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-   -   Laminate vs. hardwood (http://www.diychatroom.com/f5/laminate-vs-hardwood-174148/)

jjones1020 03-11-2013 02:00 AM

Laminate vs. hardwood
 
I am in an internal debate between laminate wood and hardwood flooring. I plan on installing it myself, so my limited handyman skills has me leaning towards a floating laminate floor. Would real hardwood be that much harder to install? Is it worth the extra money and work?

jjones1020 03-11-2013 02:05 AM

I also have two young kids that will probably be rough on the floor

joecaption 03-11-2013 10:06 AM

If you looking for a cheap fairly easy floor to install and not looking to add value to the home it will work as long as waters kept away from it.
Something as a having a dogs water dish with not mat under it can distroy it.
If the kids spill something you need to get it wiped up right away.
Do not use it in a bathroom.

Main reason DIY installs fail is they do not read all the install directions.
Main area where it's done wrong is around doorways.

A simple tip when installing it is do not just try and lock it in with one motion.
Line up the grove and work the piece up and down as it's sliding in place to get it fully locked, if you just try and do it in one motion the flooring likes to try and lift.
Look for the Roberts brand install tools not the ones that may be marked "Pergo". Last time I looked Lowes had them. It's a Z bar and a Tapping block.

oh'mike 03-11-2013 10:26 AM

Are you comparing 3/4" hardwood to a wood engineered floor--or the Formica covered laminate?

harrymontana 03-11-2013 11:55 AM

hello,
yes for a hardwood floor you need special tools such as a nailing machine.
A hardwood floor is also more expensive to buy and ideally you should put yet another under floor of 4 x 8' plywood underneath for insulation and keep everything levelled.
However, it is comparing an old honda civic with a nice and bright bentley, besides, after a few years you can sand the floor and you'll enjoy once again a brand new floor. hardwood floor therefore is on the long term cheaper and a very good investment for your house as well.

jjones1020 03-11-2013 01:17 PM

What I've liked so far is 8mm laminate with attached underpayment(Hampton bay) at Home Depot. We plan on selling in a couple years. I don't think I have seen engineered hardwood. Where would be a good place to check that out. The simpleness of floating floor is appealing but I don't want to put in something that would turn off potential buyers later.

creeper 03-11-2013 02:11 PM

[QUOTE=jjones1020;1134646 but I don't want to put in something that would turn off potential buyers later.[/QUOTE]


.....in a nutshell....

sam floor 03-11-2013 03:41 PM

Laminate is cheap and looks cheap.

DannyT 03-11-2013 03:55 PM

engineered hardwood flooring can be put down as a floating floor like laminate and will add more value to the home than any laminate floor will.

jjones1020 03-11-2013 05:36 PM

Click lock engineered hardwood is good? If so, all I would need to prep is put down an underlayment? Any recommendation on where to buy from. We have a lumber liquidators nearby.

jjones1020 03-11-2013 06:09 PM

Another question .... If I did go real hardwood, would I really have to put another layer of plywood beforehand. I have 3/4 inch as subfloor over a crawl space. Sorry for all the questions, and thanks for any input

zakany 03-12-2013 09:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jjones1020 (Post 1134826)
Another question .... If I did go real hardwood, would I really have to put another layer of plywood beforehand. I have 3/4 inch as subfloor over a crawl space. Sorry for all the questions, and thanks for any input

No.

I'll let others quiz you about the crawl space though. You want to make sure you don't have moisture problems.

FWIW, I have found hardwood easier to install than the cheaper, click-together products. I bought a refurbished nailer so my tooling costs weren't stupid.

creeper 03-12-2013 09:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jjones1020 (Post 1134826)
Another question .... If I did go real hardwood, would I really have to put another layer of plywood beforehand. I have 3/4 inch as subfloor over a crawl space. Sorry for all the questions, and thanks for any input


Don't feel bad about questions. Thats the purpose of this place. I would help you but Im mostly a pupil and not a teacher around here.

I'm sure a pro is just around the corner and he/she will be glad you waited for pro advice rather then have to fix a costly mistake after the fact.

As a pro in my field I can say with confidence that given the choice, hardwood overules laminate in every way.

DannyT 03-12-2013 09:45 AM

personally I wouldn't go anywhere near a lumber liquidators until you read some reviews online about them. don't read the reviews on their site either.

ddawg16 03-12-2013 10:38 AM

I also concur with Danny's opinion on Lumber Liquidators....if you really compare their prices...they are NOT a bargain.

I've done both (as a DIY'r)......the engineered stuff has come a long way and if not abused, can give you many years of good service. Downside...you can't really repair it....as in sand and restain. It's a one use deal.

With real hardwood (most of my house is solid oak hw from the 50's), you can sand and re-stain/seal it....several times....but patching damaged spots is not exactly easy if you have to pull out a piece.

With engineered....you can put down the plastic liner...adds cushion to the floor and in my opinion, makes it slightly warmer. Believe it or not, I did the entire 2nd floor of my garage with cheap laminate. I'm surprised at how easy it was to install and how well it's holding up....and I'm talking cheap....like $0.80/sq ft stuff.

Based on that experience, we will be using engineered in one of the new bedrooms. The rest will be tile or original hw (hey, a pub has to have old real oak)


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