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Laminate flooring is designed to mimic traditional flooring materials such as hardwood, and the patterns follow suit with a similar plank length and width. However, laminate flooring can be found with thicker or thinner planks, which can better suit the space in which it's installed whether it's in a home or in an office.
Some laminate flooring prioritizes water resistance, others prioritize scratch resistance, while others are designed to make installation as quickly and easily as possible. Choosing the best laminate flooring for your home or office is as simple as finding the product that combines the attributes that you find the most valuable.
Laminate flooring is a synthetic product consisting of several layers that are sealed together to imitate natural materials like wood and stone. Designed to be affordable and durable, laminate flooring consists of multiple components:
· Wear layer: The top layer of laminate flooring is the transparent wear layer. This layer is also water-resistant and keeps the rest of the plank looking good. The upper layer is rated on an abrasion criteria (AC) scale that runs from 1 to 5. AC 1 works for low-traffic areas such as bedrooms, while AC 5 will withstand commercial traffic. Most residential laminate flooring is rated AC 3 or AC 4.
· Decorative layer: The next layer is primarily a high-tech, color-fast photocopy, generally of a natural material such as wood or stone.
· Fiberboard core: The decorative layer is bonded to the core of the product, which is a durable, high-density wood fiberboard.
· Melamine resin: The layer of melamine resin is below the fiberboard core and provides structural stability and moisture resistance.
· Underlayment: The last layer is underlayment and sometimes comes bonded to the planks. If it isn’t, then it’s installed separately underneath them.