Though laminate flooring has just recently become a popular, widely available floor covering option in North America, it has been popular in Europe for the past 20 to 30 years.
Laminate flooring is simply a multi-layered; wood based floating floor system offering durability, a wide range of design options, easy maintenance and affordability.
Since the inception of laminate flooring, ease of maintenance has been one of its largest assets. Due to the composition and construction of the product, as well as the extremely hard Aluminum Oxide wear layer, laminate flooring is perhaps the easiest type of flooring to maintain.
Caring for Laminate
General daily maintenance requires vacuuming, sweeping and dust mopping. Brooms should be soft bristled and vacuums should not use beater bars on the floor.
Several cleaning solutions are also available to clean laminate floors (FULLER Labor Saver Floor Cleaner). The cleaner is sprayed onto the mop-head and then the floor is wiped clean.
It is very important that you follow the maintenance schedule of the product you purchase. Ask your retailer or manufacturer on the specifics of maintaining your floor. Virtually all of the warranties require a specific maintenance schedule be followed.
Laminate floors are fade, stain, dent, burn and scratch resistant. However , it is still possible that you may end up with a scratch, nick or dent that will require repair. Laminate flooring is very tough, but it is not bullet proof. If a problem arises, there are a few ways to repair or hide the damage.
Major manufacturers and home improvement stores usually have touch up kits available. These kits may include acrylic or latex putty, wax pencils or crayons. This type of repair kit is for small scratches and/or dents. These kits are a very cost effective way of repairing your laminate flooring.
A typical repair of wood laminate flooring includes three basic steps:
1. Clean the affected area
2. Apply putty, wax or crayon
3. Buff the repaired section
The first and most difficult method is to replace the affected board(s). All manufacturers have instructions on "How to replace a board". This will require some tools, patience and skill. You may want to hire a reputable professional for this, if you are unfamiliar or uncomfortable removing part of a floor.
The best way to keep your laminate floor looking its best is to understand its limitations.
· You must follow the maintenance techniques and schedules of the flooring you purchase.
· You should use floor protectors (felt or other) under chairs and other furniture on the flooring.
· You should lift furniture to move it, don’t drag it.
· You should sweep or vacuum daily.
· You should mop with a dust mop, (FULLER D. C. Polisher), regularly
· You should use a cleaner safe for laminate floors on spots as needed
· You should repair scratches and dents soon after they appear
· You should not use water to clean your floors, as water spots will appear
· You should enjoy your laminate floors for years if you follow the advice above.
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