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All Posts By

louise Martin

Quick-Step, The Original Lock And Click

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If you’ve spoken to any of our team before, then you’ve probably heard us mention Quick Step. We can’t really help it – it’s one of our best selling flooring products, and one of our favourite materials to work with. Whether you prefer luxury vinyl tiles and plants, real wood flooring or laminate, Quick Step has a product to suit that need.

One of the things Quick-Step is also famous for is their lock and click installation method. This pioneering technology has started to make its way into other flooring providers, but Quick-Step have honed it to a fine art. But that’s just one of the reasons we love Quick-Step flooring, and today we thought we would share some of the others with you today.

Quick and Easy

The biggest advantage of quick-step is just how quick and easy it is to install. This isn’t just good for us as installers – but good for you, as it means you can get a new floor installed and ready to walk on in next to no time. Thanks to the ‘uniclic multifit’ technology that Quick-step uses, each plank can be installed up to 30% faster than other plank flooring options. And since the planks already have a protective layer applied, you don’t need to worry about waxing or oiling it after installation – just click the planks together and enjoy the floor!

Smoother Surfaces

When installing flooring, how level your underfloor is has a big impact. If you want a level floor, you need a relatively level base. If not, you will likely need to have it levelled off before the floor is fitted, otherwise you will have an uneven floor at the end. Uneven floors are not only uncomfortable to walk on, but they wear out quickly and tear at the edges, so they will need to be replaced more often as well. But that uniclic multifit technology takes level differences into account when laid on your floor, and means your flooring can’t move around. This works because the tongue profiles fit perfectly into the grooves, and compensates for any minor level differences.

Versatility

When it comes to style, everyone is different, which makes it difficult to find one floor to suit everyone. But often, slight tweaks to the installation and design can make all the difference. For example, one flooring style can look dramatically different installed sideways compared to a diagonal installation. There aren’t many types of flooring that can do that – but Quick-Step is one. You can drop down planks and then angle them diagonally or horizontally, giving you the ability to create different designs within your floor. And because there is such a wide variety of flooring (from vinyl tile to hardwood) using this installation method, you could kit out your entire house in Quick-Step and have every single room look different.

Environmentally Friendly

As you may already know, at Floor24 we’re big on sustainability, and being as environmentally friendly as we can be. That includes choosing environmentally friendly suppliers for our flooring – which is exactly what Quick-Step does. All of their manufacturing processes are compliant with all of the environmental regulations, and go beyond in a lot of ways, without sacrificing quality in their products. Their products have also been heavily tested and awarded a FloorScore certification. That means that their products won’t release any harmful VOCs into your living environment, either on install or over time, and are recognised as compliant with VOC emissions regulations. So they are safe, and environmentally friendly!

And that’s just 4 of the reasons we love Quick-Step. At Floor24 we stock a huge variety of Quick-Step products, suitable for every room in the house from living room to bathroom. If you would like more information, or to see samples of the products for yourself, just book an appointment to visit our showroom using this link, or contact us to chat with one of our team members.

Wood Flooring 101

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If you’re looking to upgrade your home, you might be looking at Pinterest and seeing all of those nice, clean wooden floors and wanting one for yourself. And why wouldn’t you? Wood flooring has a timeless look that gives homes a warm feel, while being easy to clean and difficult to damage. But there’s almost too much information, to many options out there for you to make sense of, all with complicated and fancy brand names. So today we’re going to strip it back a bit, and go through the different types of wood flooring you can get, and hopefully help you work out what will be best for you!

 

Solid Hardwood

Solid hardwood basically does what it says on the tin – it’s solid wood, all the way through, from top to bottom. Really, it’s similar to any other stick of lumber sawn straight off the log, with no additional materials added. You might have heard of it called ‘hardwood’ flooring as well.

Generally you can buy hardwood flooring in 2 types – unfinished or pre-finished. Unfinished hardwood tends to be a little bit cheaper, but that’s because it requires some sanding, staining (if you want) and sealing during the installation process. This means you won’t be able to walk on it right away to allow the sealant to dry, which can be difficult in high-traffic areas of the house. Whereas with prefinished all of that has already been done, and you can walk on it right away. It comes stained, sealed and ready to go right out of the box. It is slightly more prone to scratches and dents than other types of wood flooring, but the advantage is that it can be sanded and re-stained numerous times, so minor damage can be repaired fairly easily, giving it a very long lifespan

Solid hardwood needs to be nailed to the subfloor, and can’t be installed straight onto concrete, or nailed on top of your existing floor. For this reason, solid hardwood is usually sold and installed by specialists, not general flooring suppliers. At Floor24 we don’t supply or install solid hardwood floors – it’s one of the few things we don’t handle – but instead we have partners who can handle all hardwood floor requests.

 

Engineered Wood

Engineered wood is an exciting alternative to solid hardwood flooring, with all of the pros and none of the cons. It’s essentially made by sandwiching some strong plywood board in between finish wood panels. The finish wood is what you see and walk on. While the plywood underneath makes up around 75% of the total flooring.

It’s this plywood layer that makes it different from solid hardwood. Each ply runs perpendicular to it’s adjacent ply, giving dimensional strength to the sandwich. This means that engineered wood flooring stands up well in areas with light moisture, like basements and bathrooms. It can also be installed in a variety of different ways. On top of the standard wood flooring installation techniques, the thinner types can be nailed down, thicker types can be installed as floating floors, giving you a lot of options to suit your individual rooms.

The main weakness of engineered wood is that thin top layer of finish wood on top. This can be sanded and re-stained if needed, but only by a professional to avoid damage, and the thinner varieties will need great care doing this. Deeper scratches and dents can’t be sanded out, and would require a replacement board.

At Floor24 we do supply and install engineered wood flooring, and we would be happy to help you with any questions or requirements you have.

 

Laminate

Laminate flooring might look like wood, but it’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing – because it’s not. At least, not in the way that solid hardwood and engineered wood are. Instead, laminate is made up of a thin top layer of resin-infused paper, laid on top of a wood-chip composite. So technically it is wood, but in the same way that cordials with 5% real fruit juice are ‘juice’.

But we’re including it here because it’s an amazing, cost effective alternative to real wood flooring. The resin layer is essentially a photograph of wood, but even if you got down on your hands and knees and looked under a microscope, you still wouldn’t be able to tell. And as well as looking identical to wood, it’s a fraction of the price, since paper, resin and chipboard are much cheaper than actual wood. It’s also scratch resistant, easy to install and replace, and comes in a wide variety of colours and ‘wood’ types, so you can achieve almost any look with it.

It’s no wonder so many people choose it as an alternative to real wood flooring. At Floor24 laminate is one of our more popular flooring types, and we have a wide variety of options for you to choose from in our showroom.

 

If you would like to know more about your options for wood flooring, or want to look at some examples to choose your ideal floor, we would love to help. Just click here to book an appointment at our showroom, or contact us with a question here, and one of our flooring experts will be on hand to help.

Can You Repair A Floor?

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We’ve all been there. We’ve been carrying something heavy and dropped it on a tile floor, leaving a nasty crack. Kids have found the scissors and given the carpet a haircut. Or a pair of very nice high heels have created a very big tear in the laminate.

Flooring is a very hard working part of your home, and eventually it’s going to suffer some damage, or just wear and tear. But sometimes that damage is only in one spot, and you don’t want to go through the time, disruption and expense of pulling the whole floor up and replacing it. So instead, you might want to repair it. Today we’re going to look at how easy different floors are to repair, and the best way to do it.

 

Vinyl Tiles

Vinyl and luxury vinyl tiles are very resilient to damage and wear, but sometimes they might get cut deeply, or scuffed (which only requires a light repair). For scratches that are quite light you can sometimes get away with thoroughly cleaning and then waxing them to fill the gaps, but for anything more than that you will need vinyl joint sealant. This is a specialised product, and should only be used by a professional. But honestly, in most cases we would just recommend you replace the tile that’s damaged – it’s simpler and cheaper. If your flooring was laid properly (by a professional), then removing and replacing one or two damaged tiles isn’t a big job, and a professional flooring company will be happy to do this for you.

 

Laminate

Laminate flooring is another that is relatively easy to repair, depending on the type of laminate you’ve chosen. For the most popular colours of laminate, minor scratches or dents can be fixed with colour-fill materials, and you might be able to get these from your flooring company. If the damage is a bit more severe, then again your best bet is to replace the damaged planks. Call your flooring company, and they will gently remove the damaged planks and replace them with healthy ones, piece by piece, and do any extra finishing to make sure it looks as good as new. Again, we strongly recommend you use a professional to do this, and don’t try to remove the planks yourself.

 

Wood

On the surface you might think that wood flooring is easy to repair yourself at home. But it’s much more than just filling and sanding with your tools at home. In order to repair a wooden floor to a high standard, so that the rest of the floor isn’t damaged and you can’t see where the repair was made, you really need professional equipment and supplies. Specialist filler designed to not only match your floor colour, but type of wood needs to be used, and the application, treatment and tidying is an involved process. If you have damage to a wooden floor and would like it repaired, we recommend you talk to a professional for help.

 

Of course, the fool proof way to repair any damaged floor is to call in a pro. Professional flooring companies understand how the flooring will behave, how it’s been laid, and what the best way to repair it is, so you can save yourself any costly or ugly mistakes. At Floor24, we don’t just install full floors. We can also help with repairs – whether that’s giving some advice, offcuts to help with repairs or even repairing it for you. So if you would like some advice, just get in touch with the team today.

5 Things To Think About When Choosing Commercial Flooring

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If you thought choosing the right flooring for your home was hard, wait until you have to choose something for your commercial property! floor covering is an integral part of interior space for commercial spaces of all shapes and sizes. Not only does it need to withstand a lot of heavy traffic, but it can also be a cosy accessory to make a statement or define your style – something we’re seeing more and more of nowadays. But commercial spaces, whether an office or a warehouse, need to meet a lot of different needs, and it can feel a little overwhelming to find the right fit for you when it comes to flooring. So to help you out, here are 5 things you should be thinking about when choosing your commercial flooring.

 

Safety

First and foremost, whatever flooring you choose needs to be safe. Safety in the workplace should be a fundamental consideration of workspace design, which means you need to ensure your choice of flooring is compliant with all the government regulations for commercial flooring. But in general, one of the biggest things to think about is slip resistance – especially if you’re using the flooring in entranceways or areas where spills might be common. Most floorings are given a ‘slip rating’, ranging from R9 (high slip risk) to R13 (low slip risk), and you generally want to aim for a higher rating for those slip risk areas. You could do this by using barrier tiles or entrance matting systems that can then move into your flooring of choice. There are a lot of different flooring options that can meet these standards, and you can always ask us for information on safety ratings.

 

Creative Designs

Flooring is no longer just a necessity. While the traditional workspace was often full, rigid and very formal, we’re now seeing workspaces that want to be warm, welcoming and lively in order to attract younger talent and showcase their brand personality. Flooring is a great way to do this – whether that’s using geometric shapes (like hexxtiles or herringbone), bold patterns and vibrant colours, or even printing your company logos on your carpets to create an impactful entranceway. Modular flooring is particularly good for this, as it can be installed flexible and can compliment any workspace design.

 

Sustainability

More and more people are becoming environmentally conscious, and businesses are no exception. Businesses are now looking for more eco-friendly flooring options, and looking for ways to improve their sustainability efforts. In fact, a lot of new design projects have to include sustainability as a pre-requisite, so finding eco-friendly flooring where you can is ideal. Luckily, sustainable, reusable and recyclable materials are dominating a lot of the floor covering industry today, and the whole process is much friendlier to the environment. If you can, opt for a material with a stronger sustainability rating, while it still meets your design needs.

 

Luxury

Luxury is no longer just rich homeowners – it’s also becoming an important feature in the world of commercial flooring. Businesses are looking to make themselves feel high end, and to make their customer feel like they are in safe hands. This means using materials like luxury vinyl tiles or luxury carpet tiles, which give a high-end feel while still being affordable and stylish. These kinds of materials can give a feeling of elegance and cosiness to office interiors and showrooms.

 

Maintenance

Of course, commercial premises of any kind will experience some pretty heavy footfall, which means that any flooring option you chose needs to be able to stand up to that wear and tear. Commercial flooring could easily wear out faster than domestic floorings. So durability and ease of maintenance are 2 things that will need to be high on the priority list for your commercial flooring. You can easily find this out by just looking at the manufacturer’s guidance on cleaning and maintenance, as well as the various flooring symbols used on the spec documents. The key ones to look for are wear rating class 33 (for heavy contract use), the castor chair test, and considerations such as stain resistance and colour fastness.

 

At Floor24 we stock and install a vast range of suitable, affordable floor coverings for commercial work. Our installers are also qualified in all of the required safety ratings laws, which means we can share our knowledge and recommendations for products based on your needs as a company. Our bespoke service means you can get the perfect floor for your commercial space without worrying about a lot of back and forth, or overwhelming information. Just book a visit to our showroom, and one of our team will be happy to help you. Or if you have any questions, just get in touch with the team today.

Underfloor Heating – What’s The Best Floor Covering?

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If you’re sick of having cold feet in the mornings, or just want a more efficient way of heating your home, you might be looking at having underfloor heating installed. Electric underfloor heating is something we’ve talked about before, so if you’re new to it, you can find out about the basics, and our thoughts on it, by reading this blog. But if you’ve already decided that underfloor heating is the right option for you, you’re probably wondering what the best flooring option to go with it is. After all, you want to get the most for your money, and really feel the warmth in your home, and on your feet! So today, we’re looking at which floor covering options might be best for your new electric floor, and why.

 

What to Look For

In order to get the most out of your underfloor heating, you need a material that’s going to transfer heat efficiently from the underfloor heating system to the surface of the floor. That’s the most basic requirement really. This means the best floorings will be made of thermally conductive material, allowing the heat to pass easily through them and travel up into the air in your home.

There are a fair number of flooring options that meet this criteria, so the good news is that you won’t be short on options. But with some flooring types, you need to be a bit more careful about what you choose, or bear some things in mind when having it installed.

 

Our Suggestions

At Floor2 we work with a lot of electric underfloor heating systems, and so we understand which flooring types will work best with it. Over the years, we’ve discovered that the following options work well, as long as you take note of one or two things.

 

Solid & Engineered Wood: Engineered wood and timber floor coverings have a good structural stability, which means they perform very well with underfloor heating. Solid hardwoods and softwoods are also suitable, but board width and thickness can impact their effectiveness, so you need to take care when specifications are being taken. Some reasons to use solid or engineered wood include:

  • Transfers heat well
  • Gives a timeless, elegant finish
  • Adds a visual warmth to the space
  • Suitable for all floor levels
  • Comes in a wide range of colours, grains, patterns and finishes

Bear in mind: Any timber floor product should be given time to acclimate to the property before it’s fitted. This is to avoid the wood expanding or contracting once fitted and causing issues.

 

Vinyl & Linoleum: Vinyl floor tiles are some of the most luxurious and versatile flooring choices out there. But the fact that they are also very durable and heat conductive makes them the perfect accompaniment to underfloor heating. Some reasons to use vinyl & linoleum include:

  • High-quality finish, suitable for traditional or contemporary homes
  • Hardwearing floor
  • Suitable for all floor levels
  • Ideal for well-insulated rooms with lower heat requirements

Bear in mind: If you are worried about the sensitivity of your flooring, you can fit a floor sensor to limit the heat output of the underfloor heating and protect the floor covering.

 

Carpet:  Carpet might not seem, like the obvious choice, but if you’re looking for a floor covering that’s going to maximise the warmth and insulation factor, then this is it. Underfloor heating can be used with most types of carpet, provided that the overall Tog value of the carpet and underlay doesn’t go above a total of 2.5. Some reasons to use carpet include:

  • Comfortable feel underfoot
  • Available in a vast range of colours and designs
  • Perfect for traditional decorating schemes

Bear in mind: If you’re opting for carpet with underfloor heating, avoid felt and polyurethane underlays, as they can affect heat transfer.

 

Laminate: Laminate has always been a popular flooring option, and it works very well with underfloor heating, provided it is used properly. Because it’s easy to clean and simple to fit, it’s also a practical choice for pairing with underfloor heating. Some reasons to use laminate include:

  • A cost-effective flooring option
  • Suitable for all floor levels
  • Wipe clean for high traffic areas
  • Can mimic wood and stone finishing, but easier to maintain

Bear in mind: Always check the manufacturer’s instructions on maximum temperature when using laminate with underfloor heating, so that you don’t end up damaging it.

 

Of course, there are more options available to you, but at Floor24 these are our most popular (and practical) options. Our teams are fully qualified to install not only the floor coverings, but the underfloor heating for electric systems as well. So with us, you can get the full solution, and have toasty toes in no time. If you would like to know more, just get in touch with our team, or make an appointment to visit our showroom, and we would be happy to help.

Making The World Of Flooring Environmentally Friendly

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There was a time when the term ‘eco-friendly’ brought to mind a lot of bland, boring and blah products. But no more! The world of sustainability has exploded in popularity over the last few years, and now there are some truly beautiful products out there made of entirely recycled or eco-friendly materials.

Including flooring. Eco-friendly flooring is designed to minimise the use of natural resources, maximise efficiency and be at least partially recyclable when you choose to replace it. There are a huge number of eco-friendly flooring options out there – some you’ve probably heard of before, and some that might be surprising.

 

Eco-Friendly Flooring Options

 

Bamboo: Bamboo is one of the most popular materials across the board in the eco-friendly world. This is mainly because, while bamboo is a natural product, it’s one of the most sustainable materials in nature. Bamboo absorbs 2x more carbon dioxide than trees (which has earnt it the name ‘the carbon sink’), it’s strong and durable, naturally anti-bacterial and creates paying jobs for local communities. It’s also the fastest growing plant on the entire planet, growing to full size in just 3-4 months and in the right conditions growing 3 feet tall in just 24 hours. So, you couldn’t run out of it if you tried! Bamboo flooring isn’t huge right now, but it is gaining in popularity as an alternative to wood floors. It’s light, available in a lot of different colours and grains (more so than traditional wood), and can work almost anywhere.

Lino: You might not think of it as particularly progressive, but that lino flooring in your parent’s bathroom is much more eco-friendly than you think. So while it fell a bit out of favour in the 1940’s when vinyl tiles came in, Lino is making a comeback with the eco-friendly movement. Lino is made from a mix of linseed oil, cork dust, tree resins, wood flour, pigments and ground limestone – all sustainable and recyclable materials. With the new comeback we have a higher quality of lino, in a massive array of colours and styles, with better sealants to protect from staining, wear and tear.

Wool Carpets: We talked about the pros and cons of wool carpets in our last blog, and one of the pros was that wool carpets are eco-friendly. While synthetic and mixed carpets tend to include a lot of VOCs and non-recyclable materials, pure wool carpets are completely the opposite. Not only is wool carpet a favourite go-to in a lot of homes, they are sustainably made from a natural resource (wool) and spun into a thread that can dyed any colour imaginable, and woven to create a carpet. It was one of the first materials used as a floor covering, and will continue to be for a long time. There are other natural, sustainable materials used to make carpets too – including sisal, jute and cotton.

 

Can Carpets Be Recycled?

One of the best ways you can be eco-friendly is to recycle what you can, instead of send it to landfill. Carpet is no different. When you change your flooring and have leftover carpet, it almost certainly can be recycled. Depending on the fibre, your carpet can be broken down and used to make an entirely new product. Carpets are a challenge to recycle, so they will require specialist machinery to separate out the elements, but it can (and is) done.

Unfortunately when it comes to carpets, it’s not as simple as just chucking it in a recycling bin. There is a big lack of mainstream infrastructure for carpet recycling, which mean the process will vary case by case, and depend on what the carpet is made of and where you live. You can check with your local councils – as some will take carpets at their waste management centres for recycling, or you might have specialist dealers nearby who can help, or even take the carpets for you. Right now, we are still looking into carpet recycling in the Farnborough and Andover areas, and are always happy to help you out where we can.

 

 

At Floor 24, we are passionate about protecting the planet we live on. As a practice, we try to be as environmentally friendly as we can be, including choosing eco-friendly materials and suppliers, such as Kahrs – a company producing engineered wood and vinyl flooring in Sweden. Khars have their own forest, and for every tree they cut down they plant another 5. They also don’t add any extra chemicals into the manufacturing process, creating eco-friendly flooring from start to finish. We also encourage customers to recycle used flooring where possible, and running an eco-friendly business from the inside out.

 

If you’re interested in eco-friendly flooring, or would like to know more about what we do, just get in touch with us today.

Should I Buy Man-Made or Wool Carpets?

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When you’re looking at options for flooring in your home, carpet is one of the most popular options. And it’s no surprise really! It’s soft and warm, and comes in a wide variety of colours to choose from. Not to mention it’s one of the most popular flooring choices in the UK, and has been for many years.

But when you look for ‘carpet’, your flooring provider will likely ask you what kind of carpet you’re looking for. Because as with most things in life, there is more than one way to weave a carpet. There are essentially two different kinds of carpet fibre; wool and man-made, as well as a mixture of the two. Figuring out what type of carpet you want in your home will help you whittle down the shortlist, and hopefully make the decision a bit easier.

 

What is Wool Carpet?

Wool carpets are made from entirely natural wool fibres, with no artificial fibres added at all. They have traditionally been a very popular choice for carpets in any room, but specifically living rooms and bedrooms, where people tend to walk around barefoot, or in high traffic areas like dining rooms, landings, and hallways. So really, any room in the house! Wool carpets are usually made from the coats of animals like sheep, and spun into fibres before being woven together and attached to matting to create the carpet you know and love.

 

Why Choose Wool Carpet?

There are lots of reasons people prefer wool carpets over synthetics, including:

 

  • Insulation: Since wool is designed to keep animals warm, it’s no surprise that wool is a great insulator. Wool carpets keep your home warmer, and could actually reduce your heating bill in the winter (as well as stopping you from getting cold toes first thing in the morning). It’s also fire-resistant. Which means sparks from an open fire won’t post much of a rise.

  • Easy to clean: Wool has a great response to cleaning. They have an inbuilt resistance to soiling and dirt thanks to their natural oils. They can also be stain guarded, which means they can be resistant to more stubborn stains as well.

 

  • Resilient: Wool carpets are very resilient to a high volume footprint, and will take a lot longer to sink, flatten and wear down, making them perfect for high traffic areas of the home. They are the hardest-wearing type of carpet you can find.

 

 

Of course, there are some negatives to wool carpets as well, like:

 

  • More expensive: Wool carpeting is a more expensive option than man-made ones, so covering multiple rooms could rack up a slightly larger bill. For a good wool carpet you can generally expect to pay anywhere between £15 and £50 per square metre – though check with your retailer for exact prices.

 

  • Prone to stains: While normal, everyday dirt and debris isn’t an issue for wool, they can be prone to staining if things are left to soak in. So if you don’t get the carpet stain guarded, you could end up with some stubborn stains to work out.

 

 

What is Man-Made Carpet?

Man-made carpets pretty much do what they say on the tin – they are carpets that have been made using synthetic, man-made fibres. While not necessarily traditional, synthetic carpeting has gained a lot of popularity over the years as the quality of fibres has improved. There are generally three varieties of synthetic fibre used; Polypropylene, Polyamide (Nylon) and Polyester. Each have slightly different properties – for example, nylon is the most popular option, while polypropylene is more stain resistant.

 

Why Choose Man-Made Carpet?

As we mentioned, man-made carpeting options have risen in popularity over the past few years, and for a number of reasons. These include:

  • Stain-resistant: Synthetic fibres are perhaps best known for their stain resistance, which makes them the best choice for busy households with kids, pets and husbands who don’t take off their shoes when they come in the door! In fact, polypropylene is almost impossible to stain with water-based materials.

 

  • No fading: If you have to clean your carpet, a man-made carpet can be cleaned with a mix of warm water and bleach without any risk of fading or damaging the colour at all. This is because the fibres have been heat set during production, and so won’t be damaged by the bleach.

 

  • Comfort: You might think that wool carpets would be softer – but you would be wrong. If you’ve ever stroked a sheep, goat or alpaca, then you know just how soft man-made carpeting can be. It feels very comfortable underfoot, even with no shoes or socks. They also look as comfy as they feel!

 

  • Cheaper: Man-made carpeting is cheaper to produce, and so it’s much cheaper to buy as well. Man-made carpets can start from as little as £7.99 per square metre – though these tend to be cheaper options, with high-quality carpets coming in around £15-£25 per square metre.

 

 

Just like with woollen carpets, there are some downsides to choosing a man-made carpet as well, including:

 

  • Oil sensitivity: We mentioned earlier that synthetic fibres are almost impossible to stain with water-based substances. But they are a bit weaker when it comes to oils, Oily and greasy stains can pose a problem, and often need thorough cleaning to remove.

  • Flatten easier: As a general rule, man-made carpets will flatten much faster than those made from natural fibres. While this has been improved by modern heat setting techniques, you will still see them wear and flatten much faster.

 

 

And if you can’t choose between the two? You could always opt for a blended carpet instead. These are a mix of wool and synthetic fibres, and usually come in an 80%-20% mix. This gives you all the luxurious feel of wool underfoot (and that insulation), but with the stain-resistant properties of man-made fibres.

 

At Floor 24, we stock a wide variety of carpets, including wool, man-made and blends, so we will always have something in stock to suit your needs. If you’re not sure what you want, you can always visit our showroom and see all of the different options in person, and one of our team will be happy to talk you through it and help you with a decision. To book your slot, or to find out more, just get in touch with us today.

What’s The Best Flooring For My Bathroom?

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When it comes to designing a bathroom, there are a lot of things you need to think about, that you wouldn’t usually in any other area of the house. The main thing is that everything inside it needs to be waterproof, and able to withstand steam, humidity and some very heavy foot traffic besides. After the entryway and your kitchen, the bathroom has one of the highest foot traffic rates in your house, so it’s important you get flooring that is strong, sturdy and able to cope with anything. Which leaves a lot of people wondering – what is the best type of flooring for a bathroom? And how do I choose?

 

Vinyl (Luxury or Vinyl Tile)

Vinyl is another very common bathroom flooring option, and has been for many decades now. That’s no real surprise, since it looks good and is very practical. Vinyl is best used in areas where you expect a large amount of water – so bathrooms, children’s bathrooms or utility rooms. Depending on if you choose sheet or tile, you can have minimal to no seams on your installation, making it even more water-tight. And because it’s so popular, there are thousands of style options to choose from. Whether you choose sheet vinyl or vinyl tiles though, is up to you. Vinyl tile and luxury vinyl are the options we usually recommend for any bathroom installation, as they are simple to install, look good and are 100% waterproof.

 

Pros: 

  • 100% waterproof
  • Cost effective
  • Seams are waterproof
  • Easy to install and replace

 

Cons: 

  • Often has poor resale value
  • Installation quality depends on the quality of the subfloor and underlay

  

Safety Flooring

If you’re looking for flooring in a wet room (rather than a full bathroom), then  safety flooring could be a good contender. This covers a range of materials, but refers specifically to the non-slip surface coating. These anti-slip flooring solutions often aren’t 100% waterproof, so while not ideal for a main bathroom, wet rooms and cloakrooms could benefit from them.

 

Pros: 

  • Water resistant
  • Anti-slip, so reduces the risk of falls
  • Ranges from different suppliers

 

Cons:

  • Not fully waterproof
  • Some products can feel rough underfoot

 

Flooring to Avoid

Of course, there are some flooring types to avoid as well. There are certain materials that just don’t do well with water or humidity, and will either get very dirty or damaged if used in a bathroom. Mainly:

 

  • Carpet: It should be fairly obvious why carpets in a bathroom is a bad idea. It is highly likely to get wet, and because carpeting retains moisture for so long, it won’t be dry by the next day, when it’s likely to get wet again. This creates mildew and mould, and is a breeding ground for all sorts of bacteria and smells. Plus, you’ll always be walking on slightly damp carpet. So while you can have carpet in a bathroom, we generally recommend against it.

 

 

  • Solid Hardwood: Except for its top coating, solid hardwood has no protection against moisture at all. That means that even the smallest amount of moisture that works its way into the wood will eventually rot it out. So even if you do have it installed, it’s not a long term solution, and will be expensive to replace.  

 

At Floor 24, we’re always happy to advise on floors for your bathroom. We can help you choose a type or material, and provide you with a huge range of samples for colour and style to choose from, so you can find the perfect bathroom floor for you. If you would like to find out more, just get in touch with our team, visit our showroom (by appointment only), or enquire about our doorstep sample borrowing service.

How To Get Wax Our Of Your Carpet

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Be honest with us – when was the last time you cleaned your carpet? Not just hoovered it, but actually cleaned it properly? Probably not any time recently. The truth is most people try to avoid cleaning their carpets, even though you should be doing a proper clean at least every 6 months, with a professional clean once a year, minimum. But sometimes, it just can’t be avoided – mainly when something gets spilt on it and you have no choice but to clean it. In past posts we’ve covered how to get stains out of carpets, and given a few tips for each kind of stain. But today we wanted to do more of a deep dive into one of the most difficult messes to clear up – wax.

We’ve all had that moment. We have tea lights or candles on the table for a nice romantic evening in. We knock the table with our foot, or a pet comes running past and the candle teeters in its holder before falling in slow motion. It goes out on the way down (which is a relief), but as it hits your beautiful cream carpet it spills wax everywhere. Now you’re left with a dilemma – how do you get that wax stain out of your carpet without ruining it? There are actually a couple of different methods you can try, which include:

 

The Iron and Kitchen Towel Method

This is the oldest and honestly most trusted method of wax removal out there. This one is perfect for getting large or small amounts of wax of any colour out of any type of carpet. All you need is some kitchen roll and an iron. Heat the iron up the appropriate setting for the fibres of your carpet (cotton, wool etc.). If it’s a polyester carpet it is likely to have a lot of plastic in it, so just going for the highest setting is going to melt your carpet, and that can’t be fixed! So make sure you choose the right setting before you start.

Now place a sheet of kitchen roll over the wax stain and press the hot iron onto the towel. Let it sit there for a few seconds and then remove and check the kitchen roll. It should have started to absorb the newly melted wax. If it has a lot of wax on it already, reposition it or grab another sheet. Repeat these steps until all of the wax has been absorbed by the paper towel. If you’re finding the kitchen roll isn’t working, you can use a damp cloth instead. Once you’re confident you’ve got all the wax out of the area, soak with a wet cloth and then treat it with your carpet cleaner of choice to make sure it doesn’t discolour.

 

The Scrape, Damp and Spray Method

The scrape, damp and spray method is a little more labour intensive, but can be more effective if you’re willing to put the work in. For this wax removal technique, you’ll need:

  • A clean, dry butter knife
  • A metal spoon
  • An iron
  • Carpet stain remover
  • Some white cotton towels.

Before you start, get the iron warming up so that it’s ready when you need it. Again, make sure you choose a setting that won’t melt your carpet.

First, take your knife and use it to scrape away any big chunks or loose wax, collecting them in a pile and either hoovering them up or throwing them away. Make sure you’re careful with Berber and loop fibre rugs, as these can fray easily. Once you’ve scraped off as much as you can, run a vacuum over the area to catch any loose pieces that might have sunk into the fibres. If you end up with fuzz or fraying, you can trim it (very carefully) with a pair of scissors.

Now dampen a white cotton towel, fold in it half and place it over the wax stain. Make sure it’s damp, and not dripping wet, otherwise this won’t work properly. Press the heated iron over the towel for 10-15 seconds, then remove and check the stain. The heat should draw the wax out of the rug and into the towel. Keep repeating this process until the wax is gone. Make sure your towel stays wet and if it becomes loaded with wax, grab another one. Once the wax is all removed you might notice a slight discolouration of the area. That’s where your stain remover comes in. Spray the area with stain remover and work it deep into the rug with the spoon. Dab off the excess and let it air dry. Lighter coloured rugs may require a few rounds of this to completely remove the stain, but when you’re done you’ll never know the difference.

 

 

Both of these methods follow the same basic principle – heat the wax with an iron and soak it up with something else. However not everyone has an iron, or has one handy. Luckily, there are a few ways around that. You can heat a thin layer of water in a large bottomed metal pan and use that, or you can heat the bottom of a metal spoon with a lighter to get the same effect. This might take you a little longer, but it will achieve the same results. For more tips on getting stubborn stains out of your carpet, or to ask us about replacing your stained carpets, get in touch with our experts for a free consultation – just not by candlelight!

The Basics of Underlay

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When you think of a floor, you probably think of the surfaces you walk on day in, day out. But this surface layer is just that – a  surface layer, with many more layers hiding beneath it. These lower layers might not be visible, but they are incredibly important to ensuring that your floor looks good, functions properly and stays put. One of those key layers is called underlay, and while rarely seen, it plays an important role in installing and enjoying your floor. 

 

The Anatomy of a Floor

Before you can understand what underlay is and why you need it, you first need to understand how a floor works. As Shrek would put it, floors are like onions – they have layers, and each plays an important role in providing a secure and comfortable surface to walk on. So, we’ve broken it down into its component parts, staring at the top and working down, to give you an idea of how it all fits together.

 

  • Floor Covering: This is the final, visible flooring surface – the hardwood planks, carpeting, ceramic, tile or vinyl. In other words, this is the bit that you will see and walk on.

 

 

  • Underlay: Just underneath the floor covering sits a later of material. It’s usually only around a quarter to half an inch thick, and it’s designed to provide a smooth, flat surface for the floor covering to sit on, as well as some insulation for the floor itself and a barrier between the floor coverings and the subfloor. Underlay can be made of a lot of different materials, from plywood to cement, rubber and even foam padding. The type of underlay used will likely depend on the condition of the subfloor, the type of floor covering being used and the purpose of the room.

 

 

  • Subfloor: Beneath the underlay is your subfloor, and this is the layer of OSB or plywood that was part of your home’s construction. In other words, it’s what makes a floor, a floor. These panels of OSB or plywood are integral to the structure of your home, and provide the strength and rigidity you need to be able to walk on your floor. These will already be in place when the underlay and floor covering is installed.

 

 

  • Joists: These are lateral wooden frames that rest on the foundation walls of your home, providing the structural support for the entire floor. Joists are typically made from 2-by-10 or 2-by-12 lumber or engineered microlam members, depending on what the builders of your home chose.

 

 

Why do you Need Underlay?

So, now you know what underlay is and where it fits into the anatomy of your floor, it’s time to look at why you need it. Unlike the lower layers of the floor, underlay is a catch-all term that can mean many different types of material. But whatever the type of underlay you choose, the purpose is always the same. There are 3 key functions underlay serves within your floor, which are:

 

  • To Provide A Smooth Surface: No one wants a wobbly floor. To make sure your floor covering ends up as smooth and level as possible, underlay is needed to smooth out any bumps, dips or irregularities that might be in your subfloor. This provides installers with a more predictable surface for installation, and a much better finished product at the end.

 

 

  • Improves Adhesion: Underfloor also helps your floor covering of choice stick better. Good bonding between the subfloor and the floor covering is important, as it stops your floor covering moving around when walked on, or shifting over time to become uneven. And since subfloor is known to expand and contract, this can cause problems later down the line. Underfloor provides better grip, and allows for that expansion, so you never notice a difference in your floor.

 

 

  • Improves Stability: As a side effect, underlay can also give the entire floor better structural stability. This is particularly useful in older homes, where subfloors tend to be constructed from boards rather than OSB or plywood sheet, and aren’t as stable.

 

 

When it comes to underlay, you have a lot of options available to you. But it can be difficult to know what to choose, especially if you don’t know much about the core construction of your home At Floor24, we care about every element of your flooring experience, which is why our expert fitters can assess, advise and fit all types of underlay alongside your floor coverings. With the right underlay, you can be sure your floor will look amazing, and stay that way for much longer. If you would like to know more, just get in touch to book your free consultation appointment at our showroom.