Vinyl flooring is made from a variety of plastics and is one of the most popular types of flooring used in the U.S. Vinyl is most commonly found in residential kitchens, bathrooms, and retail and commercial establishments. High quality vinyl is one of the most durable types of flooring available and can hold up extremely well against denting from heavy objects. It is a popular choice because vinyl can be found in designs that replicate the look of various hard surfaces, such as wood, concrete and tile. Vinyl’s low cost, durability and relatively low maintenance make it ideal for high traffic areas since it will withstand more wear than other floors. Vinyl’s smooth surface can be slippery, especially when wet.
VCT (Vinyl Composition Tiles) accounts for approximately 80% of U.S. commercial flooring. It is thicker than consumer-grade vinyl tile and installed with adhesive rather than a peel-and-stick backing. VCT is most frequently found in commercial and institutional buildings. It is also very comfortable to stand on making it a popular choice for grocery stores, offices and play rooms. VCT is a good choice for higher foot traffic areas such as kitchens, laundry rooms and bathrooms. Its high abrasion resistance makes it very low maintenance, and can be found in designs that resemble wood, stone and concrete.
Linoleum is a natural, tough, low-maintenance floor surfacing material derived from oxidized linseed oil. The linseed oil is mixed with plant materials such as wood flour, ground cork and pine resins that is bonded to a jute backing. Because linoleum is made of top-quality organic materials and and can have anti-microbial properties, it is a popular flooring in health care facilities, hospitals, nurseries and playrooms. Linoleum is also a great choice in residential homes in bedrooms, kitchens and bathrooms. It is available in a variety of popular styles and colors. Linoleum’s smooth surface can be slippery, especially when wet.
Vinyl plank flooring comes in pre-measured strips instead of sheets. The planks tend to be 1- to 2-foot long and come in varying widths. Vinyl plank is a very durable flooring option that is commonly used in commercial buildings with high foot traffic. It is also a popular choice for family rooms, children’s rooms, recreational rooms or play rooms. This durable flooring is a more affordable option compared to real hardwood floors yet can have the same design benefits. It is also simpler to install and easier to clean than hardwood floors. It is not typically damaged by accidental spills because the surface is highly resistant to absorbing liquids. While this makes for easy clean up of spills, liquid on the floor can increase the concerns about slip and fall accidents.
Sheet vinyl is a resilient flooring that is found most commonly in 6- to 12-foot rolls. Sheet vinyl accounts for approximately 85% of vinyl flooring sales. It is commonly used in sports/athletic facilities and recreational areas, and is popular for covering large areas because it is relatively seamless. It is a low-maintenance flooring option and will accept the paint lines necessary for creating athletic courts. Sheet vinyl is a very smooth surface that can be slippery, especially when wet.
Laminate is a synthetic flooring comprised of multiple layers of High Density Fiberboard (HDF) fused together with special resins. HDF is a mix comprised of wood waste products (wood shavings, saw dust etc…) that is ground together. Laminate is essentially a photographic image of natural hardwood bonded to the HDF layers and topped with a water-resistant coating. Laminate is a popular flooring option for both commercial and residual use, and can be used in high-traffic areas. It is much more durable and scratch and stain resistant than natural hardwood floors. Laminate flooring is less expensive to install than natural hardwood, so it is a great way to get the look of a hardwood floor without the high cost. Its smooth surface can be slippery, especially when wet.