Ames, IA
Alfred's Carpet & Decorating in Ames, IA

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How does vinyl stack up against other flooring types?

The way that vinyl is produced these days makes it possible to purchase a vinyl flooring that is visually indistinguishable from other types of flooring. Ceramic tile, hardwood and natural stone can be expertly faked with one of the high end vinyls that we offer here at Alfred's Carpet & Decorating. Beyond appearances though, there are many differences between vinyl and other types of material that you should consider before deciding which kind of floor covering will be best for your home. You’ve come to the right place to see how vinyl stacks up against other types of flooring!

Ceramic tile
  • Durability: While ceramic tiles are much harder than vinyl, they're also much more rigid. This means that situations where ceramic tiles might crack or chip wouldn't be an issue for vinyl. Ceramic tile, however, won't tear the way that vinyl can. Ceramic tile is waterproof and fireproof, while vinyl is only water and fire resistant, but ceramic tile is vulnerable and weak at the grout lines. Vinyl has no such vulnerability.
  • Ease of maintenance and repair: Both materials take roughly the same amount of maintenance, but repairing vinyl is much easier than repairing tile. It requires fewer tools, adhesives, and less expertise. Both should be repaired only by professionals.
  • Cost: Vinyl costs quite a bit less than ceramic tile.
  • Durability: Water is hardwood's worst enemy. Areas like kitchens, bathrooms and laundry rooms where contact with moisture is likely like minefields for hardwood floors. Vinyl's water resistance makes it perfect for these areas. Hardwood's scratch and gouge resistance depends on whether or not it's been finished, and the quality of the finish if it has. Vinyl is always scratch and gouge resistant.
  • Ease of maintenance and repair: Hardwood requires sanding and refinishing every so often, and repairs can be disastrous if not done properly. Vinyl requires only routine cleaning, like sweeping and mopping, but repair can be just as risky.
  • Cost: Even luxury vinyl comes up to only a fraction of the cost of quality hardwood.

Natural stone

  • Durability: Different kinds of stone have different levels of durability. Granite tiles can withstand just about anything you can throw at them, but travertine is a lot more vulnerable. Unless you're willing to shell out the dough for a granite floor, chances are, vinyl is going to be a more durable choice.
  • Ease of maintenance and repair: Porous stone like limestone, travertine and marble require sealing in order to get the maximum use out of them. Like hardwood, this protective coat must be replaced every so often depending on levels of wear. The repair process for natural stone is more closely aligned with that of ceramic tile, but vinyl is simpler than both.
  • Cost: Vinyl is much, much less expensive than any available natural stone.

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Design advice videos from top designer, Marc Thee

Want Trade Secrets? Click on any of Marc Thee's design advice videos below and learn from the expert. Marc Thee has been twice named by Architectural Digest as one of the "The Top 100 Designers in the World". He has also received the "Designer of Distinction Award" from the Design Center of the Americas.
Flooring design advice from expert Marc Thee
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128 Lincoln Way, Ames, IA 50010

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