How to choose the proper type of flooring for your home improvement project
16 Apr 2014
If you have decided to put a new floor down in your home, or would like to replace an existing one, and the plethora of floor types and styles offered in today's market has left you a bit overwhelmed or perplexed, the following tips and bits of knowledge will help you to make the best decision you can for your particular flooring needs.
If you are renovating with a green conscious, or rather you are looking to use ecologically friendly materials, you now have more options available to you than ever before. You do not have to settle for hard flooring alone. If carpet is what you have your heart set on, you can choose from one made of sea grass or natural fibers. If, however, you are looking for a 'green' material that is more traditional looking in style, perhaps with the appearance of wood; bamboo is a fantastic alternative not only because it has a look and feel very similar to wood, but it is also every bit as reliable and comparably priced. Cork is another ecologically friendly option to consider in flooring. The look is attractive and it is a renewable source, and the finished product is really comfortable underfoot.
Ease in installation can be a big plus, if this category fit you, consider linoleum or fiberglass reinforced vinyl for your flooring needs. Both are easy for the do-it-yourselfer and linoleum is great because it wears well and stands up to a lot of movement and traffic. Vinyl sheeting is also easy to install and is durable for areas that will be used often. You can get vinyl flooring that looks a lot like stone tiles if you like, or you can get matte, shiny solid or patterned pieces.Floor that look like hard wood but are really laminate flooring are also fairly easy to install as they require no adhesive. Unlike the former, however, which only require a utility knife for cutting, you will be required to use a saw to cut these strips or planks to size and for fitting them around heating vents, door spaces, etc. These floors also have easy maintenance and upkeep once installed.
Flooring that is middle of the road when it comes to strength and durability can come from having wood floors installed or from having existing ones refinished. This is a difficult project to undertake and I recommend getting the advice of a professional prior to beginning, or even better, having an expert come in to do the job. The cost will be worth it in the end, to make sure everything is done properly to ensure proper fitting and life of flooring. One of the best benefits of wood flooring is its visual appeal. It comes in many shades and hues or you can purchase wood flooring with an exotic veneer. Wood flooring is costly but beautiful and appeals to a wide variety of persons so it can increase the value of your home if you are considering selling.
If you are in the market for durability, stone, marble, ceramic or porcelain tile floors are hard to beat. Stone flooring can be quite decorative and fit into most any environment as they come with a wide variety of different finishes. They are also the most difficult to install, and can be costly, but their strength and ability to handle large and frequent amounts of traffic as well as conditions where moisture will be present makes them well worth their price and installation effort. Marble is strong and attractive but it can be very slippery so if using it for flooring make sure to use large grout lines and maybe even some inlaid pieces to border the marble and give it more traction. Ceramic floor tiles are durable and a great choice for areas that will have a lot of movement or that may become messy. Porcelain tiles are also durable and great for moisture resistance and if they chip a bit, it is not noticeable because the color pattern, unlike with ceramic tiles, goes all the way through the material. If you like a stone look but prefer porcelain tiles, you can get the latter in a look that resembles the former.
With so many choices in today's market, these tips will better help you to make an informed decision on the type of flooring you might choose to suit the needs of your individual home and lifestyle. The right flooring can bring a room to life and transfer the ordinary to the extraordinary, so taking the time and effort out to research the proper type and fit for your needs can only behoove you in the end.