Category Archives: bathroom floors

Bathroom Flooring: Pros & Cons of the Best Floors

tile floor in bathroom with white vanity and tile showerWet towels. Puddles from a rambunctious toddler bath time. Steam from a good, hot shower or bath. Bathrooms are the only room in the home that have to deal with daily high humidity and consistent water puddles. For that specific reason, homeowners need to use an extra degree of caution when choosing the right floor for their bathroom.

Wood floors should not be installed in a bathroom; the moisture in a bathroom can warp wood flooring and leave permanent water stains. There are other floors more suitable for the bathroom (and look great!); use this list of bathroom flooring options so you can choose the right bathroom floor for your home.

Luxury Vinyl Plank

We’ve listed the best flooring options for bathrooms before, and you’ll notice that luxury vinyl plank isn’t on the list. That’s because it’s one of the newest products on the market—but don’t dismiss this flooring just because it’s the proverbial new kid on the block. Luxury vinyl plank floors are attractive, durable, and easy-to-care-for. This floor is also a great option for anyone who wants the look of wood without worrying about warping or water damage from a bathroom’s moist environment.

Pros: Attractive, durable, easy-to-care-for, water resistant (some products are guaranteed waterproof), comes in a variety of styles, mimics the look of wood and stone, can be installed as a do-it-yourself project

Cons: Can scratch

Porcelain Tile

bathroom with tile floor that can handle waterPorcelain tiles are one of the most popular bathroom flooring choices. These tiles come in a variety of colors and shapes, and are durable and easy-to-care-for. Some of the trendiest new styles are porcelain tiles in a plank or rectangle style that makes a bathroom look bigger, or a hectagon shape that gives a bathroom a unique, one-of-a-kind design. (For inspiration, check out these tile ideas.) Porcelain tiles can also come with a wood grain look, giving you the warmth of wood without the warping and water damage that occurs when you install wood floors in a humid room.

Pros: Attractive, durable, easy-to-care-for, mildew resistant, comes in a variety of styles, resembles wood and stone, can be installed as a do-it-yourself project

Cons: Can be cold underfoot, grout can be stained

Brick Tile

Tiles that resembles bricks gives any home a unique look. Most brick tiles are a porcelain tile cut in unique styles and color variations, making it very attractive and mildew resistant. This flooring can hold up in rooms that have a lot of moisture (like bathrooms, mud rooms, and laundry rooms).

brick ceramic tilePros: Unique style, durable, easy-to-care-for, mimics the look of brick

Cons: This one-of-a-kind look is not for every homeowner, can be cold underfoot

Stone

Marble, granite, and limestone can give any bathroom an updated and upscale look. Natural stone comes in a variety of colors, all with their own unique veins and styles. Some natural stone requires maintenance to avoid any moisture issues; make sure you ask the salesperson how often the stone needs maintenance and cleaning when you view samples.

Pros: Upscale and unique look, easy-to-care-for

Cons: Usually most expensive option, can be slippery and feel cold

Vinyl Sheet

The biggest advantage of vinyl sheet is the absence of grout lines, meaning that the risk for water damage is minimal. Vinyl sheet flooring comes in a variety of styles and colors.

Pros: Mimics the look of tile, durable, easy-to-care-for, waterproof, can be installed as a do-it-yourself project

Cons: Can look cheap, can be scratched

Radiant Heating

Radiant heating is not a type of floor, and another flooring needs to be installed over a radiant heating mat. Also called underfloor heating, radiant heating gives off an even heat that conducts through the floor. If attached to a thermostat, the heat can be set different temperatures during the day and night. Radiant heating can be installed with a hydronic heating system (heating with a boiler) in new construction or with an electric mat.

Pros: Even and warm heat, can make stone or tile floors feel warm underfoot, can be installed as a do-it-yourself project

Cons: Adds to the cost of the flooring

6 ‘Get Wet’ Floors that Can Take the Puddles

bathroom with tile floor that can handle waterKitchens, bathrooms, basements, mud rooms, and laundry rooms all have one key commonality: water.  From an occasional water spill to the moisture that seeps through your basement slab to a once-in-a-lifetime flooding, these spaces need flooring that can take all the humidity, puddles, and moisture that comes with a wet area.  Not all flooring is created equal in this area, however, so take special care when choosing the right floor for your ‘get wet’ rooms.

For kitchens, bathrooms, basements & laundry rooms:

Luxury Vinyl

Water, high traffic, pets, soda…this floor can take whatever life in your wet areas throws at it.  In addition to being incredibly durable, modern luxury vinyl is available in a tile or wood look, can be installed with or without grout, and can be a do-it-your-self project (depending on the product).

Tile

tile flooring in laundry that tolerates water spillsThere are so many reasons to consider tile for your wet areas: porcelain tile is water, odor and mildew resistant.  There are a ton of tile patterns and colors.  Tile can be installed as a do-it-yourself project, and can be extremely affordable.  If you’re worried about the cold feel of tile under your feet, tile can be installed over radiant floor heating.  It’s also easy-to-clean, making it perfect for any kitchen, bathroom, basement, laundry room, or mud room.

Sheet Vinyl

Sheet vinyl is just what the title says: vinyl flooring that comes, and is installed, by the sheet.  Vinyl sheet flooring is durable, can handle just about any amount of water, and comes in many different colors and choices.

For basements only:

carpet in basement that can handle basement moistureThese floors are suggested for basements that only deal with the moisture that seeps through the walls and floor—not basements that are prone to flooding.

Engineered hardwood

If you want wood floors in your basement, consider engineered hardwood.  While still a real wood floor, engineered hardwood floors are not as prone to problems with temperature changes and moisture because engineered hardwood is constructed of many layers.

Carpet

Carpet is a popular choice for basements, and it’s easy to see why: it’s so soft and warmer under your feet than wood or tile (unless you have radiant floor heating).  Carpet comes in a huge selection of colors, styles, and materials, so it’s hard to find a carpet that doesn’t look great.

Carpet tiles

Carpet tiles are perfect for rec rooms and play rooms. Because you don’t install carpet tiles with a pad, they are not as soft as traditional carpet but are really easy to clean up. If a carpet square gets dirty, just pop it up, and replace it with another carpet tile.  If you want a fun décor, look for carpet tiles in a bright pattern to add interest to your area.

To check out your options for flooring that can handle water, stop in at any Y’s Way to view your ‘get wet’ floor options so you don’t have to panic every time you see a puddle. If you are installing radiant floor heating under your flooring, mention it to your salesperson when shopping.  Our flooring experts can show you your options so you can make the best choice for your wet areas.