FEATURES OF LAMINATE FLOOR COVERINGS
Currently, laminate is increasingly used for laying flooring. The reasons for its popularity are reasonable price, practicality in use and a variety of design. Unlike natural materials, it is not made from wood, but from an HDF plate, pressed under pressure when exposed to high temperatures.
In appearance, the laminate floor resembles a floorboard. Its peculiarity lies in its ability to imitate varieties of various tree species, as well as granite, marble, and all sorts of patterns. This material belongs to the category of economy class floor coverings and in some respects surpasses linoleum, parquet and self-leveling floors.
Let us consider in more detail the structure of the laminate:
The top layer (overlay) is a high-strength thin film made using synthetic resins (melamine or acrylic). It protects the panel from wear and can make the surface glossy or matte. The presence of such a protective coating increases the resistance of the material to prolonged stress and mechanical stress.
Decorative layer – for its manufacture, specially treated paper is used, which determines the texture and color of the laminate. Drawing can imitate natural wood or other design decisions. Common shades are “under the tile” and “under the stone.”
The main carrier layer is made of high-strength fiberboard or particleboard. This material gives the sheet increased rigidity, the ability to withstand shocks and provides a constant shape. The thickness of standard panels is 8 mm, but building materials with other characteristics are also presented on the current market.
Stabilizing layer – made of impregnated mol or unrefined paper. Its main function is to protect chipboard or hardboard from high humidity and prevent the plates from changing their shape under the influence of temperature fluctuations. This contributes to the stabilization of the geometric parameters of the panel.
The advantages of laminate include:
Aesthetic appeal – a wide range of colors allows you to choose a material of suitable color and texture in accordance with the interior of the room.
Environmentally friendly – the composition of flooring of this type contains the minimum amount of impurities, which ensures their safety.
Easy installation – due to low weight and the presence of convenient slots for mounting, installation work can be carried out independently.
Moisture resistance – the modern laminate has a waterproof substrate, but with prolonged contact with a wet environment, water can flow into the joints, which leads to swelling. To avoid this problem, professional installers recommend the use of special sealants.
Ease of repair – in case of damage to one panel, it is enough to replace the damaged board without the need to restore the entire floor covering.
To preserve the original appearance of the laminate must be protected from layers of dust and dirt. It is not recommended to apply varnish or wax to care for the floor. Such tools can erase a water-repellent film, which leads to a reduction in the life of the coating.
It is best to clean them by hand to remove the plaque and remove the dirt. Dry cleaning involves cleaning the laminate with brushes, rags, or a non-water vacuum cleaner. If these remedies do not help, wet cleaning may be required.
It is important to consider that any liquids should be immediately removed from the surface, and then wipe dry until the final disappearance of traces of moisture. If water accumulates on the floor covering, irregularities may appear. Laminate is not recommended to wash, it is enough to wipe with a damp cloth. In addition, it should be remembered that the use of alkaline, abrasive and other corrosive agents can lead to damage to the appearance of the material and reduce performance.