Although carpet and hardwood are two of the most popular choices when it comes to flooring, they are sometimes inadequate. Spaces like the kitchen, or garage, frequently demand a higher degree of durability and resilience. Carpet absorbs stains and moisture too easily, leading to a dingy looking surface that may also attract odors. Hardwood offers a great deal more durability than carpet, but it also suffers from problems with moisture. A damp hardwood gradually warps and cracks. After several seasons of expansion and contraction, moisture damage can become very apparent with a hardwood floor.
Areas in which spills and accidents are frequent can cause scratching or gouging in the flooring as well. Laminate flooring is a great answer to all these problems and more. With a laminate floor, designers can have the classic appeal of hardwood if they so desire, while avoiding many of the typical pitfalls. Laminate flooring is largely impervious to moisture issues and will not absorb water. Stains are not an issue, and as long as they are cleaned up promptly, should not leave a mark at all. Best of all, laminate flooring is very affordable, and can be found in a wide selection of shades, colors, and styles.
Installation of laminate flooring is also fairly simple. When first purchasing a set of laminate flooring tiles, check each to make sure there are no broken tiles. Once sure that the entire package is intact, give the tiles a few days to adjust to their new atmosphere. There may be some contraction or expansion involved when the laminate flooring tiles change environment.
Be sure to follow all manufacturer guidelines that are included with the tile packaging. Specific instructions on how to glue the tiles are very important, and can affect the overall aesthetic quality and durability of the end product. It is also important to ensure that the tiles are placed with a quarter of an inch space between the wall and the flooring. Although an extensive set of tools is not needed for in home installation, you may need something to cut the tile around corners, fireplaces, stairs, etc. A wet tile saw would definitely be adequate to cut laminate flooring.
Having a level surface for installation is also crucial. Be sure to fill any holes in the sub-flooring, or sand away any protruding areas that might stick up afterward.
Also, a word of caution for dog owners owners; laminate floors are very slippery for most dogs. If you have active dogs that have never experienced laminate floors, they can easily tear tendons or break bones trying to maneuver quickly on these floors. If you have stairs, place a rug or mat at the bottom of the stairs. If you dog climbs up on the furniture, place a rug or mat on the floor to keep them from slipping.