When doing a basement remodel, flooring is one of the biggest challenges you’ll have to overcome. You need an affordable and waterproof alternative to the rugged, cold concrete floor. Tiles, hardwood, or carpet could seem like the obvious choices, but did you know that vinyl flooring could just be the magic piece you’re looking for to give your basement a complete makeover?
Since basement flooring doesn’t play by the normal rules, you need a flooring solution that doesn’t leach residual moisture due to the close proximity to the ground. Again, during wet seasons, water could easily sip through your basement, and you want a flooring material that can dry up quickly and make your basement habitable again. Here are some reasons why vinyl flooring is revolutionizing basement remodels:
VINYL IS WARMER THAN CERAMIC TILES
Ceramic tiles can get quite cold, especially if you live in cooler areas. Walking barefoot on ceramic tiles during chilly nights can be quite uncomfortable. Vinyl floors feel much warmer underfoot and cushions your feet better than ceramic floors. It’s, however, important to note that vinyl floors placed on concrete may not be as warm as vinyl installed over a wooden subfloor. It’s completely water resistant, which is still a big plus even on concrete.
VINYL WORKS BETTER IN DAMP AREAS THAN ENGINEERED HARDWOOD
Engineered hardwood is an adorable basement flooring material as it’s more water resistant than regular hardwood. It offers better protection against moisture but it can’t match vinyl flooring when it comes to resisting moisture damage. Since engineered hardwood has a top layer of real wood and plywood backing, it exhibits a porous nature that is nowhere near waterproof; it’s only water resistant.
VINYL LASTS LONGER THAN CORK OR BAMBOO
Natural wood floors made of bamboo or cork look gorgeous but they don’t hold up to high traffic. Vinyl plank flooring offers more durability, making it a great choice if your finished basement will hold a lot of foot traffic. You can even opt for luxury vinyl planks with an extra thick top layer to offer more durability and resistance to minor scrapes and scuffs. Vinyl plank flooring comes in handy if you use your finished basement to house pets. It can withstand spilled fluids as well as scrabbling claws from your canine friend.
VINYL FLOORS ARE EASIER TO INSTALL THAN TILE
Tile flooring appeals to many homeowners, but it does come with a huge investment of labor during the installation. You have to take accurate measurements as you strive to make the tiles properly aligned, and then there’s the mess of grout and adhesive to finish up the job. Plank flooring, on the other hand, is a snap to install. It requires nearly zero clean-up, meaning that you can finish up the job in a single day.
VINYL FLOORING FLOATS: NO NAILS AND NO ADHESIVES
Plank flooring installation is quick and clean. You can easily snap them together like a puzzle on top of the concrete slab, making it a floating floor. You don’t require any special tools to do the job; your home toolbox probably has everything you need to install vinyl planks. Additionally, planks don’t require any adhesives or nails to install, making it seamless if you need to change or replace the floor in the future. In terms of repair, if any plank is damaged, you’ll only pull out the damaged plank and swap it with a new one without causing damage to the rest of the floor.
LUXURY VINYL FLOORS LOOK JUST LIKE TILE OR HARWOOD
You can’t easily tell the difference between real wood planks and luxury vinyl. The initial vinyl floors looked fake and cheap, but thanks to the recent technological advancements, luxury vinyl floors now look as natural as hardwood or tile floors. They come in a broad range of colors and patterns that imitate different types of wood flooring. With lots of flexibility and an authentic appearance, luxury vinyl gives most basement flooring materials a run for their money.
YOU DON’T NEED A SUBFLOOR TO INSTALL VINYL FLOORS
When installing other flooring types like carpets over concrete, you’ll first have to install a plywood subfloor. You may also need to put in place an extra moisture barrier to prevent the growth of mold, mildew, or rot in the carpet. These extra works can quickly eat into your budget and waste a lot of time. Vinyl may not offer the softest underfoot feeling as a carpet but its highly cost-effective, quick to install, and easy to maintain.
VINYL PLANKS ACCOMMODATE SAFE RADIANT HEATING
Radiant heating is the perfect way to turn cold, damp basements into a cozy living area perfect for the whole family. Radiant heating works pretty well with floating vinyl plank floors. However, you should set the maximum heating temperatures at 80 Degrees Fahrenheit or lower, which is warm enough to keep your finished basement comfortable. Additionally, manufacturers recommend that the heating element should be placed at least half an inch from the bottom of the vinyl floor to avoid any accidental fires.
Whenever you need to access your radiant heating system for routine maintenance or repair, vinyl planks are pretty easy to remove and replace without causing damage. The flexibility can save you a lot of hassles when you have to carry out any maintenance or repair work on your heating system.
Moisture is the biggest enemy when it comes to basement flooring. It could be moisture from below that rises through the concrete slab or moisture from above, coming from dreaded floods. Another challenge is the strength of concrete; it’s too hard to drive nails into concrete. Vinyl flooring for basements allows you to mitigate the two challenges with a single solution. Vinyl flooring materials don’t have to be nailed down or glued in any way and are highly resistant to water damage.
So, when you’re doing any basement remodel and you aren’t sure of the flooring material to go for, vinyl flooring should be your top consideration, especially if you’re worried about high moisture in the finished basement. It looks marvelous and rivals the appearance of most hardwood floors. It’s also quick and easy to install and totally impervious to water, making it a great flooring option for bathrooms too.