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Northern Beaches Mums Group

A guide to buying vinyl flooring: 13 things to consider

Gone are the days when your only flooring options were carpet, wood, or natural stone.  These days, you can select from an amazing array of artificial and engineered options, including vinyl flooring.

Vinyl flooring has never been more popular thanks to its luxurious finish and a range of practical features. To find out if vinyl flooring is right for you, consider these 13 points.

1: The different types of vinyl flooring

If you’re shopping for vinyl flooring, you’ll need to know what all the jargon means. The main terms that you need to understand include:

  • Luxury Vinyl Flooring: Luxury vinyl flooring is made up of multiple layers, which contain vinyl and other materials. Unlike traditional vinyl floors, which come in sheet form only and are rolled onto the floor, luxury vinyl flooring also comes in tile or plank form.
  • Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT): This flooring comes in tile form and replicates the appearance of ceramic tile or natural stone. Some LVT floors even have seams for grout.
  • Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP): This vinyl flooring comes in plank form (floorboards). It is used to mimic the appearance of hardwood and comes in a range of lengths and widths.
  • Luxury Vinyl Sheet: Sheet vinyl flooring is still used today and can produce luxurious results.  It will provide a seamless finish – without individual planks or tiles – but it can still reproduce the look of stone, tile, or wood.  There are many different styles of vinyl sheet for sale and they are often used for wet areas such as bathrooms.
  • Wood Plastic Composite (WPC): This term is used to describe vinyl floors that have a combination of wood and plastic in the core layer.
  • Stone Plastic Composite (SPC): This term is used to describe vinyl floors that have a combination of stone and plastic in the core layer. This vinyl flooring is often considered to be the most durable.

2: Vinyl flooring can be waterproof

The multiple layers in vinyl flooring all work together to protect against spills, moisture, and even standing water.

Not all vinyl floors will be waterproof, so make sure you check the specifications and talk to your supplier. Vinyl flooring can be waterproof in tile and plank form. Vinyl sheet is also renowned for its waterproof qualities due to its seamless finish.

3: For affordability, it can’t be beaten

Vinyl flooring offers significant cost savings without compromising on appearance or quality. It can recreate the appearance of natural stone, hardwood, or ceramic tile flooring at a much cheaper price. You can find great deals on vinyl planks, vinyl tiles, and vinyl sheets for sale. Vinyl flooring is simple to install, meaning you can have it installed cheaply by a professional.

4: It’s easy to install and you can DIY

If you want to save even more money on your vinyl flooring installation, consider doing it yourself! The majority of vinyl floors can be installed without any adhesives, staples, or underlays. All you need to do is peel and stick or cut and drop them into place depending on the design.

Vinyl can be installed over practically any other floor as long as it is smooth and even.

5: A long-lasting flooring option

Your vinyl floor will last longer if you invest in a higher quality product and take care of it thoroughly. Fortunately, luxury vinyl flooring is within most people’s budget and maintenance is a breeze.

You can expect modern vinyl flooring to last upwards of 20 years, even in areas that get heavy foot traffic. These days, some hybrid vinyl/laminate floors even come with a lifetime residential warranty, which speaks to the lasting quality of vinyl.

6: Thick vinyl offers a range of benefits

When you’re shopping for vinyl flooring, remember that thicker is better. Choose vinyl sheets, planks, and tiles with padded layers and premium thickness for underfoot comfort, better performance in varying temperatures, and increased sound-absorbing properties.

7: Stain resistant for stress-free spills

Do you have young children or clumsy adults in your house? Maybe you just want to be extra careful. If this is the case, ask about stain-resistant qualities when you’re shopping for vinyl flooring.

8: You can use it just about anywhere

Vinyl floors are incredibly versatile, both in terms of appearance and their practical features. As mentioned above, vinyl flooring can also be waterproof. This makes vinyl flooring perfect for any room in the home, from kitchens, bathrooms and laundries to family rooms, home offices, and basements.

9: An aesthetic that suits you

Vinyl flooring can be installed as a seamless sheet or in planks and tiles. You can choose to mimic practically any form of hardwood, natural stone, or ceramic, with so many different colours, patterns, and styles to choose from. 

Vinyl is effective at resembling practically any flooring material. The only difference will be the lower price (but no one needs to know about that!)

10: Temperature stable options

Some floors will expand and contract dramatically over time as they are subject to temperature fluctuations. For the most part, luxury vinyl floors will not have this problem, experiencing minor expansion or contraction at most. Stone Plastic Composite (SPC) is one of the best in this department as the stone in its core makes it incredibly temperature-stable.

11: Be careful with sunlight

Direct sunlight is the enemy of most floors, and vinyl flooring is no different. While some vinyl flooring products have taken steps to reduce UV damage, you can still expect some colour fading over time in direct sunlight. 

If your vinyl floors are in a room with direct exposure to heavy sunlight, consider closing the drapes and blinds when the sun is at its strongest. 

12: Taking care of your vinyl flooring

Taking care of your vinyl floor is as simple as sweeping and mopping. Use a broom to remove dirt and grit, and wipe your floor down with a damp mop to keep it at its best. You can use clean warm water or a specialty vinyl floor cleaner when mopping.

13: Repair options for vinyl flooring

If vinyl rips or tears, the easiest option is to replace it. Vinyl planks and tiles can sometimes be replaced in sections, but vinyl sheet flooring will need to be replaced completely as it is one seamless, fully-connected piece. When you’re looking at vinyl sheets for sale, be sure to purchase a high-quality product. 

In general, premium vinyl floors will be much more durable than low-quality alternatives, so it’s worth investing in a premium product to minimise the risk of ripping and tearing.