WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN HARDWOOD FLOORING TYPES?
First of all, do not confuse the hardwood flooring types with the wood species or variety, which determines the colour and pattern of the floor. Hardwood floor types refer to the way in which the material is put together, whether is it synthetic wood, genuine hardwood or a wood composite with veneers.
All types of hardwood floors have unmatched natural beauty and go with any decorâ€”modern, traditional, commercial, you name it.
There are four main types of hardwood floor. They are: laminate,Â parquet,Â solidÂ andÂ engineered hardwood flooring. Here are some details on each variation.
WHAT IS IT?
Laminate flooring is a multi-layer synthetic flooring product, fused together by a lamination process. Laminate flooring is a surface which simulates wood with a photographic applique layer under a clear protective layer.
WHERE TO LAY?
Living rooms, studies and playrooms. Some products include a waterproof core which means they can be used in bathrooms and kitchens.
- The faux wood effect of laminate flooring means that you get a floor withÂ all the aesthetic benefits of wood, but without the hassle of upkeep and at a cheaper price.
- It isÂ easy to install.
- The surface is also less prone to scuffs and scratches, meaning it is aÂ long-lasting and durableÂ product.
- AÂ wide variety of imitationsÂ of natural materials are available (from wood to stone).
- Even the best laminate flooringÂ wonâ€™t look or feel exactly like the real thing.
- If it isnâ€™t laid well,Â it can look shabby.
- TheÂ joins wear over time, and once the surface is damaged it is difficult to fix.
- Moisture swells it easilyÂ and the damage is irreversible.
- ItÂ cannot be sanded or refinished, like solid hardwood, which means it must be replaced.
NB: Parquet flooring can be vinyl flooring, LVT, laminate, solid or engineered hardwood. So itâ€™s not technically a hardwood floor type.
WHAT IS IT?
Parquet flooring owes the origins of its name to the French word, parqueterie, and dates back to the 1600s. Typically laid in a geometric, angular style, squares, lozenges and triangles often feature in traditional parquet flooring.
Sometimes referred to as mosaic flooring, parquet flooring is appreciated for its decorative effect. Parquet flooring can be made from solid and engineered wood these days.
WHERE TO LAY?
It looks best in hallways and reception areas so that it can be shown off regularly. It requires a relatively constant atmosphere due to its susceptibility to water or humidity damage.
- Parquet flooring isÂ elegant and adds warmth and beautyÂ to most interior settings.
- It isÂ relatively easy to maintain. Abrasive materials canâ€™t be used to clean it, but regular sweeping and cleaning using compatible products keeps parquet flooring looking its best.
- It isÂ durable and long-lasting.
- Parquet flooringÂ adds value to your home.
- Parquet flooring isÂ susceptible to scratches and scuffsÂ from small sharp objects, such as high-heeled stilettos. Once damaged, it can be difficult to repair and restore the floor back to its original look.
- When exposed to sunlight,Â parquet flooring can fade.
- Like all wood flooring, parquet flooring isÂ subject to damage from moisture and humidity.
- ItÂ requires frequent upkeepâ€”it is important to polish, sand and seal as required; if this is not done, the floor will look dull and tired over time.
SOLID HARDWOOD FLOORING
WHAT IS IT?
As the name suggests, solid hardwood floors are made from solid wood. Each board of solid hardwood flooring is made from a single piece of hardwood thatâ€™s about 3/4 of an inch (18-20mm) thick.
All types of wood have a hardness score which indicates how easily they can be damaged, dented or worn by everyday wear and tear.
WHERE TO LAY?
Anywhere with a constant atmosphere, particularly in hallways where you can show it off.
- It has many aesthetic benefits and, for this reason, solid hardwood floor canÂ add value to a property.
- Solid hardwood floorsÂ can be sanded down and refinishedÂ regardless of how long they have been installed; this can restore the original finish after scuffs or scrapes.
- Solid hardwoodÂ tends to outlast other hardwood floor types.
- Solid hardwoodÂ swells in damp conditions and shrinks in dry ones.
- It isÂ difficult to installÂ because it has to be glued or nailed down, and fitting the boards together can be tricky because they change shape once they have been manufactured.
- It isÂ generally the highest priceÂ for entry level products.
ENGINEERED HARDWOOD FLOORING
WHAT IS IT?
Engineered wood flooring is a versatile and resilient flooring option. Each floorboard consists of three or four layers of wood, glued together at right angles to create a plank around 14mm thick.
It has a real wood veneer of around 4mm on top.
Anywhere it wonâ€™t be exposed to water or humidity. Wooden stairs are very difficult to lay and fitting around places such as toilet pans is hard to achieve a good finish.
- It isÂ more resistant to moisture and heatÂ compared to solid hardwood.
- Itâ€™s construction method makes itÂ more stable than a piece of solid wood; it is less likely to buckle or gap.
- YouÂ can install engineered hardwood flooring at any level, including below ground. In contrast, solid hardwood floors cannot be installed in basements.
- It isÂ more attractive than laminate flooringÂ and cheaper than comparable solid wood planks.
- It isÂ highly durable and long-lasting.
- There are very few drawbacks, but tongue-and-groove is harder to install than click-lock. We always suggest an experienced fitter installs engineered wood flooring.
- ItÂ can be a lot more expensiveÂ than laminate.
WHATEVER YOUR TASTE, STYLE AND BUDGET, WE HAVE SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE
PHOENIX FLOORING LIMITED, BRISTOL â€“ CONTACT US
Whatever your carpet and flooring needs we are here to help.
Why not pop in to one our Carpet and Flooring Showrooms.
To view our extensive range of floorings.
Karndean, Amtico, Laminates, LVT, vinyl, coir matting, artificial grass, safety flooring, carpet and flooring.
We provide a FREE â€“ NO OBLIGATION QUOTE on all jobs.Â No matter how big or small, residential or commercial.
Our team will happily visit your home or premises and bring samples with them.
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Unit 15 Hemingway Business Centre
01454 620707 (same number for both Showrooms)
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