Vinyl flooring is composed of several layers of materials sandwiched together to form a highly durable, practical, and affordable floor covering. It remains a popular choice for homeowners because it is softer and warmer underfoot compared to stone and ceramic tiles and is resilient and easy to clean.
If you are considering vinyl flooring sheet for a kitchen, bathroom or beyond, here is everything you need to know.
Vinyl flooring is composed of a synthetic material called polyvinyl chloride (PVC) resin, which is considered safe and recyclable when it conforms to U.S. safety standards. In recent years, the vinyl flooring sheet industry has progressed due to its growing range of design, pattern, and texture options available, and its ability to almost perfectly reproduce the look (if not always the feel) of natural materials such as hardwood and stone.
There are two types of vinyl: sheet flooring and tile flooring. Sheet vinyl is available in large, wide rolls that are six to 12 feet wide, making it easy to install in rooms. Vinyl tile flooring comes in tile sizes of nine or 12 square inches for quick stick-on or click-together installation.
Vinyl flooring sheets can have one of three finishes: A no-wax finish is the lightest type and is ideal for areas with minimal foot traffic and exposure to dirt. A urethane finish is more durable, can stand up to moderate foot traffic, and is easier to clean. An enhanced urethane finish is the most durable option available. It holds up to heavy foot traffic and is resistant to scuffs and scratches.
Vinyl sheet flooring is generally considered to be a highly durable material. However, there are important factors that determine how well your floor lasts over time. For instance, the quality of the material, how it was manufactured, and how well it was installed will all impact the life expectancy of your flooring.
On average, vinyl is more durable than wood, stone, and tile due to the process in which it’s made. The interior foam can withstand high temperatures and humidity. Vinyl can also withstand a healthy amount of wear and tear and is water-resistant. On average, you can expect to get at least 10 to 20 years out of your vinyl flooring. Most products even offer warranties of up to 15 years on the wear layer.
The quality of the material that you purchase will also affect longevity. Vinyl flooring sheets often come with a wear layer, making them resistant to stains and spills. However, some solid and composite tiles will not have the same surface protection, making them more susceptible to stains. As with all flooring, direct sunlight can cause vinyl sheets to fade. We recommended drawing the curtains or blinds during times of heavy sunlight to protect your floor.
Due to its water-resistance, durability, easy installation, and maintenance, vinyl flooring can be installed in any room in your house. But it’s particularly popular for bathrooms, kitchens and laundry rooms. White vinyl sheet flooring is a great way to bring a sense of light and space into a room.
Vinyl flooring is easy to install. Exactly how to install it will depend on the type of product you choose and the room in which you are flooring. Vinyl sheet can be cut with a utility knife and is fairly easy to fit into a standard-shaped room. Vinyl tiles are installed similarly to ceramic tiles. Many don’t even require wet adhesive — simply peel and stick or click them together.
Another great feature of vinyl flooring is that it can be installed directly over any subfloor, concrete, plywood or hardwood, as well as existing vinyl. Make sure that the subfloor is in good condition, has no cracks, and is cleaned beforehand. If you’re installing vinyl over tiles, you need to use a leveling compound to ensure the floor is even and flat. A leveling compound is a mixture that can be used to smooth uneven surfaces to ensure you have a flat floor surface.
A big reason vinyl sheet flooring is so popular is that cleaning is straightforward. Mopping and vacuuming are sufficient for cleaning your floor daily. If spills are left too long, though, they can stain or leave a residue so make sure to wipe them up as soon as possible. Also, never drag heavy furniture across vinyl as it can scratch or dent the floor. Use felt or rubber covers on the bottoms of chairs or table legs to prevent indentations and gashes.
Vinyl is durable, but not indestructible. It’s essential to take the correct measures to keep your floor in good condition. To preserve your vinyl flooring for as long as possible, avoid abrasive cleaning products, or products that contain acetone or solvents. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for the best way to clean and maintain your floor.
Repairing vinyl flooring depends on the type of product and the damage it’s sustained. You can easily replace individual damaged tiles, but if you have sheets, you may have to fuse the surface or patch in new material. This can be quite difficult and the results are not usually aesthetically appealing. It’s good to call in a professional for vinyl repair to minimize the risk of having to replace your entire floor.
The cost of vinyl flooring sheets will vary based on your product, style and amount of space you’re covering. Vinyl sheets can cost as little as $2 to $12 per square foot to have it installed. If you’re handy, cut the cost down by installing it yourself. This saves about $1 to $2 per square foot. You can expect to pay anything from $6 to $18 for a low-grade traditional hardwood without installation. So by comparison to other floorings, vinyl is significantly cheaper.
Should I choose vinyl flooring sheets for my home?
The cost, durability, and easy maintenance make vinyl flooring sheets a great option for homeowners. This cost-effective option can last up to 20 years in your house. Note that vinyl flooring may not increase your home’s value if you’re interested in the resale potential.
Is it easy to install vinyl sheet flooring?
You can install vinyl sheet flooring on your own, but it can be tricky, so we recommend hiring a professional if you’re hesitant about self-installing or have subflooring that needs help. But a great benefit of vinyl flooring is that it can be installed directly over any subfloor — concrete, plywood, hardwood or even existing vinyl, making it less expensive to install.
Are vinyl floors water resistant?
Yes, most vinyl flooring is water-resistant (though not waterproof), which makes it a great choice for kitchens and bathrooms.
How long should I wait to walk on my vinyl flooring after it’s been installed?
Vinyl needs time to settle. It’s recommended to wait at least 48 hours before walking on your new floors after installation.
Are vinyl floors easy to clean and maintain?
Vinyl is one of the easiest flooring options to maintain and is scratch-, humidity- and stain-resistant. Vacuum dirt and debris and mop up spls and hard-to-remove grime as needed.