Please don’t even think about flooring until you get a look at what is the most popular, arguably, most durable, and by far, easiest-to-install flooring on the market. There’s a good chance you’ve already heard of it, but luxury vinyl flooring has radically improved over the last few years. Read on to find out more about why designers and contractors who want an affordable upgrade are choosing luxury vinyl flooring.
It’s not just homeowners that are rushing to luxury vinyl flooring. High-end retail store brands and custom homeowners alike are also discovering just how upscale luxury vinyl can be.
What is Vinyl Flooring?
Vinyl flooring is made from polyvinyl chloride or PVC. It has been around for over 150 years, and it’s used in the toughest environments and under grueling conditions. As one of the most tested and trusted man-made compounds, PVC is used in a variety of applications in healthcare, construction, and manufacturing. Polyvinyl chloride is even used to make the pipes that bring us our drinking water, the IV bags hospitals use to dispense life-saving medicines, and many other crucially important applications.
The Different Types of Vinyl Flooring
Square Vinyl Tiles – These are most often 12 inches by 12 inches, and they are sold by the box. They’ve been around for decades, and they were originally conceived as a way to replace asbestos tiles. They are somewhat basic in construction and design options.
Sheet Vinyl Flooring – This comes in a 12-foot wide roll and is either sold by the running foot or by the square foot. Usually installed as a single-piece solution, this type of flooring provides excellent water resistance, and professional installation is highly recommended.
Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP) – Here’s where things get exciting. Over the last few years, LVP has achieved so many advances in its construction, materials used, textures, colors, and, most importantly, the extraordinarily tough protective wear layer. LVP flooring comes in planks of various lengths and widths. While regular vinyl is durable and cost-effective, Luxury Vinyl Plank flooring has better performance, is more durable, and creates a far more upscale look and feel.
Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) – Ditto. LVT comes with all the advantages of LVP. The only difference is the format. Luxury Vinyl Tile comes in a tile shape, while LVP is offered in a plank shape. Both create an upscale appearance, and both have a thick, protective wear layer.
Engineered Vinyl Plank (EVP) – EVP is recognized as the best in the category. It is specially designed and manufactured to look as close to a hardwood floor as possible. In fact, it’s almost indistinguishable in terms of texture, pattern, and color.
Even walking on it sounds and feels like you’re on an expensive natural hardwood floor. Even if you get down for a closer look and run your fingers along the surface, it’s very difficult to notice a difference.
Engineered Vinyl Tile (EVT) – Move over porcelain, ceramic, and natural stone tile, Engineered Vinyl Tile is taking over. EVT is specially designed and manufactured to look identical to tiles. EVP comes in narrow planks to look like wood.
EVT comes in the same square and rectangular formats as tile. Engineered Vinyl Tile gives you all the posh and extravagance of tile with none of the exorbitant prices to buy and install.
High Durability Protective Wear Layer – No matter which level of vinyl flooring you end up with, you’ll be able to benefit from a thick, incredibly tough wear layer that makes your floor scratch and water-resistant. Luxury vinyl is one of the most durable flooring options for your home.
The thickness of this protective urethane sealant is measured in mils. (Also known as thousandths of an inch.) With lower priced choices, this wear layer is approximately 12 mils thick, which is more than adequate for the average foot traffic in a typical home application.
Flooring with a 12-20 mil wear layer is recommended for homes with active pets and children. Over 20 mils thick is recommended for heavy traffic areas in commercial locations. Some of the premium grades of flooring have a wear layer that’s even thicker. These floors can easily last more than 20 years.
Decorative Layer – The three-dimensional images used to mimic real hardwood floors or mirror real natural stone and porcelain tiles create the look of wildly more expensive flooring options. Even up close, these high-resolution images are almost impossible to tell apart from real wood or tile.
Core Layer – The higher quality choices in vinyl incorporate a rigid core that is made from SPC, stone plastic composite, or WPC, wood plastic composite. These solid cores provide ultimate water-resistant performance even in bathroom and laundry rooms.
Base or Underlayment Layer – This is the layer that helps even out imperfections in the subfloor as well as deadening sound transmission. Premium examples of vinyl flooring provide substantial underlayment.
Re-Cap of Luxury Vinyl Advantages
Outstanding Value – Every penny you invest in luxury vinyl flooring pays off in big, wide smiles of pride and joy. When it comes to high-end looks at tremendous value, luxury vinyl is at the top of every list.
Unmatched Durability – Luxury vinyl flooring can last a lifetime, and when you factor in how easy it is to keep clean and the surprisingly low cost, not even marble can compare. Luxury vinyl flooring is designed with wear and tear top of mind.
Easy-To-Install – When it comes to shopping for a new floor, many homeowners forget about floor installation. Even if you’re the kind of person who likes surprises, this is definitely one you can do without. Other than vinyl sheet flooring, luxury vinyl can be a realistic option for those who want to DIY. Many of the options include a peel-and-stick application.
Ultimate Posh – Even people with plenty of money prefer the high-end look of luxury vinyl because it’s so easy to keep clean, and it doesn’t require the long-term finicky upkeep that comes with wood flooring and natural stone tiles.
The Easiest Way To Pick the Best Flooring
Why waste any time at all driving to flooring outlets or big box stores? Our Shop-At-Home service will bring the store to you. A friendly flooring expert will visit you at your home or office to show you as many options as you like and answer every single question you may have.
They will accurately measure your floor and supply you with a free, no-obligation estimate. There’s no need to fumble around with a tape measure or get stuck on some obscure website to calculate how much flooring you’ll need. We do it all for you.