Choosing Floor Materials: Is Floor Maintenance At The Top Of Your List?
Is ongoing maintenance at the top of your list when choosing floor materials? It should be! Choosing the right floor materials for your office or home isn’t always an easy task. There are so many options to choose from that it can be overwhelming. Floor maintenance should be the top priority over the budget because it determines what type of floor is right for you. Once you know the right floor materials, your budget will fall in line at the same time. Keep in mind, it defines how you will live with your floor for its life. Consider these options before deciding on which floor is right for you.
VCT vs. Linoleum
VCT, Vinyl Composite Tile, is a faux tile that usually has a generic texture aesthetic. It is mostly used in commercial offices for easy maintenance and longevity. The material is usually used in squares and glued to concrete. The squares are easy to replace for damaged sections. That said, it’s important to buy extra squares for future sections that need to be replaced. This type of floor requires a wax topcoat to protect the floor for longevity. The floor can look new when it’s stripped and re-waxed.
Linoleum is similar to VCT, however, it’s mainly used in wet areas like bathrooms, a kitchen, or a laundry room in residential homes. This type of flooring is budget-friendly and has a protective coating already built into the material for easy maintenance at a low cost. Another advantage, linoleum is available in a plethora of designs and colors. Unlike VCT, linoleum is sold in sheets instead of squares. If an area is damaged, the entire area of flooring will need to be replaced.
Tile vs. Hardwood Floors
Tile is a great option for high traffic areas because it’s durable, easy to replace damaged ones, and doesn’t need to be waxed. You can cut out the damaged tile and replace it separately without replacing the entire area. With that said, always order extra tile to have on hand in case a replacement is needed in the future. You may receive mention about sealing your tile. Sealing grout is an option to help keep grout cleaning longer. However, your grout can have uneven spots after cleaning due to the sealant wearing off. Keep in mind that tile and grout maintenance may be required 1-2 times a year pending the traffic in your home.
Hardwood floors are most homeowners’ first choice. There are many options for every budget these days. It’s important to understand that hardwood floors can fade in the sunlight over a period of time. They can also scratch or knick easily pending the material chosen. Not all wood floors are created equal, so inquire about materials and care before making a final decision. Real hardwood floors can require sanding and a polyurethane finish. You may also have an older home that requires floor restoration. The mean specific floor areas need to be cut out, sanded, replaced and stained.
Carpet Squares vs. Carpeting
Carpet squares are a great option for commercial or large office spaces like VCT. This allows you to replace sections without replacing the entire room. Seams look somewhat “seamless” if the material is cut well and installed properly. This is also a great option in a playroom, loft, or creating a large area rug without paying the large price tag. Also, many textures, colors, and designs are available for endless design options. If you choose a large design for accent purposes, ensure that your measurements are correct. This will help you understand where the design ends for each tile. This is important for uniformity.
Carpeting isn’t everyone’s favorite choice. Largely because of wear and tear, allergies, and cleaning requirements. However, carpeting is a great option if you need commercial-grade or for your home. There are some tough carpet materials specifically for high-traffic areas, pets, or kids. It’s also a great option if you have an open floor plan and your second floor needs some soundproofing. Just plan on cleaning your carpet annually if you decide on this option.
In the end….
flooring has come a long way in the last 20 years and beyond. The type of flooring added to your home is a big deal. You walk on your floors every day and look at them too. It’s just a matter of understanding what kind of weekly, monthly, or annual maintenance is required. I haven’t forgotten about your budget. While it may not be the number spot for choosing the proper flooring, it doesn’t mean you should ignore it. Just know that there are more material options available for any budget. Floor maintenance is just one more thing you need to understand so that you aren’t overwhelmed by adding it to your cleaning schedule.