CAN A STEAM MOP BE USED TO CLEAN FLOORS?
I have been asked this question numerous times since these products have been put on the market. I did a little research myself and found an article by Consumer Reports that DOES NOT recommend using a steam mop to clean your floors. The article talks about how you might expect the steam mop to be more convenient and to loosen dried food spills and perhaps even sanitizing the floors. But these expectations did not match the test results performed by Consumer Reports. Consumer Reports coated a vinyl floor with catsup, hairspray, toothpaste, pasta sauce, olive oil, cat food, pancake syrup, mustard, barbecue sauce, and other household stuff and let it sit over night to harden. They admitted that this was a tough spill then what is usually done in a small kitchen spill. some of the smaller spills were almost gone after two passes, others such as the mustard clung to the surface. Cleaning up the larger mess was a little more challenging for the steamers. Eventually even the best steamer pushed aside more of the grime then they were picking up. The result looked like a lawn where a lawn mower missed narrow strips of grass along the way and left a dull looking floor behind. Consumer Reports retested the floor using a $15.00 sponge mop and some mild detergent. The sponge mop cleaned the floors better then the steam mop. So overall the recommendation from Consumer Reports is to save your money on a steam mop and buy a sponge mop to get cleaner looking floors.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT FIBERS CARPET IS MADE OF?
There are four basic fibers, not including wool. These fibers all have unique qualities and strengths. Your choice is usually determined by the characteristics that are important to you and your home.
Nylon – is the most versatile of all fibers, providing excellent durability and flexibility in creating a variety of carpet styles. Though nylon is not inherently stain resistance most nylons are treated by the manufacturer with some sort of stain resist carpet treatment for protection against most household stains and spills (even pet urine and feces).
Polyester (PET) – offers exceptional softness, it is naturally stain and fade resistant. Although not as durable as a nylon it still performs very well. It is a great choice for a low to medium traffic area such as bedrooms.
Polyproplyene(olefin) – Unlike other carpet fibers olefins do not absorb water, so it is solution dyed. Solution dyed means that the color is built into the fiber when it is formed making the color permanently a part of the fiber, this means the color will not fade, even when exposed to sunlight, bleaches, contaminants, or other harsh chemicals. Polypropylene is usually used in a loop pile construction where there is less need for resiliency because it is not as strong as the other fibers in a cut pile application.
Triexta – the newest fiber in the industry. Triexta is a product of dupont, the same company who brought about nylons back in the 1980’s. PTT(polytrimethylene terephthalate) is a polymer comprised of several monomers. PTT were first discovered back in the 1940’s, but were to costly to produce. After much research Dupont was able to reduce the cost of production in the 1990’s by using boitechnology. PTT fibers are hydrophobican, meaning like a olefin it does not absorb moisture. It is produced with corn glucose instead of petroleum limiting off gassing. PTT have not been around long enough to establish a track record like nylons, but seem to be performing well in durabilility and stain resistant.
What is Recycled Plastic Carpet?
Carpet made out of recycled plastic is most commonly referred to as PET carpet. PET stands for polyethylene terephthlate and is a plastic resin that is a form of polyester. Bottles and containers made with “PET” plastic are marked with a #1 code on or near the bottom of the bottle. PET plastic is a high quality plastic used by manufacturers for food products, household cleaners and cosmetics. Each square yard of carpet equates to 30 plastic soda bottles being kept out of our landfills. These bottles are broken and ground into small plastic chips, which are then cleaned and melted. The melted plastic is then molded into plastic thread and spun into carpet yarn. The PET fiber must meet federal strength standards. The caps and labels are then used for the production of the carpet core and pads.
With this being said I found an article that questions if these products are safe.
“The jury is still out as to whether PET plastics can leach contamination into our systems, but most reputable consumer advocates seem to think the stuff is relatively benign. That said, it can’t be good to ingest carpet fibers of any kind, and a 2009 study by German scientists found that some PET water bottles contained trace amounts of chemicals that could mimic hormones if ingested. So while there is no documented proof that PET carpet fibers are bad for you, why risk it? Stay safe by keeping them out of your mouths and noses.”
The article goes on to explain how stain resistant PET’s are and only top resins are used in these products.
I GET ASKED SOMETIMES WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF CARPETING?
There are 5 reasons why carpeting is good:
1. Provides warmth and comfort.
Carpet provides excellent R-value. In climates where the temperatures get seasonal, carpeting can retain the warm air longer. Helping with energy conservation or in other words “helping to retain the heat in the house”. Carpet is a comfortable place to sit, play or work and gives the room a warmer feeling.
2. Improves indoor air quality.
All carpets these days the lowest VOC emitting levels then any other product out there. Carpeting acts as a passive air filter creating a trap for dust, pollen and other particles to be removed from the breathing zone. They say studies have shown that people with allergies and asthma have seen their symptoms improve when new carpet has been installed.
3. Reduces Noise.
With all the new gadgets that technology has brought about including Big screen TV’s, media rooms, sound systems our houses have become noisy places. Carpeting has helped to reduce these sounds by absorbing the noise. Cushion also helps to reduce these noises even further. Carpeting also helps reduce noise from floor to floor blocking sound transmission to rooms below. Carpet also masks foot traffic noise.
4. Softens slips and falls.
Carpet provides safety protection for elderly adults and children when falling. Carpeting also reduces slips and falls minimizing injuries.
5. Adds beauty and style.
Carpeting allows you to choose from many styles and colors. This gives you choices to reflect your personality. It can be neutral or a statement with vibrant colors, patterns and textures.
TO EXPAND ON THE INDOOR AIR QUALITY – THE QUESTION ASKED COULD BE HOW DOES CARPET HELP WITH INDOOR AIR QUALITY?
We usually don’t associate carpet with indoor air quality, but it does have a positive effect. We know gravity causes common particles such as dust, pollen, insect, pet dander to fall to the floor. Carpet fibers can trap these particles removing them from the breathing area and reducing their circulation in the air. Proper cleaning with approved vacuums can effectively remove these particles and allergens from the carpet helping to keep them out of the air for breathing.
One of the misperceptions that is floating around out there is that people with allergies and asthma should avoid carpeting in their home. The Carpet and Rug Institute is actually saying the opposite. They have performed studies that show that properly cleaned carpets help to reduce symptoms and is the best flooring choice for those dealing with allergies and asthma.
Another misperception is mold and VOC. When carpeting is kept clean and dry, mold cannot grow on synthetic fibers. Carpeting is one of the lowest emitters of volatile organic compounds then another flooring product made. The CRI Institute identifies carpeting, cushion and adhesives as meeting or exceeding government indoor quality regulations and the lowest emitting product on the market.
ANOTHER QUESTION SOMEONE MIGHT ASK COULD BE HOW DOES CARPET HELP THE ENVIRONMENT?
The carpet industry uses the three R’s to minimize carpets impact on the environment. The three R’s are reduce, reuse and recycle. When carpet is ripped up and disposed of, before it reaches the landfills, it is removed and recycled for various products such as roofing shingles and automotive parts. There has been three billion pounds of carpeting removed from landfills since 2002.
What carpet fiber would you recommend ?
This question is usually followed by some questions from me. Such as what room are you doing? Do you have animals or kids? Is it considered a high traffic area? So in answering these questions, let’s say the homeowner says they have animals. So my recommendation would be a stainmaster product. Stainmaster has been around since the 1980’s as a carpet fiber. Stainmaster nylon 6.6 carpet. It is the B.R.A.N.D. to recommend.
B – Brand
R – Resistance
A – Assurance
N – Nylon 6.6
D – Durability
Stainmaster is North America’s best known and most trusted carpet brand. Brand recognition and trust help build rapport and foster customer confidence.
Stainmaster carpet is famous for being easy to clean. Their proprietary technologies , including LotusFX Fiber Shield allows stainmaster carpet to deliver excellent stain and soil protection.
All stainmaster carpet styles are certified to meet our strict requirements for durability, stain and soil resitance, anti-static and more. Many competitive carpets wouldn’t pass their tough certification tests or even come close.
Nylon 6.6 fiber is a high performance polymer that is used in automotive airbags, seatbelts, engine components, parachute cords and more. The shapes of our nylon 6.6 fibers have been engineered to optimize performance, style, and appearance.
It’s no secret that stainmaster nylon 6.6 carpet is very durable, most customers already know that. Their Vettermann Drum Test uses a tumbler that weighs more than five times as much as the “industry standard” Light ball hexapod test tumbler.
The key benefits to stainmaster pet protect carpeting is built in stain protection resists difficult pet stains, easily releases pet hair during vacuuming, and reduces pet odors when installed with stainmaster carpet cushion.
Does carpet cushion make a difference?
I have been doing carpeting for many years. Over time carpet cushions have changed. They have moved to a bonded padding versus a foam pad. The Carpet and Rug Institute stated for carpets to have a warranty the approve padding is a 6lb. bonded padding. As carpet fibers are changing the softer carpets are recommending a 8lb pad versus the 6 lb. If you looking for a padding with mold, mildew and moisture resistant then a spillguard protected padding would be a prime choice. This padding allows the spill to stay on top of the padding and not soak into it leaving odors or stains that could return when the carpet is cleaned. A padding choice for radiant heat would be a rubber padding such as leggett and platt stainmaster padding. This pad has fresh dimension a antimicrobial that protects against mold, mildew and odor causing bacteria. The breathable moisture barrier keeps most common household stains out of the cushion. The thermal reinforced bottom barrier provides additional protect. Its hypoallergenic and 100% recyclable.
What about carpet tiles? Would you use them in residential home?
I always thought of carpet tiles being used in commercial applications, but lately residential homes are using them also. Because of the different patterns available carpet tiles can add character to the room. Carpet tiles are easy to maintain, just vacuuming or sweeping a couple of times a week. If one gets damaged they are easily repaired by replacing the carpet tile with a new one. I like carpet tiles on the basement floor with the vinyl back it keeps the coldness of the concrete floor down making the room warmer.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT TILE AND STONE
This Support FAQ page provides answers to questions our support team frequently receives. Here are the questions we’re most often asked. If you don’t find the answer you’re looking for feel free to contact us.
Offset installations(brick patterns)
The TCNA Handbook recommends no more that a 33% offset and a wider grout joint for offset installations of tile larger then 18″ on the longest side. This is because all tiles are higher in the middle than at the edges. When the highest point(middle) of one tile is next to the lowest point(edge) of the tile next to it, unacceptable lippage can result. If customer is persistant on using a 50% break then 3/16 or larger grout joint is recommended.
What are rectified tiles?
All natural tiles vary slightly between production runs. Sizes change between batches and this means is that mixing and matching different production batches is seldom possible. Rectified tiles are deliberately made over size, and are then cut on a diamond saw at the factory to a common caliber. The square, saw-cut edges allow for finer narrower grout joints between tiles and result in a beautiful and contemporary finished look. Rectified calibration also means that rectified tiles will still work together when modular sizes are mixed. Rectified products have increased in popularity over recent times. Note that rectified tiles need to be installed on a good surface square and level, and your tile contractor should be experienced with the requirements for laying this type of product.
What is the difference between ceramic & porcelain tiles?
Ceramic tiles have been around for over 2000 years. They typically have a white or red clay biscuit with some form of glaze on top. Porcelain tile cost more than ordinary ceramic tile because you are getting a superior product. Porcelain tile requires the finest natural ingredients and a rigidly controlled manufacturing process that utilizes the most advanced processes and technology. Porcelain tiles are made from an extremely finely powdered clay tablet that is pressed under enormous pressure and heat – several hundred degrees hotter than ceramics. Porcelain tiles are much harder and more dense than ceramic tiles. This allows porcelain tiles to be made in very large formats that would be impossible to achieve in a ceramic tile. Porcelain tiles will also often have a colored biscuit that matches the surface glaze, or have a color and pattern that extends all the way through the tile. This avoids the common problem with ceramics where the glaze gets chipped and exposes the color of the clay biscuit underneath.
What about Thin Porcelain Tiles?
Thin porcelain tiles (TPT) are gaining momentum in commercial and residential specifications. Introduced initially in Europe, TPT is still relatively new in the United States market. They consist mainly of large thin porcelain panels. Sizes and thickness vary from company to company. These tiles are just as strong as regular porcelain tiles but thinner. There are many benefits to using thinner porcelain tiles:
– ease of installation, thin and light weight, easy to cut and drill
– ideal for installations over properly prepared existing tiles, avoiding the demolition and waste disposal.
– innovative applications can be curved surfaces, interior design applications, furniture and accents.
– this unique production process allows to produce perfectly flat panels.
– rectified edges, al edges have been mechanically finished for a more exact dimension.
– the thin tile reduces the need to cut doors, and allows for less drastic transitions to other floor finishes.
– TPT’s are fully vitreous porcelain making it non-absorbent, easy to clean, freeze thaw stable, resistant to acids, stains and pollution.
– thin porcelain plus boasts excellent values for resistance to bending and breaking strength.
– large sizes never seen before.
– proven, thin large format tile has been used successfully around the world for residential and commercial applications for over 10 years.
– strong decrease in raw materials, water and energy consumption, as well as pollution.
– reduced co2 exhausts during firing up to 20% less then standard tile and 50% less natural gas used compared to traditional tile production.
– transportation uses less fuel because you can fit more tile in a smaller space.
– incredibly light for size weight ratio.
What is the difference between glazed and unglazed tiles?
Glazed tiles are made the same as unglazed except that a glass layer called a glaze is fused to its’ surface by means of tremendous heat. The glaze provides an unlimited array of colors and designs. The glaze also protects the tile from staining. Unglazed tiles are true inlays. Unglazed tiles are very similar to glazed tile, except that their surface is not coated. Unglazed ceramic tiles do not show wear because their color extends throughout the tile, making them ideal for commercial applications.
What is the best grout to use in ceramic or porcelain tiles?
Mapei has come out with a product called Flexcolor CQ. This grout represents the next generation in grouts. It is designed to provide uncompromised cleanability while maintaining color consistency. It cures to a hard finish that allows light foot traffic in just 24 hours, with heavy foot traffic acceptable in two or three days. The abrasion resistance is rated the highest performer on the market. Flexcolor CQ has superior stain/chemical resistance and comes in 36 colors. So overall:
- No call backs
- No mixing
- No cracking
- No sealing
- No staining
- No efflorescence
Why would Vinyl be a good choice in flooring?
Armstrong’s unsurpassed realism captures the definition, depth and dimension of natural materials, so stones look and feel like stones and woods look and feel like woods. Armstrong offers four unique product structures. Armstrong offers four product structures each designed to meet your specific needs, choose glue-down for permanent installations or loose-lay option if you would like the freedom to change more often. Armstrong offers two different constructions, either tough guard construction or fiberglass.
Duality – fiberglass structure suitable for light commercial applications.
Cushionstep – fiberglass structure warm and soft foot.
Stratamax – made from 70% stone composite in the bottom layer for maximum durability.
Toughguard felt- sheet vinyl that offers beauty and value.
Tarkett fiber floor comes in a wide variety of colors, design, construction and installation. All of Tarkett’s fiber floors have a urethane top coat and include varying wear layers designed to perform in any room, especially in wet areas. There is also Aquaguard protection tarkett’s structured foam technology which ensures uniform floor structure and indentation resistance. Tarkett has four levels to choose from to find the perfect floor for your style, budget and performance needs. Tarkett has 5 layers, starting from the bottom up:
5. TechniCore backing layer – Allows flexibility, easy installation, moisture and sound resistant barrier.
4. Engineered fiber glass inner layer – Utilizes non-woven fiber so it lays flat and won’t expand or contract for increas stability.
3. TechniCore foam layer – adds cushion and additional indentation protection, creating warmth and comfort under foot.
2. Wear layer – prevents wear, rips, tears, gouges and indentations.
1. Finish layer – protects against scratches, scuffs and stains for easy cleaning and maintenance.
Overall vinyl has come a long way in recent years to give you the best in durability, styles and comfort.
It’s not like your grandmother’s floor anymore.
Why would I choose luxury vinyl tile versus porcelain tile?
I have people ask me why would I choose a vinyl tile versus a porcelain or ceramic floor tile?
My response is usually “it’s the perfect alternative”. Armstrong Alterna engineered stone tile flooring is a innovative alternative to natural stone and porcelain tile. Like stone and ceramic or porcelain, it is incredibly beautiful and durable. But still having some attributes of vinyl such as warmer to the touch, kinder to your feet, and easier to care for in any room in your home. Armstrong Alterna comes in multiple sizes and shapes giving you the choice to express your style in your own personal way. It can be grouted or butted, the choice is yours. Grout creates the authentic look and is ready to use. The grout requires no sealing and resists stains and cracking. Armstrong Alterna is a durable composite made primarily of quarried limestone and topped with a nonporous resilient surface. This unique construction is flexible enough to cover subfloor irregularities that could cause natural stone or porcelain tile to crack. It is ideal for wet areas and easy to maintain.
What are the benefits of prefinished hardwood flooring?
There are three ways to buy hardwood flooring, solid, glueless engineered, and engineered. Most customers that come in looking for hardwood have an idea about prefinished products. Prefinished hardwood is already stain and finished, unlike unfinished products. Most customers are looking at the convience of a prefinished product because of the ability to still live in the home while the work is being done. Hardwood, depending on the manufacturer has anywhere from 7-10 coats of polyurethane and 2-3 coats of aluminum oxide, making this product’s finish a more durable finish in the long run. It creates a scratch resist finish with warranties from 15-50 years.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SOLID, GLUELESS ENGINEERED AND ENGINEERED?
So solid wood flooring is usually 3/4″ thick. It can come 2 ways; finished or unfinished. Unfinished hardwood comes as unfinished boards that are installed and then sanded. They then are either stained or kept natural in color with 3-4 coats of finish applied. This on site application does not resist wear nearly as well as the factory applied finishes. Prefinished solid wood floors are presanded, stained and finished at the factory. This process is in a controlled and ideal environment. This wood is installation is ready when it is received from the factory. There are no offensive odors or moving out of one’s home for a prefinished hardwood floor.
Glueless engineered flooring combines the beauty of hardwood with a number of environmental and economic advantages. It is also prepared in a controlled and ideal environment. The boards are made of high density fiber (HDF) base whose engineered edges fit together perfectly with a simple motion.
Engineered hardwood flooring combines real wood surface with a solid plywood base. Engineered hardwood is best used in areas where varying humidity These floors are more stable than solid hardwood. The boards can be glued to concrete floors, used over radiant heat of a acoustic membrane. They can also be stapled on plywood. There are four criteria to evaluate the quality of the engineered floor. 1. The thickness of the hardwood wear layer. 2. T
he number of plywood plies. 3. The cutting process whether it is slice cutting, rotary peeled or dry saw cut. 4. The precision cut of base layers. Ideally the hardwood wear layer should be 5/32 inch for sanding if needed, t he plywood backing should be 5 plys thick for good floor stability.
THE NEXT QUESTION IS STYLE.
After you have picked out the type of hardwood there are still many choices to make. The color of your floor, the width of the boards and the type of finish.(cashmere and semi-gloss)
Hardwood flooring is now recognized as a distinct decorative element. Prefinished floors provide the opportunity to create interesting contrasts in the decor you are trying to achieve.
Different species of wood have different grain, color and texture. Personal taste and preference lead us to choose one species over the other. The room decor and deisred effects help to influence your decision on species. Oaks and Maples are the best known, others are birch, cherry, walnut, hickory, pine, bamboo. More and more customers are looking at the richness of the more exotic species such as brazilian cherry, mohogany, sapele, or tigerwood are some. Exotics tend to be harder then north american woods but need more stable temperatures with high humidity.
The gloss levels are a factor in the decision also. High gloss reflects the light but tends to amplify marks and scratches. Semi-gloss is a medium shine which is most popular and matte or satin reduces the appearance of marks and scratches.
WHY THE DIFFERENT GRADE LEVELS?
As a retailer we are dedicated to finding the best possible product to meet our customers needs. The grading of the wood is how the different woods will be priced. A higher price is usually affected be the character of the wood. Wood Boards are graded or classified by the variation of the boards. Boards that are more uniform in color will be graded as “select and better”. Boards that are containing more pronounced color are considered “exclusive” and boards that show more character such as mineral streaking and worm holes can be considered “rustic or antique” grade levels. The last category usually comes without warranty because of the significant manufacturing and finishing defects in these products.
WHY DIFFERENT WIDTHS?
These days there are many different boards widths in the industry. Narrow boards are usually a more stable product with expansion and contraction of the wood at a minimal amount. When you get into the wider boards they have more movement from board to board depending on the humidity levels in the room. Customers should take in consideration where the wood is going to decide which board length is better for them. Especially in the northeast with the different temperatures during the seasons, the wood is apt to move more.
WHICH WAY SHOULD THE BOARDS RUN?
When boards are being installed on a wood subfloor, ideally it is recommended to install the boards perpendicular to the joists. When installing on a concrete floor your options are open.
WHAT ABOUT THE QUALITY OF THE WOOD?
The beauty of the wood comes from the unique characteristics of the wood. Some small knots and mineral streaks are inherent and even desirable to give the authentic and natural character of the wood floor. Visual details are different from character defects. Defects can be a sign of inferior products in manufacturing and the finishing. The number of coats of finish does not always give a reliable indicator of the quality or durability of the finish. Factory finishing is by far more superior then finishes being applied in house. Finishing methods that include ultraviolet drying stages represent proven techniques that result in remarkably scratch resistant products. The application of finish on prefinished flooring is done in successive coats in ideal and controlled conditions. The result of this process is a product that resists wear so well that manufacturers confidently give it a long term guarantee. By following the maintenance instructions that are given for prefinished products you can ensure durability far beyond the guarantee period.
HOW DO YOU TALK TO CUSTOMERS ABOUT ACCLIMATION?
In our area of the country, the northeast, I try to explain to customers about the different temperatures that our houses we live in experience. In the summer we have high humidity and in the winter we have extreme cold temperatures. The wood flooring is moving with these different temperatures constantly. If you are using a 2 1/4 or 3 1/4 wood flooring the wood tends to be more stable in expanding and contracting because of the smaller size. When you get into wider planks the wood has a tendency to expand and contract at a much higher rate. Running dehumifiers and humidifiers help in keeping the area the wood is in stable. Typically 35 – 50 percent humidity is normal and between 60-80 degrees in temperature is normal. This is considered a comfortable level and once the comfort level is not met then with high humidity your boards are going to swell, with dry conditions the boards have a tendency to gap, crack fracture or split.
Oil Floor Finish vs. Poyurethane
Oil and polyurethane are the two most common types of finishes for wood floors. Both of these products offer protection to the wood flooring and can come natural or with stain. These two products give the wood flooring somewhat different appearances and characteristics.
Oil finishes penetrate into the wood surface, while polyurethane’s finish coats the surface. Penetrating finishes become a part of the wood surface as they soak in and surface finishes stay on the outside of the wood.
Since oil finishes soak into the wood, they tend to leave the natural wood grain visible. Oil finishes have a tendency to darken the wood as the oil is soaked into the wood. Polyurethane coats the surface and covers up the natural wood grain texture of the floor. Polyurethane gives the floor a slick looking surface in either a matte to glossy sheen.
Surfaces like polyurethanes usually last longer then oil finishes. The advantage to a oil finish is that the homeowner can touch-up oil finishes. Small dents and scratches can be buffed out and worn areas can have oil reapplied to blend with the rest of the floor. Oil finishes don’t usually chip or scratch since the finish is socaked in not a surface coat. Poly’s can not be touched up, the whole floor needs to be redone over. When a polyurethane floor gets worn out it may have numerous chips and scratches in the surface finish.
LAMINATE FLOORING VERSUS WPC CORE PRODUCT
When laminates came out on the market, they were the product to buy in the flooring industry. I sold many customers laminate flooring, but recently I have not promoted this product due to some issues with the product. If using in areas where water is not an issue like bedrooms and family room I have no problems. If you are thinking about laminates in the kitchen, laundry room, bathroom, basement I’m not going to recommend this product. Laminates from my experience have lost the moisture resistant core when click loc products were made. I had 2 floors go bad from 2 different companies due to moisture sitting on the floor for a period of time. The seams puckered and swelled and never really went back to the original state.
The industry has come out with a solution for this and it is called core tec. This product has a heavy commercial wear layer which protects against excessive wear, provides superior cleanability and superior stain resistance. The luxury vinyl top layer is durable, resilient, resists chips and dents and is a virgin vinyl. The permacore structure, which is the backing, is waterproof,stable, highly dense with a glueless profile. It is recommended in any room in your house. The stability of the product is even being tested in a three season room.
With this permacore technology it is the ultimate solution for anyone who is looking for a great looking waterproof floor that is eco-conscious, and easy to clean. Permacore is a 50/50 recycled wood composite that is extremely dense and stable, it will not contract or expand. It resists spills of any kind, making the cleaning and everyday maintenance easy. It has a lifetime wear and lifetime structure with a 10 year commercial warranty. It comes in both wood looks and some stone looks.
What exactly is WPC?
The “W” stands for wood, but the fact of the matter is the majority of WPC – type products entering the market today do not contain wood. WPC is a composite material made of thermoplastics, calcium carbonate and wood flour. Extruded as a core material, it is marketed as being waterproof,rigid and dimensionally stable. In a effort to differentiate their products, suppliers are branding their offerings with names such as enhanced vinyl plank, engineered luxury vinyl flooring and waterproof vinyl.
How does it differ from LVT?
The main difference is that WPC is waterproof and can go over most subfloors without much preparation. Traditional vinyl floors are flexible and any unevenness in the subfloor will transfer through the surface. Compared to traditional glue down LVT or solid locking LVT, WPC products have a distinct advantage because of the rigid core hides subfloor imperfections. With WPc it is not necessary to worry about the preparation LVT would require for use over cracks and divots in concrete and wooden subfloors.
What is the advantage over laminate?
The big advantage for WPC over laminate is that it is waterproof and suitable for environments in which laminate shouldn’t normally be used – typically bathrooms and basements that have potential moisture infiltration. In addition, WPC products can be installed in large rooms without an expansion gap every 30 feet, which is a requirement for laminate floors. The vinyl wear layer of WPC provides cushion and comfort and also absorbs the impact sound to make it a quiet floor. WPC is suitable for large open areas because it does not need expansion moldings.