Wood Vs Laminate | Malta

What is the main difference between hardwood and laminate flooring?

Wood

There is nothing that gives a dream home a warmer finish than a touch of wood. This feel can be captured both by using hardwoods or laminate flooring. When it comes to deciding between the two, the main difference that one has to keep in mind is that hardwood floors are made from different layers of natural wood, while a laminate floor is made from different fibres with a finishing layer to make it look like wood.

Different types of common wood flooring

There is an endless amount of different types of wood. However, the main classification of wood falls under two categories, namely softwoods and hardwoods.

Soft Woods

Pine flooring malta

Pine Flooring

Pine flooring has a pale yellowish tone. It is very light and its grain adds a decorative feel.

Fir Flooring
Fir has a reddish-brown tone and its texture gives a uniform finish to the product.

Cedar
Like Fir, Cedar also has a reddish-brown tint with the difference that it carries light streaks.

Redwood

It is popularly used outdoors on floors and staircases because it is highly resistant to the elements. It is resistant to decay and deterioration which can be caused by the sun and the rain.

Hard Woods

Wood Material Background Wallpaper Texture Concept

Wood Material Background Wallpaper Texture Concept

Oak

Needless to say, Oak is the most popular choice out of all the hard woods due to its strength and light colour.

Walnut

Walnut is as strong as Oak, but is darker in colour. It is noted for its wavy grain.

Cherry

For a lighter reddish-brown tone, one can opt for Cherry hard wood, which whilst being a strong type of wood, it is slightly softer than Oak and Walnut.

Beech

For a cheaper option, Beech is your best bet. It is strong and still maintains the reddish-brown hue.

Other Hardwoods

Other hardwoods include maple and mahogany. An interesting fact is that maple is used for bowling alleys.

Engineered Woods | Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring Malta

Look and feel compared to wood flooring

When compared to wood, laminate floors have a more of a cutting-edge look. Arguably, laminate flooring feels harder than wood. However, a natural feel can be achieved if one chooses wood over laminate floors. If well maintained, the feel natural wood gives would win over the laminates.

Durability of laminates compared to hardwoods and softwoods

Laminates can withstand heavier traffic than hardwoods and softwoods. Part of the manufacturing process offers protection in the fibres found within the laminates. On the other hand continuous maintenance would be needed for the hardwoods and softwoods.

Cost of natural woods vs laminate flooring

Needless to say, natural woods would be more expensive due to environmental issues. Laminate floors are more cost effective since the production of hardwood entails a longer process since one has to cut down trees, import the wood and labour costs would be very expensive since there are less tradesmen on the labour market.

Maintenance of Engineered wood vs natural wood

The lifespan of laminate floors as regard to maintenance is longer unless one is willing to invest in the continuous maintenance of natural wood. This would all depend on the lifestyle of the home owner.

An opinion on the main difference between natural wood and laminate flooring

In conclusion, when taking into consideration both natural wood and laminate floors, it is fair to say that laminate floorings are easier to install as it only involves the simple clipping of one board to another. If one opts for natural wood, one has to keep two important factors in mind. In Malta, climate is an issue since one has to consider the humidity problem. Additionally, one has to make sure the installation is done perfectly by a skilled tradesman to obtain a perfect finish. Moreover, if pets are part of the family, laminate floors are the best bet to avoid unwanted scratches and other damages.

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