The components of laminate flooring and the components of engineered flooring are similar in a number of ways. Laminate flooring and engineered wood flooring are also appear much alike to the untrained eye but are not the same product. In this article we discuss the components of laminate flooring.
Both laminate and engineered floors are available as floating floors made up of tongue-and-groove planks that snap together. Both floors are made in a variety of widths, and an array of colors and wood-grain patterns. The primary difference between the two is that the wood grain and the top surface. With laminate flooring the grain is printed paper and not hardwood and the usual top layer of laminate is melamine plastic. The resulting laminate flooring products can come in thicknesses varying from approximately 6mm to 12mm, the thicker of the laminate floors product being the more durable.
Components of Laminate Flooring the Anatomy
Melamine Wear Layer
The top layer is hard wearing thin film like layer which is specifically designed to resist
many forms of abrasion. It is typically made up of several coats of melamine with aluminum oxide giving it a durable and water resistant surface.
Decorative Paper Print Layer
The next layer from the top what gives the floor its appearance is a digital print layer. The design can range from that of a wood grain to the appearance of cork, stone, ceramic or whatever design the manufacturer chooses to print.
The thicker central layer which I the third from the top is the core material. It is typically made with particle board, high-density fiberboard (HDF), or medium-density fiberboard (MDF) HDF is a step up from MDF and is much harder. The core is the structural element supporting the weight and stresses of foot traffic.
Backing Stabilizing Layer
The backing is the stabilizing layer as it provides stability and strength to the laminate board. The backing also helps to provide a moisture barrier from the bottom up. Laminate flooring is available in styles that have a cushion attached to the backing and those that are installed over a separate padding.
Tongue and Groove
For most laminate flooring that is manufactured today, the tongue an groove is designed to snap together though originally it was primarily glued together.
During manufacturing the layered components of laminate flooring are pressed together by one of two methods”
DPL – Direct Pressure Laminate is the most typical fusing method used to manufacture residential laminate flooring. The surface, inner layers and backing layer are fused in a single press operation.
HPL – High Pressure Laminate the layers are glued together only after the decorative layer and wear layers are pressed onto an additional layer of high strength paper by means of high-pressure.
Once all the components of laminate flooring have been united you have an attractive product ready for installation.