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The pros and cons of vinyl flooring

When you’re shopping for new floors, there are a lot of things to consider. Your room, lifestyle, budget, and personal tastes all factor in to the decision you’ll ultimately make. Every flooring product has its own unique benefits, features, and, yes, even drawbacks.

Vinyl floors can be a great option for a lot of people. If you’re considering putting vinyl floors in your home, here are some pros and cons to weigh before visiting your local retailer.

Pros

You can install it anywhere

Bathrooms, kitchens, laundry rooms, and basements are all ideal places for vinyl flooring. And with today’s gorgeous visuals, vinyl can even be a great fit for bedrooms, living rooms, or other traditionally formal areas! Some types of rigid luxury vinyl tile can even be installed in three-season rooms or on sun porches. 

It’s waterproof

Spills, splashes, and pet accidents are no match for vinyl flooring. Both sheet vinyl’s seamless nature and rigid vinyl’s waterproof core make for waterproof flooring solutions. Some vinyl floors have even survived flooding from natural disasters!

It’s pretty low-maintenance

Cleaning vinyl floors is a cinch. Routine cleaning like sweeping or using a dust mop will be fine. And, because they’re waterproof, you can wet-mop vinyl floors as needed.

It can look like anything

Thanks to improvements in digital printing, vinyl flooring’s design layer can look like just about anything you want. Today’s sheet and luxury vinyl products feature stunning hardwood, stone, textile, concrete, and abstract designs. 

It’s affordable

Those realistic visuals, which mimic some of the hottest trends in hardwood, tile and stone, come at a fraction of the cost of natural products. For customers who want a high-end look but are working with a limited budget, vinyl floors might be the right solution.

Cons

It can have a short lifespan

While vinyl floors can look like wood, tile, or stone, they’re not going to last as long as the real thing. Different products have different lifespans – some entry-level sheet vinyl products might have a six-year warranty, while premium rigid vinyl products might have a 30 to 35-year warranty. Ask your retailer how long you can expect your vinyl floors to last!

It can pose environmental issues

Some vinyl flooring has been reported to emit volatile organic chemicals, or VOCs, following installation, which can cause respiratory illness over time. However, some vinyl flooring manufacturers are taking health and sustainability very seriously, and offer products that emit fewer VOCs. Look for products that are FloorScore certified, meaning they are compliant with the VOC emissions criteria of the California Section 01350 Program.

It can be susceptible to scratching

Many vinyl floors aren’t going to stand up to scratching and denting the way that tile or even laminate will. Some manufacturers have added scratch-resistant wear layers, or changed the core’s composition on rigid vinyl floors to prevent indentation, but there’s still a risk of scratching or indentation if you have heavy furniture or appliances. Use furniture protectors to help prevent scratches or scuffing!

About The Author

Lauren Moore

Proud flooring aficionado and office dog mom, "Flauren" has been a professional writer and editor for more than a decade (though she still maintains her magnum opus was "The Day it Snowed Slurpees," written at the age of 6).

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