Floor Types

By Arbaysis Ashley

There are so many different kinds of flooring material options available to the end user that it makes choosing even more difficult. We, at Flooring-Materials.net understand the various dilemmas you face when you go out to purchase the perfect flooring for your home. That is why; we have listed the advantages and disadvantages of different kinds of floorings and information on how to install them. So, now when you go to buy flooring for your home, you can be sure your purchase will be a prudent one.

There are certain basic rules. For example, the choice for flooring material depends on your home location too. If your house is located in an area with high humidity and moisture, then it is best to choose flooring material as like stone, marble, granite or concrete slabs because it doesn't rot and will not absorb water. For those who live in colder climates, it may be a good idea to use carpet flooring. For kitchen linoleum is best flooring material. If you like modern decorating then you can choose laminated flooring or bamboo flooring.

It is best because it is easy to take care. It needs only a quick wipe and no oiling or scrubbing is needed. Environmentally preferable flooring can help reduce or eliminate waste, pollution, energy use, and can even save you money. Some of the many environmentally preferable flooring choices include cork, linoleum, concrete, bamboo, tiles which can be recycled. For more on different kinds of flooring materials, their advantages, disadvantages and installation guides,

Flooring is a very important aspect that one should always consider very carefully before designing the house. Flooring should reflect you as an individual and the lifestyle that you family leads. A typical room surrounded by four walls can be transformed into a beautiful place to live in by simply designing it according to your personality

Flooring of today is not just constrained to stone and cement but the concept has out reached its limits and approaches have extended to impart decorative effect. Flooring is significant part of our home and can be decorated with various simple yet effective ways.

Installing expensive and chic flooring doesn't take ample time than its maintenance and care would take. To make flooring last longer just like it has been installed now, there is a need to look after its care. Today flooring has many types which can make your home look a wonderful place that you may always want as it is, to retain its luster and charm.

Kitchen tiles are distinct from other flooring tiles as there is a need to choose carefully for the flooring tiles. It is a belief that if one works in amiable environment, than the productivity will increases. Today kitchen has been converted into a modern room unlike traditional and small dingy places.

Sheet Vinyl


Overview and General Characteristics: This flooring is produced in sheet widths from 6' to 15', making it easy to install and eliminating seams which can trap dirt and moisture. Sheet vinyl is not commonly used in commercial buildings since it sacrifices durability when compared to VCT.

Composition: Similar to VCT but contains more vinyl resin and less limestone filler, giving it greater flexibility.

Maintenance Characteristics: Holds finishes nicely though generally not recommended in residential settings since finishing requires more maintenance and eventually stripping. Clean with neutral detergent.

Man-Made Stone Flooring

Flooring Tile

Terrazzo


Overview and General Characteristics: Terrazzo flooring offers high durability and deep beauty. Its upfront cost is considerably higher than resilient flooring but when viewed long-term, it can actually be less expensive.

Composition: Marble, granite, quartz and/or glass chips mixed with portland cement, polyacrylic-modified portland cement or epoxy resin and poured into place.

Maintenance Characteristics: Portland cement and polyacrylic-modified portland cement floors hold finish nicely. Some pure epoxy-based floors can be tough to finish due to its low moisture absorbency and hydrophobic nature (non-affinity for water). Avoid using high pH cleaners and acid-based products on terrazzo.

Unglazed Ceramic (Quarry Tile)


Overview and General Characteristics: Quarry tile provides an attractive floor that is durable and easy to maintain. These tiles are usually red in color and 6" x 6" in size with a 1/2" thickness. Quarry tile is often installed in foodservice areas.

Composition: Made from a mixture of clays that are fired at high temperatures (approximately 2200 degrees). Maintenance Characteristics: Quarry tile can be finished with standard floor care products although this is not generally advised in foodservice or other "production area". If installed in hallways, stairwells or other non-production areas, Eccothane™ can be used with great success on these floors. Clean with neutral detergent or an all-purpose cleaner.

For outdoor flooring, the unglazed finish is preferred because of the possibility of standing water. This type of finish on ceramic tiles is also commonly used in showers. Finishes available are: matte, embossed, glazed and textured ones for anti-slip

Glazed Ceramic


Overview and General Characteristics: Glazing ceramic tile creates a durable surface that is easy to clean, resists stains and scratches, doesn't fade and is slip-resistant.

Composition: Identical to unglazed except a liquid glass is applied to the tile at very high temperatures. This creates a hard, non-porous surface.

Maintenance Characteristics: Glazed ceramic tile will NOT hold floor finish. The surface is too smooth for proper floor finish adhesion to occur. Clean with neutral detergent or all-purpose cleaner.

The most waterproof type of flooring is ceramic tiles, they can be used as floor tiles or counter tops, indoors or outdoors. The high gloss finish is usually the most popular for counter tops, although they do tend to scratch.


Brick Pavers (Paving Tile)


Overview and General Characteristics: Similar to quarry tile but larger in size and thickness. Composition: Similar to quarry tile.

Maintenance Characteristics: Similar to quarry tile.


Mexican Tile (Saltillo)


Overview and General Characteristics: Saltillo tiles are natural clay tiles, hand-made in Mexico. Similar to terracotta tiles, saltillo tiles are rustic by design. The beauty and character of each tile comes from variations in size, color and texture. It is extremely popular in Mexico and throughout the Southwestern United States.

Composition: Unprocessed clay.

Maintenance Characteristics: The high alkalinity and porous nature of this tile necessitates sealing and/or finishing. Stonethane or Eccothane™ are good options. Clean with neutral detergent.


Concrete


Overview and General Characteristics: Concrete is universally used for commercial building slabs. Most are covered with another flooring material such as tile, carpeting or wood. Concrete floors that are not covered with another material are gaining popularity in retail stores and other commercial buildings since it provides a low cost yet highly durable flooring surface.

Composition: Approximately 10 - 15% portland cement, 40% stone aggregate, 25% sand aggregate, 15 - 20% water and 5 - 8% air.

Maintenance Characteristics: Concrete can be tricky to finish with acrylic-based coatings. High alkalinity, high moisture, grease and oils, and unknown curing compounds and sealants can make finishing difficult. Floors with a history of accepting acrylic floor finishes can generally be finished with any Essential coating.

Natural Stone Flooring

Marble


Overview and General Characteristics: A beautiful floor surface that is not suited for large commercial areas or heavily trafficked areas due to its soft nature (scratches easily), high absorbency (stains easily) and acid sensitivity.

Composition: Combination of calcite and calcium carbonate.

Maintenance Characteristics: Penetrating sealers perform best on marble. Acrylic-based finishes can be used but success is often spotty. Marble should only be cleaned with neutral cleaner - avoid acid-based products, high alkaline products and products with high chelation.

Marble Floors


Any room in your house will have a clean, rich feel with gorgeous marble flooring. The tiles come in different sizes, usually around 12*12" and are easy to install yourself. Marble products are processed everywhere in the world from metamorphic rock blocks that contain mostly calcium carbonate that are quarried. Marble tiles make an elegant foyer and come in many colors.


Slate


Overview and General Characteristics: Slate is a smooth, soft, natural stone available in a wide variety of textures, colors and sizes. It offers good durability and stain resistance due to its semi-porous nature. Composition: Shale, clay quartz.

Maintenance Characteristics: Slate is generally not finished with acrylic-based products although, if used, they will usually adhere. Penetrating sealers can be used if desired and are often recommended for areas exposed to food and liquid spills. Clean with neutral detergent.


Granite


Overview and General Characteristics: Granite is used sparingly in commercial buildings due to its high cost. It is hard, doesn't easily scratch and is stain-resistant - making it ideally suited for residential flooring.

Composition: Quartz and feldspar mixture.

Maintenance Characteristics: Granite's hard, smooth nature make it unsuitable for finishing with acrylic-based products. Clean with neutral detergent.

Wood Flooring


Wood flooring is a type of flooring made from the timber of hardwoods, or of spruce or hard pine. Wood flooring comes unfinished; it is sanded after installation, and then finished on site. More modernly, the product is pre-finished in a factory. The products that are pre-finished are often a polyurethane finish that has added aluminum oxide; however some companies use titanium dioxide or other oxides instead. These metal oxide finishes are used in various types of flo

Oak Flooring


Oak Hardwood flooring adds beauty to your home like a solid wood floor. These floors will not only increase your homes value, but it is durable enough to last a lifetime. Oak hardwood flooring is the most popular choice of flooring in both America and Europe. Renowned for its durability and decorative appearance, Oak hardwood floor makes an ideal floor and is used extensively in both residential and commercial project. America produces both Red and White Oak while from Europe it is commonly known as European Oak.

Plank Flooring


Plank Flooring is made of solid wooden planks. Variety of woods are used for making plank flooring such as -softer woods, Cedar wood, oak wood, ebony, ironwood, redwood and rubber wood. Cedar and oak woods are very commonly used to make these flooring. The main advantage of Plank Flooring is, it can be replaced with the other one even if a single plank fails, that too without tearing the whole floor. These can be painted or stained or if you want you can keep it as it is.

Laminate Flooring


Laminate flooring is a great flooring option as it lets you have the best of both worlds. You can have the beautiful look of a hardwood floor and not have to worry about maintenance either. Laminate flooring is a laminate flooring material made to look like natural products such as wood flooring or natural stone, but yet are made up of either synthetic materials (usually melamine resin) or of synthetic materials combined with natural and recycled ingredients.

Vinyl Sheet


Vinyl floors used to be called linoleum floors and it is available in a variety of colors and styles. Vinyl flooring is excellent in bathrooms and kitchens. This type of flooring has an ease of installation and is quite affordable. As an alternative to flooring with ceramic tiles, vinyl floors give the same look as tiles, except they cost less than ceramic tile. The most common of the vinyl flooring used today are sheet vinyl.

Carpet & Rugs


Carpet has been used for years and the only downfall is the bulky installation problems. In efforts to rectify the difficulties of installation, carpet tiles are now offered. Carpet tiles are squares, like ceramic tiles, which have been proven to be superior in choices in every way. This new carpet can be easily installed by most homeowners. Another benefit is that if there is a spill on the carpet, just one tile needs to be replaced.

Rubber Flooring


Most people think about the floor of a school when they hear rubber flooring. There are several other places that this type of flooring would be excellent, like recreation rooms, home exercise rooms, playrooms and children's bedrooms. There is very little maintenance required, just a routine wash and occasional sweeping is all it takes. Rubber floors come in many colors as well as cut and inlaid designs, too. They retain their sheen and color for years.

Bamboo Flooring


Bamboo flooring is one of the newcomers in the flooring industry. Bamboo is more environmentally friendly than hardwood floors, and it is actually not wood - it is a grass. Bamboo is very durable, elegant and versatile. The natural variations of color that is unique to bamboo come from carbonization and are usually a honey brown color or light tan.