Wooden floors have long been a part of the home tradition. It is hard not to appreciate them, because they are beautiful, warm and durable. However, we are not indifferent to the panels, and it cannot be otherwise if we are tempted by their affordable price. Of course, the choice itself becomes easier when we are aware of the advantages and disadvantages of individual solutions.
Wood on the floor
Rainforests, also known as staves, or popular parquet flooring, are characterized by the fact that they can be combined both on the pen and in front of you. They are usually 16 to 22 millimetres thick, 3 to 15 centimetres wide and of a length varying from 20 to even 200 centimetres. Long formats are currently the most fashionable, but it turns out that, contrary to the fears of skeptics, they also fit into small rooms. The situation in the case of boards is slightly different. These are 21 to 30 millimetres thick, 8 to 18 centimetres wide and 50 to even 600 centimetres long. Modern boards attract attention, among other things, because they have grooves that make them less susceptible to deformation.
The main reason for investing in solid wood is that it is warm, decorative and durable, and at the same time it ages nicely. It also works well as a thermal insulator and does not cause sensitization. The wooden floor is also subject to sanding and varnishing and after each treatment of this type still looks good. Of course, the level of satisfaction depends to a large extent on the type of wood used, so it is worth bearing in mind that a pine floor is less durable than an oak one.
There are many solid wood products on the market, so it is easy to choose the ones that will work in a particular room. Interestingly, this room can even be a bathroom, although in its case it is good to invest in oiled wood. However, when choosing wooden floors, it is important to bear in mind that we are not dealing with the best acoustic insulation at all. So sometimes the carpet is the only effective way to mute footsteps. There should also be an insulation layer under the floor.
When deciding on a wooden floor, it is important to bear in mind that its installation requires experience. The risk of warping floors made of wood also makes them not the best solution at a time when we are considering the use of underfloor heating.
Wooden panels without secrets
Wood panels look like staves and planks in appearance and, unlike solid wood floors, they are usually glued together in several layers, the top layer being lacquered wood. The lacquer is hardened and the buyer can also opt for panels that are covered with wax or oil. The middle layer, also known as the base layer, is made of slats or chipboard and the bottom layer is made of plywood or coniferous wood veneer. The panels do not require a permanent fixing on the floor.
People who think about their purchase appreciate the fact that the panels do not require sanding and varnishing, and at the same time are easy and quick to install. Their installation saves time and the excellent effect is visible almost immediately. The advantage is also their layered structure, which makes them not to warp. You can lay them down even when you have decided on underfloor heating. If you decide on high-class wooden panels, i.e. those with a thickness of up to 15 millimetres, you can also be sure that they will be as long-lasting as the parquet floor.
What is more, the choice of panels means less raw material consumption, so we are dealing with environmentally friendly solutions. Unfortunately, only by buying panels with a surface layer of more than 4 millimetres we can be sure that they will be suitable for grinding. In practice, however, this is not an easy task. What is more, the joints of panels are not varnished, and thus are exposed to the absorption of moisture from the air, which can take place even during floor cleaning. Wood panels, similarly to parquet flooring, do not work well as a sound insulator, and at joints they can quite unpleasantly crackle.
Laminated panels and their characteristics
When deciding on laminate panels, we must be aware that its top layer is laminate and even paper with printed pattern reinforced with a layer of melamine resin protecting against both abrasion and adverse outflow of water. The core of the panel is MDF or chipboard, and the bottom layer is usually made of melamine. The price of laminated panels is the main reason for purchasing them, but it is also important that they can be easily installed without the need for sanding and varnishing. They are also durable solutions that do not cause any problems during their operation.
Unfortunately, their disadvantage is a rather unnatural appearance, which is noticeable especially in the case of the cheapest solutions. If their core is made of particle board, laminate panels cannot be laid in the kitchen or bathroom. Laminated panels are also acoustic, so it is worth buying those that have been equipped with a special system dampening steps. Their damage can't be repaired.
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