Quick Guide to Vinyl Flooring: Definition, Types, Benefits, and More!
What is Vinyl?
Vinyl is a synthetic material (a type of plastic) made from ethylene and chlorine. The material dates back to the late 1920s when it was discovered. When processed, ethylene and chlorine from PVC (polyvinyl chloride) resin commonly known as vinyl. Unlike typical plastic, vinyl is more versatile. Subsequent experiments over decades have uncovered many practical applications. Vinyl is used in countless applications, including making pipes, roofing, and flooring.
What is vinyl flooring?
Vinyl flooring is - flooring made using vinyl. Technological advancements have made it possible to enhance the properties of vinyl, making it perfect for flooring in every aspect, including appearance. Today, there is vinyl flooring that resembles stone, tile, and hardwood perfectly offering an ideal substitute for traditional flooring minus the cost.
Types of vinyl flooring
Vinyl floors are categorized in several ways ranging from how they are made to their composition. Here are the main types of vinyl floors today.
1. SPC vinyl flooring
Stone plastic composite or SPC vinyl flooring is vinyl flooring made using an engineered luxury vinyl composed of limestone and stabilizers. The composition results in a highly durable core. SPC vinyl flooring is 100% waterproof, dent-resistant, and stable.
SPC vinyl flooring layers
The flooring has four main layers namely; the wear layer (topmost layer that is scratch and stain resistant), vinyl top coat (that offers water resistance, pattern, and texture), SPC core (composed of limestone and stabilizers for a waterproof and stable core) and an attachment underlayment for sound reduction and adding softness).
Main benefits of SPC vinyl floors
100% waterproof: Perfect for any application including installation in bathrooms and kitchens
Versatile: Great for residential and commercial property.
Stable regardless of temperature: The floor’s stone construction makes it extremely stable in all kinds of environments, including those with fluctuating temperatures. Great for cabins, homes with air conditioning units as well as homes which experience humidity fluctuations.
Realistic appearance: SPC vinyl floors are almost indistinguishable from traditional floors given their advanced engineering today and variety of textures, styles, and looks. Comfortable and quiet: SPC vinyl flooring has a cushioned feel offered by the attachment underlayment. The flooring is also quiet.
Easy installation: It is designed with a click-clock installation that doesn’t require expertise to install.
Affordable: The flooring is cheaper than buying traditional solid hardwood flooring.
Easy maintenance: The flooring type is usually stain and scratch-resistant. Simple moping and sweeping is adequate.
2. WPC vinyl flooring
Wood plastic composite or WPC vinyl flooring. Instead of using solid PVC backing, the flooring is made using wood-plastic composite. The backing combines plastic composites and recycled wood pulp to form stronger and stable bonds. WPC vinyl has a standard vinyl layer at the top. The flooring features a plank system and glue-less locking.
WPC vinyl layers
It is composed of four main layers namely; the wear layer (topmost layer that is transparent, scratch and stain resistant, vinyl top coat(thin vinyl layer adhered to the core), a decorative print (layer with flooring design), and a WPC coat (innermost layer made of wood pulp, foaming agents and plasticizers to form a sturdy comfortable and waterproof core).
Main benefits of WPC vinyl flooring
WPC vinyl flooring is engineered to be better than basic vinyl flooring. Some of the key benefits include:
Variety: WPC vinyl flooring is available in countless styles, textures, and looks
Waterproof: WPC is waterproof or water resistant, depending on the manufacture's guarantee. No water damage expected from spills and moisture.
Easy and quick installation: WPC vinyl flooring is designed with a click-lock installation. Most anyone can install the flooring, and you don't need any glue or adhesives. Besides, the floor has a floating installation – can be installed on existing floors (like tile).
Rigid but soft: The flooring’s stable core made up of foaming agents and wood pulp offers stability, rigidity but has some soft feel characteristics.
Affordable: WPC vinyl is more affordable than traditional hardwood options. Besides, there are many features and brands that match most budgets.
Easy cleaning: The floor is also easy to maintain. Sweeping, moping as well as spot cleaning will get the job done.
3. LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tile) flooring
LVT is a vinyl flooring category that offers additional depth, realism, and durability. The flooring utilizes 3D printing technology offering a limitless variety of tile flooring options. LVT allows you to change room flooring tile design easily on demand. The flooring can last for a long time; however, it’s easier to remove/install if you need to change your flooring.
LVT flooring is resistant to heat, moisture damage, and dents, making it a perfect vinyl flooring option for individuals who prioritize durability. The floor is also soundproof and free of harmful chemicals that compromise air quality.
Main benefits of LVT flooring
Variety of design options:It’s possible to get any pattern or tile size and design you want to mimic any type of floor or surface.
Water-resistant: LVT flooring works perfectly in areas prone to water damage such as kitchens and bathrooms.
Scratch-resistant: The flooring is also resistant to scratches. Ideal for high-traffic environments as well as areas frequented by pets.
Affordable: Cheaper than traditional flooring options but equally, if not more functional. What's more; there are no glue and installation costs.
Easy maintenance: No polishing or waxing needed. Regular cleaning and sweeping is enough.
Comfortable and quiet: LVT flooring is more comfortable to walk on than traditional hardwood flooring. It’s also quieter.
4. What is LVP (Luxury Vinyl Plank) flooring?
LVP flooring is another vinyl flooring category that mimics the texture, warmth, and looks of real wood. The flooring is widely used as an alternative to hardwood flooring today. The flooring is made of PVC which has been melted down and mixed with other elements like stabilizers and fungicides to give the flooring resilience and durability. The material is then pressed together to form planks.
Main benefits of LVP flooring
Variety and custom design: If you buy LVP flooring or any other kind of vinyl flooring from notable flooring sellers, you can get LVP flooring that matches your taste and preference perfectly. LVP flooring also comes in a variety of designs to choose from.
Water resistance and slip resistance:LVP flooring is immune to water damage. The flooring is sturdy even when subjected to accidental water spills. This benefit results in added safety. As a result, LVP floors are great for kitchen and bathroom flooring as well as high-traffic areas like commercial retail spaces for reducing accidental slips.
Easy maintenance: You need water and a mild detergent only to clean LVP flooring.
Easy installation: LVP flooring features planks that can be locked in place together by anyone following simple installation instructions.
Affordable: LVP can mimic any flooring minus the high cost.
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This was a guest post submitted to Word of Mouth Floors.