There are many types of flooring available to the American consumer in a wide variety of materials offered at reasonable prices. Typical available flooring for the American consumer are laminate flooring, hardwood flooring and tile flooring.
Laminate flooring simulates the look of real wood or grass fiber such as bamboo and even stone. This flooring product is manufacture by fusing together materials via lamination for stability and strength. The inner portion of this type of flooring is a composite of wood fiber materials and resin that bonds the material together.
This type of flooring is less expensive to purchase than the other two types previously mentioned and it is also much easier to install. Other advantages are the ease to maintain it and its durability. Disadvantages are that this type of flooring does not have the high end look of natural flooring and tends show a “sheen”.
Hardwood flooring for years has been the choice of flooring for the American consumer due to its durability, look, and ease to clean. This type of flooring offers a broad choice for the consumer as to variety of hardwood and colors to complement the décor of a home’s interior. Desired hardwood in this country are cherry, red oak, white oak, maple. For more exotic woods, the consumer has much to consider such as tiger wood, mahogany, teak and cypress as a few examples. The disadvantages of this type of flooring is the expense to purchase and cost to install and repair in damage results.
This type of flooring has become more popular in the American market in recent years due to the wide variety of colors and textures that are available for purchase. One of glazed tile flooring’s biggest advantage is that it is very resistant to water issues and as such is typically uses in bathrooms and kitchen area.
Glazed tile are manufactured with a layer that sits over the tile that prevents staining and water intrusion. This type of flooring is also resistant to high moisture environments and are ideal for tropical locations. Unglazed ceramic tiles are also on the market. They need to be sealed to protect against moisture intrusion. Likewise the grout lines between the tiles must be sealed to prevent moisture intrusion in that if they are not, moisture over time will degrade the product and mold growth will be promoted.
Advantages of tile is that it is relatively easy to install and they come in a wide variety of colors and surface texture. Disadvantages are that if water intrusion occurs the under-layer supporting the flooring most likely ends up being damaged resulting in an expense to repair. The advantages of this type of flooring is that it is easy to care for and clean. If properly sealed, it is moisture resistant for years to come.
My personal preferences as to the above flooring is a mixture of hardwood and tile. I prefer hardwood throughout the homes that I have had with no carpeting. I prefer assorted rugs over certain areas of the hardwood depending upon the décor of a given room where I have the option to change how the room looks by changing the area rugs which cover only a certain area of the hardwood giving the room a certain feel that I desire.
As to tile, I prefer glazed tile in the kitchen, bathroom areas and the mud room due to its resistance to water intrusion and moisture. If you have children or dogs, you will surely appreciate having glazed tile in the above areas that I mentioned.