Flooring Types – Pros, Cons, Reviews & Tips

A wide range of flooring types  are available in the market.  Beautiful styles to floor you, your design possibilities are endless.  Below are five types that are most common including the pros, cons, reviews and tips to assist you in your selection.  Find one that will suit your needs and budget.  


CARPET


Photo by Stephen Leonardi on Unsplash

Pros

(1) A wide variety of style, patterns and colors to choose from.

(2) It has an insulating property that provides warm in the cold winter months.

(3) Its cushion that minimizes the noise when you walk on it.

(4) Its softness that provides comfort.

(5) Its non-slip surface for safety and the cushion that prevents breakage when you accidentally drop a delicate item.

(6) Low cost

Cons

(1) It’s more prone to staining, mold and mildew

(2) Requires regular professional cleaning

(3) High traffic areas require frequent vacuuming

When considering carpet for your flooring, there are factors to take into consideration to determine its durability.

The following will guide you in making the right choice on the type of carpet to install in your home.

Types of Carpet Fiber

(1) Nylon – With stain protection, nylon is the most durable and stain resistant fiber.  A good choice for household with children and pets.  A better option for areas of heavy traffic like stairways, entryways and hallways.

(2) Polyester – A good choice for normal traffic areas.  It has an elegant appearance and feel and available in a variety of luxurious colors and style.

(3) Olefin – It provides moisture and stain resistance.  It has lesser wearability compared to nylon and polyester.

(4) Wool – It’s well constructed but not stain resistant.  It retains its good appearance over a period of time. It’s favorably chosen due to its natural beauty.

Construction

Its durability depends on how well it is constructed.

(1) Twist

Twist is how tight the fiber has been twisted.  The tighter it is twisted, the stronger it can withstand the crushing and matting.

(2) Density

Density is how tight the fiber is packed together within the carpet.  The wearability is strengthened by the fiber being packed closely together. To check for its density, bend it with the tufts or stitches outward. The denser the carpet is the less the backing will show up.

Textures

Texture is how the fibers are attached to the carpet backing.

Three Types of Textures

1. Cut Pile – It consists of yarns that’s been cut at the ends.  It’s ideal for areas like the bedroom and living room as it provides comfort due to its softness.

2. Loop – Yarns that are uncut and are looped on the carpet.  The pile height varies from low to high.  It’s tightly constructed.  It is a good choice for high traffic areas as it can hide dirt and soil.

3. Cut-loop – It is a mixture of high cut tufts or stitches and lower loops.  It performs good although it’s less durable than the loop carpet.

Methods on How they are Dyed

The two popular methods are:

(1) Solution Dyed – Done before the fibers are woven.  This provides the carpet a higher resistance to fade and stain and it enables it to stand up to harsh cleaning product like bleach.

(2) Continuous Dyed – In addition to the dye application, the color is continuously applied by spraying or printing during the post-tufting process.  Solid colors are achieved with this technique.  This is also use to give the carpet a pattern and multicolor effects.

Color Selection

Consider the elements in the room that you are installing the carpet. Elements such as walls, window treatment and furnishing should connect with your carpet color choice.   It’s highly recommended that you bring your paint swatch and fabric sample when you visit the store.


HARDWOOD

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Hardwood floor is a great investment.  It increases the over-all value of your home.  It adds elegance and beauty and easy to clean and maintain.

Pros

(1) Improves the look of your home

(2) Ease of maintenance and cleaning

(3) Durability

(4) Increases your home value

(5) Ideal for allergy sufferers

(6) It’s very versatile as it complements any home design

(7) Cost-Effective in the long run

(8) Fade resistance

(9) Can be refinished compared to its counterparts

Cons

(1) High cost

(2)  Cold to the touch

(3) Noisy when you walk on it

(4) Slippery

Below are the different types and styles of hardwood floors.  Find one that will best suit your home.

Types of Hardwood

(1) Engineered – consists of multi layer of wood that are positioned in different direction.  The top layer consists of a solid wood veneer of many species.

(2) Solid – a single solid type of wood specie throughout the plank.

Styles of Wood Flooring

(1) Strip Flooring – it comes in strips of 1-1/2” through 2-1/2” and 5/16” through 3/16” thickness.  A more traditional look is achieved using this style.

(2) Plank Flooring – comes in wider strips of 3” through 8”.  Use this to acquire the rustic or earthy appearance.

(3) Hand-scraped – it mimics the look of a reclaimed wood.  It adds character and charm to any space in your room.

(4) Wire brushed – it replicates the charm of the hand-scraped hardwood flooring but with a lesser distress to the markings.

                                      LAMINATE                                           

this used to be carpet but we replaced it with laminate flooring, and you can see the before & after photos here

With laminate flooring, durability and goods looks are achievable without breaking the bank.

Pros

(1) Lower Cost

(2) Scratch and fade resistance

(3) Ease of maintenance and cleaning

(4) Extremely durable

(5) Ideal for allergy sufferers

(6) Available in a wide range of beautiful designs that mimic the wood natural look

Cons

(1) Slippery and loud

(2) Cannot be refinished unlike hardwood

(3)  May look like hardwood, but doesn’t have the same value as the real one

Other styles imitate the stone or tile appearance while keeping its rugged durability characteristic at a lower cost that makes its practical and ideal for use in most areas in your home.

All laminates are extremely durable that they will stand the test of time.  The beauty you enjoy today will remain for many years to come.

Laminates are constructed of four layers as follows:

(1) Wear Layer – it is the clear layer that provides protection against stains, fading and surface burns.

(2) Design Layer – a high resolution photograph of the surface of the floor’s look. This gives the wide range of designs from the natural hardwood appearance to the ceramic or tile textures.

(3) Core Layer – a construction durable high-density board that provides protection against moisture and indentations.

(4) Back Layer – a stability layer that balances the floor and provides protection against moisture

These four layers create a stronger protection against heavy use while it continuously retains its   beauty.


VINYL

 

Vinyl mimics the looks of wooden or tile floors at a lesser cost.

Pros

1. Ease of installation

2. Ease of maintenance

3. Durability

4. Lower Cost

5. Waterproof

6. Available in a wide range of styles.  From traditional to contemporary, the timeless beauty of wood and stone, the design possibilities are limitless.

Cons

(1) Colors can fade with constant exposure to direct sunlight

(2) Can be damaged by sharp object.

(3) Extreme temperatures can cause damage

(4) Doesn’t stand up well to heavy loads

Types of Vinyl

(1) Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT)

i. Solid Core Luxury Vinyl – method of installation is either click or glue down.

ii. Fusion Core Luxury Vinyl – has multiple layers that protect against scratches, scuffs and water.  It is available in a wide range of wood and tile looks.  This is ideal in a room in your home that is heavily used.

iii. Flex Core Luxury Vinyl – this the most traditional of all the luxury vinyl tiles.  It’s wear layer is durable, however, if the subfloor is uneven, it will transfer through its surface

iv. Groutable Luxury Vinyl – as the name suggests, this is groutable.  Due to its groutable option, its appearance is more realistic.  This vinyl is chip and crack resistance and easy to maintain.

(2) Sheet Vinyl

Sheet Vinyl uses two types of backing:

i. Felt – as the backing is felt, it is not recommended for areas with moisture issue.  Installation is by the use of permanent adhesive for it to stick to the subfloor or it tends to curl at the end.  There is a need for it to be acclimatized, so it needs to be stored in the room where it will be installed for twenty-four hours.

ii. Fiberglass – it’s a loose lay installation, thereby, more popular to homeowners.  Installation is by resealable adhesive or no adhesive at all.  No curling issues unlike the felt.  In addition to this, it will not crack or warp when exposed to elements.  Due to its resilience, it offers more comfort and cushioning under your feet.


TILE & STONES

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When you think of stones, you think of beauty, durability and ease of maintenance.  This is a good choice for allergy sufferers as stone is inhospitable to dust mites, mold and bacteria.

Pros

(1) Scratch resistance

(2) Moisture resistance

(3) Easy to clean and maintain

(4) Highly durable and ideal for rooms that are heavily used.

Cons

(1) High cost

(2) Some types are brittle that easily chipped or scratched and difficult to repair when damaged

(3) Some are porous that they need regular sealing to prevent staining.

Types

(1) Contemporary Ceramic

(2) Porcelain

(3) Stone

Styles

A wide variety of styles are available for ceramic, porcelain and stone for both casual and formal.  A glazed and unglazed finish, deco, rustic and contemporary style, porcelain slate and terra-cotta tiles are just some of the styles to choose from.  An endless design possibility that you can create throughout your home with matched trim and accent pieces.  They are available in different shades and textures from low, medium and high.  Variations due to the natural effects in the manufacturing process.


I discussed above the most common flooring types and I hope that I was able to help you pick the flooring type to install in your next home project.

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