Living in a condominium or other similar residential establishment has its own set of regulations. One of them is acoustics. Living in close proximity to others brings up the need to minimize noise, and walking on the floor is one of the main sources.
Laminate flooring with attached underlayment is an acceptable material you can use to ensure you and your next-door neighbors enjoy a quiet life as much as possible. Here are the top five brands to look out for when shopping for good-quality laminate planks for your home.
Five Brands of Laminate Flooring with Attached Underlayment
Pergo takes the top spot as one of the top brands for laminate floors. This brand hails from the original inventor of modern laminate flooring, Perstorp. In 2013, Pergo was acquired by Mohawk and has since continued to make excellent laminate floors.
The Pergo laminates are waterproof. They also offer a good warranty duration that spans from at least ten years up to a lifetime. Now that Pergo is under the stewardship of another reputable brand, there's no doubt that the flooring options have retained good quality but also adapted to Mohawk's wide variety. On the other hand, due to this fusion of greats, the Pergo laminate products have increased their price enough to be considered expensive and may even be inaccessible in certain areas of the United States.
Mohawk is one that always pushes the possibilities. For example, this brand still makes its own laminate flooring after acquiring Pergo.
This brand started out manufacturing carpets in 1878. Now it has a group of experts that ensures innovation and quality are kept in check while also considering the environment.
Their main product line in this category would be the RevWood laminate hardwood flooring. It has about 15 types, each having 3 to 15 different laminate flooring colors. The thickness is also wide-ranging, going from a thin 7mm up to as thick as 12mm, and only costs $1.90 to about $3.50 per square foot.
The technology behind the laminate plank product involves waterproofing and scratch-proofing that's reinforced by a Hydroseal sealant to ensure that no moisture will seep into the seams.
The catch is that due to the number of good features that make this waterproof laminate floor product durable, it takes away a few years off the warranty—down to just 20 years instead of a lifetime.
Another worthy mention on the list is Shaw. The second-largest amongst the existing floor brand giants; it's packing 50 years of product experience, having established itself in 1967.
What makes Shaw a notable brand is its unrelenting pursuit of quality and excellence. All their laminate planks undergo rigorous testing in order to pass different standards from organizations such as Cradle to Cradle—a sustainability-oriented organization.
What's unique about Shaw's laminates is the fact that it can resist moisture and water for 24 hours straight. You can throw several planks into a tub full of water and leave it overnight, and it will still retain the same thickness and condition as before.
One downside to Shaw is the lack of laminate floor colors and style options on the Repel product line. It currently has only 14 styles—a little less than expected from a reputable brand.
Armstrong has come a very long way from a humble cork-cutting shop. With 150 years of business experience under its wing, no doubt it makes it to our list of brands that can deliver superior quality laminates.
In just a few years, they have grown a huge flooring business—enough for it to stand on its own. And with innovations such as a patented locking system, Armstrong has cemented its top spot amongst the greats of the laminate floor business.
Armstrong casts a wide net. They have budget laminate flooring underlay options that cater to different segments of the market. The styles they have in their catalog are on par with some of the more popular brands. The minimum warranty given the technology put in the flooring is at 20 years maximum up to a lifetime for both residential and commercial users. With plank lengths topping at 89 inches long, Armstrong is bound to give users their money's worth.
Last but not least is another Mohawk-acquired brand, Quickstep. The brand that introduced the first glueless installation technology, known as a click-and-lock or float method, was invented by a Belgium-based company called Unilin in 1997.
Today, they offer the NatureTek product line with a lifetime warranty against damages caused by water or pets.
The planks they sell go as long as 80 inches in length. It thrives in differentiating itself in terms of design; they have the best emboss in all the flooring brands in this lineup. Combine that with a GenuEdge technology that makes for a smooth flow of seamless floor surface patterns, and you have a laminate floor plank worthy of going head to head with top brands.
As always, the catch is Quickstep won't be expected to perform well in high-traffic areas. The fiberwood material will have sunken portions. So, the surface will become uneven if subject to frequent heel impact.
Our Pick: Pergo
We bow our heads to the brand that started it all—Pergo. Despite having many other brands that offer different laminate flooring and design innovations, Pergo holds its own and remains competitive against the later entrants of the laminate floor business. This proves that Pergo is timeless. Hearing Pergo reminds us of a boulder, tough and huge with its good quality and wide range of options backed by a name that's known. Needless to say, Pergo will endure and even dominate.