General Information About Vinyl Flooring

    Vinyl flooring comes in several types:

Wear layer
PVC (vinyl)

The backings of vinyl are either "flex" vinyl, fiberglass or felt. Flex is used less often.
Chemicals added to the backing make them moisture and mold-resistant.
It protects the floor from discoloration cause by mildew, mold, or bacterial growth.

"Full-spread" installation means that the entire vinyl back is adhered to the subfloor.
"Perimeter" installation means only the perimeter and the seams of the flooring are adhered to the subfloor.

The wear layer is the clear layer on top. The thicker the layer, the longer it will last and resist damage.
The type of wear layer determines how the floor will maintain its appearance over the years,
and how much upkeep is required.

The "construction" or structure of the vinyl comes in three types:

Inlaid Color: The color and design are built all the way through the vinyl, not just on the surface.
Inlaid color vinyl is made from handcrafted stencils. The layers of colors are fused under heat
and pressure to produce a solid inlaid vinyl layer. Inlaid color vinyl is heavy and comes only in six-foot widths.
It is exceptionally tough and will not lose its design if dented or scraped.
It can be repaired, because the color goes all the way to the backing.

Inlaid Vinyl: Again the colors are in-laid and fused under heat and pressure.
In this vinyl the patterns are created through random placement of vinyl granules, chips, or cubes.
This product is also tough and resists damage. This product is moderately expensive.
It comes in either six-foot or twelve-foot widths.

Rotogravure: The designs are etched with acid onto a metal plate.
Colors are added to the plate, and a thin vinyl sheet passes between the rollers.
The printed sheet is covered with backing and wear layers.
An unlimited number and kind of patterns can be accurately produced by this method.
This vinyl is lighter than inlaid products, so it is produced in twelve-foot widths and requires fewer seams.
It is less durable than the inlaid products. The pattern may eventually wear off in heavy-traffic lanes.

Even the best vinyls cost less than
most wood, ceramic tile, or laminate.
Can afford more flooring, and the best grade of vinyls.
Vinyls are impervious to water. Holds up in the busiest kitchens and the wettest bathrooms.
Are resilient - they spring back after deformation. No permanent footmarks. More comfortable to stand on than wood, tile, or laminate. Dropped items are less likely to break.
Vinyl floors absorb sound. Are quieter than hard floors, particularly with hard-soled shoes.
The inner core insulates against heat and cold. The floors are less cold than ceramic to walk on.
They resist stains. Don't absorb dirt. Easier to clean than wood floors and the grout of tile.
Seamless. Wood, laminate, and ceramic floors are made from many single pieces. Every seam is a possible opening to water, dirt, and germs.
Costs less to install and replace. Save money on installation and replacement.
Can be installed with less preparation. Can install with minimum subfloor preparation. No height and weight restrictions. No added subfloor support is needed, unlike ceramic. Can go below grade where solid wood and some laminates cannot.