There is a segment of the floor covering market that hasn’t received the full attention it deserves. Commercial designers/specifiers are HUGE fans of this, but what they know hasn’t filtered down to be shared with flooring retailers and consumers at large. Well it’s time to share the features and benefits of luxury vinyl tile and separate these unique products from the mix of other vinyl goods. Luxury vinyl tile couldn’t be more different, not only in how it’s manufactured, but in the total aesthetic and applications.
You can’t possibly have the look, graining, and character of real hardwood in vinyl tile—or can you? Today’s technology in replication processes is the first step in creating vinyl “wood” planks and textured “stone” tiles that rival the real thing admirably. I have been invited to visit some of the top design firms in metropolitan Los Angeles and Orange County, California, and amazingly, what I have seen are beautiful office suites with elegant luxury vinyl “wood” planking or vinyl “slate” adorning those office floors. These top designers can have any flooring material they want, yet so many of them chose LVT. And of course, I had to find out why. Here’s what they know that I want to share with you:
LVT BENEFITSIncredibly realistic photo replication natural materials (photogravure process) The look and feel of nature’s best materials at a lower cost are a reality of LVT manufacturing Brands that offer 100% vinyl material
Vinyl flooring satisfies Green building standards and earns LEED points in commercial applications.
Inherent safety features
Meets requirements of commercial flammability codes, slip resistant requirements…and a menu of other safety codes
Ease of maintenance
Simple damp mopping is the recommended cleaning procedure for LVT floors
Excellent selection of sizes, shapes
The size options vary by manufacturer, but many styles are available in 12 x 12”, 18 x 18”, 12 x 24” sizes, and planks in standard (3 x 36” 4.5 x 36) and extra-large widths (7 or 9’ widths).
Naturally water resistant
LVT floors are inherently water resistant (and fairly impervious to wet spills from above). It’s important to install over flat, dry, approved substrates so that no water seepage occurs beneath the floor.
Scratch, stain, dent and scuff resistant
Specialized wear layers (most common are 20 mil; Amtico International offers a 40 mil layer). Then the floors are coated with urethane to enhance durability
Economics factor favorably into the specification of LVT for both commercial and residential applications, giving the look and feel of rich, natural materials at a lower cost
Because LVT is constructed to withstand commercial wear and tear, it’s probably “over-qualified” for residential use and can handle high-traffic areas with ease. Warranties vary by manufacturer, but it’s not unusual to see 20-25 year warranties on brand name LVT
More resilient than other hard surface floors Because there are multi-layers of vinyl in LVT as well as a resilient backing as the foundation, LVT tiles and planks have more resilience underfoot. It’s easier to stand on for long periods of time AND as an added benefit, it tends to be warmer underfoot than ceramic. Amazing aesthetics
There has been a stunning transformation in the design aesthetics of LVT in the last five years. If you are linking it to “industrial” looking floors, this is where you need to throw away your misconceptions and do some research. This may be the one biggest factor that has caused interior designers to stand up and take note of the new brand of LVT. The realism of the total look, INCLUDING distressed wood finishes, stone and slate tactile surface textures, and even woven textiles imbedded in the wear layers, are grabbing attention.
There is a reason that luxury vinyl tile is gaining huge momentum in the consumer market, and the reasons are pretty well graphed out above. It’s time for you to be pleasantly amazed. If you are a retailer, call in your manufacturer’s rep to get a first-hand look at this highly evolved segment of floor coverings. Then make room on your floor for these award-winning looks. It’s still a fairly new frontier in the quest for what’s innovative in flooring. And it’s your job to make the discovery for yourself.
Contact Landmark Flooring in Tinley Park for further information at 708-349-0011