The Cost of Vinyl Bathroom Flooring
With Vinyl bathroom flooring, you get what you pay for. Low-end vinyl- is incredibly inexpensive however life expectancy will be quite short. Plan to replace it in under 10 years. High-end vinyl- will compare closely with linoleum and even hardwood, but if well maintained, it will last a lifetime.
Color & Designs of Vinyl Bathroom Flooring
Vinyl has the design department covered! Vinyl has the ability to replicate just about any flooring material including ceramic tile! All colors and textures are available in vinyl however there are two variances to consider when choosing the particular style.
Inlaid Vinyl – This term refers to a higher-end vinyl product which is made by imbedding color granules into a vinyl sheet. This process puts color throughout the sheet and visually creates more depth so if the surface layer wears, the color and or style remain fresh.
Printed Vinyl – This term refers to a lower-end vinyl product which is made by printing color onto the surface of the vinyl sheets. This product will wear much quicker.
Durability of Vinyl Bathroom Flooring
Durability of Vinyl flooring refers to a wear layer which is applied over the top of the vinyl sheets or vinyl tile. Vinyl can most definitely be a leader in durability, but there are again some variances to consider.
No wax – This is the least durable of vinyl and is used mostly in low traffic areas. It will wear and can scratch and scuff.
Urethane – A much better option for your bathroom. This coating is useful for a space with normal traffic and will resist scuffs and scratches.
Enhanced Urethane – The highest quality coating for vinyl for the heaviest amount of traffic. This product will not only resist stains, scratches and scuffs, but it will also look incredible for a much longer period of time. Typically warranted up to 30 yrs!! This style is used quite often in commercial bathrooms.
Water resistance – Once properly sealed, vinyl flooring is completely impervious to water which is why this product is still so widely accepted in bathrooms today.
Fire resistance – Vinyl burns at a much higher temperature than most flooring materials and will not spread flames. Typically vinyl will stop burning when the fire source is removed.
Construction & Installation of Vinyl Flooring
For do it yourself ers vinyl flooring can also be a fantastic choice. This product is made available in sheets, tiles, and self-stick tiles.
Vinyl Sheet – Sheet vinyl is available in 6′ or 12′ widths which can be cut to measure and or rolled. Depending on the size of your kitchen, vinyl rolls can get very heavy and can be very tricky to install on your own. It is recommended to have professionals help with the installation of sheet vinyl. Installed properly, sheet vinyl is impervious to water.
Vinyl Tiles – Vinyl tiles just might be the hottest new product available in flooring. Generally Vinyl tiles are available in 12″ or 18″ squares however new trends are making tiles available in more unusual sizes. Some vinyl tiles today are designed to measure 3″ by 36″ to better resemble such surfaces as hardwood! These tiles can also be available in thick nesses of 1/16″ to 1/8″ the latter of course the better choice for a bathroom floor surface.
Vinyl Self-Stick Tiles – Just peel off the backing and stick it on! Pretty simple, but Vinyl self stick tiles require an extremely clean and smooth surface for application and excellent planning. These tiles are more risky in the bathroom as they will get loose much easier than any other vinyl surface and because each tile will have four edges, better the chance dirt and moisture have at getting locked in the adhesive making it harder to clean if not impossible! Not the best choice for your bathroom floor.
Felt-Backed Vinyl – This type of vinyl requires the installer to apply glue over the entire floor space. Once the floor is down it will not budge what so ever. This is an excellent feature, however when wanting to upgrade, this product is painstakingly difficult to remove although a new floor could be laid over top.
Vinyl-Backed – This product requires that glue only be applied to the edges and therefore much easier to remove.
Environment & Health impact of Vinyl Bathroom Flooring
Unfortunately vinyl bathroom flooring does not pass the green test, in fact in some cases it fails miserably. However there are companies out there determined to get environmentally conscious vinyl production and recycling onto the right track. There has been enough progress in this department over the years to generate an active debate on vinyl’s behalf in this matter.
From a health perspective vinyl does make for an easy clean however adhesives and other products used to treat vinyl are also nasty culprits. In the past toxic fumes released from vinyl floors made this product a well known health risk, however the industry has much improved since then and today the health risk is minimal.
If cost effectiveness is sexy then Vinyl flooring definitely qualifies, unfortunately you may then have to settle for a lusterless floor. A touch softer than other flooring surfaces, vinyl flooring has been known to put in a great performance durability wise. Easy to clean and somewhat resistant to mold and mildew, Vinyl can make an affordable option for your home!