We are in the process of re-furbishing our living/ dining room (a largish through room approx. 8 metres by 4 metres). Part of this will include re-purposing our hardly ever used dining room into a listening area.
Inspired by the System Pics thread, we like the look of wooden flooring. So my question to those that have done the same is did you go for LVT or wood, and if the former click-fit or stick down. I’m more inclined to LVT being more practical, but appreciate any thoughts from those having done this.
There are some very good looking vinyl floors out there, and I suspect there may be physical properties which could make it a better option than wood in some areas.
A few years ago we had engineered oak laid downstairs, and some laminate/vinyl stuff upstairs in the bedrooms - wish we’d had the oak throughout to be honest though the vinyl stuff was cheap enough that I’d not worry too much if I wanted to replace it. Equally carpet might have been better upstairs as the laminate stuff is very noisy, perhaps the underfloor should have been insulated better sonically though I suspect that would have needed upgraded spot fittings in the rooms below.
Ofcourse i prefer the look of real wood too, i think most people do… Wood is just a lot more expensive and can be more impractical in terms of wear, maintenance and sonic properties, so i chose LVT mainly for practical reasons.
Personally i’m glad that i did, and i wouldn’t want to trade it for a wooden floor at this point.
I did yes; it was surprisingly easy to fit, less work than the wood laminate i had before. With VLT you can simply make a small cut in the top layer with a stanley knife, and then break the tile along the cut on the edge of a table or seat. It works really fast.
The engineered oak is nice but we made a bad choice using our builder’s supplier as many dark knotty areas are filled with some kind of dark resin/plastic - you can’t see it from a distance but close up it’s ugly and I don’t like it, and I bet the display pieces in the showroom were ‘optimal’ samples. I did notice before it was laid so can’t really complain in hindsight.
The wood scratches very easily too - stuck those felt protectors undre chair/table legs, sofa feet etc, but grit seems to gravitate and when teh things move…Naturally one day it’ll just look well worn and ‘lived in’/‘rustic’ or a similar phrase to describe old and worn!
I hasten to add, we probably had standard laminate upstairs not LVT - it’s good for the price but I wish we’d gone for something of better quality now. As a few of us have dust allergies/asthma we were hoping to avoid carpet.
Ahh i wondered yes… vinyl laminate is a bit different from standard laminate, it doesn’t have this resin-like top layer that you mention, the top layer is simply structured vinyl. I had similar problems as you with the wood laminate i had before, ultimately it became a PITA… i wouldn’t get wood laminate anymore for any new projects, but the vinyl so far has been really quite nice.
I have it since 2018 and so far it still looks the same as on the first day, it seems very durable!
Thanks for replies…I originally thought (engineered) wood, but was put off a little by the suppliers I visited (who sell both wood and LVT) for the reasons that seem to be getting mentioned here regarding durability etc. LVT is not really a cheap option as the price differential is not that large, and with 32sqm to cover either option is going to be painful.
I would also go with real wood flooring but it does not need to be expensive, the range is quite vast and there are always deals to be had for end of line types.
I would get engineered timber flooring which can be used on floors that have underfloor heating as its stable. It’s basically ply wood with about 5-6mm of natural wood veneer, for example Oak. Get a a flooring with a hard wood veneer like Oak or Bamboo and that has a hard varnish finish to it. They are also designed to be sanded down if necessary, 6mm should give you two even sanding. So if a serious accident did happen, you can potentially sand it out.
The most expensive engineered flooring come in wide single lengths, the cheapest are narrower and come in three lengths already prejoined. They can be friction fitted together or glued down onto a concrete surface.
However, I would put down a thin rubberised layer under the flooring first if it’s on concrete, to provide a very slight give when walking on it.
It’s sometimes difficult to understand how three pieces of wood glued together can suffer from quality issues as the basic process is virtually universal throughout the industry.
But of course, find a decent or trusted supplier and engineered timber flooring could keep you happy for many many years.
Engineered timber flooring does not inherently suffer from bad quality. In fact it’s purpose was to be a cheaper and more reliable alternative to solid wood flooring as it does not expand or move as much and can be laid in more environmentally challenging conditions than solid wood flooring.
Precisely why we opted for it - unfortunately I can only assume they used some sub-standard oak layers filled with a kind of polymer in regions with dark knots that may have ‘fallen out’ leaving in-filled gaps. You really can’t see it unless close up but I know the ‘filler’ is there on some ‘panels’.