Why Choose Vinyl?
Vinyl flooring is a versatile material that is easy to install. Though it historically has been known to be a rigid material, it is because of plasticizers such as phthalates that make vinyl a reliable flooring option. Plasticizers allow manufacturers to make vinyl flooring that can flex in comparison to materials like laminate or engineered hardwood.
Types of Vinyl
There are four different types of vinyl flooring to choose from. One type is Sheet Vinyl, which was found in millions of homes throughout the United States. Sheet Vinyl has some distinct advantages, including the fact that it provides one seamless surface, making it ideal for rooms that are vulnerable to water damage or moisture accumulation like kitchens, laundry rooms and bathrooms. Sheet Vinyl is generally sold in two formats with one being glue-down vinyl that requires adhesive, and the other being loose lay sheets that require special tape. In either format, you will need a level subfloor and seal any seams to ensure a completely waterproof surface.
Another type of vinyl flooring is Plank Vinyl, which is a multi-layered product highly resistant to water when it is properly installed. Many planks aim to mimic hardwood flooring, providing a stylish appearance that is comparable to tile flooring. Vinyl Planks use a click-lock system which features the ends and edges of the planks snapping together. Vinyl Planks are considerably more thick than Sheet Vinyl, being more forgiving of any imperfections in the underlayment, errors that can appear on the surface on Sheet Vinyl. Due to its thickness, Vinyl Planks have more give underfoot, which makes it more comfortable to walk on this surface.
Engineered Vinyl flooring is another type of vinyl that is engineered from several different layers similar to that of Laminate Vinyl Planks or engineered hardwood flooring. The core of each Engineered Vinyl Plank makes the difference, which is made from a composite. This makes each board rigid, but the level of rigidity depends on whether it is classified as SPC (Stone-Plastic Core) or WPC (Wood-Plastic Core) flooring.
While SPC and WPC flooring are very similar to each other, they do offer different benefits. WPC flooring offers more resilience and better comfort underfoot, and it is also lightweight enough to handle for installation. SPC flooring offers a high static load limit, which means a load that doesn’t move. SPC flooring also offers high dent resistance, and they are very affordable in price.
Vinyl flooring has three types of finishes. There is the Vinyl No-Wax Finish, the lightest type which is great for light foot traffic and minimal exposure to dirt and moisture. There is also the Urethane Finish, which is very durable and heavier, and can withstand moderate foot traffic and scuffing. The Enhanced Urethane Finish is the toughest type which can withstand the heaviest foot traffic. It strongly resists scratches and stains, and can last a long time without constant care.