Five Tips for Choosing Laminate Flooring

Five Tips for Choosing Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring is a versatile, durable, and cost-effective option for many homeowners looking to update their home's aesthetic. It offers the appearance of real wood, tile, or stone without the high cost and maintenance. However, selecting the right laminate flooring can be challenging given the vast number of options available. This guide will provide you with five essential tips to help you make an informed decision when choosing laminate flooring for your home.

1. Consider the Thickness of the Laminate

The thickness of laminate planks typically ranges from 6mm to 12mm. Thicker laminate is generally more durable and feels more like hardwood underfoot. It can also help smooth out imperfections in the subfloor.

  • Tip: Opt for a thicker laminate if your budget allows. It will not only last longer but also provide better sound insulation and a more realistic wood feel.

2. Look for a Good AC Rating

Laminate flooring is rated by the Abrasion Criteria (AC) rating, which measures durability and suitability for various levels of foot traffic. AC ratings range from AC1, suitable for bedrooms and other low-traffic areas, to AC5, designed for commercial environments.

  • Tip: For residential areas with high foot traffic like hallways and living rooms, look for laminate with at least an AC3 rating.

3. Choose the Right Style and Color

Laminate flooring comes in a wide range of styles and colors. When choosing the right style and color, consider the overall design aesthetic of your home and the room where the flooring will be installed.

  • Tip: Take home samples to see how different styles and colors look in your home’s lighting. Remember that lighter colors can make a room appear larger, while darker colors create a cozier feel.

4. Evaluate the Quality of the Locking System

Laminate flooring is designed to be a floating floor, meaning it is not directly fastened to the subfloor. Instead, it relies on a locking system to keep the planks together. A high-quality locking system is crucial to prevent gaps and shifting after installation.

  • Tip: Read reviews and consult with flooring experts to ensure the laminate you choose has a reliable and durable locking system.

5. Check for Compatibility with Underfloor Heating

If you have or plan to install underfloor heating, it's essential to check that the laminate flooring is compatible. Not all laminate is suitable for use with these heating systems, and using incompatible flooring can lead to warping and other damage.

  • Tip: Look for laminate flooring specifically labeled as compatible with underfloor heating systems to avoid any future issues.


Choosing the right laminate flooring involves more than just picking out a color or style. By considering factors such as thickness, AC rating, style, locking system, and compatibility with underfloor heating, you can ensure that your flooring will meet your aesthetic preferences and stand up to the demands of your household.

If you're ready to explore a wide range of high-quality laminate flooring options, visit Friends and Family Flooring. We offer expert advice and a vast selection to suit any style or budget. Check out our website or stop by our store at Fulton & Silver Spring, MD, to find the perfect laminate flooring for your home today!