Waterproof laminate is a great alternative to vinyl plank flooring. Remember, vinyl is only waterproof top-down and still needs protection from moisture in the installation and concrete preparation with a plastic barrier. If there is excessive water vinyl needs to be pulled out and can not be replaced. Laminate treated for water resistance in the locking system proves to be as “waterproof” as vinyl.
One benefit laminate has over vinyl is its scratch resistance. Inhaus, a laminate brand, has laminate with AC commercial scratch resistance ratings. AC rating is the wear rating given to laminate flooring by measuring the resistance to abrasion, impact, and stains. This indicates the durability of the laminate. AC ratings are broken down to five levels in the United States but have six levels in Europe. Each rating will have a specific use out of it. Let's break them down so choosing your laminate flooring becomes easier.
AC 1-3 Best for residential use. See below for the breakdown of them.
AC 1: Suitable for moderate traffic. Best suited to use in bedrooms or guest rooms that see very little foot traffic.
AC 2: Suitable for general traffic. Dining or livingrooms are the best place for AC2-rated laminate floors.
AC 3: Suitable for heavy traffic. Generally suitable for all areas, especially areas such as hallways which see a lot of footfall.
AC 4-5 are best suited for commercial use. See below for the breakdown of them.
AC 4: Suitable for moderate traffic in commercialspaces. Think small offices, cafés or smaller retail outlets.
AC 5: Suitable for heavy traffic in commercial spaces. Large department stores, public buildings and large offices are the perfect place for laminate with a rating of AC5.
Now each AC rating has an increase of wear of 60% as it goes up. For example AC 1 to AC 2 increases by 60% but if you were to jump from AC 1 to AC 3 it would be 120%. The heavier the wear means a slightly cloudier look to your flooring.
“You may also find AC ratings described using pictograms. In these images, the different AC ratings display either a house (residential) or a commercial building (commercial). They may also contain icons for people, as well as numbers to display the laminate flooring’s suitability for either moderate (1), general (2) or heavy (3) use.” https://www.directwoodflooring...
Here is a video you can watch to show how the testing is done.
The nature of lamination is more scratch resistance than the urethanes used on LVP. That means that the normal wear and tear from the kids and guests in your house will not damage your floors! You can enjoy your floors instead of worry about them
Watch my video to see more of these colors and laminate features!