Benefits of Carpets

When you are shopping for new flooring there are so many options out there it can get overwhelming. One option that many people overlook is carpet. Hardwood and the extensive selection of laminate options have taken over public consciousness, but carpet is a reliable, comfortable option that is sure to please. If you are on the fence about what kind of flooring to go with in your living areas, bedrooms, hallways, and dining room, here are our top six reasons why you should consider carpet.

Improves Indoor Air Quality

Carpet gets a very bad rap when it comes to allergens and air quality. People think that carpet traps allergens, which keeps them in their home. While carpet does trap allergens, dust, and dirt, it actually helps keep them out of the air and removes them from lungs. Compared to all other types of flooring, carpet also has very low Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) emissions. Thanks to this, those who suffer from asthma and allergies end up benefiting by switching to carpet from hardwood.

Child-Friendly and Safe

Carpets are great if you have young children. They are soft and comfortable to play on, making any space great for your kids to hang out in, but they also are cushioning in case of slips and falls. The extra cushioning can also save your fragile belongings if they get knocked over or dropped onto the floor.

Noise Reduction

Carpet is a natural noise barrier and can help block the sound of television and footfalls from those under you. This is one reason why carpet on the stairs and down hallways, as is a great option, as it helps mask the sound of people tromping up and down them. If your bedrooms are directly above the central area of your house, it will also help keep the noise down if you have children playing upstairs.

Heating

Carpets can help your home to stay warm, which in colder climates like Canada can help save on your heating bill in the winter. Carpet has thermal resistance and helps to insulate rooms and keeps the air warmer, longer. It is also warmer on bare feet, which is very nice in the winter and fall.

Variety

There is endless variety when it comes to carpeting. Carpet comes in so many colours, styles, and patterns that there is something for everyone. You can build an entire room around a carpet with an interesting pattern and never have to limit yourself to something neutral and plain.

Eco-Friendly Options

Carpet comes in many eco-friendly options, including wool, bamboo, seagrass, and cotton. Carpet can also be made out of recycled materials. Compared to other flooring options it is quite eco-friendly and a great choice if you are trying to do your part regarding your ecological footprint.

Carpet from Touchtone

If you are looking at getting home renovation done in Edmonton but are not sure about every interior design aspect, then come into Touchtone. We offer residential and commercial flooring options for everyone, including luxurious carpet that your whole family will love. Contact us today!

Sturdy, Solid, And Reliable Laminates - Made To Last!

Choosing flooring for your bathroom is much different than choosing flooring for other parts of your house. The major factor being the amount of water this room endures on a regular basis. The wrong type of flooring would be left ruined if installed in this room. Here are some considerations to take into account when choosing flooring for your bathroom.

Porcelain or Ceramic Tile

Porcelain is the best option for bathroom flooring because it is waterproof, trendy, and cost-effective. It can achieve a rich, textured feel while remaining waterproof and inexpensive. The difference between ceramic and porcelain is the water absorption rate. The Porcelain Tile Certification Agency (PTCA) certifies types of tile as porcelain if it has a water absorption rate of 0.5% or less.

You could opt for ceramic, which is cheaper than porcelain for a half bathroom or powder room as there are no bathing facilities. There are also so many options to choose from with ceramic tiles, so you can create any look you want. Individual tiles comes in a variety of sizes and shapes, from square to octagonal. To avoid slippage, use smaller tiles that require more grout and acts as a non-skid surface - especially in showers.

Vinyl Sheet or Plank

Vinyl has been a popular choice for bathrooms because of its practicality. Sheet vinyl is ideal for children’s bathrooms or a laundry room where large amounts of water are inevitable. It comes in large sizes, which means it could be possible to install it with no seams in a small bathroom. Our luxury vinyl plank flooring comes in narrow widths and long lengths. Because of how popular vinyl is, it comes in thousands of options. Check out our 45,000 square foot showroom to see all of our options in-person.

Engineered Wood

Better than solid wood in high moisture conditions due to its stability all around. It has a plywood base that holds up well against moisture and has the appearance of authentic wood because the top layer is real wood. Although, no matter how well protected any type of wood product is, it is still vulnerable to damage in bathrooms.

Laminate

Certainly a better choice than solid hardwood, it is still more likely to wear down in a bathroom than vinyl, ceramic, or porcelain. Laminate flooring is essentially resin-paper on top of a wood chip base with a clear coat called the wear layer. It can work in bathrooms if you take extra steps to protect the wood base from moisture. Ensuring tight seams between planks will make it difficult for moisture to work its way in. If the wood base does come in contact with moisture, it will expand and bubble, with tearing it out being the only way to fix it.

Colours

This is the fun part. Once you have selected the material you want to line your floors with, you can select the colour or pattern. This will largely depend on the options available for the type of material you picked, but our showroom should have plenty to choose from regardless.

Small bathrooms

Consider installing light colours like soft pastels and neutrals. These will brighten up a small space, making it appear bigger.

Large bathrooms

You could choose darker, more saturated colours in a large space like navy or deep brown. Consider brighter hues if your bathroom gets a lot of light or is an oversized master bathroom.

Top 5 Spring Trends to Spruce Up Your Home

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The months are warmer, the fields are greener, the flowers are in full bloom; what about your home? Is it summer ready to match with the weather? Are your rugs, drapes, and blinds dusted and mended? Is your flooring in good shape? Or is there some fixing to do? Breathe new life into worn-out corners with these evergreen home interior trends.

Bright and Beautiful

Lift tired nooks and corners with bright little accents. Delete the greys and browns of winter. Bring a smile with bright area rugs that bring the room alive. Choose colours that go with your spring mood: red, pink, lime green, orange or yellow. Place them in your living room, dining area, by the bed or at the main door entrance. Go for soft and welcoming textures that match with the season. Get natural fibre carpets for a change or classic oriental rugs that never go out of style. One look at a happy pattern can set the tone for the day.

Refresh and Relax

De-stress by lying back on your favourite sofa that has been a staple for your living room since you moved in. If it is beginning to look worn-out, but you’re not ready to trade it yet, simply change the drapes to change up the scenery. Get sheer ones that move delicately with the summer breeze. They look light, bright, and are easy on the eyes; or get unique fabrics that are available in a variety of ready-to-hang styles. 

Sunshine and Serenity

Are the heavy curtains before your bedroom window getting in the way of the beautiful view outside? Roll them up for airy blinds instead. Blinds, wood shades, and shutters are a beautiful way to let the sunshine stream in without heating up the room on hot days. Relax on your bed with a book in hand and watch the blooms lift your frown. Bring the garden into your room with mirrors on the opposite wall. They will reflect the view and sunlight into every corner of your room.

Expand your Horizons

Why limit greenery to the outdoors?  Line up potted herbs on the window sill in your kitchen or dining area. If you don’t have a green thumb, get leaf printed cushions in different shades of green or a pretty floral print. If that’s wild, here’s a wilder idea for animal lovers. Get cushions or throws in animal print for the kids. Exciting leopard spots or tiger stripes can change the look of furniture in an instant. Pair the animal print throws with cushions in a bold single colour. You don’t want to go overboard on any pattern. Mix and match, play with shades, patterns, and new styles to offset new mosaic floors.

Get Floored by Touchstone Canada in Edmonton

Looking for more bright ideas? Step in to Touchstone Canada - Edmonton’s famed flooring and interiors company that has been serving the region for over 23 years. We have over 3,000,000 square feet of home renovation ideas that will have you floored! Whether you are looking to renovate your home or build your dream business, you will find something of value here. 


 

Carpet Vs. Hardwood - How To Choose The Flooring That Suits Your Needs

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The two most popular, and common, floor solutions are carpet and hardwood. There are pros and cons to both, but no matter which one you pick, they will go along way in making your home more beautiful. There are positives and negatives to having carpet and hardwood in various areas of your home, and both have their uses over the other. Here are the great things and not so great things of both flooring options to help you decide which to put in your home. 

Location, Location, Location

Before we get on to the various attributes of carpet and hardwood, it is important to understand one thing; you need to consider one thing in every room before you lay down a new floor and that is, "what is the chance of flooding?" The kitchen, bathroom, and basement all have a high likelihood of water damage for obvious reasons. For this reason alone it is a bad idea to carpet these areas. Keep these areas hardwood or tile! On the other hand, areas like the living room and the hallway where you want to have some additional comfort are the perfect place for carpet! 

Hardwood

What are the great things about hardwood?
 

1. Easy to Clean

Hardwood is super easy to clean. If you spill liquid on hardwood flooring, you just have to wipe it up, and it's gone! Simply sweeping or vacuuming once a week and running a mop over the area keeps it looking perfect! Carpet, however, cannot withstand spills, which need to be cleaned quickly unless you want permanent stains. 

2. Can Be Refinished

When hardwood is damaged or starts to wear out, you do not need to rip it up and repair it. Instead, you can refinish it. This process is much less expensive than replacing every single piece of hardwood in the area. With carpet, on the other hand, you do not have this luxury. When carpet is damaged, the whole thing has to go and when it wears out there is no refinishing, only replacing. 

3. Eco-Friendly

Wood floors are eco-friendly, while most modern carpets are made from petroleum, which is from a limited resource. Hardwood is attractive to some people for this reason alone. 

Carpet

So what are the great things about carpet?

1. Warmth

Carpet adds so much warmth to a room. It is soft and warm on your feet and helps to actually insulate a room so that heat does not escape through porous floors, such as wood. You can also put a polyurethane pad underneath your carpet which adds an R-value of around 4. 

2. Soundproofing

Unlike hardwood, which sound bounces off, carpet absorbs sound. When installing upstairs, it is wonderful for those living below because you will not hear them stomping around (to the same degree). 

3. Kid Friendly

While less friendly to kids spills, carpet offers a soft surface for children to play on. It also offers more padding if there is a slip and fall, cushioning impact and lessening the chance of sustaining an injury. 

No matter what you choose for the flooring in your house, you will want to come into Touchtone Canada. Our store specializes in commercial flooring in Edmonton. If you are looking for flooring to breathe new life into your home, contact us today!

Perks of Beautiful Vinyl Flooring

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Since its advent in 1930, vinyl has been a popular flooring choice among many homeowners. The extremely affordable option beautifully matches and enhances all types of decors while also offering tremendous protection to the interiors. 
The durable and resistant flooring option is formed of multiple layers to create tiles, planks, and sheets. The base layer of vinyl flooring gives support to the top five layers, fibreglass keeps the flooring flat, and the cushion layer adds texture and bounce. The pattern layers encompass great colours and designs, while the wear layer protects the appearance of the flooring. Lastly, the top coat is applied to add sheen and protection. 
Vinyl flooring has tremendously expanded its beneficial properties and designs since gaining prominence in the mid-20th century.  Let’s take a look at all perks beautiful vinyl flooring offers. 

Stain and Water Resistant

As previously mentioned, the wear layer and top coat in vinyl flooring add protection to the surface. The top layers are easy to clean and maintain. An eco-friendly vinyl floor cleaner and mop are the two items needed to clean dirt and stains off of vinyl. 
Additionally, vinyl sheets and tiles that are installed with precision are bound to provide water resistance. No wonder many people opt for vinyl when it comes to picking a flooring option for their washrooms, laundry rooms, kitchens and other moist prone areas in the house. 

Affordability and Durability

The range of vinyl flooring from low-end to high-end premium options affect the quality and cost. Higher quality material and design in flooring naturally costs more. However, the expense of all types of vinyl floorings remains lower than traditional surfaces, such as stone. 
The life expectancy of vinyl flooring depends on the materials and methods used in its manufacturing process. Composite vinyl tiles and solid vinyl have high resistance to scratches because the colour used in their manufacturing gets permeated through all the layers. Meanwhile, printed vinyl has to rely on the top wear layer for protection.

Comfort

Vinyl flooring keeps interiors cozy during the winter months by remaining unaffected by chilly temperatures. The padded under-layer in vinyl flooring also makes it incredibly comfortable to walk on.
Vinyl planks and tiles are installed on a completely dry and levelled subfloor. Laying the parts of flooring can be a DIY task for a handy person, but a professional should be contacted to prepare the subfloor. 
 

Buy from Touchtone Canada

Touchtone Canada is a prominent flooring and interior company that boasts 3 million square feet of flooring product in 45 thousand square feet operating space. Situated in Edmonton for over 23 years, we provide diverse flooring options throughout the province. 
Our expert staff is highly skilled in renovations, commercial ventures, and new home constructions. So wait no more! Simply visit www.touchtonecanada.com to view our magnificent gallery. You may also call to speak with us at 780-414-0862. Beautiful and comfortable flooring awaits you. 

3 Affordable Flooring Options for Your Kitchen

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It is easy to splurge on home renovations. When you start exploring ideas, expensive options sound more durable and look more aesthetically pleasing. In no time, you might find yourself exceeding your budget. Don’t rush! As the experts in kitchen flooring, Touchtone Canada offers you inexpensive options that look just as good and stay in good condition for years. While price is important, we will advise you to also consider the quality. Your kitchen is the most used part of your home. It needs to wear well against spills, stains, heat, and accidents. It also needs to be easy to clean and maintain, fix, and replace. Have a look at what we have to suggest:

Less expensive kitchen floors are ceramic tile, vinyl, laminate, and cork. However, costs do not include underlay, fixing with adhesive or installation supplies.

Vinyl

If you are considering DIY installation, this is a good option. You can install it right over your existing floor so you avoid extra expenses on underlay. Vinyl comes in a wide variety of styles, the cheapest of which is peel and stick tile. There are also peel and stick planks. If you’re looking for a touch of luxury, consider the thicker planks which can be fitted in a click. Vinyl is easy to clean, is resilient, and feels smooth under bare feet, but depending on the quality of the vinyl, it can be more easily scratched or ruined. It can scratch and wear off easily. Make sure the installation has a professional finish.

Laminate

Laminate is inexpensive but by no means can it be called fragile. It has a hard resin surface that is scratch and stain resistant making it perfect for kitchens, but it can get damaged easily with water. Leaks and spills can make laminate planks swells up around the edges. You cannot mop it with water either. It is very important to choose water-resistant flooring for your kitchen, or you will be spending soon on upgrades. Laminate is available in a “water-resistant” variety which prevents water damage for up to 24 hours, but they are priced higher. Regarding aesthetics, they lose out to hardwood. Your guests will notice the difference for sure. Varieties can look like wood, ceramic tile, stone, and other high-quality flooring. The question is, do you really want a kitchen floor that you can’t mop with water?

Tile

Tile is perhaps the best option for inexpensive kitchen flooring. It is tough, easy to clean, can last for decades if installed properly. If you prefer a simple, clean design, tiles will be perfect for you and they are easy to mop. However, tiled floors can crack easily if a hard object is dropped on it. The flooring can feel uncomfortably hard, hot or cold under your feet. With that said, you can opt to add an in-floor heating system that will remove the cold feel of tile.

Cork

Cork is a high-end option among the inexpensive choices. It is comfortable, aesthetic, easy to install and offers soft cushioned comfort under your feet. Cork can last you decades. It is available as planks that can be snapped together but as you can expect, it will cost you more.

Touchtone Canada: Luxurious Flooring Store in Edmonton

Touchtone Canada has been servicing Edmonton for over 23 years. We have over 3,000,000 square feet of flooring products and over 45,000 square feet of operating space offering diverse flooring products at the best prices in the entire province.

Contact our knowledgeable staff for flooring services, home renovations, commercial products, and new home constructions.

Humidity and Hardwood Flooring

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Winter has ended, and spring is happy to be here. With warm weather, though, comes humidity, and humidity is not the friend of hardwood floors. Whether you have recently splurged on hardwood floors or have beautiful old hardwood, you want to protect it and keep it in good condition. Wood is naturally porous, and when there is too much moisture in the air, wood will absorb this, causing the wood to expand. When the humidity goes down, which can happen quite quickly in Canada where the weather fluctuates between extremes, moisture escapes the wood. When moisture is absorbed by and then leaches out of wood, it can cause it to warp. Some things can be done to avoid this so that your hardwood floors look brand new for the entirety of their life.

The Ten Percent Margin

When floors warp because of humidity, it is because they undergo huge fluctuations in humidity levels, especially over a short period. 45% humidity to 55% humidity is the best possible range for wood floors to stay between, any fluctuations that happen between these two points is safe. That is not to say that wood floors cannot survive humidity levels dipping below or going above that point. The real issue is to keep humidity from jumping around quickly. It is best, though, to keep humidity within the magic range of 45% and 55%.

Kitchens, Bathrooms, & Basements

Your house may already have hardwood in the kitchen, the bathroom, or the basement. If it does, then there is no reason to rip it out and install tile or laminate. If you are going to be doing renovations, however, it is best to install tile and laminate in these areas. These places, especially the bathroom, are predisposed to have high humidity levels. They also experience fluctuations in humidity. Considering these factors, it is best to use flooring that is not hardwood. Spills and flooding are also more common in the kitchen, bathroom, and basement, which can cause warping and damage to a hardwood floor. It takes very little time for water to damage wood floors; if it does, they may never be returned to their original condition.

Seasonal Changes

In the summer, you have to look out to see if your flooring is bulging. A little bit of bulging is fine, but too much can cause permanent damage, and if it appears to be bulging a lot, then humidity needs to be taken out of the air; and fast. In the winter, there may be gaps between planks on your hardwood. This is typical, and it is not a precursor to damage as long as it is minimal. Larger gaps between floorboards are not normal. If they are present or there are cracked bits of wood and bending, then you have humidity damage. If this is the case your hardwood needs to be fixed or replaced with another product.

Keeping Humidity Out

To keep your hardwood healthy you need to keep humidity out of your house. In the summer, the best way to do this is with air conditioning. You also should reconsider turning off your air conditioner when you leave if the humidity levels outside are extremely high. Dehumidifiers also help and in the winter you can use a humidifier to keep your floor from experiencing too many gaps.

What type of commercial flooring should you pick for your business

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If you are remodelling your current office or moving into a new one, choosing the best type of flooring will be a big decision. Certain types of flooring can be very hard to maintain, expensive, and in a lot of cases, just plain drab.

 

New engineering and design theories are putting an end to these issues. It's now feasible to accomplish a good look, a dependable hard wearing surface, and keep prices in check. A combination of commercial carpets, tiles, top quality floor coverings, and personalized design is drastically boosting the standard of public and corporate spaces.

Flooring designs for offices

 

The flooring in your office will be used a lot throughout the day, and the prerequisites for durability, plus cost-efficient maintenance and repair are important to consider.

 

Areas such as airports, libraries, auditoriums, public office buildings, together with other high volume traffic zones have a higher risk of trips and falls if the flooring isn’t safe to walk on. Having a different and fresh approach to your office flooring can end up saving you money on repairs and keep everybody walking on them every day safe.

 

If your business is located in an area that sees a lot of snow or rain, you should also consider investing in durable rugs which are designed to be simple and economical while keep your floor clean and safe to walk on.

Comfortable carpet flooring

 

You may have recently seen some ultra contemporary, hard wearing carpet in public places that looked remarkably different than carpet you are used to. This is actually a brand-new category of carpet design, created on a “constructed to last” basis.

 

These new designs include smooth carpet tile squares with incorporated backing, supplying both cushioning and maintaining cloth integrity. This integrated structure also enhances safety and avoids seam stress fractures that can eventually destroy carpets.

 

Modular carpet tiles, retail carpet, and commercial carpet squares make upkeep easy and quick. The area can be restored almost immediately, at minimum cost without disrupting how people walk around your office. The design notions are predicated on built-in efficiencies and also realistic approaches to the needs of busy areas. The economics of public places can be managed very well, with regards to product life durability. Inferior quality flooring is less affordable with time, and more of a risk with regards to safety and unexpected maintenance costs.

 

High-quality materials will prevent wear and tear, are more budget-friendly, and bring you the peace of mind for those accountable for these areas. The best industrial carpet tiles are incredibly durable, and might never need any work done on them at all. Probably the most impressive part of the floor concepts for public places is the capability to custom design these huge spaces. In the past, this could have been nearly impossible except at great expense.

 

If your office has a big and busy public area, you may want to do your very own custom layout for it, including custom colourization. If you run your company out of Edmonton, Alberta, check out the commercial flooring options we have at TouchTone Canada! Visit our site to see our design options, patterns, and see some current working samples of custom design commercial flooring we are working on. Give us a call at 780-414-0862 or email us at info@touchtonecanada.com today if you have any questions regarding the options for your business’ floor!

Engineered Wood Flooring Vs Hardwood Flooring

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Engineered hardwood flooring sure has made a name for itself. Some people won't even look its way, preferring traditional hardwood flooring, but there are of course advantages to both. What advantages does engineered flooring have over regular wood flooring you ask? Let's look at both sides of the equation and compare these two types of flooring so that you get a good look at the complete picture.

 

First of all, engineered hardwood has a better reaction when it comes to both temperature and humidity. There are many reasons why companies prefer engineering flooring, it can be built and modified to be longer lasting, more durable, and more cost effective then some of its contemporaries. That's not the end of the story, however, so let's take a look at more of the differences.

 

In order to install Hardwood flooring, it is required that the floor be nailed into the ground. This is not the case with engineered floors however as glue can be used, or in some cases, staples. So far, we are painting a picture together that highlights engineered flooring as the winner of this battle but there are still two sides to this story.  

 

Let's say that you have been using a hardwood floor for over 20 years in your home. The chances are that by then it may start to lose its original finish. A tremendous benefit to Hardwood floors is that they can be easily sanded and refinished. This is not the case with engineered wood floors as the amount of true wood surface that on has to work with is limited in comparison.

 

Hardwood flooring will typically cost more money than its engineered counterpart. However, this is not always the case as there are many different kinds of materials that can be used to construct an Engineered Wood floor. One of the benefits of Hardwood is that it has a reliable material that one can expect to last for decades on end. This is not to downplay engineered hardwood however, as there are many brands that offer tremendous quality and value for the product.

 

Now you know have a little more knowledge on what you can expect from both types of flooring, you may see why engineered flooring is making such a splash in the market. With more flexible installation options, an engineer’s design palette and reliable companies backing the product, we believe Engineered Floors offer something of great substance and value to the consumer.


 

At the end of the day however both hardwood and engineered wood flooring both have many advantages and neither is strictly better than the other. Different situations call for different types of flooring and what matters most is choosing the ideal product that will not only help your floor, but also make you happy. Flooring is a big decision and there should be no bigger criteria than customer satisfaction.


If you are in the Edmonton area and are looking to upgrade your flooring to Hardwood or Engineered wood, you lay your expectations on Touchtone Canada to get the job done! We are Alberta’s Largest Flooring Store and are entering our 25th year of business. We have options for hardwood and engineered wood flooring from all the trusted and high-quality brands, ensuring your floor will look amazing and be durable for a long, long time! We offer same day delivery & pick up as well as next day installation.

Give us a call at 780-414-0862 or email info@touchtonecanada.com for more information. At Touchtone Canada: We Floor, You Adore.

Mistakes to Avoid When Choosing a Wooden Floor

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Deciding on the materials to use on a new wooden floor can be a complex process. You need to figure out a variety of things, including what colour should you go for? Is this the right style for your room? What finish is best for you? Once you have made these decisions and figured out the obvious things, there are some less obvious factors that you need to think about which are just as important if you want your floor to provide you with years of trouble-free enjoyment. Here are a few common mistakes that you will want to avoid when choosing a wooden floor.

Make Sure that You Measure the Space Correctly
Make sure you measure the space that you plan on laying your new floor correctly. This can be done by ensuring that you are taking accurate measurements from the longest and widest parts of the room. If you are working with a room that is an irregular shape,  be sure to split it into separate sections, and then measure each of those sections individually. Once that is done simply add the total together at the end.

Find Out Which Underlay Works Best for Your Situation
People who are unfamiliar with laying flooring down, often incorrectly assume that underlay is simply a trivial addition that comes in a standard size and spec. This is a mistake that can result in a major headache. This is because having the right underlay can extend the life of your new wooden floor, as well as offers noise insulation and needs to be compatible with your heating choices. If you have not already considered what sort of underlay you need, here are some of the primary factors to consider:

  • How thick do you need the underlay to be?
  • Is the underlay going on to a concrete or wood sub-floor?
  • Do you need the underlay to provide a moisture barrier?

If You Plan on Installing Underfloor Heating Make Sure that it is Compatible
There are so many potential issues that could potentially arise when you install your wooden floor over underfloor heating if you have not made sure that it is compatible first. Most people don’t know that many solid wood floors are not compatible with underfloor heating due to the expansion and contraction of the wood as the temperature changes. Having the wrong flooring installed with underfloor heating can result in cracking, warping, as well as bowing and excessive drying out of your once beautiful hardwood floor, which can completely destroy it.

Not Giving the Floor Enough Time to Acclimatize
Are you aware that different wooden floor types require different periods in order to properly acclimatize to your home’s conditions? The humidity and temperature of your home both play a large part in how your wooden floor will contract and expand. In order to lower the risk of gaps and warping in your floor once it’s been installed, the installers would leave the floor in the room in which it is due to be installed for anywhere from 2 to 7 days.

The Janka Hardness Scale

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Hardwood flooring is one of the best decisions you can make when it comes to interior home design, as it is a product that never goes out of style. It’s easy to assume that all hardwood flooring is the same when it comes to durability, but this is actually quite far from the truth. Hardwood’s actual hardness is measured by something called the Janka hardness scale. Let’s take a look at what the Janka scale is and how it works.

What is the Janka hardness scale?

The Janka hardness scale is a way of measuring the hardness of a given piece of hardwood. It was invented in the year 1906 by an Austrian wood researcher named Gabriel Janka, and it is an adaptation of the Brinell hardness test for metals. In order to better understand the Janka scale, you first need to know how the Brinell test works. The Brinell hardness test is used to test metal materials that are too coarse or rough to be tested by other means. The test involves a steel ball with a 10mm diameter being pressed into the material’s surface under 3,000 kgs of pressure. The resulting indentation is then examined to determine the hardness of the material.

How does the Janka hardness scale work?

The Janka hardness scale works in a very similar way to the Brinell test. It measures the pounds of force (lbf) it takes to drive an 11.28 mm diameter steel ball halfway into the surface of a slab of hardwood. A test done on the surface of a board, perpendicular to the grain is called a test of “side hardness”, while the same test being performed on the cut surface of a stump is called a test of “end hardness”. Every hardwood board will not yield the same test result, seeing as the hardness of wood varies with the direction of the wood grain, and will be different from one board to another. While durability issues come up when we look at different types of wood grains, there is usually not much deviation when it comes to differences in separate types of wood material, as estimates usually find the difference to be about plus or minus 10%.

Why is a Janka hardness rating important?

Hardwood flooring is a big investment and will typically cost you a pretty penny, so you’ll want to make sure you are getting top quality wood that is not going to deteriorate or wear down after a few short years. While wood with a low Janka rating can still serve you just fine, it is only going to do so if you live a quieter lifestyle that does not involve your home seeing heavy foot traffic. If you have children and/or pets, try to find hardwood with a higher Janka score. A Janka hardness rating is going to give you a great indication of what kind of wear and tear your hardwood is going to be able to handle, helping you make a smarter decision when it comes to making a purchase. Come visit Touchtone Canada and browse our collection of high-quality hardwood flooring today.

 

What to know When Buying Hardwood Floors with Dogs

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When you install hardwood flooring in your home, you want to make sure it stays beautiful for years to come. Hardwood that is damaged or worn is never going to give off the same appearance as newly installed hardwood, so you need to make sure you are avoiding any and all damage. A fairly big cause of scratched and damaged hardwood these days is dogs’ nails. As dogs run across a hardwood floor, their nails can easily dig into the wood and create scratches and deep gouges. To better prepare yourself for having a pet in your hardwood home, there are a number of things you can do.

Choose your finish wisely

When looking to buy hardwood for your home, you should know that wood with a glossy, shinier finish is far more likely to make every dent and scratch show. This is because these types of finishes reflect light a lot more than their non-glossy counterparts, making it much easier to see scratches and dents. If you are a pet owner, it’s probably a good idea to stray way from the glossy finishes and go for something a little less shiny.

Try using a two-toned finish

Some hardwood companies offer a flooring option that is “two-toned”, which means it is stained black, then sanded, then stained again to give it the completed look. The end result is an “old” look in which black soaks into the grain and edges. This style of flooring is extremely popular with homes that contain pets because it does a great job of camouflaging any small scratches or dents that may happen to occur.

Keep your floors clean

No matter what type of hardwood you decide to put in your home, you will not be able to avoid scratches and gouges if your floor is consistently dirty. When your floor is dirty, your pet’s paws can just drive that dirt into the hardwood and cause it to dig deep scratches and gouges. Try and sweep your hardwood floors regularly in order to avoid this from occurring.

Trust your hardwood supplier

When it comes to making the right choice concerning your hardwood floor, there is no better way to get the information you need than by asking an expert for their opinion. Your hardwood supplier is likely a good candidate for this, so make sure you ask all the questions you need answered before you purchase any hardwood. An experienced professional is going to be very informative when it comes to buying hardwood that is safe for pets, so make sure to ask!

Use mats and rugs

If there is a stretch of hardwood that you know is going to be seeing a lot of pet traffic, it may be a good idea to consider setting up a couple of mats or rugs in that area to avoid any damage all together. This will ensure that your hardwood stays beautiful at all times.

 

Tile Flooring for the Winter

tile flooring

When decorating your home, you are mainly focused on how everything looks and compliments each other. This same outlook applies to the flooring in your home. However, when it comes to deciding which flooring is best for your home, you should definitely consider the overall aesthetic look, but you should also consider the climate that you live in.

If you live in a climate that is subject to long and cold winters, you will need to get flooring that won’t warp, expand or break – especially if your climate is prone to drastic temperature changes. One of the optimal choices for this is tile flooring.

Here we look specifically at tile floorings that would be suitable for the winter climates.

Luxury Vinyl

Luxury vinyl is a versatile flooring option that can deal with the harsh elements that winter brings. Here are some of the advantages that come with installing vinyl flooring:

Durable: vinyl tiles have a topping of a hard, durable wear layer. This allows the surface to be resistant to the scratches and scuffs that can come with shoes (especially shoes with salt in its soles). This resistant surface can withstand heavy traffic, which makes it perfect for those who trudge in with winter boots day in and day out.

Waterproof: this feature of vinyl makes it a popular option for bathrooms and kitchens. However, this is also well suited for the rest of the home because any melted ice and snow will simply stay on the surface, rather than seeping through.

Creative Designs: vinyl is highly customizable and comes in a variety of designs suited for the requirements of the buyer. You can get warmer tones, and even mimic natural stone and wood at the fraction of the price.

Laminate

Laminate flooring is a good option because it is warm to touch – which is great in the winter time when you do not want to wear thick socks inside your home. Here are some of the advantages that come with installing laminate flooring:

Efficient: It can mimic hardwood with less costs and maintenance!

Stable: this type of flooring does not expand or contract in high temperature or dry air – which makes it great for the colder climates.

Heating: another benefit is that laminate flooring works well with radiant heat systems, making it a popular option for those who live in wintery climates.

Ceramic

Ceramic tile flooring is a great and durable option for the winter time because it is easier to maintain with the foot traffic that brings in slush and snow. The ceramic will resist any etching that comes with any harsh chemicals that get tracked in such as salt, snow and more. A simple sealant will also solve any problems such as grout, leaving your tile hassle free all winter.

Ceramic tile is a durable option, and is considered a practical flooring type because it can use radiant heat during the winter time. Take the time to install in-floor radiant heat to keep your feet warm all winter long.

Ceramic tiles can come in a multitude of designs which can make it easy to match the overall elements of the room it will get installed in.

These type of tile flooring options are advantageous for the winter climates, and they are stylish too. Keep your home well insulated and your feet warm with any of these warm to the touch flooring options.

Your Guide to Buying Tile Flooring

flooring tiles

Whether you’re building a new home or doing renovations, your flooring choices will make a very big difference in the outcome of your design.  There are, of course, many options out there, but if you’re looking for something durable, beautiful and long-lasting, you can’t go wrong with tile. 

When choosing tiles, there are a number of considerations; not every tile is created equal, so it’s important to know what to look for.  Did you know that tiles have ratings for several different categories?  These categories include the tile’s water absorption, friction coefficient, a grade, PEI rating, frost safety and tone.   These ratings can be found on the box, and it’s a good idea to go shopping armed with the knowledge to make an informed choice.

Tile Grade

A tile’s grade can fall anywhere between number 1 to number 3, with 1 being a top quality tile that will demand top prices.  Grade 2 is also a great choice for flooring; but it’s less expensive than a tile with a grade of 1.  If you see a box with a grade 3, this is a tile that’s best used for walls (backsplashes and such) and will not stand up to regular floor traffic.  Although a grade 1 or 2 tile can certainly be used on your walls, a grade 3 tile should never be installed as flooring.

PEI rating

PEI stands for the Porcelain and Enamel Institute’s wear rating.  You’ll only find this type of rating on a glazed tile, as this rating concerns itself with the glazed tile’s resistance to scuffs and marks.  If the box of tile you’re looking at doesn’t show a PEI rating, it’s because the tile is   unglazed.

Just as tile grades show different numbers for the different uses for tile, so too does the PEI rating.  If your tile is rated a number 3, it’s a good tile for normal wear and tear around your home.  Number 4 is even more durable, while a number 5 generally means the tile is more appropriate for commercial use.  A number 1 or 2 indicate a tile that’s good for use on walls, but shouldn’t be used on floors.

Tile slip resistance

Also known as a tile’s COF (coefficient of friction is a fancy way of saying slip resistance), this rating lets you know how slippery your floor will be.  A low COF means a more slippery floor, while a higher number means that the floor will allow for more traction.  This is an important consideration especially when it comes to small or elderly family members.

Water absorption rate

There are 4 different categories in the water absorption rate; the nonvitreous tile (not for use in bathrooms or other high moisture areas of the home, semivitreous (like nonvitreous, this tile isn’t good for high moisture areas), vitreous (can be used outdoors or in high moisture locations), and impervious (great for use in very high moisture areas).

Tile frost rating

If you’re using the tiles for inside your home, this rating won’t apply anyway, as your tile isn’t exposed to freeze and thaw cycles.

Tone rating

Toned tile will come into play when a tile is made to look like natural stone; there is a specific controlled variation from tile to tile.

 

How to Maintain Tile & Carpet Flooring

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Your carpet and tile will look great for years to come, if you take care of it. To keep your flooring looking fantastic, follow these industry tips and tricks!

Tile Maintenance

Tile is easy to clean and water-resistant, which is what makes it a top choice for busy families and houses with a lot of foot traffic. Keeping your tile floors clean all depends on the type of tile you have.

All Types Tile:

●     Sweep and vacuum regularly to remove daily dirt build-up.

●     Always vacuum or sweep before moving on to other cleaning products.

●     Mop at least once a week to avoid wear and damage from abrasive debris.

●     Always allow floors to dry completely before walking on them.

Glazed Tile:

●     Use a non-oil, all-purpose cleanser that is formulated to clean grout joints.

●     For bathrooms: Choose a sprayable cleaner made to remove mildew, soap scum, and hard water deposits.

●     Use a sponge, soft cloth, or other non-abrasive tool to scrub. Never use metal brushes, as they will damage the glaze and grout.

●     Do not use acids or ammonia. They can weaken grout and damage tile glaze.

Unglazed Tile:

●     Use a balanced pH concentrated tile cleaner that is formulated for your type of flooring and foot traffic.

●     Avoid abrasive cleansers and tools. When in doubt, test a small area first to make sure it won’t damage the tile.

●     Don’t allow cleaners to sit on the tile, clean it away with water.

●     Glass tile can be cleaned with solutions made for either glass or tile, so long as it’s not abrasive.

Carpet Maintenance

Carpet is a plush and soft relief for those of us who spend all day on our feet. It may seem like a trap for dirt and stains, but with the right know-how you can easily keep your carpet looking fresh and spotless.

●     Vacuum regularly, at least once a week, to keep dirt from embedding itself too deep.

●     Use the right vacuum for your carpet type: Plush carpets need equipment with spinning brushes and bars while rougher indoor and outdoor types only need suction.

●     Hire a professional cleaner at least once a year, more often if you have a lot of traffic.

●     Never pull or tug debris out of the fibres, it only does more damage. It’s better to simply cut it out.

Dealing with Damage

Depending on the type of damage, some parts can be cleaned or cut away, while others might need to be patched or replaced. Here are some tips for dealing with common carpet catastrophes.

●     Stains - Treat spills immediately, as the longer they sit the deeper the stain will become. Do not rub but blot the fluid out. Use detergent or retail spot remover sparingly to avoid bleaching.

●     Burns - Cut the tops off the burned fibres if the burn is small. If a large area is affected, cut out the entire area and patch or replace it.

●     Water Damage - Consult a professional to deep clean both the top and bottom mat.

Common Flooring Options

flooring and carpet installation edmonton

When it comes to flooring options for your home there are so many options it can be difficult to know which is best.  You may even opt for a few different kinds of flooring depending on the specific use of the room.  It also helps to know how much prep or what types of prep or underlay your flooring may require.  Here are some of the most common flooring types available and a few key details about each.

Ceramic Tile

Less expensive than stone, waterproof and with fewer associated issues, ceramic tile is a very popular and low maintenance option for homeowners.  Colour options are endless which means that you will be able to find something that flows with the other decor and colour choices already in your home.  Ceramic tile comes in different sizes, is relatively simple to install, and can be heated for toasty toes during the colder months of the year.   A smooth surface makes it easy to keep clean with a simple sweep and mop, and most ceramic tiles are durable and can stand the rigours of family life with kids and critters.

Laminate

Another very popular choice, laminate won’t break the bank and can also be found in a variety of colours, widths and even textures.  Many laminates are very durable and will resist water damage.  It installs quickly whether you opt for the snap together variety or the glued type, and it can withstand all types of traffic and household uses, from your kitchen to your bathrooms to entry ways.

Hardwood

Beautiful, classic and often environmentally friendly, hardwood is another great choice that allows homeowners the ability to have it refinished when they tire of their floor colour. Although it is a fairly durable floor and small scratches or dings can be buffed out, hardwood isn’t the best choice for bathrooms as it is not moisture resistant.

Engineered Wood

If you just can’t live without the look of hardwood, an option you should consider is engineered wood flooring.  The plywood base gives the flooring some moisture protection, and the top layer is actually hardwood so you don’t have to sacrifice the style you’re after.  Engineered wood can also be very environmentally friendly, just look for products that have been harvested from well managed forests.

Vinyl

If you’re looking for something easy on the pocketbook, durable, and with a wide range of colour, designs and styles that can be installed in virtually any room in your home, don’t discount vinyl flooring.  This flooring type is far less expensive than most other flooring choices and is simple to maintain.

Carpet

Carpet is often the warmest and most comfortable option, although it would be odd to see it installed in a bathroom or kitchen.  Often the best choice for bedrooms and family rooms, carpet can hold up well to regular traffic and be a welcoming flooring option to come home to at the end of the day.  It comes in a wide variety of colours and styles to match your decor and taste.

5 Great Home Interior Styles

Are you looking to completely redo the interior of your home and are yearning for a great new style to work with? There are countless options out there when looking for interior styles, so it can be a little overwhelming when browsing for your home’s new look. Do you stick with a more modern style, or do you go vintage? Do you want to add as much of your own personal touch as possible, or do you want to keep things simple? Here are 5 trendy home interior styles that just might do it for you!

Eclectic

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The eclectic interior style is for those of us with a creative flair. This style borrows from a number of different periods, styles, and trends. It’s meant to be twisted and moulded in different and unique ways, allowing for maximum expression! While it can be tempting to let loose and add all sorts of patterns, colours, and textures, it’s still important to keep a sense of balance between these things, while also blending old with new.

Minimalist

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Minimalism is a trend that is fairly new, starting in the early twentieth century. This style was originally influenced by Japanese design and its simplicity, and it involves interiors being stripped down to their basic elements to create as little clutter as possible. The idea behind the minimalist style is that less is more, therefore any empty space is a design statement and is meant to be empty. Minimalist style should always be done with colour being used sparingly, since too many colours will just be a distraction from the simplicity.

Scandi

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The scandi style is becoming more and more popular around the globe. This style is inspired by the snowy landscapes of the Nordic countries and is characterized by heavy use of the colour white. Too really feel like you’re warm and cozy in the Nordics, consider adding white wools, fabrics, and furs to wooden frameworks. The scandi style is all about sharp lines and lots of texture; it’s perfect if you’re looking for a clean and vibrant style.

Vintage

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The Vintage style is most likely to create that home-sweet-home feeling we all know and love. While not old-fashioned, Vintage style seeks to evoke feelings of comfort while treating the eye to versatile design choices that can be either Charming or edgy, pretty or retro. A concept of open shelves leaves plenty of room for knick-knacks and more as you customize your vintage space.

Contemporary

The beauty of the contemporary interior style is that it is constantly evolving. This style is modern and current at heart, but there are constantly new additions to its essence, and what is considered a contemporary interior now will likely change as time goes on. As it stands today, contemporary interior styles include clean spaces, furniture with exposed legs that create a feeling of space, a lack of intricate details, and lots of metal and glass.

These are just 5 of the many beautiful and unique styles dominating the world of interior design today. A whole world of style and beauty is waiting for you, so get decorating!