Innovative, Appealing & Resilient: Luxury Vinyl Tile Flooring
Luxury Vinyl Tile is a man-made flooring product that falls into the resilient flooring category. This product is an innovative floor covering, designed with visual characteristics that are appealing for residential and commercial installations. LVT is extremely durable and water resistant with good soiling and scratch retention properties. These products are currently manufactured into flexible, rigid tile, and plank formats. The design of the flooring is to look like ceramic tile, natural stone, and hardwood, but constructed with some important advantages to other flooring options. It is easy to install with a click or a square edge profile. Installations can be clicked together and floated or glued down. The products are sold at an affordable price.
Today’s LVT is a great solution for many different situations. This product has gained recognition for its versatility and durability, a result of the way it is manufactured. Most sheet vinyl on the market today is made up of multiple layers, each layer adds something to the overall properties of the product. The layers enhance the performance and the visual appearance of the product. The layers include a backing material with a fiberglass impregnation for stability, a central/core layer, a decorative print layer, a clear wear layer, embossed pattern for texture, a final top coat for gloss, and added performance attributes to the flooring.
Composition of the Layers
Residential and commercial vinyl tile is manufactured in the same manner, only the thickness of these layers is the difference. Both have multiple layers that are laminated together, starting at the top and going down:
- Top coat layer: This topmost protective layer prevents light scratching and sets the shine or gloss of the product.
- Emboss: Pattern design pressed in register or random with textures that resembles that of the real material.
- Wear or clear film layer: This layer protects against aggressive damage, such as rips and tears.
- Design or Print layer: This is the photo-realistic image, printed as tile, stone, or wood.
- Central or core layer: This layer positions the fiberglass for structural integrity and a lamination film for the print layer.
- Fiberglass layer: 30 to 100 gram wt. fiberglass layer for product stability.
- Backing layer: The bottom layer is the real backbone and foundation of the flooring. The backing layer comprises of the highest percentage of the product’s total thickness.
Size and Thickness
LVT usually comes in either plank or tile form in flexible or rigid constructions, thickness offerings of 2.0 to 7.0 mm. Widths of 6” to 24” and Lengths of 12” to 72”.
The Pros and Cons of LVT
- Visually Appealing: LVT can be produced in a variety of colors and designs, simulating colors and patterns found in nature. Many designs can have a subtle or dramatic variation between individual plank or tile pieces.
- Easy Install: Projects can be completed in much less time than it takes to complete a comparable hard surface installation. LVT tile can be glued down or can be clicked together and floated.
- Durable: LVT has a reputation for durability, with very good water and scratch-resistance properties, a good choice for heavy foot traffic areas.
- Feel: Pleasant to the touch compared to ceramic and other natural stones. It also absorbs sound due to the composition of the material in its makeup.
- Maintenance: LVT is easy to clean, maintain, and it is 100% recyclable.
- Cost: Lower price with many desirable attributes. It is much cheaper to produce than flooring made of wood, or stone. Luxury vinyl has many performance attributes not present in natural flooring products.
- Subfloor Preparation: Flexible LVT can require preparation for use over uneven surfaces on concrete or wooden subfloors. You could see imperfections after installation.
- Finish Sundries: A lack of transition pieces for doorways and from room to room. Metal transition or, stained wood pieces to match are only currently available.
Luxury Vinyl Tile is relatively new to the industry as compared to other flooring. It’s a product that feels and looks great, provides options for style and color, is easy to install, very durable, and an affordable price. LVT is a viable flooring solution. If you have further questions on Luxury Vinyl Tile, please contact me by clicking the picture below!