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12mm Laminate Flooring: Benefits, Installation, and Maintenance

12mm Laminate Flooring
November 30, 2023

At first glance, the flooring world might seem straightforward—a floor is just a floor. Yet, as our homes echo the stories of our lives, it becomes imperative to dive deeper. Enter the realm of 12mm laminate flooring.

With the market awash with options, why has this particular thickness gained such traction? Is 12mm laminate flooring waterproof? And is it truly superior to its 8mm counterpart?

While hardwood might wear the crown of traditional luxury, 12mm laminate stealthily offers a blend of resilience and aesthetic charm often overlooked.

In this deep dive, we'll unearth the pros and cons of 12mm laminate flooring, demystify its installation, and explore the art of its maintenance.

Strap in; your floorboards are about to get fascinating.

12mm laminate flooring reviews

When it comes to simulating the authentic feel of wood underfoot, laminate flooring has been a go-to choice for homeowners.

Amidst the myriad options available, the 12mm thickness stands out prominently.

Is 12mm a good option for Laminate Flooring?

Absolutely. Though not the thickest, the 12mm laminate flooring strikes the perfect balance between authenticity and affordability.

The sensation it offers is reminiscent of genuine hardwood, making it the pinnacle of laminate flooring options in the retail market in terms of feel and price.

Introduction to 12mm Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring is a marvel in modern home design. This multi-layer synthetic product can flawlessly emulate wood or stone appearances, thanks to its core, crafted meticulously from fiberboard material or melamine resin.

Its soaring popularity doesn't just stem from its ability to replicate the essence of traditional hardwood flooring. Equally alluring are its effortless installation and maintenance procedures.

Diving deeper into its composition, the 12mm laminate is the bulkiest of the planks. To visualize its thickness, imagine stacking a dozen US pennies.

This plank consists of four distinct, precisely compressed layers, culminating in a robust and durable flooring option.

Advantages of 12mm laminate flooring

When renovating or designing a new home's floors, homeowners are presented with many options. However, 12mm laminate flooring has consistently made its way to the top of many lists, and for good reason. Here's why:

Highly Durable Manufacture

12mm laminate isn't just about thickness but the quality compressed within those millimetres. With a solid build, this flooring is designed to endure heavy foot traffic, ensuring longevity and sustained beauty.

Scratch Proof and Water Resistance

One of the standout features of 12mm laminate is its ability to resist day-to-day wear and tear. From pet claws to dragged furniture, this flooring holds its ground.

Its water-resistant nature makes it an excellent choice for areas prone to spills, like kitchens or living rooms.

Realistic Appearance

If you've ever yearned for the charm of hardwood or the elegance of stone without the hefty price tag, 12mm laminate delivers.

Its design intricacy offers a highly realistic appearance, making it almost indistinguishable from the real deal.

Cheap and Easy Installation

In the grand scheme of home renovations, time and money are of the essence. The 12mm laminate is wallet-friendly and easy to install—no need for prolonged waiting periods or exorbitant installation costs.

Cleanability and Hygienic Appeal

In today's fast-paced world, the ease of cleaning can't be overstated. With its smooth and non-porous surface, this laminate ensures that dust, grime, and allergens don't settle, preserving a hygienic environment for your home.

Oak Beige Laminate Flooring – Realistic Oak Wood Appeal

However, like every product, the 12mm laminate flooring has. While its merits significantly outweigh the drawbacks, having a comprehensive perspective is essential.

To delve deeper into the pros and cons of 12mm laminates, a valuable resource is thespruce.com.

Installation guide for 12mm Laminate Flooring 

Whether you're an avid DIY enthusiast or someone just starting, here's a step-by-step guide to help install 12mm laminate flooring with finesse.

Understanding the Nature of Laminate Installation

Laminate flooring installation is a dry process. This means you can bid farewell to the messy and tedious tasks of handling grout, mortar, or adhesives.

The laminate structure is designed for interlocking, much like hardwood flooring, allowing it to snap into place.

An added advantage? It's not directly attached to the subfloor or underlayment, making the process smoother. Think of it as arranging a jigsaw puzzle on your floor.

1. Preparation: A Clean, Flat Subfloor

Start your installation journey on the right foot by ensuring the pristine subfloor. Sweep away any debris and give it a thorough vacuuming. A clean, flat, and smooth subfloor is crucial for the laminate to sit perfectly.

2. Laying the Foundation: Installing the Underlayment

After mapping out your flooring layout, roll out the underlayment. This layer is a cushion and barrier, preventing moisture from reaching your laminate and providing sound insulation.

3. Setting up the First Row

Starting with the longest wall, trim and shape the edge of the laminate planks to fit snugly against it. Tools like a sharp utility knife, circular saw, or table saw will be your allies in this task. Remember, precision is critical.

4. Planning and Laying Subsequent Rows

As you proceed, strategize the layout of the following rows to ensure a seamless appearance. Continue laying row after row, making sure the planks lock in securely.

Use tools like a Speed Square or try square to mark your lines accurately when making crosscuts.

5. Common Pitfalls to Avoid

A frequent mistake homeowners make is trying to install laminate over an old, soft, or cushiony floor covering like certain types of vinyl. This is especially problematic in moisture-prone areas like bathrooms and kitchens.

Such underlying floors can warp or soften over time, undermining the stability of your new laminate flooring. Always ensure a solid base for your laminate to avoid long-term issues.

How Durable is 12mm Laminate Flooring 

When homeowners contemplate a flooring decision, one of the fundamental questions is durability.

Mainly, how does the durability of 12mm laminate flooring measure up against its counterparts? Let's delve into its robustness.

Exceptional Durability Defined

12mm laminate flooring is more than just any regular flooring option. It stands out because of its outstanding durability. The secret lies in its design. It's a formidable surface shielded by a tough external layer, often resin-coated.

This protective layer makes it more challenging than many conventional flooring materials, vinyl, hardwood, or other hard surfaces.

Whether you have the pattern of little feet, furry paws, or the frequent lack of high heels, 12mm laminate flooring can withstand it all gracefully.

Resistance is its Middle Name

It's not just about physical wear and tear. The resilience of 12mm laminate flooring extends to its impeccable stain, moisture, and fade resistance.

Many manufacturers have such confidence in this product's ability to resist fading and moisture damage that they offer extensive warranties to back their claims.

Imagine a floor that stands unyielding against accidental spills, the occasional sun glare, and the hustle and bustle of a busy household.

Hassle-Free Maintenance

Its longevity isn't just due to its inherent strength. The ease with which you can maintain 12mm laminate flooring adds to its lasting power.

Cleaning up is a breeze due to its superior stain and moisture resistance. There's no running around for special varnishes or waxes to retain its shine; its innate gleam remains unmarred with regular cleaning.

Revolution in Installation

Adding to its durability is its innovative installation method. The introduction of glueless laminate floors has revolutionized how homeowners approach flooring installations.

This feature means that 12mm laminate flooring can seamlessly be installed over non-textile existing subfloors, ensuring a stable foundation and, by extension, a longer-lasting floor.

Cost of 12mm laminate flooring | 

How much will it cost? Will it offer value for money? Understanding the pricing structure of 12mm laminate flooring can guide you in making an informed decision. Let's break down the associated costs.

Installation Charges

The cost of getting 12mm laminate flooring installed plays a significant role in your budgeting. Installation charges range from $25 to $35 per square meter.

This is just the installation fee; other costs might be added depending on the project's intricacies.

Revamp and Repair Costs

Over time, you might need to revamp or repair specific sections of your laminate flooring.

You remove existing flooring to make way for repairs or updates cost between $8 to $35 per square meter.

This price can vary based on the material type and the complexity of the removal process.

Price of the Laminate

The thickness of laminate flooring has a direct bearing on its price.

For instance, while 8mm laminate flooring is on the lower end of the pricing spectrum, 12mm laminate flooring, with its added durability and aesthetic appeal, ranges from $35 to $60 per square meter.

Professional vs. DIY Installation Time Frame

Time, as they say, is money. A professional with expertise installing laminate flooring can complete a 100-square-meter job in a single day, even factoring in short breaks.

However, if you're leaning towards a DIY approach, be prepared for it to take anywhere from three days to a week, depending on your proficiency and the tools at hand.

A Comprehensive Budget Overview

Given the costs mentioned above, for a 100-square meter area, you're looking at an expenditure ranging from $2,500 to $4,500. This includes the laminate material, installation, and other associated charges.

Comparing 12mm Laminate Flooring Vs Hardwood 

Regarding home flooring choices, the debate often boils down to 12mm laminate flooring vs hardwood. Both have their distinct advantages and cater to varied preferences.

Similarities

Wooden Aesthetics: Hardwood and 12mm laminate flooring exude a wooden charm from a distance. They emanate warmth and can elevate the ambience of any room.

However, upon closer inspection, laminate might fall short of the rich and intricate grain detailing that is the hallmark of solid hardwood.

Laminate v Hardwood Flooring – The Ultimate Guide

Differences

Pattern Variations: One of the key differences lies in the pattern. Solid hardwood, being a natural material, doesn't have repetitive patterns.

Each plank is unique, showcasing the natural growth patterns of the tree from which it was cut.

Laminate, however, can sometimes display repetition in its design since it's a manufactured product. You might find similar patterns across multiple planks.

Heat and Water Resistance: In moisture and heat scenarios, laminate flooring takes the crown. It's more resilient on wet surfaces and maintains its form better under heat.

This makes laminate a preferable choice for spaces like kitchens or basements where moisture might be a concern.

Cleaning and Maintenance: Both hardwood and 12mm laminate flooring are a breeze when it comes to cleaning.

Both surfaces can be easily cleaned, whether it's a vacuum, broom, or damp mop. Moreover, neither requires periodic waxing or polishing to maintain their lustre.

Durability: Hardwood floors, when well-maintained, can last for generations. They exude a timeless charm and can be sanded and refinished multiple times. However, they have their Achilles' heel: susceptibility to water damage.

An event like flooding can render hardwood floors irreparable. In contrast, 12mm laminate flooring can last a long time, especially with its water resistance.

Typically, a good quality 12mm laminate floor can serve you well for 15 to 20+ years.

How to clean 12mm laminate flooring 

A pristine floor can uplift the aura of any room, making it inviting and cosy. 12mm laminate flooring, with its rich appearance, is no exception.

However, proper cleaning methods are essential to maintain its gleaming surface and increase its lifespan.

Regular Cleaning

Vacuuming: Regular vacuuming is paramount. This ensures that daily dirt and debris, which can scratch or dull the floor's surface, are removed.

Run a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment across the bottom for best results to keep the crevices and cracks dirt-free. Remember, a cleaner floor doesn't just look better; it also reduces wear.

Mopping

Frequency: A damp mop can be used on the floor to eliminate any lingering dust or stains. While the entire floor may not need daily mopping, high foot traffic areas like kitchens and living rooms should be addressed more frequently due to their propensity to gather grime.

Type of Mop: Opt for a mop with a reusable, washable microfiber head. These mops, like the ones from Bona, are designed to clean effectively without causing damage. Their microfibers efficiently pick up dirt and moisture, ensuring the floor is neither scratched nor excessively wet.

Things to Avoid

  • Polishes and Waxes: Laminate floors have a protective layer on the top that gives them shine. Using polish or wax can diminish this shine and leave a residue that's hard to remove.
  • Harsh Cleaners: It's crucial to avoid abrasive cleaners, scouring powders, or steel wool. These can scratch the surface of the laminate, leading to permanent damage.
  • Excessive Water: While a damp mop is recommended, ensure the mop is not soaking wet. Excessive water can seep into the gaps between the planks and potentially damage the laminate's core.

Design options with 12mm laminate flooring

12mm laminate flooring offers homeowners an expansive range of design options to emulate various textures and patterns. Here's a peek into some of the popular choices:

1. Natural Hardwood Laminate

Replicating the rich texture and grains of natural hardwood, this laminate option provides an authentic wooden look at a fraction of the price.

It's perfect for those who cherish the traditional hardwood feel without the associated cost and maintenance.

2. Stained Wide Planks

Stained wide planks in laminate are the way to go for a more contemporary look. Available in various shades, these planks add a touch of sophistication and spaciousness, making rooms appear more prominent.

3. Golden Oak for Dining

Golden Oak laminate exudes warmth, making it perfect for dining areas. Its golden hues and grain pattern offer a cosy ambience, turning meals into memorable experiences.

4. Laminate Slate Kitchen Tiles

Break away from the conventional with laminate slate kitchen tiles. They infuse a rustic charm, blending the durability of laminate with the unique patterns of slate. It's an unconventional choice that's gaining popularity.

5. High-Gloss Laminate

 

For those who love a bit of sheen, high-gloss laminate is the answer. Reflecting light beautifully brightens up spaces and gives a sleek, polished look. This design is ideal for modern homes and spaces that crave a touch of luxury.

Laminate flooring thickness guide

Laminate planks' thickness is quantified in millimetres (mm). To provide a perspective, a single millimetre equates to approximately 0.039 inches.

This may sound minute, but even slight variations in thickness can affect the flooring's functionality and appearance.

Is Thicker Always Better?

Depth vs Quality: A common misconception is that the thicker the laminate, the superior its quality. While thickness can add to the feel and insulation of the floor, it doesn't always guarantee longevity or durability. It's plausible for a 12mm laminate to be crafted from subpar materials, reducing its lifespan and performance.

Feel and Authenticity: Thickness, however, undeniably affects the floor's feel underfoot. A 12mm laminate flooring often replicates the sensation of walking on natural hardwood, providing that solid and comfortable feel many homeowners desire.

Balancing Thickness and Quality

When shopping for laminate flooring, avoiding getting fixated on thickness is crucial.

While a 12mm plank offers a more authentic hardwood experience, other factors like the quality of materials, the protective top layer, and the manufacturing process play equally pivotal roles in determining the flooring's longevity, resistance to damage, and overall value.

Choosing between different laminate flooring thicknesses

The market offers a spectrum of thicknesses when it comes to laminate-flooring planks. The general rule of thumb is that the thinner the plank, the less it costs.

Laminate planks typically range from 6 mm to 12 mm. Among these, 8-mm, 10-mm, and 12-mm are widely regarded as the optimal thicknesses, offering a balanced mix of durability, feel, and cost-effectiveness.

Benefits of Opting for a Thicker Laminate Plank

  • Ease of Installation: Thicker planks often interlock more seamlessly, making the installation process smoother and more straightforward.
  • Forgiving Nature: A standout advantage of thicker planks is their ability to mask minor subfloor irregularities, ensuring a level flooring surface.
  • Superior Acoustics: Thicker laminate flooring is known for its enhanced sound-absorption properties, providing a quieter underfoot experience.
  • Impact Resistance: Drops, dents, and everyday wear and tear are better managed with thicker laminates, making them especially suitable for high-traffic areas.

Making the Purchase Decision

The answer isn't a definitive yes or no when faced with the question, "Is thicker always better?". While thicker planks offer undeniable advantages, the choice should align with your needs.

Consider factors such as foot traffic, room acoustics, and budget. Remember, understanding what you truly need is paramount.

Why choose 12mm laminate flooring?

The flooring world offers myriad options, but 12mm laminate flooring stands out for many reasons.

If you're contemplating whether to opt for this specific thickness, here's an exploration of its distinct advantages that can guide your decision.

  • Extremely Strong
  • Easy to Maintain
  • Suitability for All Rooms
  • Quick and Easy Installation

On a personal note, in light of our results, it's clear that 12mm laminate flooring offers a blend of durability, aesthetics, and value for homeowners.

Its diverse design options and ease of maintenance make it an attractive choice for those looking to elevate their living spaces without compromising on quality.

FAQs

1. What is 12mm laminate flooring?

12mm laminate flooring is a type of flooring that has a thickness of 12 millimetres. It's known for its durability, realistic appearance, and its ability to mimic the feel of genuine hardwood or stone.

2. How does laminate flooring thickness affect its quality?

Laminate flooring thickness can influence durability, feel underfoot, and sound insulation. While 12mm is considered high-quality, thickness alone doesn't determine the overall quality; materials and construction also play roles.

3. Are there any notable pros and cons of 12mm laminate flooring?

Yes. Pros include durability, realistic appearance, and easy installation. However, like any product, there are cons. For an in-depth analysis, refer to resources like thespruce.com.

4. Is 12mm laminate flooring waterproof?

Many 12mm laminate flooring options offer moisture resistance. While they can handle spills better than thinner versions, cleaning up spills promptly is essential to prevent damage.

5. How does 12mm laminate compare to 8mm laminate flooring?

12mm laminate is thicker and can offer better sound insulation, a more realistic feel, and enhanced durability. However, it might be pricier than the 8mm options.

6. Is 12mm laminate of good quality?

Yes, 12mm laminate is considered high-quality due to its durability, feel, and appearance. However, it's essential to consider other factors like manufacturing standards and warranty.

7. How much does homebase laminate flooring cost for a 12mm thickness?

Costs can vary based on brand, region, and specific product lines. Typically, 12mm laminate flooring prices range from $35 to $60 per square meter. It's best to check with local retailers or the Homebase website for exact pricing.

8. What is the recommended underlay for laminate flooring installation?

The choice of underlay depends on where you're installing the laminate. Moisture barriers are essential for ground-level and below installations while soundproofing underlays might be preferred for upper floors. Always refer to the manufacturer's recommendations.

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