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How to Pick the Best LVP Flooring for Your Home

If you’re looking for an affordable, high-quality flooring option that is durable, waterproof, and easy to install and maintain, look no further than Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP). But with so many options available on the market, how do you choose the best LVP flooring for your home? In this article, we’ll explore the different factors to consider when selecting the ideal LVP flooring option, compare it to other types of flooring, and offer tips for making the best choice.

Understanding Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP) Flooring

Luxury vinyl plank (LVP) flooring has been rapidly gaining popularity in recent years due to its versatility, durability, and affordability. Typical LVP mimics the look of natural wood or stone but offers benefits that traditional hardwood or tile floors may not provide. It’s essential to understand LVP’s key features, benefits, and factors to consider while shopping for a new floor.

Composition and Look of LVP

LVP is primarily composed of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) resin, a synthetic material that can be customized in terms of appearance, texture, and performance. The planks are made by layering PVC backer, PVC core, printed vinyl layer, and a clear urethane wear surface, resulting in a visually-appealing floor that remains cost-effective.

The printed vinyl layer allows LVP to resemble a wide variety of natural materials, such as hardwood, stone, or even ceramic. Many homeowners and designers appreciate this feature, as it grants flexibility to the overall design of an interior space. The embossed surface patterns on the planks also contribute to their realism and distinct appeal, meeting diverse aesthetic requirements.

Durability and Waterproof Features

One of the major advantages of LVP flooring is its outstanding durability. The wear layer on top of the vinyl layer protects the floor from scratches, scuffs, and dents, making LVP an excellent option for high-traffic areas or households with kids and pets. Depending on the brand and quality, some LVP floors come with commercial-grade durability ratings, ensuring longevity and performance for years to come.

An added bonus to LVP flooring is its waterproof feature. Unlike traditional hardwood flooring, which may warp or become damaged when exposed to moisture, LVP resists water damage and can be installed in moisture-prone areas such as kitchens, bathrooms, or basements. This feature makes LVP a versatile and practical choice for various environments.

Ease of Installation and Maintenance

LVP flooring installation is typically quicker and more manageable compared to traditional hardwood or tile flooring. Many LVP products use a click-lock system, allowing planks to be seamlessly fitted together without the need for glue or nails. Some options even come with a pre-attached underlayment, making the process more straightforward and reducing the overall installation costs.

Maintenance for LVP flooring is also comparably easier than other flooring options. Cleaning generally involves regular vacuuming, using a soft broom, or mopping with a damp cloth. There’s no need for waxing or refinishing, which helps maintain the floor’s appearance over time while reducing overall upkeep costs.

Factors to Consider When Choosing LVP Flooring

Thickness and Wear Layer

One crucial factor to consider when selecting LVP flooring is the thickness and wear layer available. Generally, thicker planks will provide better sound insulation, thermal insulation, and overall comfort. The wear layer, which protects the printed design from potential damage, determines the longevity of the floor. It’s essential to opt for a floor with a substantial wear layer, typically measuring at least 20mil for residential use and 28mil for commercial applications.

Brand Reputation and Warranty

In the world of LVP flooring, not all products are created equal. It’s essential to research different brands and manufacturers, as the quality of materials, production processes, and overall performance can vary. Choosing a reputable brand with a solid track record will ensure a more satisfactory end result. Additionally, examine warranties offered by each manufacturer. A comprehensive warranty can provide peace of mind, knowing that your investment is protected against defects or premature wear.

Color, Design, and Texture Options

Thanks to advances in technology, LVP flooring now comes in numerous design, color, and texture options, enabling homeowners and designers to create custom looks for any interior space. When selecting LVP, consider the overall aesthetic you wish to achieve and explore different styles and finishes to best match your preferences. For instance, an embossed-in-register (EIR) texture on wood-look LVP offers a more realistic and natural appearance by aligning the embossed texture with the printed grain.

It’s always helpful to order samples or visit showrooms to see the various options available firsthand, ensuring the best choice for your home or project.

Comparing LVP Flooring with Other Flooring Options

Luxury vinyl plank (LVP) flooring has become increasingly popular for a variety of reasons, including its durability, affordability, and stylish appearance. However, how does it stack up when compared to other flooring options like laminate, hardwood, and tile? This comprehensive comparison will help you make an informed decision when choosing the best flooring option for your home.

LVP vs. Laminate Flooring

LVP and laminate flooring are often confused with one another, as they both offer an affordable and versatile alternative to traditional hardwood floors. However, there are some critical differences between the two that you should consider when making your choice.

LVP is an entirely waterproof flooring option, making it an excellent choice for areas where moisture is prevalent, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and basements. Laminate, on the other hand, is not waterproof and can be easily damaged by exposure to moisture. This makes LVP a better option for those who want a wood-like appearance in those areas without the risk of water damage.

Another advantage of LVP over laminate is its resistance to abrasion and scratching. Laminate flooring typically features a wear layer that is prone to scratching, which can cause the floor to appear dull and aged over time. In contrast, LVP is engineered to resist scratching and wear, maintaining its appearance for a longer period.

LVP vs. Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring is a timeless classic with a beauty that many homeowners find difficult to resist. However, LVP has some key advantages over hardwood in certain situations.

First and foremost, LVP is less expensive than hardwood. Whether you’re on a budget, want to save money for other renovation projects, or simply can’t justify the cost of hardwood, LVP is an attractive alternative that offers similar aesthetics without breaking the bank.

Additionally, LVP’s waterproof nature gives it the edge over hardwood, which can warp and become damaged in the presence of moisture. This means you can use LVP in areas where hardwood would not be recommended, such as basements and kitchens.

While hardwood floors can be refinished to restore their original beauty, LVP lacks this option. However, higher-quality LVP products are designed to last for decades, minimizing the need for replacement or refinishing.

LVP vs. Tile Flooring

Tile flooring is another popular choice for homeowners due to its durability, moisture resistance, and wide range of design options. However, LVP brings some unique benefits to the table when compared to tile.

One of the most significant advantages of LVP over tile is its comfort underfoot. Tile floors can be cold and hard, while LVP has a warmer, softer feel that many homeowners find more comfortable. This is especially appealing in living areas and bedrooms, where comfort is a high priority.

LVP is also easier and less expensive to install than tile, which typically requires a professional and precise installation process. This makes LVP a more budget-friendly and DIY-friendly option for homeowners who want to tackle their flooring project independently.

Lastly, tile floors can be quite slippery, making them a potential hazard, especially in wet areas. LVP, on the other hand, typically features a slip-resistant surface, providing a safer option for households with children, elderly residents, or pets.

Practical Tips for Selecting the Ideal LVP Flooring

Assess Your Space Requirements

Before you choose LVP flooring for your home, it’s essential to assess your space requirements and how the new flooring will fit into your existing decor. Consider factors like the size of your rooms, your home’s architectural style, the amount of natural light, and the existing color scheme. You can use this information to narrow down the multitude of LVP styles and colors available, allowing you to choose the perfect fit for your space.

Request Samples and Conduct In-Home Testing

One of the best ways to ensure you’re making the right choice when selecting LVP flooring is to request samples and test them in your home. This allows you to see how the different planks will look in your space under various lighting conditions, helping you make an informed decision. Many LVP manufacturers and vendors provide samples upon request, so don’t be afraid to ask.

In-home testing will also allow you to evaluate the thickness, texture, and overall quality of the LVP options you’re considering. Remember, not all LVP products are created equal, and the quality can vary significantly between brands and price points.

Consider Your Budget

Finally, never forget the importance of your budget when selecting LVP flooring. With an extensive variety of styles and at various price points, you’re sure to find an option that meets your financial limitations without sacrificing quality or appearance.

While it’s essential to stick to a budget, it’s also crucial to consider the long-term implications of your choice. Investing in a higher-quality LVP might initially be more expensive, but the durability and longevity of the product may ultimately save you money by reducing the need for replacement or repair in the future.

Making the Best LVP Flooring Choice for Your HomeMaking the Best LVP Flooring Choice for Your Home

If you’re in the market for new flooring, luxury vinyl plank (LVP) is an excellent option to consider. This versatile, durable, and attractive flooring material is perfect for modern homes, offering a wealth of benefits for homeowners. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about LVP flooring: what it is, how it’s made, and how to choose the best type for your home.

Understanding LVP Flooring: What is Luxury Vinyl Plank?

LVP flooring is a type of vinyl flooring that closely mimics the look and feel of natural hardwood. It’s designed to be resilient and easy to maintain, with a top layer that resists scratches, stains, and daily wear and tear. LVP flooring is also waterproof, making it an ideal choice for spaces prone to moisture, like kitchens, bathrooms, and basements.

How LVP Flooring is Made

Luxury vinyl plank flooring is constructed with four primary layers. The first layer, known as the backing layer, provides stability and support for the plank. Next is the core layer, which is made from a combination of materials, such as PVC resin and plasticizers, to create a strong and durable base. The aesthetic layer is up next, featuring a high-quality printed design that simulates the look of real wood. Finally, a wear layer is added on top, containing a protective coating that keeps your vinyl plank looking like new for years to come.

Choosing the Right LVP Flooring for Your Home: Core Types

There are three primary core types for LVP flooring: traditional, stone plastic composite (SPC), and wood plastic composite (WPC). Each type has its own unique set of benefits and drawbacks, and your choice will ultimately depend on your specific needs and preferences.

Traditional Core: This is the most basic and affordable type of LVP flooring. It offers excellent water resistance and is suitable for areas with light foot traffic.

SPC Core: Offering improved durability and water resistance, SPC core is an ideal upgrade option for high traffic areas and commercial installations. Its denser core also makes it a more stable choice for temperature fluctuations.

WPC Core: This core type combines the benefits of both traditional and SPC cores. It offers a softer, more comfortable underfoot feel, making it perfect for spaces like bedrooms and living areas. WPC core is also highly water-resistant, so you can have peace of mind when accidents happen.

Thickness and Wear Layer: Factors to Consider

The thickness of LVP flooring is a significant factor that affects its durability and comfort. In general, thicker planks offer better stability, sound insulation, and impact resistance. The wear layer thickness is vital for the longevity of the LVP flooring, offering improved scratch and stain resistance. Thicker wear layers are recommended for homes with pets, as well as high-traffic areas.

Texture and Style: Matching Your Home’s Aesthetic

LVP flooring comes in various textures, styles, and colors, allowing you to match it perfectly with your home’s aesthetic. LVP flooring textures range from smooth, hand-scraped, distressed, and embossed in register (EIR), which mimics the feeling of real wood grain. An extensive range of styles is available, from classic traditional hardwood looks to contemporary, exotic designs.

Installation: Click-Lock vs. Glue-Down LVP Flooring

There are two primary installation methods for LVP flooring: click-lock and glue-down. Click-lock flooring is designed with interlocking edges that click together, making it an excellent DIY-friendly option. Glue-down LVP requires adhesive to secure the planks to the subfloor, which makes it more challenging to install and replace but results in a more stable flooring solution. Your choice will depend on your level of experience, the area being installed, and your long-term plans for your home.

Mistakes to Avoid When Choosing LVP Flooring

When selecting LVP flooring for your home, be sure to avoid common mistakes, such as not considering wear layer thickness, sacrificing quality to save on price, and not accounting for potential moisture issues. Additionally, never skip proper subfloor preparation, as this can lead to uneven surfaces and significantly lower the lifespan of your LVP flooring.

Expert Opinions: Consult with Professionals

When in doubt, consult with flooring professionals to help guide you in making the best LVP flooring choice for your home. They can provide valuable insights into various products’ performance and longevity and answer any questions you may have about installation and maintenance.

LVP Flooring Variations and Resources

It’s essential to be aware of the various LVP flooring variations available on the market, from eco-friendly options (made from bio-based plasticizers) to rigid core LVP (combining the benefits of SPC and WPC core), to fully understand the range of choices at your disposal.

Take advantage of the wealth of resources available on the internet, including product reviews, informative blogs, and professional insights, to ensure you make the best-informed decision for your LVP flooring needs.


What are the different types of luxury vinyl tiles, and how do they differ from one another?

There are several types of luxury vinyl tiles (LVT) available in the market, each with its own unique features and advantages. Some of the different types of LVT and their differences are:

1. Glue-down LVT: This type of LVT is designed to be glued directly to the subfloor using a special adhesive. Glue-down LVT provides a permanent and stable installation and is ideal for high-traffic areas like commercial spaces, offices, and retail stores.

2. Click-lock LVT: Click-lock LVT is a floating floor system that snaps together easily, without the need for adhesive. Click-lock LVT is an ideal flooring solution for DIY enthusiasts, as it is easy to install, and can be laid over existing floors.

3. Loose lay LVT: Loose lay LVT is also a floating floor system, but it does not lock like click-lock LVT. Instead, it relies on the weight of the flooring to hold it in place. Loose lay LVT is easy to install and can be easily removed, making it a great option for rental homes and commercial spaces.

4. WPC/SPC LVT: WPC (wood plastic composite) and SPC (stone plastic composite) are two popular types of LVT that offer superior durability and resistance to water and moisture. WPC LVT is made of wood and plastic composite, while SPC LVT is made of stone and plastic composite. Both are excellent choices for high-traffic areas and spaces that are likely to get wet, such as bathrooms and kitchens.

Overall, LVT is a versatile and durable flooring solution that offers a wide range of styles and designs to suit any taste and budget.

How do I determine the thickness of the luxury vinyl flooring that will work best for my space?

The thickness of the luxury vinyl flooring that will work best for your space will depend on a few factors, including the level of foot traffic and the subfloor condition. For areas with high foot traffic or heavy furniture, a thicker flooring may be necessary for durability. Additionally, if your subfloor is uneven, a thicker flooring can help to hide imperfections. Generally, luxury vinyl flooring thickness ranges from 2mm to 8mm, with the thicker options providing more stability and durability. It’s best to consult with a flooring professional to determine the best thickness for your specific space and needs.

What kind of wear layer and durability should I look for in luxury vinyl plank flooring?

When looking for luxury vinyl plank flooring, it’s important to look for a wear layer that is at least 12 mils thick. The wear layer is the topmost layer of the flooring that provides protection against scratches, stains, and other types of damage. Additionally, you should look for a durable core material that can withstand heavy foot traffic and resist water damage. A high-quality luxury vinyl plank should be designed to last for many years without showing signs of wear and tear.

About The Author

Courtney Daily

Courtney is a freelance writer who wears many other hats: kindergarten teacher by day, Broadway diva in the shower. She is a transplant Hoosier who originated in New England. When she isn't writing in her spare time, you will find her reading history books, arguing with her latest knitting project, or being beaten by her kids at most games.

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