Vinyl is an affordable and beautiful flooring material, provided you choose luxury vinyl tiles (LVT) or planks. Unlike conventional vinyl sheets and planks, these are more durable and have a realistic surface texture that mimics their natural counterparts extremely well. While it is more expensive than vinyl sheets and regular vinyl planks, it is more affordable than solid and engineered hardwood but equally beautiful. However, every product has its pros and cons, and LVT is no different. Being aware of the problems will help you avoid them and get you the maximum utility out of the product.
Challenges Posed by Luxury Vinyl Tiles
LVT, or Luxury Vinyl Tiles, pose certain challenges that affect the aesthetics and overall beauty of your floor. The following are some potential challenges you may face during installation:
Challenges related to the substrate:
Substrate preparation is key before any type of floor installation. But it is particularly critical for vinyl planks and tiles which can buckle if the substrate is uneven. Ensuring the substrate is laid flat without any bumps or dents is a challenge. The primary problems related to laying the substrate are:
- When the substrate is uneven and the vinyl flooring is laid over that without rectifying the problem, the material will shorten as it must ride over the high and low dents on the substrate. This leads to needing more flooring material.
- Moisture is a major problem, particularly in concrete substrate. Vinyl flooring gets damaged from underneath when it comes into contact with moisture. Problems include crumpling at the edges, as the adhesive has loosened, or, as in case of LVT, problems with abatement chemicals which can react adversely with these flooring materials.
- If you are installing click-lock vinyl planks, uneven substrate can lead to lifting of the flooring’s edges and joints.
- The substrate should be clean and dry before you lay down any subfloor and vinyl on top of it. Often when flooring is being replaced, homeowners neglect to clean off the residue of old glue and debris thoroughly, which can hamper the installation of new flooring.
Challenges related to installation failures
Improper installation can cause various problems with vinyl flooring, leading to a shorter lifespan and unsightly appearance. Here are some common installation-related issues:
- Moisture levels in the room and subfloor must be regulated to prevent issues like curling, cupping, and lifting of the flooring.
- Vinyl flooring reacts to temperature changes, so it’s important to choose the right location for installation. LVT in particular can expand and contract with temperature changes, and moisture should be prevented from seeping into the underside of the tiles.
- The subfloor choice is also critical. Soft subfloors should be avoided as they can dent under foot traffic and cause problems underneath the vinyl.
To avoid these issues, it’s important to have a professional installer with expertise in vinyl flooring. At AA Floors, we have a team of experienced installers who use top-quality materials and installation techniques to ensure your vinyl flooring looks great and lasts for years to come.
Solutions to Common Vinyl Installation Problems
Let’s find out solutions to various problems that vinyl floors may pose. Peaking, bubbling, and lifted edges are some of the problems that experienced flooring contractors can fix.
Peaking is a common problem that occurs when two vinyl tiles or planks push against each other and lift at the joints. The main reason for this is the lack of space left for expansion and contraction during installation. This can be easily remedied by trimming the planks or tiles along the wall or removing some of the mouldings to create more space. Although peaking will not be eliminated immediately, it can be somewhat flattened by laying weights on top of the lifted area overnight or for a couple of days.
Moisture, sunlight, or water seeping into the joints can also cause peaking. This emphasizes the importance of ensuring proper moisture control during installation to prevent peaking or other problems that can affect the appearance and longevity of your vinyl flooring.
- Warping Warping is a common issue faced in hardwood and laminate flooring, but it can also occur in vinyl flooring. The main cause of warping in vinyl flooring is exposure to direct sunlight during installation, which causes the planks to expand. In the case of glue-down tiles and planks, warping can occur due to water spillage that is not cleaned up immediately and has seeped under the flooring through the seams. To prevent warping, it is important to maintain and care for your vinyl flooring regularly.
- Mould and mildew
Mould and mildew can have a negative impact on indoor air quality, causing health issues such as allergies and respiratory problems. If left unchecked, it can spread quickly and become a persistent problem. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure that your vinyl flooring installation is done by experienced professionals who can take necessary precautions to prevent mould and mildew growth.
At AA Floors, we offer top-quality vinyl flooring solutions that are designed to withstand moisture and prevent mould and mildew growth. Contact us today to learn more about our installation services and quality vinyl flooring options.
Vinyl flooring is an affordable and beautiful option for your home, but it is not entirely problem free. Potential problems and their sources must be understood to get the most from your flooring. If you keep the above-mentioned factors in mind, enhancing the lifetime of your flooring by another few years becomes easy.