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What to consider when choosing Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT)?

Rubber floor tiles were invented by an architect in Philadelphia in 1894. They were considered durable, sound-deadening, easy to clean and install at the time. However, they had some major shortcomings: they were easily stained and unsuitable for use in spaces where moisture was an issue such as basement. In 1926, Polyvinyl chloride (PVC), commonly known as vinyls, a newly improved type of rubber flooring was invented which overcame the problems of the previous type. It eventually became a popular flooring material in both residential and commercial settings.

Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT), an industry term, is a popular flooring option that has gained popularity in recent years due to its durability, versatility, and realistic appearance of natural materials. It typically consists of four layers:

Wear Layer: The top layer is a wear-resistant, transparent coating that protects the tile from scratches, stains, and wear and tear.

Vinyl Design Layer: Beneath the wear layer is a high-resolution photographic layer that can mimic the look of various materials such as wood, stone, or tile.

Core Layer: The core layer provides stability and durability to the tile. It is usually made of PVC (polyvinyl chloride) and can include additives for added strength.

Backing Layer: The bottom layer provides additional stability and helps with moisture resistance.

The Pros of Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT):

One of the primary advantages of LVT is its ability to replicate the look of natural materials like hardwood, stone, or ceramic tiles. Advanced printing technology allows for highly detailed and realistic designs. Unlike traditional hard flooring materials like ceramic tiles or hardwood, LVT is softer underfoot and provides some level of cushioning, making it more comfortable to walk on for extended periods.

LVT is also known for its durability and resilience. It is resistant to scratches, dents, and stains, making it an excellent choice for high-traffic areas and households with pets and children. Many LVT products are waterproof or water-resistant, making them suitable for wet areas like bathrooms and kitchens. This feature also makes them less susceptible to damage from spills and moisture.

LVT is relatively easy to clean and maintain. Regular sweeping and occasional mopping are usually sufficient to keep it looking good. The wear layer provides a protective barrier against dirt and stains.

LVT is available in various sizes, including planks and tiles, allowing for versatile design options. It can be installed in a variety of patterns and layouts. Many LVT products come with click-and-lock or adhesive-backed installation systems, making them suitable for DIY installations. LVT is often more affordable than natural materials like hardwood or stone while still offering a similar aesthetic. Some LVT products are manufactured with eco-friendly materials and processes, and they can be recycled.

Cons of Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT):

While LVT can mimic the look of natural materials, it may not have the exact texture or feel of the real thing. Unlike hardwood or natural stone, LVT may not add as much value to a home in terms of resale. While LVT is durable, if it does get damaged, individual tiles or planks may need to be replaced, which can be challenging to match exactly if the product is discontinued. In addition, some LVT products may emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) during installation, although low-VOC options are available.

Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) is a versatile and durable flooring option that offers the look of natural materials with added benefits like moisture resistance and ease of maintenance. It's suitable for a wide range of applications and can be a cost-effective choice for both residential and commercial spaces. However, the choice of LVT should be based on your specific needs, budget, and design preferences.


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