When you walk around your home, chances are that you don’t give the flooring a second thought. As long as it is solid and serving its purpose, you hardly notice it. You clean it and maintain it. You repair it, when necessary. As long as you can walk across it to get from room to room, you are not concerned with its construction.
Your flooring consists of the materials you see – hardwood, tile or carpeting. And it consists of the materials you don’t see – the underlayment. While most people focus in on the looks and feel, spending extra money as necessary to get what they want, it’s the underlayment that can significantly play a part into the quality of your flooring choice.
The flooring underlayment makes it possible to have “floating” floors. Rather than have the flooring attached to the actual subflooring, an underlayment is installed. This underlayment lays on the subflooring. It provides extra insulation, reduces sound, minimizes any imperfections of the subflooring, and helps give your floor a smooth, level appearance.
A flooring underlayment can also help keep moisture away from your floors. If you have a flood or a water spill, instead of having major structuraly damage, if you catch it quickly it can be as simple as replacing the flooring and underlayment only.
Gypsum fiber panel is one of the most popular choices for a flooring underlayment. This type of underlayment is moisture resistant and has a very smooth surface. It can also be used with a wide range of floorings and adhesives.
If sound reduction is important, a cork flooring underlayment is a good option. Cork underlayment is designed to reduce the sound. The thicker the underlayment, the more the sound will be reduced.
Should you ever decide to replace your existing flooring, you may need to replace the underlayment. Now that you know what the function of underlayment is, you can use a consultants help not only to select the right flooring for your situation, but also the right underlayment for your needs.
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