Category Archives: choosing the right floor

Which flooring is right for your home?

picture of kitchen remodelChoosing the right flooring for your home can be overwhelming. There are so many floor options: hardwood, tile, luxury vinyl, carpet…the list can go on and on.  It’s easy to be floored (pun intended) by so many products; it gets even more complicated when you start to add in the other factors that help you decide whether that beautiful floor is a good long-term option.  After all, you don’t want to install a floor that looks great but is susceptible to damage because you didn’t know that about moisture and its effect on your floor.

We’ve put together a full list, and breakdowns of all the important factors, to get you started in your decision.  From here, head into your local flooring store with a few of your favorite flooring options, where they can give you the advice that gets you down to the right product (and look!) perfect for your home.

Hardwood

warm wood floors in home that need deep cleanThe look: Hardwood floors are timeless and classic.  Available in almost every color and plank width, the right wood floor can complement the décor of any room.  For a more contemporary look, choose a wide plank floor with a dark finish (consider a handscraped variety to add texture).  To give your home a traditional, classic look, a lighter finish can make your home feel timeless.

Pros: Can add value to your home, beautiful look, very durable flooring, can be sanded down and refinished many times

Cons: Should not be installed in a basement or over radiant floor heating, can be damaged by water spills, can be damaged by steam cleaning, cost

Best rooms: Living rooms, bedrooms

Note of caution: Hardwoods can be installed in kitchens, mudrooms, and bathrooms, but be careful of water puddles. Do not put down any area rugs for the first six months after installation to avoid any issues with discoloration.

Tile

tile floor in bathroom with white vanity and tile showerThe look: Tile floors can make a statement that you can plan your décor around or be a neutral backdrop that offers a lot of décor options.  Choose a tile with variegated colors for a floor that catches everyone’s glance, or a tan or grey tile that looks great.  In addition to tile color, tiles can also be installed with any color grout that coordinates with your décor.

Pros: Can be installed over radiant floor heating, water, odor and mildew resistant

Cons: Can be prone to cracking, items may break when dropped due to hardness

Best rooms: Entryway/foyer, kitchen, bathrooms

Laminate

installing luxury vinyl plank in a basmentThe look: Laminate floors have come a long way over the years.  With the look of wood and an incredible durability, laminate floors can take all the activity that your family and pets can throw at it.  Laminate floors come in a variety of colors and widths.  For a neutral and modern look, choose a grey laminate with wide boards.  To keep your home looking classic, choose a laminate floor that looks like a 100-year old hardwood, like a laminate that has the look of hand-scraped hardwood flooring.

Pros: Easy-to-clean, very durable, ideal for high foot traffic rooms, can be a do-it-yourself project, affordable

Cons: Can be damaged by water spills, may be scratched

Best rooms: Living areas, bedrooms

Luxury Vinyl

luxury vinyl_showroomThe look: Luxury vinyl floors look like wood but without any of the worries about water.  These floors come in almost any color or plank width, giving you a variety of options to choose from when planning your décor.  Luxury vinyl floors look great and can leave you and your guests in awe of a beautiful floor.

Pros: Easy-to-clean, durable, can handle water better than laminate or hardwood, can be a do-it-yourself project, can be installed over radiant floor heating

Cons: Can be scratched, more expensive than laminate

Best rooms: Entryway/foyer, mudroom, living areas, bedrooms, kitchen, bathrooms, basement

Carpet

Carpet_installed by ysThe look: Carpet is one of the most common flooring choices because of the variety of styles and colors, and the soft feel under your feet.  This flooring is also affordable and can be a striking part of any home’s decor.  Carpet can come in plush styles that your feet love, or with patterns or textures that enhance the look of any room.

Pros: Easy-to-clean (just a regular vacuuming and annual carpet clean), soft underfoot, affordable

Cons: Cleaning can be more complicated than hard floors

Best rooms: Living rooms, basement, bedrooms, hallways

Carpet tile

The look: Carpet tile comes in squares and is pieced together to make a fantastic pattern in any room.  These tiles are available in different colors and textures.

Pros: Easy-to-clean, can be swapped out with another carpet tile when stained, affordable

Cons: If not installed with pads, may not be as soft underfoot, cleaning can be more complicated than hard floors

Best rooms: Living rooms, bedrooms, basement (play areas!)

How to Choose the Right Flooring for Your Home

how to choose flooring for your homeChoosing the right flooring for your home is not a game—it’s too serious of a decision to be taken lightly—but it is a process of narrowing down your options. Choosing the flooring that works for you and your family is also more than just selecting the floor you think looks the best; often that kind of flooring choice leads to a floor that wears down quickly and is full of stains—or worse, gets irreparably damaged soon after installation. That’s why it makes sense to research your options, and to ask yourself and the experts all the necessary questions to make sure you get the right floor for your home:

  • How much traffic comes through this room? Is the room a busy walk-through? An area where your family plays, runs and tromps? Is it a room where your pet spends most of their time? Options: many kinds of carpet are designed specifically to handle high traffic and pets, as well as tile, wood, vinyl plank and laminate floors.
  • tile flooringDo I need to worry about water spills? Is the traffic that comes through full of mud, snow, sand and lord-knows-what-else? An educated decision now can save you the headache of a warped floor later.Option that comes with a warning: Water can be your worst nightmare on laminate and wood floors, so a bit of planning now eliminates the hassle of replacement or repair. If you have a room where water may splash or form puddles, such as a bathroom, mudroom or kitchen, and you still want wood or laminate floors, put rugs in front of doors and be ready to mop up any water spills.Options that handle water: Consider vinyl plank flooring or tile, both of which has products that look like wood but is incredibly durable. Carpet is also another option if you want soft flooring under your feet.
  • What kind of maintenance does the floor require? You don’t want to purchase a floor, have it installed and then end up with damage because you don’t care for, clean or vacuum it properly. Find out what kind of cleaning and maintenance the floor needs, what products you need to purchase to keep it in great shape—and realistically how much of that maintenance you can take on. Options that require maintenance: wood flooring (cleaning, wiping & refinishing every 3-5 years) and some tile floors (if the grout needs to be resealed). Even carpet needs a periodic deep carpet cleaning to keep it looking its best.
  • vinyl floorWhat is under the new floor? Are you installing radiant floor heating under the flooring? Sometimes knowing what is under the floor is just as important as knowing what is going to be on top of it. If you have a “special” situation, such as flooring that is installed over a concrete slab or radiant flooring, make sure you mention that to your sales professional when you discuss your flooring purchase. Options for over radiant floor heating: carpet, laminate, tile, engineered hardwood.Options for basement: carpet, tile. Engineered hardwood or laminate can be installed if the risk of moisture in your basement is low.
  • What is my budget? If you have a small area that needs carpeting—a small office, hallway or bedroom—consider purchasing a carpet remnant. Because there is a limited supply, a carpet remnant is discounted. Know the square footage of the room you need flooring for and the price you can afford per square foot. If you need a large square footage of flooring, visit our Lake Mills location for deals on bulk flooring purchases that you can install yourself. If you want to talk price is a very, very general kind of way, wood and vinyl plank floors tend to cost more than laminate; tile, laminate and carpet tend to cost less per square foot. Remember, these are just generalizations, the true way to find the cost of flooring for your home is to head into a Y’s Way Flooring and select a floor product (or several different floor products) that you’re interested in.

Ultimate Flooring for Every Kind of Man Cave

man caveWikipedia defines a man cave as: “a male sanctuary, such as a specially equipped garage, spare bedroom, media room, den, or basement.” However, many of our male customers use other words to describe their man space: “it’s my hideaway,” “my place where I can watch the game in peace,” “my hangout with my buddies,” and “a place where men can be men.” Whatever your definition of the ultimate man cave or man space is—a game room, grilling station, theater/media room, garage, game room, sports room, music space—don’t forget to research and select every detail for your man space, including the flooring. You don’t want to just slap down any flooring in your man space, you want flooring that can handle what, ahem, men do in their man cave:

Grilling station. A proper grilling station is more than a patio, it’s a man space suitably equipped for barbeques with your family or your entire neighborhood. You’ll need a surface below the grill that is easy to clean after the party’s done and you’ve produced a gourmet grilling feast. Porcelain and slate tile fits the bill, as does stained concrete. Make sure to tell your salesperson that you are using tile for outdoor use, so they can point you to a tile suitable for the Grillmaster’s man space.

Theater/media room. A media room needs awesome audiovisual equipment that can give your man cave the theater feel—and also flooring and wall coverings that can give you the optimal effect from that amazing sound system. The top-recommended flooring for theater/media rooms is carpet for acoustics, but other flooring can be used as long as you use area rugs and soft wall coverings. If your theater/media room is in the basement, avoid wood flooring. Use these tips for selecting the right flooring that works in a basement.

Garage. If your garage is your man room, choose flooring that is easy to clean and fits your needs. Epoxy coated floors, mats and vinyl flooring give you the look you want, and a functional space where you can work on your beloved automobile or create a masterpiece from wood. All of these garage floors are easy to clean and sweep away small pieces and parts, while mats can keep you comfortable as you spend time in your shed, workshop, or man space.

Game room. If you need sound deadening flooring or want to match the felt on your pool table with your flooring, consider carpeting. For a game room in a basement, avoid hardwood because of moisture issues. You can use engineered wood flooring, tile or vinyl flooring instead; each of these floors can handle the moisture levels that come with Wisconsin basements. For the look of wood, consider one of the luxury vinyl floor products that look like wood, can be a DIY project and is known for durability (even during the most heated game battles).

If you have any questions, ask the experts at Y’s Way Flooring on Facebook, via email or in person. They can recommend flooring that gives your man cave the manly feel you want, and the functionality you need in your male sanctuary.

Floors Perfect for the Laundry Room

laundry room floorIf you fit into any of these categories:

  • have a family with little kids that spill, spill and spill some more,
  • a family of older “kids” who need a different jersey for every game, practice and, well, that favorite shirt that makes them look “just right,”
  • a house with four-legged kids who somehow seem to always need blankets and other favorites laundered,
  • you have a messy job or occupation that dirties clothes CONSTANTLY;

there’s a good chance you probably feel like you spend most of your life in the laundry room, making it one of the most important rooms in your house (even if it’s not always the most fun). It’s also the room that you should think the hardest about flooring, because the laundry room is a high-traffic room with a high moisture level and water spill potential (or even flooding, yikes!). So what are your options?

  1. Vinyl. Get rid of those ugly pictures in your head of nasty, patterned cheap-looking vinyl. Today’s vinyl has the look and appearance of wood (really!) and stone, and comes in almost any color you can imagine. Vinyl is also easy to install, durable and handle any water spill you throw at it.
  2. Tile. Ceramic or porcelain, doesn’t matter. Both kinds of tile are mildew resistant. They are also easy to clean and look beautiful. Ceramic and porcelain comes in virtually any color, and can be installed in a square or diagonal pattern with any color of grout you choose.
  3. Slate. Slate is a stone with a variety of colors and strengths. It also comes in large and small square tiles, and as long rectangular tiles for a modern look. Best yet, slate tiles are durable and stain and water resistant, making it ideal for your laundry room.
  4. Radiant floor heating. We know radiant floor heating is not technically a type of flooring, but radiant floor heating is ideal for Midwestern homes. Radiant floor heating keeps your feet warm, and can be installed under almost any kind of flooring. If you want tile floors that are warm in summer and our cold Wisconsin winters, radiant floor heating is right for you.

If your laundry room is in your basement, and you are installing the flooring over a concrete slab, be sure to mention that to the flooring professionals when you check out your flooring options for your laundry room. They can give you tips specifically for installing flooring over a slab, or can suggest flooring that can handle the changes concrete goes through as our Wisconsin temperatures rise and fall throughout the year.

Don’t feel like you can choose the right flooring for your laundry room? Or do you want to hear what laundry room flooring works best for other homeowners? Contact Y’s Way Flooring via email or on their Facebook page, or stop in at any location in Watertown, Lake Mills or Oconomowoc. Their flooring professionals can tell you what they’ve seen work best, set up installation or give you tips if you are a do-it-yourselfer. If nothing else, they can give you flooring that makes all that time you spend in your laundry room a little more bearable.

Beginner’s Guide to Choosing the Perfect Floor

wood floorsJust bought a new house? Is the flooring you picked out when you built your house finally ready to go? Or have you finally saved up enough to replace the last homeowner’s flooring mistake? If you’re a rookie to choosing the perfect floor, it’s wise to do your research. Choosing the perfect floor is not a small purchase, or something you want to screw up. On the flip side, choosing the perfect floor isn’t complicated—and it’s not something you have to do alone. Even a beginner (like yourself) can choose the perfect floor by asking a few simple questions:

  • Do I need to worry about water spills? An educated decision now can save you the headache of a warped floor later. Water can be your worst nightmare on laminate and wood floors, so a bit of planning now eliminates the hassle of replacement or repair. If you have a room where water may splash or form puddles, such as a bathroom, mudroom or kitchen, plan ahead. Consider vinyl plank flooring which has the look of wood, or any kind of tile floor which handles water like a pro. A room with the chance of a spill doesn’t mean you can’t get a wood floor—it just means being mindful of wiping up the water as soon as possible.
  • How much traffic comes through this room? Is the room a busy walk through? An area where your family plays, runs and tromps? Is it a room where your pet spends most of their time? Is the traffic that comes through full of mud, snow, sand and lord-knows-what-else? Use that knowledge to determine what kind of flooring would work in that particular area.
  • What kind of maintenance does the floor require? You don’t want to purchase a floor, have it installed and then end up with damage because you don’t care for, clean or vacuum it properly. Find out what kind of cleaning and maintenance the floor needs, what products you need to purchase to keep it in great shape—and realistically how much of that maintenance you can take on.
  • What is my budget? If you have a small area that needs carpeting—a small office, hallway or bedroom—consider purchasing a carpet remnant. Because there is a limited supply, a carpet remnant is discounted. Know the square footage of the room you need flooring for and the price you can afford per square foot. Factor that into your purchase decision.
  • What is under the new floor? Are you installing radiant floor heating under the flooring? Read our post about what kinds of flooring work over radiant floor heating. Are you installing this flooring over a concrete slab, like in a basement? Here’s information on what floors work in basements. Sometimes knowing what is under the floor is just as important as knowing what is going to be on top of it. Make sure you mention what’s under your floor to your sales professional when you get to step two of your flooring purchase.

If, even after asking all the questions, you still don’t have a clue about choosing the right flooring, or you’re trying to choose between two options, come into Y’s Way Flooring or ask us on our Facebook page. We can tell you what has worked for other Wisconsin homeowners and help you narrow the options in your budget. Best yet, we can help you choose the perfect flooring—and you don’t even have to tell anyone we helped.

Why You Don’t Need Luck to Choose the Right Floor

1926662_10152777203739378_7515375266822588355_nThrow your four-leaf clover away. You don’t need the luck of the Irish to choose the right floor, or a rabbit’s foot. What you do need is a bit of research and advice to choose the flooring that works in your home—even with all the foot traffic, water spills, kids or pets. Where should you start your research? By taking these factors about the room that needs the flooring into consideration:

  • Water. An educated decision now can save you the headache of a warped floor later. Water can be your worst nightmare on laminate and wood floors, so a bit of planning now eliminates the hassle of replacement or repair. If you have a room where water may splash or form puddles, such as a bathroom, mudroom or kitchen, plan ahead. Consider vinyl plank flooring which has the look of wood, or any kind of tile floor which handles water like a pro. A room with the chance of a spill doesn’t mean you can’t get a wood floor—it just means being mindful of wiping up the water as soon as possible.
  • Traffic. Is the room a busy walk through? An area where your family plays, runs and tromps? Is it a room where your pet spends most of their time? Is the traffic that comes through full of mud, snow, sand and lord-knows-what-else? Use that knowledge to determine what kind of flooring would work in that particular area.
  • Maintenance. You don’t want to purchase a floor, have it installed and then end up with damage because you don’t care for, clean or vacuum it properly. Find out what kind of cleaning and maintenance the floor needs, what products you need to purchase to keep it in great shape—and realistically how much of that maintenance you can take on.
  • Budget. If you have a small area that needs carpeting—a small office, hallway or bedroom—consider purchasing a carpet remnant. Because there is a limited supply, a carpet remnant is discounted. Know the square footage of the room you need flooring for and the price you can afford per square foot. Factor that into your purchase decision.
  • Sub flooring & slab. Are you installing radiant floor heating under the flooring? Read our post about what kinds of flooring work over radiant floor heating. Are you installing this flooring over a concrete slab, like in a basement? Here’s information on what floors work in basements. Sometimes knowing what is under the floor is just as important as knowing what is going to be on top of it. Make sure you mention what’s under your floor to your sales professional when you get to step two of your flooring purchase.

Once you’ve decided the types of flooring fit the bill for your new room, visit a Y’s Way Flooring for more information. Describe the room to the salesperson, and what you’ve found in your research. Ask for advice about what they’ve seen in local Wisconsin homes. Once you’re satisfied with the look, feel and functionality of the best flooring, ask for a quote. Then sit back, stand on and enjoy the feel of the perfect flooring you didn’t need luck to find.