Parquet board or laminate
Repair is literally a “catastrophe”, which overtakes everyone, sooner or later, but you have to put up with its need. If we talk about decorating walls and ceilings, then they require attention after about 3 years, but with the floor the situation is much more serious. It fits with the prospect for many years, for this reason the choice of flooring is a crucial step. And then a lot of questions arise, because the materials today are provided in a wide assortment. One of these points will be considered in this publication and its essence – which is preferable: parquet board or laminate?
Why exactly them? Because these materials are the most popular: parquet board – a synonym for high quality, laminate – ease of use, practicality. But, first things first, you should first understand what exactly they are.
- Laminate General
- A bit about parquet board
- Some similar characteristics
- Weigh the pros and cons
- Wear resistance as an evaluation criterion
- The complexity of installation in comparison
- Application: operating conditions
- What is easier to care for?
- Price-quality ratio
- An important aspect – environmental friendliness
Laminate is a multilayer coating with a plastic film or special furniture foil applied to the surface. Basically, this foil / film can have a variety of colors, the texture of natural wood or imitate ceramic tiles. The topmost layer is protective and key to the quality of this flooring. As a rule, strong melamine resin acts in this role..
The middle layer of the laminate is a wood-fiber board, due to which the material acquires moisture resistance, the invariance of geometric parameters. But the bottom layer is also protective: either unrefined, resin-impregnated paper, or a layer of plastic. Very often, the edges of the laminate are treated with wax-based water repellents..
A bit about parquet board
Parquet board is considered a successful invention in the world of construction. This is due to the fact that there is an amazing combination of hard and relatively soft woods, and this makes it possible to maintain the necessary flexibility.
Naturally, a parquet board differs in quality, price indicator: it is determined by the type of wood, grade, processing technology, manufacturers rating.
Parquet board can be:
- with a base in one layer – frames are glued around the edges, planks form diverse patterns;
- in two layers – the slats are laid in the direction of the axis;
- three-layer board – two battens glued in layers, laid mutually perpendicularly.
Important: the first options are used extremely rarely, and the three-layer design is the most common.
The top layer is the most valuable – hardwoods are used for manufacturing. The middle layer – narrow planks of pine, spruce, rubber tree. A thin (1-2 mm) plywood layer completes the entire structure. In a similar way, a peculiar sandwich is formed with an orthogonal arrangement of fibers, if we consider the ratio of each layer to the neighboring one. Such a “pie” reliably provides maximum stability of the floorboard.
Some similar characteristics
What unites these two floor coverings? Something to eat:
- castle connection – ease of dismantling and replacing damaged elements;
- wide choose;
- design – the so-called “deck”.
At first glance it may seem that a larger number of trump cards refers to the laminate, because the price is quite low, and the strength characteristics are up to standard. But all this erroneous opinion, the more you delve into this issue, the more the situation becomes clearer..
For example, many people want to surround their living space exclusively with natural materials. But not one, even the most expensive laminate, can truly imitate a real tree. This is one minus, that is, if initially the difference seems to be not visible, then over time it becomes colossal. A person begins to be burdened by artificiality, unpleasant tactile properties, predictability of the picture. What is better to give to your beloved children: spanking bare feet on a velvety and warm tree or on an unpleasant, cold plastic? Absolutely, most caring parents will choose the first option. So, the floorboard is still the leader.
Weigh the pros and cons
Yes, some time ago the limit of dreams of a Soviet citizen was not far off – linoleum with a picture “a la parquet”. Then the assortment of floor coverings was scarce, limited and did not provide any opportunities for a fantasy flight. But today the market is actively developing and offers are increasing..
To finally determine the choice of material, you should analyze the comparative characteristics. To obtain the most objective result, the comparison will take place according to several parameters.
Wear resistance as an evaluation criterion
As for durability and practicality, a good, high-quality laminate is not afraid of scratches from moving furniture, heels. It is resistant to stress, indentation, does not fade in the sun.
Important: smoldering cigarette is not able to leave marks on the surface of the laminate.
Depending on the class, the service life of the laminate is 7-20 years. There is also a drawback to this parameter – the impossibility of restoration.
Now about the parquet board – the wood can be pushed with too heavy furniture, and the varnish can be easily scratched (with careless handling). Therefore, the flooring requires a careful attitude, compliance with the rules of operation. What applies here?
- a parquet board “loves” constant humidity and temperature; water, sand and chemistry are highly undesirable;
- the most optimal conditions for long service: plus temperature – 18-24 degrees, humidity – 40-60%.
With proper care and lean operation, the parquet board will last 50-100 years. Plus, it lends itself to restoration – polishing 4 times and the possibility of coating with a new layer of varnish.
The complexity of installation in comparison
Laminate flooring is very easy to install: it is small in size and a castle connection is thought out. The parquet board is also easy to install, but requires a pre-prepared, as flat as possible base.
Application: operating conditions
Laminate is suitable for many rooms: from a children’s room, a bedroom to an office. It all depends on the class of wear and on those additional characteristics that the manufacturer provides..
Important: laminated parquet does not fit in the bathroom, shower, sauna, as it is unsuitable for rooms with high humidity.
Laminate production is standardized, that is, divided into application classes (by level of stability). The class is usually denoted by a two-digit number: the first digit is the type of room for which the material is intended, the second is the allowable intensity of operation. For example, class 21 and 22 are designed for installation in a residential building with a small to medium degree of load. In most cases, such a laminate is laid on glue and fully serves 2-4 years (minimum). These primary laminate classes are suitable for bedrooms..
23-31 class – the next step in terms of wear resistance. The first of them is used for laying in residential premises with a significant number of people, and the second experts recommend using in a small office, a guest room.
Important: it should be noted that a laminate of class 31 can be laid in an apartment, but the 23rd is not suitable for offices at all.
The service life of a laminate of class 23 is 6 years, the same time class 31 will be used, and when laying in an apartment it will lie twice as long (with careful handling).
If we talk about the laminate classes 32 and 33, then their main purpose is shops, cafes, that is, premises with a large daily load. These classes have the best protective layer and, often, water-repellent impregnation. And there is also an additional layer of sound insulation, which fully replaces the substrate during installation.
Important: if there are financial opportunities, it is more rational to purchase a high-class laminate for home use, then the need for its replacement will arise no earlier than 15-20 years.
The scope of a parquet board by houses and apartments is not limited. She looks perfect on the floor of business offices, waiting rooms. The only significant limitation is laying in rooms with large temperature differences and a high degree of humidity.
If during the installation and subsequent processing there were no errors, then the parquet board will last a very long time. In principle, the first 10 years such a floor covering does not need to be processed, and when the varnish has already lost its original attractiveness, the board can be sanded again and coated with a new layer. The tree becomes magnificent again.
Modern manufacturers today are more and more pleasing to consumers, offering a wide selection of wood flooring boards. In order not to get lost in variety, to make the right choice, you need to familiarize yourself with the basic properties of each breed.
Oak is the undisputed leader, because it has high wear resistance. The oak facing layer provides the parquet board with a significant service life, and also it practically does not undergo abrasion, does not deform.
Maple – a fairly stable wood, characterized by a beautiful shade.
Beech – is perfect for laying in a children’s room, because this breed is presented in bright colors. It is important to note that beech is unstable, it is necessary to monitor the level of humidity: it should not exceed 60%. As for another variety called “smoky” beech, a special heat treatment gives such a darkish shade, as a result, the strength increases.
Cherry, no doubt, captivates everyone with its exquisite beauty, because it has amazing pink shades with all kinds of tones: from light to rich coffee.
Walnut – dense wood, parquet board has good characteristics and does not require special care. Plus, the nut has a hardness similar to oak, but it has a more pronounced structure.
Exotic tree species are in no less demand. This fact can be justified by their high strength..
Wenge is an African breed of ebony, it is saturated with oils, wear-resistant and has a bright pattern.
Merbau is a very interesting tree species. Original brown color is inherent in it, and hardly visible gold streaks. This is an Indonesian breed, it is naturally rich in oils, and this indicator characterizes it only on the positive side – high resistance to fungi, the tree practically does not decay, is moisture resistant and stable. Another advantage is its heavy machinability, which means that the Merbau floorboard has a high resistance to mechanical influences.
Kempas is a breed with good hardness, but it is sensitive to humidity and temperature changes. Therefore, this is not the best choice if a warm floor is installed..
What is easier to care for?
In fact, the laminate in the care is unpretentious: you do not need to engage in scouring, grinding and varnishing. For leaving, wiping with a well-wrung rag is quite enough, and complex contaminants are removed with acetone, detergent, solvent. Laminate is a floor covering that is not afraid of chemistry.
Parquet board is also not very difficult to care for. What is required for this? Everything is simple here, so that the tree retains its original appearance for a long time, it is necessary to use special care products. When cleaning, do not forget that a large amount of water is inappropriate: you can not use a water vacuum cleaner, the rag must be wrung out carefully. As for cleaning products containing chemicals, they are unacceptable.
The cost of a laminate depends on such factors:
- wear resistance class (23-31 cheaper, and for rooms with a large load more expensive);
- manufacturer name.
As a rule, the decor features do not affect the price. But in general, less money is needed to buy a laminate than to a parquet board.
The price of a parquet board depends not only on the brand, brand and quality, but on the type of wood used in the top layer. For example, beech and oak are the cheapest, cherries and walnuts are much more expensive (they have thin trunks, so they can be sprayed much less).
An important aspect – environmental friendliness
Despite the high technologies of our time, which make it possible to imitate wood as much as possible, still the laminate is not a natural material. Chemicals are used in production, and they affect health negatively..
Parquet board is a natural tree, so there is no need to doubt its environmental cleanliness. She conveys all that living that nature has prepared for people..
We can make a logical conclusion that the difference between a laminate and a parquet board is significant, therefore, you should weigh all the arguments and make the most suitable purchase.