Thinking about replacing the floors in your home? If so, you’re probably a bit curious as to what types of floors are available for you to choose from. Today, there are dozens of options for flooring materials, but the most popular choices for many homeowners are: (i) solid wood/bamboo, (ii) engineered wood, (iii) vinyl, (iv) ceramic, (v) plastic laminate, (vi) linoleum.
Below is a description of each flooring type and reasons for why you would, or wouldn’t, want to use each.1. Solid Wood/Bamboo
Solid wood is one of the more expensive flooring options, but also one of the most attractive too. Boards can come is a variety of widths and logs are cut into planks in multiple ways to emphasize the different patterns in the grain. Wood isn’t always a great choice for using in moist areas, such as in bathrooms, as it can warp over time. Also, direct sunlight or pooled water can cause discoloration. Cost for materials without installation is in the $8 to $15 per square foot range.
2. Engineered Wood
Looks like solid wood thanks to a thin sheet of veneer as the top layer of this multi-layered plywood flooring option. Engineered wood is relatively easy to install and often comes in a tongue and groove option, allowing the planks to snap into one another, but can also be nailed, stapled, floated, or glued down. Like its solid wood cousin, engineered wood does not do good in bathrooms or other moist areas and is prone to damage from pooled liquids and sunlight. Unlike its cousin, this product is much cheaper per square foot, often ranging from around $6 to $11 before installation.
Vinyl is a great option for using in bathrooms and laundry rooms, as moisture does not cause immediate damage. In addition to resisting moisture, vinyl won’t stain, wear, or damage from sunlight easily. Vinyl can come is a variety of patterns and designs, but the natural stone look is a trendy choice. This material is one of the easiest to install and typically comes in either large rolls or small 12-inch tiles. If damaged, vinyl is relatively inexpensive to replace and is the least expensive flooring option for your home at $3 to $8 per square foot.
Ceramic is the best choice for using in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, etc., as it won’t be damaged from water pooling or moisture from the shower. In fact, ceramic tile is often used for flooring and walling in showers and around baths. The only disadvantage to ceramic is that is can break if a heavy object is dropped on it. On the same note, if you have extra tile, replacing a broken one is an inexpensive fix for you floor. The cost for ceramic tile can range significantly; however, common pre-installation costs are in the range of $6 to $18 per square foot.
5. Plastic Laminate
Plastic laminate is often in a wood finished plank that is supposed to be an eco-friendly option to using real wood. This material has several advantages over wood, such as it can be made from recycled materials, it is sturdier, plus it can resist spills and moisture better. But that’s not to say it is a good option for bathrooms, as extended exposure to moisture can caused warping or separation in the planks. The cost per square foot for plastic laminate is right around $5 to $10.
Linoleum is similar in texture to vinyl and also resists moisture, sunlight, and dents. However, linoleum is considered more resilient. This material works well in kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms. When shopping for linoleum, keep in mind that different quality materials do exist, and lower quality products may scratch or tear easier than others. The cost for linoleum is typically in the neighborhood of $5 to $10 per square foot.
Call (734) 243-3502 today to learn more about flooring options for your home or business.
– Monroe, Michigan