Kitchen flooring has a huge impact on the look and feel of every kitchen design. No matter what kitchen flooring you choose- wood planks, ceramic tiles, vinyl, linoleum, or laminate- you will be making a statement.
The good news is contemporary kitchen designs benefit greatly from materials improvements from new technologies. Faux finishes are more realistic than ever before in terms of colors, textures and durability.
Kitchen Flooring – Durable For Heavy Use
Kitchen flooring is tougher than ever. Consumer Reports latest test results show improved resistance stains such as ink, asphalt sealant, and crayon. Vinyl kitchen flooring has even shown improvement against scratching and staining.
Many kitchen flooring shoppers favor the warmth of wood. Unfortunately, in a typical active kitchen, solid and engineered wood floors can be prone to dents from dropped items like cans or pots and pans. Conversely, a great upside to solid hardwood and bamboo as kitchen flooring is many can be refinished multiple times, removing dents and scratches. Many kitchen designs using wood floors with a rustic, distressed appearance will even increase in character with each ding, dent or scratch.
Kitchen Flooring With A Wood Look More Affordable Than Ever
According to Consumer Reports, the higher quality laminates they tested performed similarly to solid wood when used as kitchen flooring. They were tough and still looked good. Laminates can also save homeowners time and money because they can be installed right over your old kitchen flooring with no need for glues or fasteners. An even tougher kitchen flooring product bare the “luxury” vinyls. They come in a variety of wood looks and are more resistant to dents and scratches. The standard laminates and luxury are also available in authentic looking stone and slate designs.
As you might expect, the testing results were mixed when frequent activities such as walking, spilled food, dragged and dropped objects, and sunlight were added into the mix.
Kitchen Flooring Scouting Reports
Solid Wood (Installed cost: $5 to $10 per square foot)
PRO – Have a natural look and feel, and can be refinished many times. More rustic-looking and distressed finishes are becoming popular kitchen flooring choices.
CON – Can dent easily and is more difficult to install. Can change color under UV light. Some can be damaged by spills.
INSIGHT – Factory finishes are usually tougher than those applied by a contractor. Consider prefinished floors.
Vinyl (Installed cost $2 to $6 per square foot)
PRO – Tough and durable. Aesthetically closer to real stone and wood than in the past excellent for kitchen flooring.
CON – The best vinyl still doesn’t look completely real up close. Off-gassing brings phthalate concerns for young children, though there’s no cause for alarm.
INSIGHT – Do-it-yourselfers consider tiles or planks instead of a sheet requiring a precise cut.
Engineered Wood (Installed cost: $4 to $9 per square foot)
PRO – Costs less than solid-wood flooring, offering the same warm, natural look. They can often be installed without glue or fasteners on top of existing kitchen flooring.
CON – Most dent easily and can be damaged by large spills. Refinishing is limited to once they are a veneer over substrate.
INSIGHT – In various kitchen designs, wider planks can make small rooms look bigger.
Laminate (Installed cost: $3 to $7 per square foot)
PRO – Tough and mimics a variety of natural materials. Can be installed over existing kitchen flooring. The highest quality are durable and are resistant to stains and UV fading.
CON – Can dent easily. Laminate cannot be saved once the top layer has worn through.
INSIGHT – Laminate boards can have a similar pattern from a single package. To avoid repetition mix boards from multiple packages to avoid repetition.
Linoleum (Installed cost: $4 to $8 per square foot)
PRO – Mimics stone and other materials similar to vinyl. Because it is made of tree bark and linseed oil it’s considered a green option. Highest quality options offer superb resistance to scratches, stains, and fading from UV rays.
CON – The best vinyl offers better wear resistance and easier installation for about the same price.
INSIGHT – Check Consumer Reports for details on the best performing Linoleum for kitchen flooring.
Ceramic Tile (Installed cost: $8 to $15 per square foot)
PRO – This kitchen flooring comes in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and prices, and even planks with a wood-grain look. Can be installed over existing flooring and is relatively easy to install.
CON – Tiles can crack if dropped and grout can stain.
INSIGHT – Most tiles can be floated without glue over an existing kitchen flooring.
Kitchen flooring is a major investment. We hope this article has provided some insight for your future kitchen designs. Be sure to ask your Schoenwalder Plumbing representative about our kitchen remodeling worksheets.
For kitchen designs of all types, the experts at Schoenwalder Plumbing are ready to help. We can create kitchen designs, do the kitchen remodel or just do the kitchen flooring.
In addition to serving Waukesha WI, we serve Lake Country including Hartland, Delafield, Pewaukee, Brookfield, Elm Grove, Oconomowoc Dousman and New Berlin.
Call or email a Schoenwalder Plumbing pro for assistance with your kitchen designs and kitchen flooring in Waukesha WI.