You cannot stigmatize cheap laminate flooring simply because they are cheap. We can find cases where a certain floor offers what we need without excess or that cuts where it can and does not seek excellence.

These types of soils are composed of different parts and each of them plays a role. Here you can see which are the most important and the minimum they must comply with in order not to sell you a hare.

Where are costs reduced on cheap laminate flooring?

Slatted finish

The variety and quality in the design of a laminate floor is something that not all people give equal importance to. While there are people looking for more exclusive designs (usually more expensive) and with a more natural touch, there are others who do not value this issue to the same extent and do not feel the need that when touching the wood grain design can be felt, and that the design and texture are also synchronized. To achieve this type of effect, both in the touch and in the visual, more complex processes are needed that raise the price of laminate floors.

But it’s not just about drawing on each board independently, it’s about the result of the whole. The designs of the different blades must match and the joints must go unnoticed in some designs and in others must be seen, in addition to avoid excessive monotony. This is not always achieved with cheap laminate floors, where the end result may not be the one desired by those who thought: «I just want a laminate floor with a light oak design and what I see in this display is beautiful and at a very good price ».

Plate quality: thickness, density and other characteristics

The laminate flooring support is usually made of HDF (High Density Fibreboard) or high density. This is undoubtedly the most relevant variable in the quality of the floor and where some manufacturers reduce the benefits to obtain cheap prices for laminate floors. In this regard, we are interested on the one hand thickness and on the other the density. The question is simple: the higher the density and the thicker, the higher the quality.

If we had to establish a minimum thickness we could speak of 7 millimeters. Below these 7mm it is quite possible that we are facing a low quality product. Regarding the density of the slab below 750 kg / m3, the quality drops dramatically. It is amazing how easy it is to find cheap soils with densities below 650 kg / m3.

With regard to cardboard, in addition to density and thickness, there are some additional characteristics or qualities that are very interesting: resistance to moisture, fire, expansion stability, etc.

Anchoring and machining system

Both issues are related, that is, poor machining will make the anchoring system not as perfect as it should be. On the one hand, edges will be noticed at the joint of the blades, which will accelerate the deterioration with continuous friction and the leaks, which in turn will accelerate further deterioration. On the other hand, subjection it will not be strong enough, which in extreme cases can cause the shutters to separate.

The thickness of the board is also important in this matter, since if it is too thin the anchoring system or click can become very weak.

Regarding anchoring systems, there are patents that protect methods that have proven effectiveIn other words, they prevent leaks and offer good adhesion. Brands that decide to use some of these patents must pay their owners, which logically increases costs. One way to reduce the price and be able to offer a cheap laminate floor is to use a click system that is not patented, probably because of deficiencies.

The warranty cheap laminate flooring

The legal guarantee for any product in the European Union and, therefore, also in Spain, is two years. However, when a manufacturer is able to offer a good quality product and knows that it will perform well even after these two years, it usually has no problem extending the warranty beyond what the law requires.

This is something that some manufacturers are doing with their products and that offers security to consumers. In some cases there is talk of 30-year guarantees. This is a good indicator of whether cheap laminate flooring is also of low quality.

Selling cheap laminate floors and what is meant by quality

CHEAP LAMINATE FLOORING

Many traders take advantage of consumers’ ignorance to sell cheap laminate floors. They use the hook that is “an AC5 at an incredible price”, identifying this scale as a synonym for quality. It must be explained.

The AC class measures the abrasion resistance of the surface layer and, although it is important, it is exactly that. Saying that a laminate floor is of superior quality simply because it is AC5 is very importantIn fact, it is relatively easy to achieve this resistance and the cost of adding this quality is very low when compared to other variables. In other words, it is very easy and economical for the manufacturer and trader to obtain an AC5, saving on the other features, which are also more important, and to sell a cheap laminate floor as a quality one.

With regard to this problem, it is really impressive that for most cases an AC5 resistor is simply unnecessary. AC3 is sufficient for most homes and AC5 or AC6 is only justified in places with high traffic and heavy use, for example, in shopping centers. In fact, it is much more likely that you will have to replace your laminate flooring due to the action of moisture in the face of a bad anchoring or assembly system than due to wear and tear.

Disadvantages of DIY department store business

Contrary to what it may seem, do-it-yourselfers don’t usually manufacture their laminate floors, but order them from manufacturers already established in the industry and then market them under your brand. These are large orders to supply all of its stores, which in most cases have no continuity over time, and which are manufactured according to very specific specifications to achieve very competitive prices.

This creates a problem that it’s not just about quality, it’s also about availability of these economical laminate floors. It is quite possible that, if we need to buy another package, either to complete the work or to replace a deteriorated clapboard, it will be impossible to find it if the promotion stocks have run out, which is usually done very quickly, given the prices of those that are offered.

This problem can also occur with manufacturers when they use their own brands, although it is much less frequent because it keeps products in catalog for much longer, there are many companies that distribute them and in many cases small stocks of products.

Buy cheap laminate flooring online

Buying products online can be a good way to get good prices, there is no doubt about that, but it is also the best way, if we don’t know what we are buying, to make a bad purchase.

To buy laminate flooring online some recommendations may be of interest:

  • Buy only well-known brands that you can also buy on other sites. It is very common to have to buy another box at some point, if that were the case, and if we only placed an order for a box, the benefits of buying online would possibly disappear due to shipping costs.
  • Scale the order something more than normal. If you think it will be difficult to find the same type of laminate flooring, it is advisable to oversize the order a little more than normal. Remember that it is normal to ask for about 5 to 10% more of the surface to be covered due to waste due to cuts.
  • Before signing the delivery, check carefully each box with special attention to machining, as these are the weakest parts and susceptible to damage. If they are not in perfect condition, do not accept the product.
  • Confirm where delivery will be made and when. Shipping may not include bringing home laminate flooring purchased online, which can be a major problem for the buyer if it is not what he expected and if he is not prepared for it. It can be an especially bloody situation if the order is large and it is a floor without an elevator and the buyer has no help at that time.