Like anything, there is a process for choosing vinyl flooring. Measuring the space, finding out flooring options like thickness, weir, colour and material finish. The most important thing though is knowing the purpose of the flooring and where its going to be placed so that you can clearly define things like the weir or the thickness. Is it high traffic, or low traffic? Will there be wet shoes coming through or will water likely be spilled here? These are questions you ask. And once you have chosen your flooring, you then need to look at who will install it. Perhaps you can use a virtual tool to visualise the room. We have included a few links for some free below.
5 things you need to do when choosing new Vinyl flooring
- Measure the space
- Get flooring options
- Know the purpose or use of space
- Research who will lay the flooring
- Get samples and visualise the room.
1 Measure the space
To get the lineal meter, you will need to draw out a map or take your building architectural plans/ evacuation map and measure out each space that needs new flooring make sure it has each wall, door, corner. This will help you go out to get an accurate quote comparison from flooring installers or vinyl suppliers, though they most likely will want to measure themselves.
2 Know the purpose of the space
Really understanding how much foot traffic you are going to have on a daily basis is important in determining the zones of your vinyl flooring. Like thickness, weir requirements, and even slip resistance.
3 Get Flooring options
Look at types of vinyls
There are 3 types- Planks, sheets, or tiles. Each has a different way of installation.
- Peel and stick – this is a quick, low cost, and easy to install but likely to come up.
- Glue down- this is a more permanent solution, requires a smooth subfloor and even temperatures. It’s great for high-traffic areas.
- Interlocking planks – easy to install and usually thicker material.
Generally, you will find:
- Planks – are more realistic looking
- Sheets – are more affordable, focusses on pattern, seamless with no gaps. Great for larger areas.
- Tiles – Similar to a sheet just in smaller pieces. It’s light and easy to work with, may take longer to install than a sheet but you can create custom designs with it.
- Inlaid vinyl –
- Printed vinyl – low cost and great for large areas, prone to be easily damaged though.
- Glued vinyl planks – as above these are a more permanent installation,
- Floating planks – not a long-term solution as it’s easily removable as they are not glued ground, great for leased spaces.
- Wide planks
Different thickness’ has different use. The thinner it is, the lower the cost. And they are good for low-traffic areas. But you will need a pretty good subfloor as it shows any imperfections. For high-traffic areas go for your thicker (3.2-4mm+). In short, for long-lasting durable vinyl, the thicker the better but technology has allowed for durable vinyl planks that can hide imperfect subfloor and still allow for low-cost durability in a thinner material.
Choosing your top layer/wear
This is the very top coat of your vinyl, it may vary from slip-resistant to water-resistant, from shiny to matt they are all important and some are better suited for your needs than others. For example,
- 20 mm wear is optimum for commercial spaces with high traffic.
- 12mm for residential – light commercial
- 6mm is more for residential
4 – Research your local flooring installer
You want someone with the right qualifications, the right insurances, the right licenses (if state-required), sometimes cheap is not always the best quality. Experience, references, and portfolio of work are always key to getting the right tradesmen in – see this blog on choosing the right trade.
5 – Get samples and visualise the room
Get samples so you can look at matching the colour and texture to the other furniture in your room.
Thanks to technology, today you can use online tools to match a vinyl/flooring option with your existing room. We have included a few free ones where you can upload your image and get virtual visuals.