Vinyl flooring is made from 100 percent plastic. This composition gives it superior resistance to moisture. When water sits on vinyl floors, even for extended periods of time, it won’t damage the surface. Vinyl’s water resistance makes it an excellent choice for rooms such as kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, and basements where a greater chance that the floors will get wet exists.
Some types of vinyl flooring are waterproof. For example, wood plastic and polymer composite (WPC) vinyl is waterproof thanks to its composition of thermoplastics, wood flour, and calcium carbonate. It can be installed in areas where high moisture levels are present. Other waterproof vinyl floor options include stone plastic composite (SPC) vinyl, made from natural limestone powder, polyvinyl chloride, and stabilizer. Also known as rigid core vinyl, it can be installed over many types of flooring as a floating floor.
Aesthetically, vinyl is often considered inferior to laminate. Vinyl has come a long way when it comes to style choices; you can now find vinyl flooring that mimics the look of stone, tile, or wood floors. However, the appearance is less realistic compared to laminate.
Laminate is a synthetic product that simulates the look of real hardwood. It can have an authentic wood floor appearance that make it popular with homeowners who like the style of hardwood but want to spend less money on flooring. Although it is a budget-friendly flooring type, laminate does not perform well when it comes to moisture. Some types of laminate have water-resistant properties, but these flooring options are not waterproof and will become seriously damaged if water sits on them for an extended period of time.
One of the major benefits of choosing laminate flooring is its comfortable feel underfoot. You may not think of this feature as a significant factor in your decision about which flooring type to choose, but the underfoot feel can have a big impact on whether you enjoy walking on your floors day in and day out. Laminate has a thicker composition that includes wood content, which helps it to feel warmer and slightly soft. Vinyl, however, tends to be quite hard and cold to the touch, so it’s generally not the best choice for main living areas and bedrooms.
Unfortunately, laminate flooring doesn’t last as long as vinyl. In many cases, laminate floors need to be replaced within 10 years of installation. The upside is that the initial cost of laminate floors is sometimes lower. If you’re on a tight budget, laminate flooring allows you to give your floors a fresh new look for less money. Be sure to save up for the eventual replacement floors if you plan to stay in your home for a long time.
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