What is the best type of flooring for a kitchen?

Flooring Guide

How do you choose the best type of flooring for a kitchen?  We can help.  To make the right choice, let’s first look at the properties of kitchens:

Kitchens:

  • Kitchens are high traffic rooms
  • Spills are common with lots of messy food products.  Ease of cleaning is very important. Water resistant flooring is crucial.
  • Non-slip flooring is necessary for safety purposes.
So, what are the options?

Vinyl or Linoleum Flooring for Kitchens:

The benefits:

  • Vinyl and Linoleum are more affordable than the other flooring options.
  • It is also the easiest of the options to clean.  Just sweep, and then mop with soap and water.
  • Vinyl flooring also has some give, so if you drop a glass, it may not break.
  • Vinyl is easy to install and is available in an endless array of colors and patterns.
Keep in mind:
  • Vinyl will melt if a lighted match or cigarette lands on it, linoleum can’t.
  • Linoleum can be used on countertops and backsplashes where vinyl cannot.
  •  Durability – linoleum can last 30-40 years where most vinyl cannot.
  • Linoleum requires an acrylic coating upon installation and then again annually where vinyl flooring does not.
  • Vinyl flooring is a synthetic product made of chlorinated petrochemicals and linoleum is made from raw and natural ingredients.
  • One of the drawbacks of vinyl floors is that the edges can curl.

Ceramic Tile Flooring for Kitchens:

The benefits:

  • Ceramic tile flooring is arguably the most aesthetic option.  It allows for a great deal of customization in terms of colors and patterns.
Keep in mind:
  • Though tile is easy to clean with a damp mop, the surrounding grout can be difficult to maintain.
  • We recommend using the largest tiles possible to minimize grout lines.
  • Tile can be hard on the legs and feet, and even harder on dropped dishes.  You can use a room rug over the flooring to solve these issues.
  • Tile doesn’t help with sound control in a kitchen.
  • It can be cold underfoot, unless you get Radiant Heating installed below.
  • If there is any foundation or standing water issues below the flooring, uneven flooring can cause the stiff tile to crack.
  • One of the drawbacks of vinyl floors is that the edges can curl.

Laminate Flooring for Kitchens:

The benefits:

  • For homeowners who like the look of wood, but want a floor that is extremely durable and requires little maintenance, laminate is an option.
  • It is easy to clean.
  • Laminate is factory-finished, and it can be put in over an existing floor.
Keep in mind:
  • Laminate looks like wood flooring, but it typically lacks the warmth of hard wood flooring.
  • Some people find it noisy.

Wood Flooring for Kitchens:

The benefits:

  • Wood comes in a variety of colors and types, and fits many decor styles.
  • It generally looks great.  You can also use a rug over the wood.
  • It’s easy on the legs and feet.
  • It’s a quiet option.
Keep in mind:
  • The maintenance and durability of a wood floor depends greatly on what species of wood is being used and how that wood is finished.
  • Wood is that it may scratch, but remember that wood floors can always be sanded and refinished.  See my post on refinishing a wood floor to learn more.

Bamboo Flooring for Kitchens:

The benefits:

  • Bamboo provides the look of wood, but is made from bamboo grass, a rapid-renewable resource.

Keep in mind:

  • If you choose bamboo because it’s eco-friendly, make sure the factory finish is formaldehyde-free.
There are pros and cons to each flooring choice.  Feel free to contact us for more help figuring out what’s best for your particular kitchen.  We can help you chose a floor that’s best for you.  We can work with all of these materials, and more.  We serve all of Sonoma County, including Santa Rosa, Rohnert Park, Petaluma, and Windsor.


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