Choosing Flooring

Selecting flooring can seem daunting. So many materials, styles, colors, manufacturers, and price ranges from which to choose. In addition, flooring isn’t like wall paint that you can easily redo if you don’t like the color or coverage. A bad floor is a bad floor for a long time. Fortunately, looking at your floor from the aspects of design (Planning Your Floor) and materials (this section) can ensure that you don’t select and install a bad floor. In fact, you can make wise flooring decisions that will both serve purposes and gain compliments for many years to come. First, you consider the characteristics of available materials. Then you can begin narrowing the field down to types of flooring based on cost, advantages and disadvantages, uses, ease of installation, and the tools you’ll need. Along the way I’ll show you what’s available in flooring materials so you can pick the ones you’ll install in your great floor.

  • Solid Wood Flooring

    Solid wood flooring is the traditional floor of choice. However, it has some limitations. Make sure you understand the advantages and disadvantages before selecting solid wood flooring.

  • Laminate Wood Flooring

    Laminate flooring made of wood and other materials is increasingly popular because of the lower cost, easier installation, and environmentally-friendly use of wood products. But laminate wood flooring isn't for all applications. Review the following before deciding on your next flooring material.

  • Sheet Vinyl Flooring

    Sheet vinyl flooring is less expensive and relatively easy to install than other types of flooring materials. There are advantages and disadvantages to this flooring type that you should consider before investing time and money in installation.

  • Vinyl Tile Flooring

    Many do-it-yourselfers choose vinyl tile flooring as it is less expensive and easier to install than some other flooring types. Make sure you understand the costs, advantages and disadvantages, and installation process before selecting vinyl tile.

  • Stone and Ceramic Tile

    The most beautiful -- and most expensive -- flooring material typically is stone, ceramic and other masonry materials. It often requires greater skills to properly install these materials, usually beyond those of the do-it-yourselfer. However, you can select easier-to-install masonry flooring and follow the manufacturer's instructions for a beautiful floor that will last many generations.

  • Carpeting

    Carpeting has been a popular flooring material for more than 50 years. And the man-made materials are getting easier to install and maintain. Depending on the application, carpeting may be the most appropriate flooring material for your home.

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