How to Tell the Difference Between Hardwood and Laminate Flooring

September 22, 2021

Hardwood floors have long been the standard in home flooring, but due to improved manufacturing and installation practices, laminate is another fantastic choice for homeowners investing in new floors. If you’re shopping for new floors or touring houses to buy and are wondering about what types of floors the house has, keep reading. This post will cover how to tell hardwood from laminate:

  • Wear and tear: The easiest way to tell whether the floors are hardwood or laminate is to search for signs of wear and tear. The colors or textures in hardwood will change over time due to sunlight exposure or moisture. Hardwood may also get scratched or scuffed up as time goes on. Laminate is engineered to withstand normal wear and tear, so it’ll retain its original appearance for much longer.
  • Nail holes: Professionals need to nail or staple hardwood floors down during installation. Laminate, on the other hand, is a tongue-and-groove material that is installed without any nails or other equipment. So, if you spot any nail holes, you’re looking at traditional hardwood floors.
  • Longevity: Another way to tell the difference between laminate and hardwood is to look at the age of the house and flooring. Hardwood can last for 75 years or longer without needing to be replaced. Laminate floors are also incredibly durable, but they often need to be replaced every few decades.

Should you choose laminate or hardwood flooring?

Now that you know how to tell hardwood from laminate, it’s time to make a decision about which to install in your home. These are a few things to take into account before hiring flooring specialists to install your new floors:

  • Budget: The first thing to consider is how much you’re willing to spend on your floors. Laminate flooring ranges from $2 to $8 per square foot, whereas hardwood can cost $20 or more per square foot. Additionally, you’ll need to factor in installation costs if you choose hardwood, as hardwood installation is not a DIY job.
  • Home value: With that added cost for hardwood comes a much higher home value. Hardwood floors can increase a home’s value by up to 5 percent because many buyers are looking for a home with true hardwood flooring. If you think you might sell your home at some point, consider paying extra for true hardwood.
  • Lifestyle: Your lifestyle is another thing to think about. If you have pets or small children running around, hardwood might not be your best bet. Laminate floors are much more resistant to pets’ nails and wear and tear caused by young kids.

Buy your new floors today

If you’re in the market for some new floors, pay a visit to All American Carpet Inc. We have a vast selection of laminate, hardwood, carpeting, vinyl and more, all at the most competitive prices in town. Reach out to us today to get a quote or to learn more about how to tell the difference between laminate and hardwood. We look forward to assisting you soon.

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