Vinyl Plank Flooring FAQ - (With Our Blunt Answers...)

Updated: Oct 3

Vinyl Plank Flooring FAQ (With Our Blunt Answers...)

Vinyl plank flooring is one of the hottest selling products in the floor covering marketplace. Homeowners can install vinyl plank flooring in any room of the home. Many customers are still unclear of the uses and benefits of this product. The top vinyl plank flooring frequently asked questions are:

  1. What Are the Advantages of Vinyl Plank Flooring?

  2. Does Vinyl Plank Flooring Look Cheap?

  3. Can You Install Vinyl Plank Flooring Over Other Types Of Floors?

  4. Will My Dogs Nails Scratch My Vinyl Plank Floor?

  5. Which Manufacturer Makes the Best Vinyl Plank Flooring?

Vinyl Plank Flooring FAQ (With Our Blunt Answers...)

What Are the Advantages of Vinyl Plank Flooring?

The reason that vinyl plank flooring is so popular, is because of the many benefits it has to offer the buyer. Customers no longer have to buy different types of flooring for different rooms of the house. Here is a list of some of those benefits:

Waterproof Product: The benefit of being waterproof has completely exploded the sales of vinyl plank flooring. Customers can feel comfortable putting this product in their kitchen, mudroom or front entrance area. Many customers put vinyl plank throughout the main floor of their home. Unlike hard surface products of old, if a water spill happens on your floor, homeowners simply clean it up, and move on with their day. No worries about the water damaging their floor.

Easy To Clean: Customers in today's world like products that will make their life a little bit easier. Vinyl plank is incredible easy to clean. Simply use a dust mop for a few minutes, and you have a clean floor. Vinyl plank flooring is sold with a factory finish that does a great job of protecting the floor, and makes it very easy to sweep up dirt and dust.

Easy To Install: While flooring can be a tricky DIY installation project, vinyl plank is one of the easier flooring products to install. With its click together installation method, many customers are saving money by taking on the challenge of installation.

Durability: Unlike some of the hard surface home products of old, vinyl plank is made to last. Competition is fierce among manufacturing companies, and in order to stay competitive, companies are making this product better and better each year. For those homes with high traffic, vinyl plank has become a great product to have installed.

Scratch Resistant: While this term is somewhat deceiving, most vinyl plank companies will promote their product as being "scratch resistant." This simply means, with the factory finish that is put on each plank, vinyl plank can withstand high traffic and minor abuse much better than some of the other competing types of flooring.

Pet Friendly: As with the term "scratch resistant", "pet friendly" is a deceiving term that most vinyl plank companies will use in their marketing material. "Pet friendly" simply means, vinyl plank flooring will hold up with pet foot traffic and play.

Does Vinyl Plank Flooring Look Cheap?

Many years ago, hard surface flooring (laminate flooring) was the most popular hard surface product sold. Most stores carried pallets of laminate in their stores for cash & carry sales. Stores couldn't keep it in stock. Customers were gobbling it up for DIY home projects.

Fast forward a few years later, and all of the product claims started to come in. The laminate of old, was just not made very well. It looked cheap, it was made cheap, and it performed well below homeowner expectations. Stores were flooded with customer complaints and problems. It took many, many months for stores to get passed all of these issues.

This created a huge void in the marketplace. Customers wanted an alternative to real hardwood flooring, but they didn't want to put this old laminate junk in their house.

This is about the time that vinyl plank flooring entered the marketplace and started to take off in sales. In today's world, companies are making vinyl plank flooring for all types of homes and all types of installation. Vinyl plank flooring has beautiful designs and colors. It has become a very unique product. If you want proof, simply go into any retail floor covering store and see how much of their space is dedicated to vinyl plank products. Stores only display products that sell. If a large percentage of their showroom space is dedicated to one type of product, what does that tell you?

Gone are the days of cheap looking laminate products. The competition is so fierce, today vinyl plank is available in many different board widths, board lengths and product designs. Vinyl plank is going in million-dollar homes, as well as in starter homes and apartments.

Vinyl plank flooring does not look cheap, and it will not hurt your home value. In fact, many new home builders are putting vinyl plank flooring in their show houses. Customers love vinyl plank, and there is no indication this product will slow down in sales anytime soon.

Can You Install Vinyl Plank Flooring Over Other Types of Floors?

This is a great question. The answer is both yes and no. Vinyl plank needs to have a smooth and flat surface for a proper installation.

One of the advantages of vinyl plank is that customers can save money with installation, by installing plank flooring over an existing floor. For example, instead of spending hundreds of dollars taking out a ceramic floor, customers are leaving the ceramic floor in, and installing vinyl plank right over the top of the ceramic. Instead of taking out that 20-year-old sheet vinyl that's in a kitchen, customers can install vinyl plank right over the top of the old sheet vinyl.

However, installing vinyl plank over an existing floor can be a little bit tricky. Don't assume that you can go over every type of floor. If you have any doubts about your installation, we always recommend getting a professional involved.

What about carpet? Can you use your existing carpet as a pad, and install vinyl plank flooring over the top if it? Our answer would be absolutely not! Carpet is just to think, and too fluffy for vinyl plank. The carpet will move too much, and most likely, will make your vinyl plank installation fail. In many cases, the locking joints on the vinyl plank will come apart, and you will be left with a major problem.

As we mentioned earlier, with vinyl plank you need a flat AND SMOOTH surface. Keep in mind, any imperfections in the sub-floor will "telegraph" through the vinyl plank. As an example, if you have a small bump in your sub-floor (the size of a penny), and you go over it with vinyl plank, that small bump might look like a fifty-cent piece once installed.

Again, if you have any installation questions, it is always a good idea to get a professional involved.

Will My Dogs Nails Scratch My Vinyl Plank Floor?

It really depends on the type of dog. If you own a small dog that weighs next to nothing, chances are, you will be just fine. On the other hand, if you own a 100-pound beast dog, and you let that dog run around, and rough play on your floor...guess what? It will scratch.

The best thing you can do, is to keep your dog's nails well-groomed and short. If that is not possible, and your dog continues to live with long and sharp nails, plan on your floor scratching. It is just as simple as that.

Common sense floor maintenance needs to rule the day when t comes to animals and your floor. We have a really good article, "Will My Dogs Nails Scratch My Floor," which goes into this topic in more detail. Homeowners need to set-up guidelines for their family members on how to treat their flooring.

Which Manufacturer Makes the Best Vinyl Plank Flooring?

There are so many vinyl plank manufacturers in the marketplace, it is really impossible to state that one company makes better products than the other guy.

Each company has their version of good, better and best products. Each company tries to do something a little bit different, just to get noticed in the marketplace, to get a competitive advantage.

When buying vinyl plank flooring, make your buying decision based on your project goal, and your budget. The best product for one person, might not be the best product for you. We have an article, "How To Buy Flooring For Your Home," that discusses this thought process.

Keep in mind, that not every store will sell the same product. In fact, stores will usually try to sell different products than their competition that is located down the street. It is always a good idea to visit 2-3 stores, before you make a buying decision.

Ultimately, vinyl plank is made so well today, no matter what product you pick, if installed properly, your product should last a very long time. Make a product selection based on color, style and price.

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