Please help me with my flooring decision

I don’t know why this has given me paralysis. We need new flooring in the worst way. I am determined it will happen this summer. I am still deciding between tile and VPL. We’ve dealt with tile so that’s not the sticking point.

I think we really want VPL, but we are so unfamiliar with the product that it’s made me just unable to get going. I feel like I don’t know the right questions to ask at the stores. Does anyone have advice or a good tutorial they’ve used to educate themselves?

One main question is is there a minimum depth (is that the right word?) we need for longer wear? We aren’t looking to move anytime soon so this is not for flipping purposes. We have a dog, no kids. DH constantly is tracking things in so he’s rough on floors.

Is this stuff really OK for bathrooms and kitchens? Is there some minimum level of quality we need so that it is?

Feel free to post links to what you’ve put in your home and whether you love it. HELP!

I looked at the vinyl at a big store, and all were quite inexpensive. I know people that bought it at huge floor stores and are satisfied. I just got marble from this store, but I didn’t go there in person. Just for comparison, I went to the mom and pop store that I’ve used before and they carry upper end products. Their vinyl was @$6.50. There are other products out there too.

The nice thing about the marble is that there isn’t all the grout to clean. The same is true of the tile that can look like wood or marble. I never want to clean grout again.

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Thicker the better.
Thicker color layer the better.
Backing–some rubber, some cork.
Water RESISTANT 24/72 hours vs water PROOF.

Go out and look around and start paying attention to the actual specs. Get someone to go through the differences with you at the stores–you’ll learn a bit more each time.

We eventually ended up at Lowes with a water proof product (our biggest concern). Some really nice products out there now. It is softer and warmer on the feet than tile and not as noisy.
Are your floors even? Tile might be more forgiving and require less leveling. Or if you are replacing tile maybe the LVP can be installed on top (check thickness).


We put ceramic plank floors in our master bedroom and bath. Didn’t like it. Bad installation. Mortar cracked and cold in winter. Replaced with VPL. Love it. My wife thinks I’m crazy because I want to rip out our 20 year-old wood floors for VPL after our kitchen remodel.

Proper installation is everything with flooring. I won’t go through big box stores anymore after our first wood floor installation fiasco 20 years ago.

I think VPL is much more forgiving than tile or ceramic if your floors aren’t perfectly level. Plus it’s warmer and it looks great. Lower maintenance too.

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We have 7inch EVP (enhanced vinyl plank) flooring. At first I loved it, but a year later I’m kinda eh on it. It’s nice in the living areas (halls, library, dining, family room). Definitely don’t love it in the kitchen and breakfast room.

The biggest thing I don’t like is that it doesn’t hide water spots at all. I don’t want to spend my life mopping up every time my dog gets a drink and dribbles from one end of the kitchen to the other.
Also, don’t drop anything on the floor!! My husband dropped a finial when he was putting up drapes and put a nickle sized hole in the floor. There are a few more that we’re not sure how they got there. We keep the dog’s nails trimmed and rounded but he’s still putting scratches in the floor. The scratches don’t go thru, but you can still see the lines when the sun hits (which is every morning!!)

The upside is it’s very easy to clean. I got a Bissell Crosswave and it’s alot easier to go from rug to floor, vacuum to mop. I just wish I’d gotten tile for the kitchen and breakfast room.

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I had tile in my kitchen and it was slippery and everything I dropped on the floor broke. I have cork now which feels great, and nothing ever breaks. Unfortunately it turns outs that it shrank on installation leaving big gaps between the corks so I can’t recommend it. I like tile in bathrooms, but I think the new vinyls are worth considering for kitchens.

We have been investigating LVP after discussions with several general contactors. All of them told us to steer away from big box store brands. After some research, I am aware that you want to choose something with at least a 20mil wear layer for best scratch and dent resistance and very little of what’s in the big box stores has that thick of a wear layer. Plank thickness is in terms of mm and the thicker the better on that too. It comes in lots of patterns/colors that look like tile, so that might be a good choice if you like the tile look.

I would suggest looking at the vpl made for like industrial /medical offices. We used it in our last two and the name of the company escapes me but they make a residential and industrial type. The industrial type is thicker with longer warranty with much thicker padding underneath. We used a flooring installer not a big box. The installation and doing it correctly is everything with these products. The prep work is extremely important to have a level smooth surface. Pay more and have someone do it correctly.

These get cleaned daily and sometimes multiple times a day (like winter) and they hold up.

We have LVP in our sunroom. We went to a reputable local flooring store/installer. We have had it several years - while it is partially covered by a rug, it has seen activity by 2 dogs, lots of sun (since it’s a sunporch!) and survived cold winters (there is some heat in the room but it gets chilly at night in winter) and it looks as good as the day installed. I am a hardwood lover but I also love this floor.

We renovated our kitchen and dining room with porcelain tile because the rest of our home is hardwood and I didn’t want two different kinds of wood or “wood” look to abut. No problems with cracking, and we live in soil that moves. With kids and a dog, I did not want to pay much for flooring. We got Corso Italia tile from Home Depot and it is beautiful, non-slick, and, most importantly, is $2 a sq ft. We got it in the gray color.:


That’s really pretty. My neighbors have done tile throughout their downstairs that I like, but the tile we have in the kitchen has wide and too-light grout, and it looks gross so many years later.

I’m also looking for flooring within the next month or two - we currently have engineered natuarl maple that has mellowed over the years so the removal of foyer rug shows how much the color changed. I have lots of windows in my home and lots of light - concerned about the LVP color of natural maple to change based on sunlight - at least that was a concern I read. However, you are saying you’ve had it in your sunroom and see no difference in color from the areas that have not received full sunlight?

I do not see any discoloration. The “color” is a mid- walnut color. As I mentioned we have always had an area rug on the space but if I lift it there is no difference.

kirroyalmum - is that a picture of your foyer? So pretty!! Regardless - floor is a great color.