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Laminate Flooring FAQs

Laminate Flooring FAQs

Find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about our products. If you can't find the answer to your question please feel free to contact us at 1-877-884-3232 or by email at expert@nucasa.com.


Solid and Engineered Hardwood Flooring FAQs

Laminate Flooring FAQs

Cork Flooring FAQs

Moulding FAQs


Laminate Flooring FAQs


Q. What is laminate flooring?
A. Laminate is a man-made floor that consists of four layers: a base, a fibreboard core, a photographic image and a melamine surface. Generally, laminate’s photographic image and plank dimensions mimic hardwood floors, however, you can get laminate floors that look like tiles, painted wood or other patterns. See our laminate buyers guide for more information.


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Q. What is the difference between laminate and hardwood flooring?

A. Hardwood floors, either solid or engineered, are 100% real wood throughout. Laminate floors are a man-made fiberboard with a photographic image, usually of a wood species. There is no wood used in the production of laminate.

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Q. Is laminate flooring environmentally friendly?
A. Since laminate is not made from hardwood, it doesn’t involve the harvesting of old growth forests and is often made with recycled materials. That said, laminate is less friendly to the environment than hardwood. This is due to the core fibreboard with which it is constructed, which is made from sawdust bound with resins. High-grade laminates often contain low VOC (volatile organic compounds) resins but cheaper, lower grade laminates from Asia may contain formaldehyde. These resins can off gas depending on the thickness of the material’s core. Also, laminate flooring unlike hardwood, can’t be recycled at the end of its life.

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Q. Does the thickness of laminate flooring indicate quality?
A. Thickness is not an indicator of quality. The quality of the materials and manufacturing are the factors you should consider for a beautiful, long-lasting floor. Material and production methods can impact how the floor will perform and hold up over time. Look for established brands, like Haro Tritty, with a proven track record, ISO ratings of 9001 for quality and ISO 14001 for environmental commitments.
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Q. What does the AC rating mean?
A. The AC rating stands for the abrasion class rating which is a standard measure of how well the floor resists moisture, burns, abrasions, impact and stains.
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Q. Do I need to use an underlay with laminate floors?
A. Yes. You should always use an underlay when installing laminate. An underlay will help soundproof the floor, protect it from moisture and increase comfort and warmth underfoot. We recommend the Floor Muffler with an STC rating of 73 and IIC rating of 74.
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Q. What is peaking?
A. Peaking occurs when if a floor has been installed without an expansion space around the perimeter of the room and the boards – usually due to moisture issues – expand and are forced upwards at the joints instead of horizontally towards the wall. An expansion space or joint is a necessary small amount of space left between the floor and the wall, covered by baseboard molding. An expansion space also needs to be left under transition moldings. Removing the baseboard and trimming the edge board slightly to create an expansion joint can correct peaking. The troubled area may need to be weighted down to flatten it out and then the baseboard can be replaced.
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Q. What is crowning, cupping, buckling and warping?
A. These terms refer to problems that can occur as the result of moisture issues. When a board gets damp it will swell into a convex shape, with the middle of the board raised higher than the edges. If it later dries out too much, then the edges may curl up creating a cup shape. Higher quality laminates, like Haro Tritty, combine moisture resistant core boards, treated edges and a good backing layer to combat these problems.

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Q. If I get a scratch or burn on my floor, how do I fix it?
A. Minor scratches can be touched up with the aid of a laminate floor kit. These usually include putty and coloured crayons or pencils. For more serious damage, you may need to replace a board or two. This can be done quickly and easily -- just remember to store spare boards for minor repairs down the road.
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Q. Can I refinish my laminate floor?
A. No. Unlike real hardwood floors, laminate floors cannot be refinished.
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Hardwood Flooring FAQs | Laminate Flooring FAQs | Cork Flooring FAQs | Moulding FAQs


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