Although many believe that laminate flooring was first made in the United States, the fact is that he innovative concept of laminate flooring was in fact thought of and developed by a Swedish company, and was first presented to the market in 1984. The name under which it was labeled was Pergo. To put the characteristics of laminate floor in a nutshell, laminate flooring is a cheaper, lower maintenance, imitation of hardwood flooring.
It can be said that almost all the laminate flooring that we have in our showroom at Canadian Home Flooring
on West Broadway are made up of five various elements: The overlay, the design or decoration layer, the HDF core, and a counterbalance or a stabilizing layer. Each of these layers has an impact on the quality and value of a laminate floor. Of course almost all of today’s laminates come with a locking system or a click system.
The overlay provides a scratch-resistant and fade-resistant surface. It is important to note that we say scratch “resistant”. While no flooring product is absolutely scratch and dent proof, high quality laminate floors are more durable than almost all the various choices of natural hardwood floors.
The decoration layer is what the laminate is mimicking in looks. Although many laminate flooring products are made to look like hardwood floors, there are many that look like ceramic tiles or even natural stone. The digital technology of today’s better manufacturers allows the look and feel of many laminate floors to be like never before with extremely realistic appearances and even textures that feel like real hardwood floors.
One of the main determining factors in the price of a laminate floor is the construction of its HDF core. This layer is the key piece that determines its durability and performance - below is a brief rundown of the various methods used to manufacture the HDF core. Thickness of this layer does not necessary relate to its performance.
In other words, a 15 mm laminate does not guarantee better performance than a 9 mm laminate. More important than the thickness of the core, it is the density of the core that gives the laminate flooring its strength and will help to prevent denting and gouging. There are 2 different methods in constructing the core of any laminate flooring. The method used determines its performance, durability, and pricing as well.
he Direct Pressure Method
With the direct pressure method, multiple layers are assembled at the same time and then heated and pressed together to form a bond. This is the most common type of laminate flooring. It is a less expensive way since the yield per hour is much higher than the high pressure method.
he High Pressure Method
This type of construction of an HDF core is more often found in the higher quality end of the laminate flooring market. It is a newer method which basically treats the top and bottom layers of laminate flooring separately, and then fuses these onto the core layer under extremely high pressure and it is done one layer at a time.
The stabilizing or counter balance layer within laminate flooring adds to its structural strength and integrity. In some of the better laminate flooring products this layer may be cork or other sound barrier or muffling type of products that reduce the sound transmission when walking on the laminate floor itself as well as for the level below.
At Canadian Home Flooring you will find a fantastic selection of both the Direct Pressure method samples as well as the High Pressure method. Torly’s and Quickstep laminate products are 2 examples of the High Pressure method and they consistently produce gorgeous looking products that last years and take incredible abuse.