As an affordable and flexible flooring choice, vinyl plank flooring has become more popular over the past few years. It is made from PVC and is shaped into interlocking planks that are meant to look like more expensive materials like stone or wood. Planning to put down vinyl plank floors? If you look at the pros and cons of vinyl plank flooring, you can choose if they are right for your house.
Pros of Vinyl Plank Flooring
One of the main appeals of vinyl plank flooring is its affordability compared to options like hardwood, tile, or stone. It makes vinyl an attractive option if covering a large area. Their competitive price point makes vinyl plank floors a cost-effective solution for many households.
2. Easy Installation
Vinyl plank floors are not only affordable, but they are also pretty easy to install yourself. A lot of them have click-lock or snap-together systems that let them sit on top of your current floor, so you don’t have to use nails, glue, or staples.
Light and interconnected, they can be rapidly assembled without the need for extensive expertise or specialized equipment. You may also remove them or apply replacements at a later time. If you choose to do it yourself, ensure that the base is completely prepared beforehand.
Contemporary vinyl plank flooring is water-resistant and durable, making it suitable for installation in wet areas such as kitchens, restrooms, and laundry rooms, in addition to high-traffic areas. The planks have a tough vinyl wear layer on top of rigid PVC or composite bases that are meant to keep them from getting dented.
Many vinyl planks also have finishes that make them scratch and stain-proof. Durability does vary by price, though. Commercial-grade planks and bigger ones are the most durable.
4. Variety of Looks
Vinyl plank floors now imitate everything from weathered wood to natural stone and concrete. Whether aiming for a cozy, rustic aesthetic or cool urban chic, there is likely a luxury vinyl plank to match your vision. They offer all the visual appeal of pricier counterparts for a fraction of the cost. Just be aware that some mimic the look more realistically than others, depending on the quality. Carefully inspect samples before purchasing.
Cons of Vinyl Plank Flooring
1. Off-Gassing and VOCs
Like other plastic-based floorings, some have raised concerns over vinyl plank floors off-gassing volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the home after installation. While stricter manufacturing standards have reduced VOC levels significantly in recent years, they are not zero. Those sensitive to chemical odors may wish to source low-VOC or VOC-free options. Letting them air out before installation can also help.
2. Prone to Scratches, Dents
No matter how much you use and abuse vinyl plank flooring, it can still get scratches, dents, and changes in color over time, especially on lighter styles. When moving or cleaning, be extra careful not to drag furniture or sharp objects across them.
Under the legs and rollers of your furniture, put floor rugs, mats, and protection. Also, keep in mind that kids, pets, and high heels can quickly damage planks if you don’t take the right steps.
3. Not Suitable for All Spaces
Avoid installing vinyl plank flooring in rooms or homes that experience extreme temperature swings or moisture levels. Vinyl planks can contract and expand with fluctuations in temperature.
They also risk condensation build-up and warping in damp crawl spaces or basements. Use with caution in three-season rooms or vacation homes subject to long-vacant periods as well. Vinyl planks work best in temperature-controlled living spaces.
For many households, the pros of value, easy installation, and stylish looks make vinyl plank floors a crowd-pleasing choice. Just be realistic about their durability limitations and best usage by analyzing pros and cons of vinyl plank flooring. Select quality planks suited to your lifestyle and living space. Also, factor in sustainability considerations if going green is important to you. Taking all their pros and cons into account helps ensure vinyl plank flooring meets your needs – both functionally and aesthetically.
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