Yes, I need a pad under laminate flooring.
In this blog post, I’ll discuss the benefits of adding a pad under your laminate flooring and which type is best for different floors. Read on to find out more!
What Is Underlayment?
Underlayment is a thin layer of material, usually foam, placed between the subfloor and the laminate flooring. It serves many important functions, including providing an extra layer of cushioning and insulation, reducing noise levels, absorbing movement and shock, protecting against moisture damage, preventing buckling and warping of the flooring, extending the life of your flooring, and providing additional warmth underfoot.
It’s important to note that while some laminate flooring comes with pre-attached padding, this is only sometimes the case. To get all of the benefits of Underlayment, you need to invest in a separate layer.
Why Do You Need Underlayment for Laminate Flooring?
Underlayment is an extremely important part of any laminate flooring installation. It serves many purposes, from providing extra cushioning and insulation to reducing noise levels and protecting against moisture damage.
But why exactly do you need Underlayment for laminate flooring? Well, the primary purpose of an underlayment is to provide a level surface for the laminate planks to be laid on, as this will help ensure that your flooring is installed properly and evenly. It also helps absorb movement and shock, which can cause damage over time if not properly cushioned.
Underlayment also helps protect the flooring from moisture damage and prevent buckling and warping due to changes in temperature or humidity. Furthermore, Underlayment can help extend your flooring life by providing warmth underfoot. As you can see, there are many benefits to using an underlayment for laminate flooring.
7 Benefits of Using Underlayment
Underlayment provides several benefits to homeowners who install laminate flooring. It provides extra cushioning and insulation, reduces noise levels, absorbs movement and shock, protects against moisture damage, prevents buckling and warping of the flooring, extends the life of your flooring, and provides additional warmth underfoot.
It’s no wonder that most laminate flooring manufacturers recommend an underlayment. Let’s explore these seven benefits in more detail.
1. Provide extra cushioning and insulation
It is worth noting that the extra cushioning provided by Underlayment does more than provide comfort underfoot. This added layer of insulation can reduce energy costs over time, making it a cost-effective choice. Additionally, the extra cushioning can help to protect your laminate flooring from damage due to furniture, heavy foot traffic, and other everyday wear and tear.
2. Reduce noise levels
Underlayment also helps reduce noise levels, ensuring your laminate flooring isn’t too noisy when you walk on it. This is especially important in areas where you’ll be entertaining guests, such as the living room or dining area.
The Underlayment also helps to reduce sound transmission, which is great if you have a downstairs neighbor or if you’re trying to keep noise from disturbing the rest of the house. You can also find Underlayment specifically designed to reduce noise levels even further, making it perfect for those who want to keep their floors as quiet and peaceful as possible.
3. Absorb movement and shock
Underlayment helps reduce the amount of movement and shock when walking on the laminate flooring, which can help to prevent damage to the floor. This is especially important in areas with high foot traffic or in homes with children and pets, as these areas can be prone to more wear and tear.
Underlayment also helps to reduce noise levels, making it perfect for spaces where you want a quieter atmosphere.
4. Protect against moisture damage
Moisture protection is another key benefit of using Underlayment for laminate flooring. The Underlayment helps to keep the laminate planks from getting warped or buckling due to changes in humidity and temperature. This is especially important in areas prone to heavy moisture, such as basements or bathrooms.
In addition, Underlayment can also help protect your flooring from water damage caused by spills or leaks. Not only will using underlayment help protect your flooring from water damage, but it’ll also help prevent mold and mildew growth.
5. Prevent buckling and warping of the flooring
Underlayment also helps to prevent buckling and warping of the flooring. By providing a layer of cushioning between the flooring and subfloor, Underlayment helps to reduce the effects of expansion and contraction due to changes in temperature and humidity. This ensures that the floor remains stable, even when exposed to changes in temperature and humidity.
Without this cushioning layer, the laminate flooring could be damaged by expansion and contraction, leading to buckling or warping.
6. Extend the life of your flooring
In addition to the other benefits that Underlayment provides, it can also help extend your flooring life. Since it helps to absorb shock, movement, and moisture, your flooring is less likely to become damaged or warped over time.
On top of that, it acts as an extra layer of protection for your floors against wear and tear. This means that your laminate flooring will last longer, saving you money in the long run.
7. Provide additional warmth underfoot
When added to your laminate flooring, Underlayment can also provide additional warmth underfoot. This is especially beneficial when you want to keep your feet cozy and comfortable during the colder months. In addition to providing warmth, the Underlayment can act as an insulating barrier, reducing sound transmission and making it more difficult for heat to escape.
This means that your home will remain at a comfortable temperature all year round while providing a softer feel when walking on the floor.
What Happens if You Don’t Put Padding Under Laminate Flooring?
If you don’t put padding under laminate flooring, you may experience several problems, such as noise, buckling, warping, and even moisture damage. Without Underlayment, the minor imperfections in the subfloor can cause wear and tear on your flooring, leading to weak spots that will eventually cause your floor to fail.
You may also find your laminate flooring noisy due to stiction and dirt trapped between the laminate planks. Underlayment is the only way to ensure that these issues are avoided and that your flooring is comfortable and long-lasting.
Do I Need a Pad Under Laminate Flooring?
The answer to the question, “Do I need a pad under laminate flooring?” is yes. Underlayment is necessary to provide cushioning and insulation, reduce noise levels, absorb movement and shock, protect against moisture damage, prevent buckling and warping of the flooring, extend the life of your flooring, and provide additional warmth.
An underlayment layer can result in the flooring buckling or warping, damaging by water or moisture, or not providing adequate cushioning or insulation. It is essential to use the right type of Underlayment for your specific type of flooring.
Which Underlayment Is Best for Laminate Flooring?
Several options are available when choosing the right Underlayment for your laminate flooring. This foam pad is often sold as a “vapor barrier” and provides a moisture barrier between the subfloor and the laminate flooring.
If you have a plywood subfloor, you can also use a breathable underlayment, such as cork or rubber, which allows moisture to pass through without damaging the flooring. Regardless of which type of Underlayment you choose, make sure it is designed for use with laminate flooring and is labeled as such.
How Much Does Underlayment Cost?
When it comes to the cost of Underlayment for laminate flooring, it can range from as little as 15 cents per square foot to upwards of 50 cents or more. If you’re on a budget, foam underlayment is the cheapest option.
However, it’s important to remember that performance usually follows price with underlayments, so it’s worth considering if you can afford to spend a bit more. You can also head over to the roofing section in your local big box store and pick up an underlayment thicker than most brands in the flooring section.
Generally speaking, a 3-5mm underlay is recommended for laminate flooring to provide comfort and ground-leveling properties. Check out our ultimate guide to learn more about laminate flooring underlayment and what you should look for.
In summary, Underlayment for laminate flooring is essential for a successful installation. It provides extra cushioning and insulation, reduces noise levels, absorbs movement and shock, protects against moisture damage, prevents buckling and warping of the flooring, extends the life of your flooring, and provides additional warmth underfoot.
Without proper underlayment installation, your laminate floor could shift and move and is more prone to wear and tear or warping. Make sure to take advantage of this important step in the installation process; quality underlayment is worth the investment!