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Laminate Flooring VS Hardwood Flooring: What are Their Biggest Differences?

Posted on March 15, 2023 by fivestarwood

Laminate flooring and hardwood flooring are two of the most popular flooring solutions at the moment. This is for a good reason. They’re both very durable and have a high-end appearance to them, and they’re not as prone to noticeable damage as carpets.  


However, the two are very different, and they tend to appeal to different people.  


Today, we’re going to talk about the differences between the two in this laminate flooring vs hardwood flooring roundup.

Laminate Flooring is Easier to Install


The ease of installation is important for two reasons.  


First, it determines how long you’ll need to stay out of the way while installers do their job. If you get an overly complicated type of hardwood flooring, the installation process can take all day for a single room. Do you have that kind of time to have a large portion of your home under construction?

In comparison, laminate can be installed very quickly and easily. It’s still better to have a high-quality professional team do the installation, but it’ll get done a lot quicker.  

Second, like with any service, the price of the installation climbs dramatically with difficulty and time requirements. By opting for the easier and faster laminate option, you can save a bit of money on installation fees.

Both are Durable in Different Ways


Both of these options are incredibly durable. You should expect either flooring option to last for years without any serious wear and tear unless you don’t take care of your floors.  


However, that durability is a bit different for each option.  


Laminate is prone to peeling after a long time has passed, or it isn’t taken care of properly. However, it’s highly resistant to scratches and fading.


Hardwood doesn’t tend to peel up if you take care of it, but you have to put more time and energy into protecting your hardwood floors because they can get scratched, gouged, and otherwise damaged fairly easily.  


Laminate also doesn’t fade or discolor. Hardwood flooring does fade, and you’ll need to reapply stains and finishes to return it to its intended luster.  


Repair Differences


This is where hardwood can take the lead in terms of performance.  


When laminate is damaged past a certain point, you have to replace the whole floor most of the time. Hardwood can be replaced in sections without any noticeable differences in appearance.  

With that being said, you can also re-glue laminate and preserve its lifespan. With hardwood, when it’s damaged in a way that compromises its integrity, a professional repair is needed regardless of how bad it is.  


Laminate is Cheaper


Floor lamination is a cheaper overall option compared to hardwood flooring. The material is easier to source and manufacture, and that greatly reduces the price of the laminate pieces needed per square foot.

As we mentioned earlier, the cost of installation also tends to be cheaper due to how fast and easy it is to work with.  


There are pros and cons when it comes to the battle of laminate flooring vs hardwood flooring, but laminate tends to be more suitable for those on a budget or who don’t want to do a lot of maintenance, and hardwood tends to be a good choice for those who take exceptionally good care of their flooring.