Kitchen Flooring 101 — Which option is best for your home?

Kitchen Flooring 101 — Which option is best for your home?

August 9, 2017 – With an endless supply of styles, textures, and colors to choose from, it can be difficult to decide which flooring option is best for your kitchen. There are quite a few variables—including durability, maintenance, and look and feel—to consider when choosing the best fit for your home. Whatever your preferences may be, the Randy’s Team is here to help. We’ve put together this kitchen floor buying guide to help you find the best flooring option for your kitchen.

Hardwood and Laminate Flooring
When people choose to incorporate hardwood flooring into their home, they often do so in their main living spaces, such as the living room and bedrooms, but hardwood flooring can be a great option for the kitchen as well. Hardwood flooring’s timeless appearance and warm aesthetic creates a seamless connection between living and dining spaces. If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly alternative to natural hardwood, laminate is a great option. While hardwood and laminate may be a great fit for some homes, these classic materials may not be for everyone. Due to their susceptibility to serious damage when exposed to water, hardwood and laminate may not be the best option if your kitchen sees frequent spills or water leaks. For this reason, it is best to clean hardwood and laminate using a broom or dry mop.

Pros: Timeless; Warm; Scratch and stain resistant
Cons: Can be susceptible to serious damage

Vinyl Flooring
If you’re looking for a flooring option that can withstand the wear and tear of a busy household, vinyl is a great way to go. This budget-friendly material has waterproof and stain-proof qualities that make it easy to clean. Any spills can be easily remedied by sweeping, vacuuming, or mopping the surface. Additionally, vinyl’s durable yet soft surface prevents rips, tears, and scratches, and can even save glasses and dishes from breaking when dropped.

Pros: Durable; Budget-friendly; Low maintenance; Water resistant; Comfortable underfoot
Cons: Not biodegradable and not often recycled; Low-quality vinyl is susceptible to rips, tears, and discoloration — make sure you invest in a high-quality option

Tile Flooring
Tile’s sleek and timeless look is perfect for those wanting a flooring option that will never go out of style. With water- and stain-resistant qualities, this durable material is a great choice for the kitchen. Cleaning this low-maintenance material is easy, and can be done by sweeping, vacuuming, or mopping the surface. While tile may work great for some households, it is not for everyone. The smooth texture of the material can make those walking on tile more susceptible to slip and fall accidents. Homeowners can avoid this potential hazard by choosing a slip-resistant tile option. The cold and hard qualities of tile also make it less comfortable to stand on for long periods of time and make it more likely that dishes will break if dropped. While you can’t change the hard quality of tile, the cold touch can be remedied by adding an electric floor warming system. Randy’s preferred brand, the Schluter Systems DITRA-HEAT, ensures that your toes stay toasty warm year-round.

Pros: Durable; Timeless; Easy to clean
Cons: Can be slippery; Cold and hard underfoot

Cork Flooring
Made from the bark of the cork oak tree, cork flooring is one of the most sustainable flooring options on the market. The naturally occurring air pockets in cork make the material shock absorbent and warm. Its cushy surface makes it great for kitchens where you may be standing for long periods of time and can help save dropped glasses and dishes from breaking. Cork is also antimicrobial, impermeable to liquids, and resistant to cracking and abrasions. While mostly low maintenance, it does need to be resealed every few years to protect against moisture.

Pros: Sustainable and great for the environment; Comfortable underfoot; Water resistant
Cons: Needs to be resealed every few years to protect against moisture

Natural Stone
Made from a materials that are extracted from the earth, there are a lot of options when it comes to natural stone flooring. However, with each type comes different properties. Softer stones—such as marble and onyx—are more easily scratched and stained, while hard stones—like slate and granite—can be made impervious to water when properly sealed. Hard stone materials are resistant to scratches and divots, but can be chipped or cracked if a heavy item is dropped. One of the best attributes of natural stone floors is their ability to cover up dirt and imperfections. Multi-colored stones such as slate and granite are perfect for anyone who wants to minimize work spent keeping a kitchen looking spotless.

Pros: Can be made waterproof; Hard stone varieties are resistant to scratches and stains; Can hide dirt and imperfections
Cons: Can be chipped or cracked; Requires periodic sealing treatments

Are you looking to add new kitchen floors to your home? Check out our products and trusted brands or stop by our Cedar Rapids or Coralville showroom so we can help you find the kitchen flooring of your dreams.