on your feet.
2. Concentrate On Core Issues
- Most crucial when it comes to stability and strength, is the core or inner layer.
- This will be either a medium density fiber-board (MDF) or high density fiber-board (HDF).
- For added moisture resistance and robustness, the core is usually impregnated with a plastic resin such as melamine. This ensures hardness and strength.
3. Wear Layer Wisdom
- The tougher the outer or surface layer, the longer your floors will retain their good looks.
- The wear layer usually comes with a coating that is also resin-based for toughness.
- Look for aluminum oxide or melamine here for the best results.
- The quality of the wear layer determines your discount laminate flooring’s ability to resist scratching, fading, staining, moisture, impact and burns.
- Be very careful when it comes to cleaning. If you use an abrasive cleaner for instance, you will damage this layer and may even void your warranty.
Once you get to know the basics, buying discount laminate flooring won’t seem like such a daunting task!
Home-Improvement-Time.com – Get your free copy of the Laminate Flooring Buyer’s Guide where you get useful information on ‘How To Choose Environmentally And Health Friendly Flooring’, ‘How To Interpret The AC Rating?’, ‘What Is Underlayment And Why Do You Need It?’ and much more…Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Rika_Susan