Today’s vinyl flooring is not your grandmother’s vinyl floor. For decades after it was introduced in the 1930s, vinyl was a popular, inexpensive flooring choice with a wide range of colors and patterns. It later got a bad reputation as cheap and outdated and was a prime target for replacement in many kitchen and bath remodeling projects in the last 20-30 years.
Vinyl floor options on the market today share the benefits of easy maintenance and durability with their vinyl predecessor. They also still have the benefit of offering a wide range of colors, patterns, and textures. The introduction of luxury vinyl tile (LVT), however, has taken this flooring material to the next level.
What is LVT?
This modern version of vinyl flooring is a high-end product that closely resembles the look of natural materials like wood and stone. It accomplishes this by using realistic imaging on the surface layer along with textures that give the look and feel of the natural product. LVT is a multi-layer material that is highly durable. These layers include a vinyl backing, vinyl core, printed layer with your chosen design, and protective coating to keep your design good as new for years.
It is available in squares, rectangles, and even planks that mimic hardwood flooring. These tiles or planks realistically appear like stone, concrete, ceramic, or wood with every color or grain pattern you can imagine.
What are the benefits of LVT?
Luxury Vinyl Tile has made vinyl cool again, and with good reason. There are many benefits for homeowners considering this product for a kitchen remodel or bathroom renovation.
- LVT is an attractive flooring option that offers an array of styles, colors, and patterns to suit any kitchen design or bathroom design.
- It can also be used in any other interior living space and would be ideal for a laundry room or busy family room.
- It is highly resilient and durable. LVT is very resistant to dents, moisture, heat, and just about anything else you can spill or drop on it in a busy kitchen or bathroom design. The level of durability will vary with the quality and price point, but most residential products come with a 15-25 year warranty.
- It never needs to be refinished, unlike hardwood floors.
- Luxury Vinyl Tile is incredibly easy to clean and can be maintained with simple sweeping, vacuuming, and mopping with water.
- It is flexible, soft, and warm underfoot, making it the ideal material for busy home living spaces like the kitchen design where you spend a lot of time on your feet.
- If you want to add extra warmth, LVT is also compatible with underfloor heating.
- Unlike a sheet of vinyl that is difficult to repair or to replace a section, luxury vinyl tiles or planks are relatively easy to replace in case of damage to a section of flooring.
Are there any downsides to LVT?
For flexibility, durability, and easy maintenance it is hard to top luxury vinyl tile. Is there a downside to this type of flooring? The main issue is that LVT is a man made material and so will not achieve the same look and feel as the real deal. It will come very close in appearance, but nothing has the truly natural, unique beauty of wood or stone. If this is important to you, then stick to the original material.
Looking for more inspiration for your next kitchen remodeling or bathroom design project? Check out flooring styles and much more in our kitchen and bathroom design galleries. Then contact us or stop by our Lansing, MI showroom to talk to one of our experienced design professionals. We are ready to help you with your flooring selection and much more!