What You Need to Know About Vinyl Flooring

What is Vinyl Flooring?

Vinyl flooring is made from a synthetic substance called PVC, or polyvinyl chloride plastic. This PVC is then heated and pressed into layers that are stuck together to make tiles or planks. Each tile or plank then has an image pressed onto it that makes it look like wood, stone, or brick, or other materials.

Vinyl is more durable than other materials such as real hardwood or stone, it usually lasts longer without wearing. Luxury vinyl floorings are different than laminate or linoleum and lasts longer than either of those. They are similar in looks, but they are different in many other ways.

Types of Vinyl Flooring

There are two main types of vinyl flooring, tile flooring and sheet flooring. Tile flooring is shaped like tiles and can come in squares that are 9 inches by 12 inches. Sheet flooring comes in sheets, as the name suggests, and are usually 6 feet wide or 12 feet wide. Sheet flooring is more water resistant than the tile flooring, but both are water resistant. Another type of vinyl – luxury vinyl tile – come in planks that are about 7 inches wide by about 48 inches long and resemble tile or wood.

Vinyl Finishes

There are three basic finishes for your vinyl flooring – vinyl no-wax finish, urethane finish, and enhanced urethane finish. The no-wax finish is best for low traffic areas because it is the lightest finish. Urethane finish is heavier and more durable and can withstand moderate traffic and can be more resistant to scuffing and it is easier to clean. The enhanced urethane finish is best for the heavier traffic and can be more resistant to stains, scuffs, and scratches. It is the easiest to clean and can show a shine even without constant care.


Vinyl is one of the least expensive choices for floor coverings, especially when compared to stone, tiles, or wood floors. Regular vinyl flooring can be as low as $2 to $12 per square foot, while luxury vinyl tile, or LVT, can be between $3 to $14 dollars per square foot. This is much less expensive than stone, tile, or wood and you can save even more money if you install it on your own. You can save as much as $2 per square foot by installing it yourself.

Ease of Installation

Vinyl flooring is much easier to install than other flooring materials because it usually a peel and stick variety. You must prepare your floors by cleaning them and you can use a vinyl glue if you feel it is necessary, but you do not have to. It can also be applied over a variety of other materials such as previous vinyl, wood, plywood, or concrete. You should not have more than two layers if you want to install it over previous vinyl.


Vinyl flooring is very durable and can last upwards of twenty wears if maintained properly. Vinyl is the best flooring that you can use in high traffic areas because it resists wear and tear. Some vinyl flooring even has up to a fifteen-year warranty because they know it will last. Of course, the higher quality vinyl flooring that you buy, the longer it will last.

Stain Resistance

Some vinyl flooring has a wear layer that protects it from spills and scratches, others are more prone to spills and scratches. It depends on the type of flooring that you buy because vinyl tiles usually do not have that special wear layer. Even that type of flooring is easy to maintain, you may have to occasionally strip and re-wax it, but that is not too difficult: https://www.whatisvinyl.com/stripping-floor/. This does not even take a long time to maintain even if you must strip it.


Vinyl flooring comes in a variety of thicknesses, but some even have a layer that is padded to soften your steps and make them more comfortable. They are resilient and give a certain degree of cushion when you walk on it. It can also be sound resistant making it quieter to walk on.

Recommended Usage

Since it so durable, vinyl flooring is recommended for those high traffic areas such as kitchens, family rooms, bathrooms, laundry rooms, and basements. These high traffic areas can benefit because vinyl flooring is easy to clean and is very durable so that it will last longer in these areas. You will not have to replace it as often, and there is very little maintenance involved to keep it looking nice.


This is the biggest reason that you want vinyl flooring in those high traffic areas – ease of maintenance. You will just need to sweep the floors and then use a vinyl approved cleaner to mop over it once in awhile. This will keep it looking fresh and new with very little maintenance. If you do this even once a week, your floors will continue to look new.


Pete White Pete White

Love Shrewsbury editor and chief developer at The Web Orchard, find out more on petejwhite.com

Read More from Pete White