Updated Mar 24, 2023
Updated Mar 24, 2023
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Discover the cost to install vinyl plank flooring and the various types to choose from. We’ll even share important considerations to keep in mind throughout the buying process as well as how to prepare your subfloor for vinyl flooring.
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Vinyl plank flooring is a synthetic flooring material with many different layers. This type of flooring is available in planks, similar to hardwood, but is made of a type of plastic.
The total cost is between $2 and $7 per sq ft for standard vinyl flooring. Luxury vinyl tile flooring has a price range between $1.50 and $10 per sq ft.
Professional installers typically charge around $36 per hour for a labor cost, which doesn’t include the materials required.
Here’s a cost guide on the average prices of vinyl plank flooring you can expect for each type.
Wood flooring typically costs $2.25–$12 per sq ft. This cost estimate is extensive due to the many variations of wood.
This type includes marble, slate, and granite appearances. It’s generally between $2 and $8 per sq ft.
This type of vinyl flooring is more experience at an average cost of $3.50–$7 per sq ft.
Most homeowners need help deciding between vinyl plank and vinyl tiles due to the finish and price difference. Peel-and-stick tiles can be as cost-effective as 75 cents per square foot, which is perfect for anyone on a budget. It’s an extremely durable option while offering the benefit of super easy installation.
Several factors affect the overall price range, including the installation cost, price of materials, plank thickness, vinyl quality and thickness, and installation method.
Before you install vinyl flooring, there are some considerations you’ll need to make.
There are various vinyl flooring options available, including vinyl no-wax, urethane, and enhanced urethane.
Removing your existing flooring and replacing it with new flooring can be challenging if you’re not a professional. Fortunately, installing vinyl flooring is usually easier than other flooring options, as it doesn’t require staples or glue.
However, not all types of vinyl flooring have the same installation method. Check whether your chosen option can be installed over concrete, plywood, hardwood, or any other material that’s your floor base.
How long-lasting is your preferred vinyl flooring? Some types can last for up to 20 years, but that’s dependent on the amount of foot traffic that area of your home has. Furthermore, a high-end brand typically includes a wear layer to protect the flooring against scratches and stains. You might also receive a generous warranty from the company to cover any wear and tear.
Vinyl plank flooring is available in an array of thicknesses. Some sheets have a padded layer to make the surface more comfortable for walking on. Some floors have plenty of elasticity when you walk on them, which means that they absorb sound.
You’ll need to maintain your vinyl flooring to keep it looking new and comfortable against your feet. If you’re looking for an option that doesn’t require much maintenance, consider a no-wax finish; this will keep it looking shiny and new the day of and after mopping.
You may also want to avoid a vinyl floor that’s one block color — particularly white or black — as this can enhance dirt and pet hair compared to finishes with a pattern.
The appearance of your vinyl flooring matters because you’ll be looking at it every day. Consider the aesthetics of your home, so your flooring can match that. There’s an array of finishes available—from patterns to one-block colors. You might also wish to consider printed vinyl to create a look of hardwood or concrete.
Preparation is key to a successful installation, and here’s how to assemble your flooring before applying the new vinyl planks.
Pay attention to any trapped moisture on your floor, as this can contribute to mold and mildew growth. Moisture issues are common with a concrete flooring choice, so you’ll need to install a moisture barrier before applying the vinyl.
Another effective way to test your floor for dampness is by using a moisture meter. These tools monitor the moisture percentage, so you know whether you need a polyethylene sheet before installing the vinyl flooring.
Additionally, you can test for moisture by taping the vinyl flooring to the subfloor and sealing the edges securely. Leave the vinyl for a few days. Once you remove the flooring, check to see if the duct tape removes away easier; this will indicate that there’s some moisture on the subfloor.
Aside from a moisture barrier, you can also use a dehumidifier to remove any water vapor from inside your home and, thus, the floor.
Before you apply vinyl sheet flooring, inspect the subfloor for holes, cracks, and dents. You’ll be able to feel any rough, uneven surfaces underneath your feet when you install the vinyl flooring. Replace any missing tiles and patch low spots to make the surface even to walk on.
Allow enough time for the glue to dry before you apply the vinyl sheets. Some substances only require 20 minutes to dry, but it’s best to leave them overnight to ensure the surface is completely prepared.
Use a vacuum and some soapy water to remove any dirt and debris from the subfloor before adding the vinyl plank flooring. It’s unnecessary to completely remove all stains since you’ll be applying another layer on top. But even a small stone will show a bump on the vinyl flooring.
We only recommend a DIY project if you’re experienced in installing floors. Otherwise, hire a flooring contractor to ensure a professional result and prevent any mishaps and uneven patches. Additionally, many flooring companies suggest hiring a professional for installation to ensure the warranty is still valid.
Installation usually takes between one and two days. However, some types of vinyl flooring — like plank or tile — require additional days for the material to acclimate to your home’s temperature and humidity levels before installation.
The total cost is generally between $2 and $7 per sq ft for standard vinyl flooring.
Laminate flooring doesn’t contain wood, which vinyl does. For this reason, laminate is more prone to moisture due to humidity levels in a home. Laminate flooring features a fiberboard core beneath a protective layer. These several layers help to create a more sturdy, realistic finish.
It’s durable enough to last for up to 20 years and is easy to maintain and install. Vinyl flooring is also water-resistant and available in various colors and designs to match any home’s decor.
Vinyl isn’t as strong as wood flooring, making it more prone to damage and scratches by sharp items. All the while, vinyl tiles are difficult to repair, so you’ll need to replace the entire flooring.
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