Best Flooring for Extreme Temperatures | Word of Mouth Floors Blogs

The Best Flooring for Extreme Temperatures

When floors are exposed to extreme temperatures, they might suffer unexpected damage as a result. That's why we should look for the best flooring for extreme temperatures so we can ensure that it will last longer. The type of flooring you choose should greatly depend on the temperature and climate of your location, especially if you live in an area that gets extremely hot and cold at the same time.

NOTE: this is not purchasing advice, it is informative to help you in your research to find the perfect floor. We do not know your exact situation and this article is not to be used for purchasing advice for your exact situation.

Choosing the right flooring for extreme temperatures depends on the climate in your area as each harsh environment affects floors in a different manner. Here are some of the best flooring options to consider for various climates:

Flooring for Extreme Temperatures: Dry Climates

Flooring for extreme temperatures | Word of Mouth Floors in Vancouver

Floor types that are exposed to dry air can suffer disastrous consequences. Among the issues, it can cause are shrinkage, gaps, and cracks. Fortunately, you can minimize your chances of experiencing these types of problems if you choose one of the following floor types. 

1. Tile

Considering tile's insulating properties, it is an ideal material for most climates. Underfoot, tile is usually cool, which makes it ideal for hot and dry areas. There are also a variety of colours and patterns available to suit any theme. 

2. Engineered Hardwood Flooring

You can get the look and feel of hardwood without having to worry about shrinkage and cracking with engineered hardwood. Engineered hardwood flooring has several manufactured layers under a real wood layer to provide added stability, preventing warping and cracking in dry climates as well. It's important to remember that engineered hardwood flooring can still warp or crack even when it can outlast solid hardwood in dry climates. The best chance of success is to use a hardwood species that has been grown in your region. So if what oak grows in your Province or State, consider using white oak. We see problems with installation of exotic woods in domestic environments. The exotic woods may crack or move rapidly and must be seriously researched before being used in any extreme temperature environments. As a general rule, we do not advise it.

3. Vinyl Planks

There are many benefits to vinyl plank flooring, including its durability and versatility. Vinyl planks also resist scratches, moisture, and stains, and can be easily installed, cleaned, and maintained. There are many different finishes and looks available for vinyl flooring, just like tile. You can even get the same look as natural hardwoods. It is important to keep in mind that vinyl floors tend to expand if the temperature exceeds 85°F, and they can also be damaged by direct sunlight. Vinyl floors, however, are an excellent alternative to natural wood in dry climates. 

Flooring for Extreme Temperatures: Hot and Humid Climates

Flooring for humid places | Flooring in Canada

Wood products that are not treated can expand and warp when exposed to high levels of humidity. It's one of the main reasons you shouldn't use wood in warm or moist areas of your house. Nevertheless, if the weather is hot and humid, you might want to steer clear of hardwood. 

Here are three other options to consider: 

1. Porcelain Tile

Ceramic tile is one of the most common choices for moist areas of the home, so it comes as no surprise that the material is also ideal for humid climates. Ceramic tile is incredibly durable, and it won't expand or contract as the temperature changes. It also won't absorb much moisture, so there's no need to worry about warping. 

2. Vinyl Planks

In humid areas, vinyl is an excellent alternative to hardwood due to its water resistance. The durability of vinyl planks is exceptional - even in humid and hot climates, so long as they are installed correctly. It is important to keep in mind that vinyl planks do have a temperature and humidity range, so they should not be installed in high temperatures, or in humidity levels higher than 30-70% relative humidity range.  

3. Water-resistant Engineered Hardwood Flooring

For those living in humid areas and wishing to have natural hardwood, water-resistant engineered hardwood is the better option. Essentially, water-resistant engineered hardwood consists of a layer of water-resistant hardwood affixed to a vinyl core, resulting in a floor that is water-resistant while still having the appearance and feel of natural hardwood.

The water-resistant quality of the material enables it to perform better in humid temperatures than hardwood. Water-resistant engineered hardwood can, however, still be damaged by high humidity. Hence, it's best in places with low humidity, less than 50%. 

Flooring for Extreme Temperatures: Cold Weather Flooring

Flooring for cold weather area | Word of Mouth Floors in Canada

If you live in an area that is prone to freezing and snow, finding cold-weather flooring can be challenging. Since snow and ice get carried inside, it is necessary to have floors that can withstand moisture. Also, it will be helpful to have floors that don't freeze during the winter and can provide some extra warmth. 

The following four options are great for cold climates:

1. Vinyl Planks

With vinyl planks, you can enjoy a warm floor much faster than you would with tile or hardwood. Additionally, it is highly water-resistant. Therefore, vinyl plank flooring is a durable, versatile option that is warm and comfortable to walk on in colder areas. 

2. Laminate Flooring

The advantage of laminate is that it's cost-effective and easy to install, and it has a lot of natural insulation, so even in the winter it will stay nice and cozy. You can keep the laminate looking great even as it expands and contracts as long as you leave a slight gap around the perimeter of the room. In addition, it resists water if spills are cleaned up quickly.  

3. Carpet Flooring

In freezing temperatures, carpet can be the most comfortable choice since it keeps the space warm. It is, however, crucial to ensure that your subfloor has a good moisture barrier if your flooring will be exposed to a great deal of moisture. Carpet is not preferred by many individuals because of staining concerns, but if you use carpet tiles, you can avoid many of these problems. 

4. Tile

It may seem strange to choose tile for a cold area, but when paired with a radiant heating system, tile is actually the best choice since it resists moisture and freezing temperatures. The versatility and durability of tile can be enhanced when you combine it with a radiant heating system.

Flooring For Extreme Temperature: Wrap Up

It is important to consider the climate when choosing a floor type, especially if the area is subject to extreme temperatures. This is will allow your flooring to last longer and stay beautiful despite the extreme temperature you have in your area.


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