Kitchen Flooring Considerations
Choosing a kitchen or bath flooring material involves more than just aesthetics. The flooring not only needs to hold up under a significant amount of foot traffic for years to come, it also needs to be easy on your joints when you’re standing over that risotto for a significant amount of time. Options include:
Tile: One of the most common kitchen floorings, tile doesn’t absorb odors or bacteria, and it can hold up under heavy foot traffic. However, tile can also be uncomfortable to stand on because of how hard it is.
Hardwood: Hardwood floors, most commonly oak, can be beautiful if carefully maintained, but they can be damaged by pet claws and high heels and ruined by standing water.
Bamboo: Bamboo has a distinctive look and good overall durability, similar to hardwood. It is also subject to the same types of damage as hardwood.
Laminate: Laminate is relatively inexpensive and very easy to install. It is also stain-resistant and cleans in no time. However, it is vulnerable to water damage in the kitchen because moisture can swell the edges of the flooring planks, which cannot be repaired.
Cork: Cork flooring is easy on your body because of its slight sponginess, which also makes it quiet. It is relatively easy to install and easy to clean. Like laminate, it can be damaged by standing water that gets between planks or tiles.
Linoleum: Linoleum is the traditional resilient flooring option that predates vinyl and, unlike vinyl, it is made with natural materials Linoleum is durable and antibacterial and available in a variety of colors and patterns. It also offers a small amount of cushion underfoot.
Vinyl: Vinyl is the go-anywhere flooring material that is easy to install and maintain. It comes in a huge range of styles and can even emulate the look of ceramic tiles or hardwood planks. Basic vinyl tile is one of the cheapest kitchen flooring materials, while high-quality “luxury” vinyl is priced in the middle range for kitchen flooring.