Laminate Floor Pros and Cons

Laminate flooring refers to flooring that resembles natural materials like stone or wood. Laminates are manufactured to provide an alternative to those who may not be able to afford or access the natural materials. This article discusses the pros and cons of laminate flooring. Use this information to make an informed decision on whether this type of flooring is the right one for you.

The Pros

  • It is easy to install. Laminate flooring is manufactured to be very easy to install. All the installer has to do is to place the interlocking components together without using any nails or glue. Thus, the floor can be ready for use in a very short time.
  • It is easy to clean. Laminate flooring materials may be easier to clean than their natural counterparts may be. For instance, wood may be damaged by exposure to water but wood laminate flooring can be cleaned using water.
  • It is durable. Laminate floors are hard to dent, scratch or damage in any other way. This is because the flooring is made from very sturdy materials like strong plastic. This is unlike natural flooring (such as stone) that is easy to dent or chip.
  • It is uniform in quality. Laminate flooring is consistent in appearance, grain structure and colour. This is in sharp contrast to natural materials like wood or stone that may have imperfections such as spots of darker colour. Flawless natural flooring materials cost a premium and many people may not afford them.

The Cons

  • It has a low resale value. Homebuyers pay very close attention to the materials used to build a home. Some homebuyers may look down on laminate flooring since they may see it as fake. This can lower the perceived value of your home.
  • It is hard to repair. Natural flooring like wood can be repaired (by sanding and repainting, for example) when it develops signs of wear. However, laminates are hard to repair since one cannot use techniques like sanding on the laminate since any abrasive action will damage the material further. Consequently, worn laminate flooring has to be replaced entirely.
  • It can be very slippery. Laminate flooring does not have pores to absorb moisture so it may become very slippery when wet. Some manufacturers have developed versions that are less susceptible to becoming slippery but these cost more than the "default" version.

Compare laminate flooring to other floor installation options before you make a final choice for your home.