Can I Put Laminate Flooring Over Hardwood?

Laminate flooring has been trendy in the past decade because it successfully balances being affordable, long-lasting, beautiful, and simple to install. Having installed it in my bedrooms, I can attest to the fact that it’s a durable type of flooring that has better looks than most alternatives.

The fact that laminate flooring can be readily laid directly over a variety of surfaces with little to no work is part of what makes it so desirable. Laminate flooring can be installed over hardwood, often without preparing the wooden floor. You can install it directly on the wood with a built-in underlayer on laminate flooring.

With hardwood flooring being one of the best types of flooring, adding laminate will make it look better and last longer than if the wood was used alone. Even then, laminate flooring has its downsides which need to be addressed before proceeding with it.

Laying laminate flooring
Image Credit: DIY Creators

Can I lay laminate flooring over hardwood?

Laminate flooring can be laid over hardwood for the following reasons:

1. It’s DIY-friendly

You’ll need specific tools, like a tapping block and pull bar, that are required for the click together no-glue, no-nail installation. This enables the planks to snap together in no time. You can remove the laminate to revert to the original hardwood. It’s that simple!

2. Many options available

Secondly, an endless array of colors and patterns are available with high-quality laminate flooring. This allows you to select one that most closely resembles your existing hardwood floor pattern or best meets your demands and available space. The options are endless.

3. It’s highly durable

One of the most durable flooring alternatives available is laminate. It is challenging to dent or damage. Changes in humidity have minimal impact on it. Additionally, it includes a shielding topcoat that increases its fading resistance. You can even have heated laminate flooring.

4. Easy to maintain

Keeping laminate floors clean is also not that difficult. Use a moist cloth or mop to remove filth from the floor, and sweep or vacuum the floors occasionally to eliminate dirt and debris. No unique products are required.

5. Affordable

Finally, installing laminate is generally inexpensive. In addition to being less expensive than restoring your old solid hardwood boards, laminate flooring installation prices are also considerably lower.

Downsides to putting laminate flooring over hardwood

Even with all these positive remarks, it wouldn’t be fair if we didn’t look at its cons. 

1. Cannot be refinished

Unlike other types of flooring, laminate flooring cannot be sanded down and resurfaced. Your flooring must be changed or repaired if it has become worn or if visible cosmetic damage has occurred.

2. It can be noisy to walk on

Because laminate flooring is laid directly on the subfloor and is relatively complex, it can be noisy to walk on.

3. It’s slippery

Lastly, laminate flooring may become slippery in certain rooms, especially ones with heavy traffic. This could lead to things such as falls, which means extra caution needs to be taken if you have little ones. Like Silestone, laminate gets slippery when wet such as during cleaning.

What is the best laminate to use?

When picking the types of laminate flooring, the best options include the following:

1. Pergo (Overall)

The laminate flooring pioneer Perstorp known by Pergo, is the best overall. They offer four laminate collections with over 100 hues and wood-like finishes. 

With an AC4 grade, their products are great for laminate flooring and are therefore acceptable for domestic and light commercial use.

Pros

  • Options for waterproof laminate flooring.
  • 10-year commercial guarantee and a lifetime warranty for home use.
  • Certified for low or no formaldehyde emissions by GreenGuard.

Cons

  • Pergo laminate flooring isn’t available in most stores.
  • Despite having more than 100 style selections, no stone or tile looks are available.
  • If the plank is damaged, it must be replaced, as it cannot be repaired.

2. Shaw Industries (Durability)

The second-largest flooring firm in the world, Shaw, is a staple in the laminate flooring industry and produces some of the most durable pieces. They have more than 200 styles and hues available. 

Shaw focuses on differentiating their goods based on the planks’ size, enabling them to achieve greater quality and longer endurance. They are ideal for rooms with heavy traffic, such as the kitchen or the living room.

Pros

  • Lifetime warranty for both commercial and residential applications.
  • Their Premier line can tolerate water damage for an entire day.
  • It is possible to buy extra-long boards for a better finish.

3. Manning Mills (Sustainable)

Mannington’s laminate selections are ideal for homeowners looking for green alternatives. They have water-resistant laminate flooring solutions with 70% recycled material available.

Although they have one selection of laminate flooring, more than 60 types exist. Most of their products have a solid AC4 rating, making them ideal for busy locations.

Pros

  • To guard against spills and water accidents, all items have SpillShield Plus Waterproof Technology.
  • It comes with a 5-year warranty for commercial use, and a limited lifetime warranty is provided.
  • Low in volatile organic compounds (VCOs) according to FloorScore certification.

Cons

  • They withhold data regarding the product’s AC rating.
  • Pricier than the majority of available alternatives
  • The standard warranty does not cover any accidental damages.
  • Not the greatest option for DIYers, as Mannington recommends utilizing professional installation.
  • Despite being water-resistant, their products are not waterproof.
  • They only have wood finishes available.

4. Tecwood (Wood Finish)

The TecWood finish is one of the best. TecWood is an intriguing product because it combines a fiberboard core and protective layer with a natural wood veneer to create a hybrid product that offers the best of both worlds. 

These features make it incredibly lifelike, much stronger, and more affordable than ordinary hardwood. It’s ideal for the entire house and comes in over 200 colors and patterns.

Pros

  • Better water, scratch, and dent resistance than traditional hardwood.
  • It comes with a five-year warranty for light to medium commercial use and a lifetime warranty for home use.
  • Natural wood veneer finish for an elite appearance.

Cons 

  • Relatively more expensive as compared to other alternatives.
  • Sampling is complex as it’s only sold online.
  • Only available from one retailer.

5. AquaGuard (Water Proof) 

The AquaGuard laminate line, only offered by Floor & Decor, is a tremendous water-resistant option for most homes. Except for the tile-like appearance, ideal for mudrooms and bathrooms, most varieties are traditional plank shapes in wood-look patterns. 

With an AC5 rating on almost all of its products, AquaGuard is among the strongest brands on this list.

Pros

  • A superior AC rating with a lifetime home guarantee and a 15-year light commercial warranty is available.
  • Water-resistant for up to 30 minutes in still water.
  • Both tile and wood-like designs are available.

Cons

  • Not readily available.
  • Significantly more expensive than alternate options.
  • Only available online, which makes it challenging to view samples and finishes.

Conclusion

The advantages and disadvantages of laminate flooring are in favor of the pros, as you must have noticed. Although laminate has its drawbacks, your home can benefit greatly from it.

Laminate flooring is a strong candidate in any home because of its usefulness, affordability, and adaptability to design aesthetics. This clears any doubts you have concerning laminate flooring.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it cheaper to refinish hardwood floors or replace with laminate?

In general, it’s cheaper to refinish your hardwood floors than replacing them. The major cost differences are buying the new floor, and replacing it besides cutting away the existing floor.

Can I lay laminate flooring over hardwood flooring without underlayment?

You can lay laminate flooring over hardwood flooring without underlayment, but it’s a bad idea since underlayment mutes the sound of walking on the floor, insulates it, and provides a moisture barrier for the floor.

What type of flooring can you put over hardwood flooring?

Laminate flooring is the best for installing over hardwood flooring. It’s also the easiest to install since you don’t need any type of preparton over the hardwood flooring to install laminate.

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