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Every thing about vinyl flooring

Vinyl flooring is a form of synthetic flooring that is produced from polyvinyl chloride plastic, commonly referred to as PVC. It is created by heating small pieces of colored PVC and pressing them into thin layers that are then adhered together to form flexible sheets of vinyl. These sheets can either be used as they are or cut into tiles or planks.

Vinyl floor has the ability to be colored and textured in a way that resembles various materials such as wood, stone, and ceramic. While vinyl floor is often compared to linoleum or laminate flooring, it is important to note that linoleum and laminate flooring are made from all-natural materials, whereas vinyl is entirely synthetic, making it more cost-effective, durable, and easier to install.

Tip! If you are struggling to choose between vinyl and laminate flooring, refer to our comprehensive guide on Vinyl or laminate flooring to assist you in making an informed decision.

Construction of vinyl floors

The construction of vinyl floor involves four distinct layers of materials. So, what components make up vinyl floors?

  • Wear layer

The first layer is the wear layer, which is crafted from a clear, protective urethane sealant. This layer is responsible for giving vinyl floor its durability and resistance to water. The wear layer’s thickness, measured in mil (thousandths of an inch), dictates the level of durability of the vinyl floors.

0–12 mil: suitable for average traffic, ideal for typical home activities 12–20 mil: designed for higher traffic areas, perfect for homes with pets or children Over 20 mil: recommended for heavy traffic locations, ideal for busy commercial establishments

  • Print layer

The second layer is the print layer, which contributes to the visually appealing appearance of vinyl flooring. It consists of a thin film adorned with the desired flooring pattern that is visible through the clear wear layer.

  • Core

The third layer, known as the core, determines whether the vinyl flooring is flexible or rigid. Rigid core vinyl floors usually appears in the form of robust planks or tiles with minimal flexibility. These highly waterproof cores can be constructed from either stone plastic composite (SPC) or wood plastic composite (WPC), with SPC typically being denser, harder, more compact, and more long-lasting compared to WPC.

  • Underlayment

The final layer is the underlayment, composed of fiber, felt, rubber, or foam. This bottommost layer offers vinyl flooring additional cushioning, insulation, sound absorption, and durability. In instances where the subfloor is prone to moisture, underlayment can act as a protective moisture barrier for the underside of the vinyl flooring. Underlayment may either be pre-attached to the vinyl floor or provided as a separate component – it is advisable to review the manufacturer’s specifications before making a purchase.

Vinyl Flooring Designs

The vinyl flooring is available in a variety of design styles, allowing you to achieve your desired floor aesthetic while benefiting from its durability. The following are the different design options that can be selected for vinyl floors.

  • Wood: The wood-inspired vinyl flooring, which comes in numerous wood types and finishes, serves as a cost-effective alternative to expensive hardwood flooring.
  • Stone & Slate: Vinyl flooring offers a wide range of designs that mimic natural stone and slate, providing durability, comfort underfoot, and a more affordable price.
  • Ceramic & Porcelain Tile: For those looking to floor their bathroom or kitchen with a classic ceramic or porcelain tile appearance without overspending, there are vinyl flooring replicas that offer a similarly appealing look at a lower cost.
  • Marble: Despite its cost-effectiveness, marble-inspired vinyl flooring boasts the luxurious appearance and texture of real marble, along with the advantages of vinyl flooring.

Vinyl Flooring Installation Types

When it comes to vinyl flooring installation, there are three distinct methods available. These methods differ in cost and skill requirements, necessitating a careful review of the available options.

  • Floating: Comprised of interlocking or tightly fitting pieces, floating vinyl flooring does not require glue or nails for installation. While it may be lighter and less durable than other types, the use of underlayment can extend its lifespan.
  • Glue-Down: Among the various vinyl flooring installation methods, glue-down installation is the most robust, requiring additional adhesive for bonding to the subfloor. Although it requires more effort to install than other methods, glue-down vinyl flooring is the most durable and long-lasting.
  • Peel & Stick: Ideal for home use, peel-and-stick vinyl flooring is easy to install, with a pre-applied binding agent on the planks. Installation simply involves peeling off the backing and pressing the panels into place.