What is vinyl flooring, why is it good? We will show you how to lay the vinyl floor!
In recent years, a new player has appeared among the types of warm coverings laid in our homes, namely in the form of vinyl flooring, which has the special feature of being safe to use in wet rooms. But what is vinyl flooring, what is the essence of vinyl flooring, why is vinyl flooring good instead of parquet, laminate flooring or cold covering? What is the difference between vinyl and laminate flooring, how is vinyl flooring laid at home?
In our article, we tell you what vinyl flooring is, where you can buy vinyl flooring in rolls and what vinyl flooring looks like (e.g. wood-effect vinyl flooring or stone-effect vinyl flooring). In addition to learning what vinyl flooring is, we also tell you what it takes to install vinyl flooring, how long it takes to install vinyl flooring, and why vinyl flooring is a good alternative to other types of flooring. Where can you buy vinyl flooring in good quality (e.g. Diego vinyl flooring, Praktiker vinyl flooring), what aspects should we consider when buying vinyl flooring?
What is vinyl flooring?
First of all, let's clarify what a vinyl floor is, what kind of material it is! The vinyl floor is a new type of PVC (although the old fashioned linoleum is similar to the roll vinyl floor, do not confuse it with it, it is not the same type of floor!), its surface is much harder than previous materials, and its emissions are not measurable, and it is also aesthetically pleasing also available in any pattern (not only wood-effect vinyl floors are available, but also various types of stone-effect vinyl floors are also available).
The vinyl floor has a four-layer structure: the task of the base layer is to stabilize the vinyl floor, on it is located the photo layer that gives the pattern of the vinyl floor (it can have any pattern). There is a PVC protective layer on the photo layer, and a surface protective layer on top (PUR surface treatment), thanks to which the vinyl floor does not need to be waxed. In the case of PUR+ treatment, the surface of the vinyl floor is matte, and the natural wood effect is achieved with it. Vinyl flooring is an excellent choice for bedrooms and living rooms, but we can even cover the hallway, kitchen, and bathroom with it.
Why is vinyl flooring good?
One of the biggest advantages of vinyl flooring is that it can be laid on almost any existing floor (except carpet) without having to beat up the existing coverings, in addition, unlike most laminate floors, parquet, strip parquet, it is waterproof, so it can be easily washed and placed in wet rooms. Laying the vinyl floor is quick, and the click-on vinyl floor can be walked on immediately after it has been laid, there is no need to wait. Since vinyl flooring is easier to lay than cold covering (it is difficult to do without the use of a cold covering specialist), it is often used to replace tiles - however, we must emphasize that vinyl flooring is not a cheaper solution than tiles (it can cost the same or, in some cases, more).
What is the difference between vinyl and laminate flooring?
In addition to the differences listed above, the differences between the vinyl floor and the laminate floor include the fact that the laminate floor also contains wood, i.e. the "trunk" of the floor board is provided by an FDH carrier board made of pressed wood pulp. In the case of laminate flooring, you can almost exclusively find a printed wood pattern, the thickness is different (between 6-12 mm), and although there are waterproof laminate floors today, most warm coverings of this type cannot be used in wet rooms. Laminate flooring consists of hard floor tiles, however vinyl is also available in roll vinyl flooring (typically stick-on vinyl flooring) which works similarly to linoleum.
When laid down, there is no difference between a high-quality laminate floor and a wood-effect vinyl floor, however, if you want to save money, you are probably better off buying plain laminate. Both floor types and strip parquet can be installed at home, however, if you do not know how to do it (typically, laying a glued vinyl floor is a more complicated task), it is advisable to entrust the work to a professional - it is true that it is a more expensive solution, but this way the end result will definitely be good and we will not waste it away the covering material.
What is a good vinyl floor, how do I choose?
Before buying a vinyl floor, it is advisable to think about what function the vinyl floor will actually fulfill - do we want to put it in a bedroom, living room, or do we want to cover a wet room with it? Accordingly, choose whether it is necessary to lay down a glued vinyl floor, and another important aspect is whether there is a suitable substrate under the vinyl floor, and if so, how smooth the surface is, whether special insulation or foil is needed. Regarding the color and pattern of the vinyl floor, we would advise that in the case of wood-effect vinyl flooring, it is advisable to choose a shade that matches the furniture, door jambs, and other furnishings of the property.
How is the vinyl floor laid?
In the case of laying vinyl floors, the adhesive technique was mostly used in the past, however, self-adhesive vinyl floors and click vinyl floor types are also available today. The latter is the most popular, as it is the easiest to lay down, just like the laminate floor - in addition, the click solution keeps the entire floor together and it is easier to replace damaged elements. In the case of a traditional, adhesive vinyl floor, we must ensure that the surface to which we will stick it (with vinyl glue) is completely free of dirt. In the case of a self-adhesive vinyl floor, it is worth applying a primer layer or backing film to this surface. Allow the sheets to acclimatize at room temperature before laying them down.
Laying the click vinyl floor
Laying the click-on vinyl floor is the easiest, it is practically the same as laying the laminate floor: the floor tiles are placed by snapping them together, without gluing, but make sure to leave a gap of 0.5-1 cm along the walls and thresholds. expansion gap, and if we use some kind of film or insulating layer under the vinyl floor, we first lay it down perfectly. In smaller rooms, start tiling next to the wall, in larger ones you can also start in the middle of the room (don't forget to read the manufacturer's instructions for laying the vinyl floor).
When laying the vinyl floor, we will need a saw (e.g. decopier saw), a ruler, a snitzer, a rubber hammer, as well as a pencil and spirit level. Cut the vinyl floor tiles to the right size, recycle the fallen pieces at the edges. Pay particular attention to the area around the heating pipes, where you can also use a hole saw, put in a grommet and gasket. We use the rubber hammer to close the sheets, so that the sheets fit properly, but are not damaged during the fitting. The expansion joints can be closed by laying down skirting boards, and at the threshold, use a cover replacement profile as an aesthetic transition.
Laying the adhesive vinyl floor
The adhesive vinyl floor is laid using a special vinyl floor adhesive. Vinyl floor tiles are thinner, so defects in both the vinyl floor and the soil penetrate more easily - if you plan to lay such a vinyl floor, use a subfloor leveler beforehand. Before actually gluing, lay down a few sheets to see if the pattern of the vinyl floor fits well. Apply the glue to the substrate - under 3-4 rows of vinyl at a time - and then carefully attach the sheets to it. Do not apply too much glue because the sheets will slip; fit the vinyl floor tiles tightly together.
Press the vinyl flooring into the adhesive and then roll them down for perfect adhesion (pavers use a 50kg steel roller for this). When laying down the glued vinyl floor, wait for the drying time, then do the edging to cover the expansion gaps (for the walls and pipes, cut the vinyl floor tiles to size in the same way as for the glued vinyl floor and use cover replacement profiles). The roll vinyl floor is laid in a similar way, after the covering has been cut to size and the edges and corners have been aligned.
Vinyl floor prices
Vinyl flooring is available in virtually any major DIY store or home improvement store (e.g. OBI, Praktiker, Diego vinyl flooring), and the selection is very wide, whether it's about size, color, or pattern. In the case of vinyl floor prices, the deviation is quite large: the cheapest, roll vinyl floor types are already approx. They are available from EUR 5/m2 (mainly simple PVC floors), the cheaper adhesive, self-adhesive and click vinyl floors cost approx. They start at EUR 20.
The more branded vinyl floor pieces are around EUR 30-90 per square meter (of course, there are vinyl floors that are much more expensive than this), plus the labor fee of the warm covering specialist and the underlay or glue - however, the latter can be saved if the vinyl floor is laid at home. So that we know what vinyl flooring is, why vinyl flooring is good and what is the difference between vinyl flooring and other warm coverings, we can go to the stores to choose. If we install the vinyl floor ourselves, don't forget the tools!