Types of wooden flooring

What is laminate flooring?

The laminate flooring core is made from highly compressed wood fibres. A photographic image then covers the top to resemble wood, stone or tile, whilst providing a protective overlay at the same time.

How much does laminate flooring cost?

Costs for laminate flooring will range depending on the quality you opt for. Cheaper prices will start from around £3 per square metre, but you’d expect these to be smooth and often unrealistic. If you want a more natural appearance for the laminate flooring, then prices will increase up to £30 per square metre.

Click-lock laminate flooring

Click-lock laminate flooring is the easiest and most common laminate to install and can be fitted by a competent DIYer. This type of flooring is most suitable for living areas such as the dining room, lounge, study or playroom. Some clock-lock laminate flooring will be waterproof and manufacturers say it’s suitable for bathrooms and kitchens too. However, to be on the safe side it’s best to check the guarantee to ensure you’re not caught out.

Benefits

  • Cheaper option whilst being hardwearing
  • Easy to install
  • Lots of variety in appearance.

Drawbacks

  • Laminate won’t look or feel like real wood
  • Joins can wear and it’s difficult to fix when the surface has been damaged
  • Inadequately laid laminate puts off potential house buyers.

What is engineered wood flooring?
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Engineered wood is constructed from several layers to keep the planks solid. There are normally three of four layers of wood glued together to create a plank with around a 14mm thickness. On top of this is a wood veneer, meaning the original look can be restored by sanding and treating the finish if it’s scuffed or damaged.

How much does engineered wood cost?

If you were to go to Ikea you could probably pick up engineered wood for around £11 per square metre, but the expensive options such as olive, maple and teak can be more than £70 per square metre.

Where can engineered wood flooring be installed?

Technically, you can choose to fit the flooring anywhere that isn’t affected by moisture. Living rooms in particular are popular for engineered wood. It can be time consuming and tricky to install, so it’s always recommended to hire a professional contractor.

Benefits

  • Its construction makes it sturdier than pieces of solid wood and is less likely to warp with the room’s temperature or humidity
  • It’s far more attractive than laminate finishes and is also cheaper than solid wood alternatives.

Drawbacks

  • It can be considerably more expensive than laminate.

What is real wooden flooring?

As from its name, this type of flooring is the real deal. It hasn’t been manufactured or modified and planks tend to be thicker than both laminate and engineered wood.

Boards tend to be between 18mm and 20mm in thickness and a tongue and grove technique is normally adopted for installation. With real wood you’ll find a hardness score so you can determine how easily it could be damaged or dented.

With real wooden flooring you can sand it down to restore the original look if any damage does occur.

How much does real wood flooring cost?

As with everything you’ll find a range of prices for real wooden flooring. Typically prices will start from £15 per square metre and more expensive options go up to around £82 per square metre. This is more common for tropical hardwood.

Where can real wood flooring be installed?

Real wooden flooring can be fit anywhere that has a constant temperature. Hallways and living rooms are popular areas for real wood installations.
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Benefits

    • Has a fantastic aesthetic appeal that is unmatched by any other wood option and is a key feature which helps many to sell their home.

Drawbacks

    • You need a consistent temperature as real wood can swell in damp conditions and shrink in dry conditions
    • It’s difficult to install and needs to be glued or nailed down. A professional contractor is always recommended
    • Real wood is the most expensive option for wooden flooring installations.

Tom Crosswell

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