6 Attractive Types of Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring is available in a wide range of styles. From the slate effect to stone tiles and classic wood laminate, there is a great flooring option to match the intended look and feel. Here are a few of the most popular laminate flooring types:

Oak

Solid oak flooring is certain to be a very appealing option for the home and easily complements most styles of decor. However, it is an extremely expensive option and also needs a lot of ongoing maintenance. Alternatively, the oak laminate flooring is a practical substitution to give the stunning look of real oak and is much more affordable, especially if laying the laminate in a large area. Plus, this type of flooring is easy to maintain.

Walnut

The walnut laminate is atmospheric and dark to help create the perfect ambiance in the home. The laminate can be made to look much like real wood with its unique grain and knot detail. The natural dark color means a room is given a neutral base for greater freedom to decorate and style the walls and furnishing. Also, it helps to add a touch of warmth to a room which makes it a practical choice for the bedroom.

Hickory

The hickory laminate is a great way to introduce a warm tone to the home. This flooring is available in several shades including the grays, beige and warm reds. It is a very stylish and classic option that will look perfect in any home receiving a modern makeover.

Chestnut

The chestnut laminate has a traditional look and gives the classic look to any living space in the home. It has a very distinctive grain detail which helps to enhance its all-round authenticity. Also, this type of laminate can be finished with a worn look to create a feeling of yesteryear. The classic look makes it an extremely versatile option and easily goes with most color schemes.

Stone

A stone tiled floor is a wonderful finish to the traditional or contemporary styled home. Stone not only looks stunning, but is easy to maintain and super durable. However, it is a material that is very cold under your feet and quite slippery when wet. A great substitution for the real thing is the stone effect laminate. This can look extremely realistic while also being more comfortable to walk on and naturally anti-slip.

Slate

Real slate flooring is a fantastic option for the home, but is very expensive. The most cost-effective option is to invest in slate effect laminate with its textured surfaced and rich and deep tones. It is a lot more practical floor surface and much easier to clean and maintain.

Enjoy The Beauty Of Hardwood With The Endurance Of Laminate Flooring

Everyone likes the beautiful, timeless look of hardwood floors. Elegant, yet simple, hardwood is stunning. But take a closer look. Is that hardwood scratched and dented? Are those stains and fade marks that you see there? Maybe that hardwood floor is not as nice as you originally thought.

If you like the look and the timeless appearance of hardwood floors but not want the scratches, dents and fade marks that will come with it than laminate flooring is a good option for you. Besides the fact that laminate is much more durable than traditional hardwood flooring, it is much cheaper as well.

What Is Laminate Flooring?

Laminate flooring is a composite product that looks like a wood product; however, you can care for it as if you would your laminate countertop. Laminate flooring is made of a high-density core with an image placed on the top layer and sealed with a laminate covering. Laminate flooring has a water repellent placed on it and good quality floors are infused with water repellent throughout the core.

What Kind Of Laminate Floor Should I Get?

When you are choosing your laminate floor you will need to take a few things into consideration. The first thing that you need to look at is where you are going to put the floor. Are you looking at a high traffic area that will see a lot of use? Alternatively, is the area that you are covering a smaller, low traffic area? If you are looking at covering a low traffic area, you will probably be able to get away with a laminate flooring that has a smaller core.

The core sizes of laminate flooring vary from around 6mm to 12 mm. The thicker the core in the flooring, the better the stability is. In addition, if you have a thicker core it will stand up better to wear and tear is likely to last you longer than a thinner core.

If you are thinking of moving to a different home in the next few years, you may want to go with a lesser quality of laminate flooring as well. Usually when people purchase a home, the flooring is the first thing that they change so there is no point spending a lot of money on a floor when you are going to move homes.

Most laminate floor come with warranties starting around ten years long. Generally, the more expensive floor types will come with longer warranties. Be sure to read your warranties very carefully however, as some warranties may not cover floor placement in the kitchen or bathroom.

Can I do It Myself?

One of the biggest appeals of laminate flooring is that most people can install them by themselves. You can install most laminate coverings over sheet vinyl, concrete slabs, plywood underlay, existing hardwood or any other flat and level surface.

The glue less Pergo flooring is a very popular choice because it does not require any glue to install properly or any other special tools of any kind. Therefore, anyone can do it himself or herself without any special training. Even if you have never installed a floor before, or do not have a lot of home renovation experience, laminate flooring is easily installed.

One of the biggest benefits to installing the floor yourself is that you can save thousands of dollars on installation fees. Unlike hardwood floors that are already very pricy, and need to be installed professionally, laminate is quick and easy, even for the beginner.

What About In The Kitchen?

Laminate flooring is a good choice for the kitchen and bathroom because it is water repellent. The core of laminate floors have been infused with water repellent to protect from everyday spills that happen. However if you are looking at installing your floor in the kitchen or bathroom you may want to look at purchasing a floor that has been infused with a paraffin wax in the joints in order to further repel water and avoid swelling.

Unlike hardwood floors, laminate is a much better choice for kitchens or bathrooms. Because we all know that spills happen. Water and food spills can stain traditional hardwood floors, and with laminate, you simply wipe them up and it is all taken care of.

Choose The Right Floor

Laminate flooring is available in many different styles, colors and patterns. There is something to suit everyone no matter what your style preference may be. When you go shopping for laminate flooring, you will encounter many different brands such as Pergo, Armstrong and Bruce. Since laminate was introduced in 1982, its market share has been growing in leaps and bounds. You will be able to find laminate in many price ranges, so there is something to suit everyone and everyone’s budget.

Everything You Need to Know About Hardiplank Siding

Fiber cement siding has been around for about one hundred years, and is finally gaining popularity thanks to its unmatched durability and aesthetic beauty. Much technological advancement has been made since James Hardie invented the process of combining sand, cement and cellulose fiber into a siding product that can withstand some of the harshest climates and stand up to high winds and hail. This product is known as Hardiplank siding.

Hardiplank siding is available in many shapes, sizes and finishes and can be custom ordered to match your existing home style. You can achieve a wooden look or a stucco appearance with certain finishes of Hardiplank siding. Because it is made of fiber cement, this type of siding is termite, rot and fire resistant. Furthermore, Jamies Hardie siding comes with a 50 year or lifetime warranty – a warranty that no other siding manufacturer can match.

You may wish to have Hardiplank siding installed on your home. If so, there are some things you need to take into account. First, research reputable contracting companies that have experience and are skilled in installaing this type of siding. Ask questions about the manufacturer’s warranty and find out what – if any – maintenance you’ll need to do on the product. Check with your town or city’s local business codes. Some installations of fiber cement siding may require a permit. Also, some building and construction methods will differ from town to town and region to region, depending on climate and other environmental factors.

Make sure that your delivery of Hardiplank siding stays dry and off the ground. It should be covered with plastic sheeting or a tarp to avoid moisture. When it comes time to cut and trim the fiber cement siding, you’ll need a diamond-carbide skill saw. You should perform all cuts with the finished side down to ensure a clean seam. Be sure to wear ear, eye and mouth protection, because sawing through Hardiplank is loud and small pieces of fiber cement can lodge into your eyes and airway, if not protected.

Of course, installation of James Hardie-invented siding should be left to the professionals. They will make certain the nails they use are of proper durability, either rust-free stainless steel or hot-dipped galvanized. Nails can be color-matched to blend evenly with the fiber cement siding.

You’ll also notice that siding contractors will install all the exterior trim before they install the Hardiplank siding. All cut ends and butt joints will be properly caulked and painted to keep moisture out, and flashing will be installed where siding and trim meet.

Skilled contracting companies who specialize in the installation of Hardiplank siding will make sure your home has properly installed siding that looks clean and professional. You will have a house that can look great and remain protected from the elements for many, many years to come.

Fiber Cement Siding is Non-Flammable & Low-Maintenance

A house fire can devastate all you’ve worked so hard to achieve. The investment in your home and your valuables inside can be totally wiped out and you can find yourself suffering a great hardship. While taking the proper precautionary measures can prevent house fires, you can’t rule out the possibility of one completely. That’s why it is important to choose construction materials that are non combustible and will give firefighters the time needed to fight the fire before it can completely consume your house.

Wood and vinyl are both standard choices when it comes to exterior home siding. But fiber cement siding is gaining popularity due to its versatility and durability. It is thick, wind resistant and easily maintained. And because this particular type of siding is flame resistant and non-combustible, fiber cement siding is the wise choice for fire-rated construction.

Fiber cement siding is made of a combination of strong and lightweight materials. Water, finely-ground sand, premium cement and natural cellulose fibers are cured and pressurized into a heavy duty plank that can be colorized and painted to match any home’s exterior. Because of the makeup of fiber cement siding, the siding remains non-flammable and non-combustible. These cellulose fiber-mixed cement planks require very little maintenance and resemble the natural beauty of wood, especially when installed with a horizontal overlap.

As well as being fire resistant, fiber cement siding is a popular choice for those who live in climates with extreme weather conditions. The makeup of this type of exterior choice makes it resistant to water damage (mold and mildew, warping, rotting, etc.) and is virtually unaffected by insects such as termites that can cause massive amounts of damage to wood siding. It is strong and durable in high wind conditions, able to withstand hurricane and tornado force winds and show minimal damage from debris or hail hits. After painting, this type of siding resists cracking and chipping, making it a great low-maintenance option for homeowners. Basic maintenance involves an easy wash with a common garden hose or light wash with soapy water.

Fiber cement exteriors are backed by long warranties (depending on the manufacturer) and is an unparalleled cost-effective alternative to the traditional cedar or vinyl siding, especially when compared to all the maintenance issues associated with conventional siding like painting, washing and replacement. While the price may seem steep at first, the long-term benefits far surpass any costs associated with the maintenance and upkeep you’ll have to perform with wood or vinyl siding.

If you’re looking for a low-maintenance alternative to wood or vinyl siding, consider fiber cement siding. The strength, durability and longevity of fiber cement – as well as unmatched fire resistance – is the perfect way to protect your investment and have a home that shows off attractiveness and natural looking curb-appeal.

Types of Eco-Friendly Home Siding

There are several options for making your interior home environmentally-friendly. But what about your home’s exterior? Can it also be altered towards eco-friendliness? Yes! A home’s siding can be functional, visually appealing, and eco-friendly all at the same time! If you are in the market for new home siding, you may want to consider an eco-safe siding material. Continue reading to learn the different types of common materials used for environmentally-friendly home siding.

Metal

Steel metal siding is a popular choice among homeowners with a “green” agenda. That is because most metal siding is made from recycled metal, such as junk cars or construction scraps. You see, metal is easily recyclable and abundant, so it is a viable source for eco-friendly home siding. It is also durable and easy to install.

Wood

Wood is a renewable resource. It is abundant, natural, and locally-sourced, making it a great option for eco-safe siding. It is also very easy to install, convertible, recyclable, and sustainable. Most wood siding comes from Douglas Firs, Cypress trees, Redwood trees, Pine trees, and Cedar. It is recommended to use wood materials that are Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) certified.

Brick

Although bricks are man-made commodities, they are constructed from renewable, natural resources like shale, clay, and water. This makes brick a wonderful, “green” siding option! It is made from natural resources so it is biodegradable and safe for the environment. And not only is brick siding eco-friendly, it is long-lasting. Brick can last for up to 200 years!

Rock

Although rock is not a common home siding option, it is an environmentally-friendly one. Using rocks is labor-intensive and time-consuming, but it renders a stunning look that holds up for years to come. Rock is a great choice because it is natural, energy-efficient, and locally-sourced.

Fiber Cement

Fiber cement home siding is made from recyclable ingredients like cement, sand, and wood pulp. And since the makeup of fiber cement emits few dioxins when burned, it is an eco-friendly option. It can be manufactured to resemble higher-end materials like wood or vinyl, but for a much cheaper cost.

Stucco

Like fiber cement, stucco is also made from using recyclable, natural ingredients, like water, cement, sand, and lime. This chemical-free combination gives stucco an eco-friendly appeal. It is also natural, energy-efficient, and easy to install.

Eco-Friendly Roofing Materials

If you are someone who enjoys contributing to environmental wellness and sustainability, then making eco-conscious roofing decisions is a great way to continue this positively-charged pastime. Fortunately, there are several options for eco-friendly roofing systems. Your choice will depend on your personal preference, budget, and a few other factors.

By talking to a professional roofing contractor, you can learn all of the eco-friendly roofing options that will best fit the unique needs of your home. You can also review many of the possibilities beforehand, in order to prepare yourself for making the ultimate decision.

Continue reading to learn some of the most common and celebrated eco-friendly roofing materials, as well as a few tips to improve energy-efficiency and more.

Environmentally-Friendly Roofs:

The most common environmentally-friendly roofing systems include some of the most popular ones on the commercial and residential markets. Below is a list of these systems, and the qualities that make them safe for the environment and surrounding eco-systems. This list includes asphalt shingles, metal, clay tiles, concrete tiles, slate, wood shakes, fiber cement, and recycled roofing.

Asphalt Shingles – This is one of the most cost-effective and common options for residential roofs. They are considered the least attractive, and do not last as long as other roofing materials, but they are made of natural materials, making them perfectly eco-friendly.

Metal – Metal is 100% recyclable, and can be reprocessed over and over again. Recycling metal lowers the need to mine more, reducing natural ore deposit depletion rates. An old metal roof is still useful and valuable, and can be repurposed, endlessly. Steel and light-weight aluminum are the most common metals used for metal roofs.

Slate – Slate is a natural element of the earth and highly durable. It lasts a long time, but comes with a hefty price tag. It is one of the more attractive roofing options. Slate is also 100% decomposable and recyclable.

Clay – Clay tile roofs are referred to as “terra cotta” in the industry. They are made from natural resources, mostly clay and water, which are 100% natural. You must be careful choosing the coating, however, as some are slightly toxic if they runoff into the natural water sources.

Concrete – Concrete tiles are similar to clay tiles in terms of eco-friendliness and natural composition. Concrete is made from natural aggregates, like cement, stone, gravel, and sand.

Wood Shakes – Wood is a natural element that comes from trees, making it 100% eco-friendly and safe for the environment. Cedar is the most common material used for wood shake roofing systems, but other types of lumber are frequently used as well. Just be sure to choose FSC certified wood.

Fiber Cement – Fiber cement board is an excellent green roofing option since it is primarily composed of cement and cellulose fiber, both of which are biodegradable.

Recycled Roofing – Using recycled product is a terrific eco-friendly practice, and roof systems are no different. Plastic and rubber roofing are recyclable, and can be manufactured to resemble higher-end materials, like wood shake and tiles.

Additional Tips:

  • Go for materials that are high in recycled content.
  • Avoid copper and zinc coatings.
  • Avoid materials that require the use of chemicals for maintenance.
  • Choose light-colored roofing in hot climates for increase sun reflectivity.

What You Need to Know About Fiber Cement Sidings

Fiber cement siding is composed of fiberglass mesh that has been encapsulated in a cement plaster. The exterior of the siding has a wood finish that protects the cement board from deterioration that comes from sun exposure, heavy rain and snow fall.

types of cement sidings

There are three types of the cement siding: lap siding, batt and board, and cedar shingles.

Lap siding is the most common style of cement siding. The material is usually installed horizontally across a home and comes with an exposed face of 4-8 inches. If you are planning of driving nails or screws into the siding, you have to pre-drill it to create the holes.

Batt and board siding comes in 1X2 to 1X12 boards that can be installed vertically. To cover the seams, you can use smaller width boards.

Cedar shingles are usually 2 feet by 16 inches. For you to hang them you need to pre-drill them. In addition to this you also have to overlap them so that they can create a look of real cedar shingles.

Advantages of fiber cement siding

The main advantage of cement siding is that it’s durable. The reason for this is because its water proof and resistant to bugs. The material also doesn’t crack or warp in extreme temperature.

Another advantage is that the material is versatile. This is because it comes in different designs and styles that are very elegant.

For example, the material can be easily made to look like wood, cedar shingles, stucco or even vinyl. Existence of the material in different styles gives homeowners a wide range of options.

Fiber cement siding is fire resistant; therefore, you don’t have to worry of your house catching fire when you install the sidings.

Many manufacturers usually offer warranties where some of the warranties are for as long as fifty years. These warranties are good because they give you confidence that you are dealing with genuine products with a long lifespan.

Disadvantages

Although, the sidings have these advantages they have their fair share of disadvantages. One of the disadvantages is the health concern that comes with the use of these materials.

Scientists say that the dust that comes from the sidings (when they are cut) can cause cancer; therefore, you should be very cautious when installing them.

Another disadvantage is that the materials are expensive. On average one square foot of the material costs $4 which can be expensive for many people.