New and Improved Vinyl Flooring
You’ll love Resilient Vinyl Flooring
There is a trend among flooring manufacturers and retailers to call vinyl flooring, “resilient” flooring—with good reason. Vinyl flooring can stand up to abuse that would make other flooring products wave the white flag. No matter what a large family throws at it (or on it), vinyl flooring comes out looking good every time. Food and drink spills, high heels and sports cleats, mud, skateboards, pet claws, playground mud, beach sand, or almost anything you can think of. Nothing fazes vinyl.
Manufacturers use a process called rotogravure to engrave a image on the vinyl so that the perfect image of wood, tile, marble, or any of a number of surfaces can be perfectly emulated. No matter what color, texture or pattern you’re looking for, you can find it in vinyl. Artistic professional installers like ours at Great American Flooring, can use sheets, tiles and planks of vinyl flooring to create a unique look in any room, offering a variety of color and textures to choose from. Patterns can swoop or curve across a room. Borders can outline a room in different colors or designs. In the hands of a vinyl flooring master, a room’s center space can be perfect for highlighting a medallion of a different style to bring the room’s focus to center stage. Even something a simple as an occasional tile of a different color in a roomful of black and white vinyl tiles ca create an unbelievably special look to your favorite space.
For some reason, many people believe that resilient vinyl flooring is a cold and hard surface. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Vinyl flooring has come of the same characteristics of carpet; they are flexible, soft and easy to walk on. Plus, you don’t have to have a perfectly level subfloor to install flexible vinyl flooring. It’s as adaptable, flexible and cushion-y comfortable as any flooring choice you can make.
Not All Resilient Products Are Vinyl
Vinyl flooring is known for its durability and versatile designs
For folks who like to shun the traditional flooring choices, there are three products that are as resilient as vinyl (or even more so), and very unusual for typical home floor.
Linoleum? We Still Have Linoleum?
Who would have thought that one of the greenest flooring choices of the 21st Century would have been around since the 19th Century? Well, it’s true. And, if you grew up from the 1050s on, you walked on it five days a week from September through June every year. It’s resilient linoleum. That’s right. Linoleum, the primary flooring choice for every public school built during the 1950s. Since its inception in the late 1800s, until the 1960s, linoleum was been composed of renewable natural resources: linseed oil and wood flour or cork dust over canvas. That’s why linoleum has made a contemporary comeback as a primary flooring choice among the environmentally conscious. Even though the color now runs through the sheets, and it lasts almost forever, linoleum still has a couple of quirks: It has to be waxed regularly to keep it looking good, and; it doesn’t come in white. Linoleum does, however, come in a rainbow of colors and, since it is made in sheets, it can be hand cut by an expert to create incredible colors and shape patterns. But, DYI people, be forewarned: This is not a job for amateurs. Like sheet vinyl, linoleum installation should be left to professionals.
The only problem with linoleum – and it’s not a big one – it is that linoleum’s surface isn’t as resistant to dirt and grit as vinyl. You will need to use walk off mats at entrances to protect it. Linoleum needs regular sweeping and washing with mild detergent. But, never leave it wet. And don’t forget to wax it. Often. If waxing seems like too much trouble, remember this: vinyl flooring comes in linoleum colors and you never have to wax it.
Put A Cork On It
Many people are familiar with cork’s primary uses: to seal wine bottles and use as lightweight, resilient soles for shoes. But a lot of folks don’t know that cork is also used for floors. Cork comes from the cork oak, a tree native to the Mediterranean. Portugal delivers fully half of the world’s cork production. When a cork oak is about 25 years old, the bark (which is where cork comes from), can be split off without harming the tree. Cork oaks can live to be 250 years old, and each tree’s bark can be harvested every nine to 12 years. Talk about your renewable resources! Cork flooring is installed like hardwood flooring and a urethane or wax coating is applied to seal and protect it. Because cork is a natural product, no two floors will ever be alike. Cork’s natural sound dampening quality makes it quiet to walk on and it is warmer than wood. It is naturally hypoallergenic and resistant to mold and mildew. Keeping a cork floor clean is simple: just sweep or vacuum regularly, clean up spills right away, and never use a wet mop. Cork floors sealed with wax instead of kurethane will need to be re-waxed on occasion.
Amazingly Indestructible Rubber
Rubber flooring is not only resilient, it is virtually indestructible. That’s why it used to be perfect for places like train stations and playgrounds. And, it still is. But recent rubber flooring had gone beyond basic black into a myriad of colors from purple to pink, and savvy, green conscious homeowners have moved it’s clean, contemporary look into their houses. Rubber floors can be muted, smooth or textured. Its vulcanized or cured surface is long lasting, even in the most high-traffic areas. Its nonporous surface is easily cleaned. If you are on your feet all day, rubber’s soft, impact absorbent qualities will make your tootsies incredibly happy. Let us bounce an idea off you: Designer styles and colors, and its famous ability to resist stains and dents might just make rubber the perfect flooring for your home.