Luxury Vinyl Tile or LVT flooring is a hard and rather durable form of floor covering. It is available in an extensive range of design and color options, meaning that it is possible to even replicate the appearance of hard wood or natural stone flooring – without having to deal with the more extensive maintenance and installation costs that the wood or stone flooring usually bring with them. Below is some info regarding LVT flooring pros and cons.
Advantages of LVT Flooring
Most types of hard surface flooring can be extremely time-consuming and costly to maintain over the long term because both have extremely specific requirements with regards to maintenance if you want to prevent damage or staining from occurring.
However, when comparing the LVT flooring pros and cons, you will see that the LVT flooring has far easier requirements with regards to care and maintenance. In most cases, nothing more than a daily sweep or clean with a slightly damp mop will be needed to keep LVT flooring looking good for as long as possible. When cleaning and maintaining these floors though, it is essential that you not use a vacuum cleaner with a beater brush, as this will damage the protective surface of the boards.
Another great point to keep in mind when comparing LVT flooring pros and cons is the fact that LVT flooring has been manufactured with a highly durable protective wear layer on top, making it an excellent option for high foot traffic areas. When damp mopped and swept regularly with a soft broom or Swiffer, these flooring planks have been known to last up to 10 years before needing to be replaced – another distinct advantage. In some cases, it is even possible to have this protective layer reapplied, meaning that you may even be able to get more use out of your flooring than you initially bargained for.
In many instances, it is possible to have LVT flooring installed in your home in about half the time it would have taken to install ceramic tiles. LVT flooring can be floated by clicking them together and installing the special underlay product needed to finish the job. If you prefer though, this flooring can be glued down as well. However, this could make it more challenging to remove at a later stage if you would like to change your floor covering. When considering the LVT flooring pros and cons, another benefit that most people don’t give a second thought to is the fact that it helps dampen noise in your home.
Luxury Vinyl Tile is also a lot softer underfoot than most other hard wood or stone flooring, making it far more comfortable to stand on for extended periods of time. It also renders the flooring a little more flexible, meaning that it is ideal to use on floors that may be uneven or cracked in places.
In a lot of cases, luxury vinyl tile installation can be undertaken as a DIY project. However, it is essential that all instructions be followed carefully, especially with regards to preparing the existing floor surface ahead of time. This type of flooring is also extremely affordable, especially when compared with carpeting, tiles or stone flooring.
If you live in a property that is excessively damp, this type of flooring will not usually be affected by the additional moisture either. This means that over time, this flooring shouldn’t warp or develop mold either.
Cons Associated with Luxury Vinyl Flooring Products
When it comes to dealing with LVT flooring pros and cons, one of the main disadvantages that people list about it is the fact that it is not as comfortable underfoot as most types of carpeting. Although LVT floor tiles have the ability to dampen a lot of noise, they are still not as effective at quietening background noises as carpeting can be – in fact, it has been proven that most forms of carpeting can absorb three times more noise than LVT flooring.
Another of the more commonly cited cons of LVT flooring is the fact that there seems to be a lack of attractive and aesthetically appealing transition pieces available – other than the traditional and unsightly metal strips. This has the ability to cheapen the appearance of what would otherwise be an extremely attractive floor once it has been laid. Although it is possible to have a carpenter or woodworkers professionally stain solid wood pieces to use in place of the metal strips, this can be a time consuming and costly procedure.
Another aspect to consider when comparing the LVT flooring pros and cons is that it can become discolored or fade over time due to exposure to the sun. In some cases, something as simple as the rubber on a rubber backed floor mat can cause luxury vinyl tiles to fade or discolor as well. As a result, it is not recommended that any rubber-backed mats be laid on it at any time.
Due to the fact that it is not recommended to use rubber-backed mats on LVT flooring, this can present a slipping or falling hazard for elderly people who may not be as steady on their feet as they used to be – especially if liquids are spilled on these floors. It is also not recommended to use any other form of loose mats on these floors, as they can also pose a serious slipping or falling hazard. Another disadvantage of LVT flooring is that it is not biodegradable in most cases.
Over the past few years, the various LVT flooring pros and cons have been brought to light, including the fact that it has the ability to affect quality of indoor air in your home. One of the more serious problems with luxury vinyl tile is that some brands are known to release excessively high amounts of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Although this doesn’t always affect everyone, some people can display allergic reactions to these VOCs, including experiencing respiratory conditions and headaches. As a result, it is essential to check that the flooring you choose meets current safety standards in this regard.
Choosing the Right LVT Flooring Products
Many people think that all they need to do when choosing LVT flooring is to pick a color and have it installed as soon as possible. However, this is not always the case.
Another mistake that many property owners make is thinking that all types of LVT flooring are the same, so they try to shop around for the cheapest pricing possible. Unfortunately, the quality of LVT flooring products from different manufacturers will not always be of the same quality standard. This means that you should always be willing to spend as much as you can comfortably afford when shopping around for your new LVT flooring.
One of the best ways to ensure that you obtain the best possible value for money when purchasing your luxury vinyl tile flooring products is to ask friends, family or even coworkers for referrals if they have recently had this flooring installed. In most cases, people will be more than willing to let you know if they have received great service and flooring from their suppliers or not.
Another crucial aspect to consider is the installation of your LVT flooring. While it can sometimes be undertaken as a DIY project, this should not happen if you aren’t familiar with the product. When choosing an installer, it is essential to keep in mind that many places you purchase this flooring from will include installation in their product pricing. However, you should always inquire beforehand to confirm. This will prevent any unpleasant surprises with regards to the costs involved. It is also crucial to ensure that the installer or company you choose is reliable and has a good reputation all round – especially where after sales service is concerned.
While the various LVT flooring pros and cons may seem to be many, this is generally a great form of flooring to use in most properties. When purchasing a good quality product, you can expect to get anywhere between 5 and 10 years of use out of it, provided that care instructions are carefully adhered to. Although it can be tempting to use chemical based cleaners to ensure that your floor is clean, this is not recommended with LVT flooring, as it will strip away the protective top layer after only a few applications at most.