Whether you're interested in a sleek white oak look to open up your living area or an intense brown walnut to bring moody drama to a primary bedroom or office, you can easily find stunning laminate flooring that looks like wood. Thanks to the latest technology, photorealistic faux wood flooring can fool even the most experienced eye. If your kid- and pet-filled house warrants an intentionally durable floor, enjoy beauty and resilience with wood look laminate flooring.
You've got a growing family with little ones just learning to walk. You know messy days are ahead, but you don't want that to limit the aesthetic you're going for with your current renovation. With wood look laminate flooring, you can enjoy the beautiful natural appeal of your favorite hardwood species alongside man-made resilience. Choose the wood hue, undertone, grain pattern, and texture that best suits your design style, whether that's midcentury modern, cottage core, or an eclectic mix of design styles that’s all your own.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Wood Look Laminate Flooring
As you mull over your flooring options with your partner, consider the pros and cons that come with laminate wood looking flooring. On the pro side, you've got:
Extremely durable wood fiber core that can handle your busiest days without scuffs or scratches
Simple, low-effort cleaning and maintenance
Fairly straightforward installation
On the cons side, you'll want to consider that laminate wood look floors:
Don't handle long periods of water exposure well, unless you opt for specific waterproof products
Can't be refinished like solid wood
Can buckle or stain if spills aren't cleaned up quickly
Wood-Look Laminate Flooring vs. Solid Wood Floors
If you're drawn to the natural beauty, longevity, and character of hardwood, you'll really only find it with solid wood floors. But if you're willing to be a little more open, wood look laminate flooring can fit the bill nearly as well and at a fraction of the cost. Solid wood can last for a generation or more if it's well cared for, plus it can increase your home's value. But if your lifestyle requires rugged durability that involves water resistance, solid hardwood may let you down. Standard laminate can resist small spills, and waterproof options are available if you need more protection.
Wood Laminate Flooring vs. Engineered Wood Floors
Whether you choose engineered wood floors or wood look laminate floors, you're getting a beautiful, wood-inspired designthat's more affordable than solid wood floors! Laminate planks may include plywood or fiberboard on the inner layer while engineered wood planks have a top layer of actual hardwood covered in a protective topcoat. These planks are generally more difficult to install and cost more but usually last longer than wood look laminate flooring.
Laminate Wood Looking Floors vs. Vinyl Floors
Both vinyl and laminate wood look floors do a fabulous job of realistically resembling genuine hardwood. They differ in how they’re made. Vinyl flooring is an entirely synthetic, rigid material that can hold up to both water and heat. Laminate, on the other hand, has a core layer that includes plywood or fiberboard, which doesn't inherently repel water. If your home is riddled with muddy paws, routine spills, or wet towels constantly on the floor, it may be better suited to the water resistance of vinyl flooring.
How Durable Is Wood Look Laminate Flooring?
Laminate wood look floors provide a good amount of durability with their wood fiber core and overall construction. Laminate can withstand your husband and kids walking around throughout the day, but if you drop something heavy, it can leave a mark. Long periods in the sun or with water exposure can also damage wood look laminate floors, so do your best to avoid them or invest in a fade-resistant finish.
Lifespan and Installation
You worked hard for the money you're spending on this beautiful wood look laminate flooring, and now you want to make sure it goes the distance. And how long is that, anyway? Under the best conditions, faux wood flooring will give you many years of easy, worry-free wear. The good news is that those conditions are largely within your control! They include:
How the laminate is installed and the quality of the materials used
Whether you keep up with maintenance and follow the manufacturer's guidance
The amount of wear and tear your family delivers
When it comes time to make a decision about installation, think twice before you trust the job to a friend or family member. We highly recommend pro Flooring America installers, and for a few key reasons. They'll show up with the right tools in hand, know exactly how to prep and install your wood look laminate, and make sure it's perfect before going on their way. You'll sleep easier at night knowing your long-term investment is still protected by the product warranty.
Keeping laminate flooring in tip-top shape is a sure way to get the most from your investment. That starts with routinely sweeping or vacuuming the floor to remove any dirt and debris. When a spill happens (and let's be honest, it's inevitable), clean it up right away to prevent unnecessary repercussions. The manufacturer of your specific laminate wood look flooring will have care instructions that we recommend you follow.
FAQs About Laminate Wood Look Floors
Is wood look laminate flooring easy to maintain? You're in luck because it is easy to maintain! Follow the recommended instructions provided by the manufacturer, which are quite simple and likely include sweeping or vacuuming regularly and cleaning up after spills.
What thickness of wood look laminate flooring is best? You can find laminate flooring in thicknesses ranging from 6 to 12mm, and which one you choose will depend on where it's going. In general, 10mm laminate flooring is a great durable option for average use in your home's busiest areas, like the entry and hallway, kitchen, and living room.
What's the downside to wood look laminate flooring? Some laminate flooring looks like wood, and although its appearance may be a big advantage, its main disadvantage is how it reacts to moisture. Exposure to high humidity or significant moisture can cause planks to warp, buckle or break down. High-end waterproof laminate is a good wood look alternative for your kitchen, bathroom,, or other areas that might see liquid spills.