Deciding on the proper flooring type for your home is a tough, time-consuming process. There are countless options out there available from manufacturers, and each type has its own advantages and disadvantages. Luxury vinyl flooring is no different. Vinyl planks are no doubt one of the most frequently used styles, but why are they so popular? Let’s check out the pros and cons of luxury vinyl.
- Extremely Affordable: This is undoubtedly the single biggest reason why so many homeowners opt for luxury vinyl over hardwood. True hardwood flooring can be quite expensive, so if you don’t have the budget for it, vinyl flooring is a great alternative that looks the same. On average, it can be five to ten times cheaper.
- Easy Installation:. With some products, it can simply be glued to the subfloor. With others, planks are locked together like a jigsaw puzzle and create a floating floor that isn’t directly connected to the subfloor. Many homeowners choose to do the installation themselves, although it’s always recommended to hire a professional for the best quality.
- Waterproof: With true hardwood flooring you always have to worry about water soaking into the planks, causing permanent damage. Luxury vinyl is 100% waterproof so this is never a concern.
- Easy Maintenance: Luxury vinyl flooring comes with a protective layer that never needs refinishing or resurfacing. In most cases, all the maintenance that’s needed is frequent cleaning.
- Durability: Don’t let this confuse you - luxury vinyl flooring is still a very durable product. However, it is made of softer materials and is sensitive to scratches and gouges. Indentations from heavy items like furniture are also a concern.
- Fading: If exposed to direct sunlight for longer periods of time, luxury vinyl has a tendency to fade.
- Can Be Difficult to Remove: This is only the case if you’ve selected vinyl planks that are glued down to the subfloor. It can be challenging to remove these and the adhesives in order for other flooring to be installed, while click lock planks are incredibly easy to remove.
- Sustainability: Unlike hardwood, vinyl is not made from raw, natural materials and is usually constructed with synthetic compounds. For this reason, it’s not as environmentally friendly.
Source: The Spruce
How Much Weight Can Luxury Vinyl Flooring Hold?
As mentioned above, one of the drawbacks of luxury vinyl flooring is that it’s softer than true hardwood. As a result, it’s susceptible to bending and indentations when heavy loads are put on it. While it will have no problem withstanding normal household objects, specialized pieces like pianos and heavy appliances like refrigerators can be too much to handle.
According to Home Inspection Insider, a single vinyl plank can hold up to 500 pounds. Since most furniture will not go under just one plank, it is perfectly safe for bulky furniture and refrigerators to go on vinyl plank flooring. Vinyl plank flooring will not be damaged or cracked by home appliances’ weight due to its strong durability. However, most manufacturers will specify a lower weight, than its true capacity to prevent any damage. Many homeowners have had no problems, even with heavy items. A proper installation will increase the performance of your floor in holding up to higher weights.
Click-Lock Vinyl vs Glue-Down Vinyl Plank Flooring
The variety of luxury vinyl flooring you’re using will have a big determining factor on how much weight it can handle as well. Glue-down flooring generally can withstand much more weight as it’s adhered directly to the subfloor, leaving little gaps and no room for movement, leading to a harder surface. The only damage you’ll notice is smaller indentations directly on the face of the planks, particularly in areas where furniture legs are.
Click-lock is more of a concern. If enough weight is placed on it, the joints between the planks may begin to separate. This can cause buckling to occur, with some planks rising higher than others. To prevent this, try to disperse the weight across the floor so that it’s not concentrated over the joints.
Tips to Protect Your Luxury Vinyl Flooring From Furniture
When it comes to luxury vinyl, furniture is largely responsible for most of the damage that it suffers. As mentioned earlier, luxury vinyl flooring is softer than other flooring types like hardwood, and is prone to scratching, scuffing and indentations. This can be frustrating for a homeowner, as it’s not like you can remove the furniture from your home.
Luckily, however, there are a number of steps that you can take to lessen the impact of heavy furniture. If these tips are followed religiously, your luxury vinyl flooring should maintain an incredible lifespan without any serious damage.