A short history of laminate flooring

Laminate floors are popular thanks to their affordability, low price, durability and ease of installation. It is made up of many layers, which are conjoined with resin or glue and then cured with pressure or heat.

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This method creates flexible and strong planks that can be topped with photographic images of stone, hardwood or tiles. The flooring is beautiful, hard-wearing and durable, and it requires hardly any maintenance. Cleaning tips can be found on Cleanipedia.

The Pergo chapter

Stensmölla Kemiska Tekniska Industri in Sweden, the parent company of Perstorp and Pergo, started refining beech wood in 1881. Perstorp started using the laminate materials made by Stensmölla Kemiska Tekniska Industri in 1923 for making radios. In 1974, Perstorp AB bought AB Tilafabriken. Technology in this partnership was used to refine laminate further so it could be used for windowsills and countertops. Later, in 1977, Perstorp used creative thinking to rise above low sales and invented high-pressure laminates (HPL). Perstorp Golv GL80 was the resulting first flooring line sold in 1979.

The first-ever specialist factory was created in 1985 by Pergo. Three years later, the manufacturer applied for a patent, which was awarded in 1990.

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Increases in choice

Laminates became more attractive and decorative with stone and wood effects in the 1990s and early 2000s. Meanwhile, cheaper and easier-to-produce Direct Pressure Laminate Flooring (DPL) was the result of technological innovation.

The first US factory opened in North Carolina, in 1996. Simultaneously, Pergo applied for a patent for an embossing technique. This period saw click-in systems added during the late 1990s, and the addition of sound insulation came in 2000.

Market expansion

In Europe, Pergo flooring quickly became popular. It wasn’t introduced to the US until the early 1990s, but the market continues to expand. In apartment blocks, laminates are replacing allergen-infested carpets.

Ease of installation

Because the flooring is so simple to install, the market is rapidly expanding. Laminates also have a beautiful appearance that does not require any maintenance or special treatment. For options, see sites like https://www.woodfloorwarehouse.ie/laminate-flooring.html.

Rating system

When this flooring became more popular, new manufacturers emerged. In 1994, a testing and rating system was introduced in Germany. Laminate planks are rated on their resistance to burning, scratching and staining, along with their ability to withstand furniture castors.

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