We know that it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by the choices you need to make when it comes to choosing vinyl flooring.

Figuring out what kind will suit your home and habits is the first step when trying to choose the perfect vinyl flooring for your home. That’s why we’ve written the complete buyer’s guide to vinyl flooring, to help you learn all about vinyl flooring and make your decision easier.

This guide covers the following sections:

  • What is vinyl flooring?
  • Different types of vinyl flooring
  • Different finishes of vinyl flooring
  • Is vinyl flooring waterproof
  • Underlays for your vinyl flooring
  • Vinyl flooring and longevity
  • How to clean vinyl flooring
  • Maintaining vinyl flooring

What Is Vinyl Flooring?

Vinyl flooring is made using PVC (polyvinyl chloride), which is a synthetic material. The construction of the vinyl flooring can differ depending on what type of flooring you choose (sheet vinyl flooring, plank vinyl flooring, or luxury vinyl flooring) but the base layer is normally fibreglass coated in a plasticiser and PVC vinyl. The product is then printed and sealed using a surface print layer, giving the material a strong, yet flexible composition.

Vinyl flooring is considered to be very resilient because it can compress and expand without cracking after contact. Additionally, as this product is 100% plastic, it can be easily recycled, making it a smart choice for the eco-friendly customer!

What Are The Different Types Of Vinyl Flooring?

There is a type of vinyl flooring to suit all budgets, styles and needs, and there are three main types of vinyl, namely: traditional vinyl, luxury vinyl and hybrid vinyl.

While each kind of vinyl flooring has a different composition and the production process for each varies, the benefits they share are that they are all durable, waterproof, easy to clean and come in a wide range of looks and finishes.

Traditional vinyl has a softer texture with cushioned backing and is soft underfoot while still remaining hard-wearing and durable. Traditional vinyl flooring either comes in sheets or in planks.

Luxury vinyl is made up of multiple layers pressed together to create a very hard-wearing and natural-looking finish. The top layers consist of a scratch-resistant and protective surface laid over an image layer that holds the colour and design. Beneath these are several layers of fiberglass, moisture-resistant backing, and an impact-resistant core.
Hybrid vinyl is built for impact resistance and durability combining the best aspects of vinyl and laminate. It differs from traditional and luxury types of vinyl in that it’s built with a rigid limestone core. This makes it very strong and extremely long-lasting while still having the realistic look of the luxury vinyl.

Vinyl flooring either comes in sheets or planks. Vinyl sheets come in a large roll a little like a large carpet and usually cover the whole space in one big piece, without leaving any visible seams. Traditional vinyl is normally available in sheets.

On the other hand, vinyl planks are, as the name suggests, planks of vinyl that are attached to an underlayer of fibreglass which makes it very rigid, sort of like a floorboard.

Luxury vinyl and hybrid vinyl is available in vinyl planks.

Read more: Types of vinyl flooring for your home: sheets, planks or luxury vinyls

Read more: Hybrid flooring versus vinyl planks: choosing between the two

What Are The Different Finishes For Vinyl Flooring?

Vinyl flooring can come in a wide range of colours and styles, with wood-look flooring options recently becoming very popular. Vinyl flooring can replicate the look of wood flooring very convincingly, but without the extensive cost and upkeep that comes with real wood flooring. Other popular choices for vinyl are stone look and tile look finishes.

Is Vinyl Flooring Waterproof?

Vinyl flooring is fully waterproof, thanks to its 100% plastic composition. This characteristic helps to make this flooring type a great choice for any part of the home.

Does Vinyl Flooring Need Underlay?

Another benefit of vinyl flooring, (particularly if you are the one installing it), is that underlay is not necessary for vinyl flooring.

How Long Will The Vinyl Flooring Last?

Vinyl flooring is highly prized as a flooring material because it is virtually maintenance free, and extremely durable. With proper cleaning and care, your vinyl flooring should last for the life of your home.

Is Vinyl Flooring Easy To Clean?

One of the main benefits of vinyl floors is because they are waterproof, they are very simple to clean, and with the right care, they’ll continue to look great for years. To keep them looking their best:

  • Sweep or vacuum (with a brush head attached) your vinyl flooring regularly
  • Wipe up spills immediately
  • Wash or mop your vinyl flooring with hot water and a neutral detergent
  • Avoid using abrasive cleaners, wax, or solvent-based polishes.

What Kind Of Maintenance Will The Vinyl Flooring Need?

Thanks to vinyl flooring’s superior durability, apart from regular cleaning, there isn’t much maintenance you need to do for them. However, there are some tips you can follow to help eliminate the risk of damage to your flooring:

  • Use Furniture Pads

The sharp edges of furniture such as stools can sometimes cause damage such as scratches in your vinyl flooring. Using furniture pads will protect your floors and keep them in good condition for longer.

  • Keep Hot Items At A Safe Distance

Items like heaters, irons, and hair styling tools, if left unattended, can melt and damage your vinyl floor. Keep hot household objects at a safe height from the vinyl floor.

  • Use Walk-Off Mats

Place a walk-off mat at outside entrances to reduce the amount of dirt brought into your home. The less dirt tracked inside, the less vacuuming and sweeping for you to do!

For more maintenance and cleaning tips for your vinyl flooring, read our ultimate guide to cleaning and looking after your vinyl flooring.

So now that you know what to look out for when it comes to choosing vinyl flooring, now’s the perfect time to visit your nearest Parry’s showroom and take a look at some of our extensive flooring choices.

Our team can help you find the perfect vinyl flooring for your home and answer any questions you may have about the whole process of buying and installing vinyl flooring.