When you need to break away from the usual floor options to something more unconventional, but also beautiful and easy to install, then vinyl floors are exactly what you might need.
Vinyl floor options have been around for some time, although advancements in technology have seen better and more variety coming into the market, according to Sarah Birungi, an interior designer.
“Vinyl options often come in the form of sheet or tile with manufactured layers for the different varieties. They are very ideal when one needs a quick floor option since they are quick to install.
Vinyls can also be applied to an already existing floor as long as it is smooth and thus, they can work well where one needs a change, but they also don’t want to get rid of their already existing floor,” she explains.
Birungi says vinyls are ideal for spaces such as the living room, corridors, bedroom, children’s play rooms and some specific types are good for commercial use and for high traffic floors.”
Micheal Mbonye, a civil engineer at Concrete Flooring Systems, advises that one should choose a vinyl dependng on where it is going to be used.
“There are those that are used in commercial buildings which are heavy duty and thus used for high traffic areas. These are usually very expensive. On the other hand, there are those suitable for domestic use,” Mboye says.
He cautions that vinyl is not friendly for outdoor spaces because of UV light from the sun and extreme temperatures.
Additionally, Timothy Muruli, a construction engineer, shares that although all vinyl flooring is generally known for being waterproof and resistant, a lot of water absorption in the vinyl weakens the glue that is used in it’s application . It also causes the edges to start becoming loose and soften the internal components of the vinyl. “Once this happens, their beauty diminishes,” he notes
Types of vinyl
This type has about 33 colours and comes as tiled vinyl. The tiled sheets come in two metre sheets but one can also order them in 0.6X0.6 metre tiles.
The tiles are homogenous with a surface that is highly resilient to scratches. The same surface is also stain resistant, easy to clean but also hygienic so it does not allow for growth of bacteria, which makes this type preferable for hospitals, especially operation theatres.
Mipolam Elegance is also antistatic and so, it does not allow electricity to go through them, which makes it suitable for spaces that have many electric wires.
This is a two metre roll and one of the modern new types of vinyl. It comes in about 25 colours with a matt finish. It is also 100 per cent recyclable, very flexible and homogenous. It has a soft rubber touch and has two layers.
This vinyl does not need waxing over time because it doesn’t wear out or grow dull.
It is also stain resistant and is suitable for high traffic floors.
Texline cushion vinyl
This is a type of loose lay vinyl rolls and so it comes in a roll and is very easy to install.
Texline does not need glue in its application but it has a sticky back side that sticks to the floor when applied. It is very soft, with a rubber touch that is not easy to tear.
It is sound proof and best for children’s playrooms or areas occupied by children, though it can be used anywhere else in the house.
It is eco-friendly and made from recycled plastic. Texline is additionally resilient and doesn’t easily wear down, making it good for high traffic floors.
It is recommended for use in dining, bathroom, kitchen, bedrooms, and lounges.
Cost: Each square meter is Shs90,000 minus labour.
Creation 55 or 30
This is a type of vinyl that comes in the form of interlocking planks. The planks come in different colours and finishes such as solid colour, natural touch, mineral, wooden and stone finishes.
Unlike tiles, the planks are quick and easy to install. They are called creation 55 or 30 because the material used to make them is recyclable; with Creation 55 having 55 per cent of its material being recyclable and Creation 30 having 30 percent of material used being recyclable. They come with an adhesive which eases their application.
Cost: Each square metre of Creation 55/30 is Shs115,000 and Shs95,000 respectively.
Taralay Initial is a type of glue down planks. These also come in different finishes of a wide range of colours and patterns of wood, stone and plain grey. For more creativity, they also come in textile design.
These are best recommended for residential use, especially in high traffic areas around the house such as corridors, living areas and other common rooms around the house.
Unfortunately, they are not recommended for outdoor areas because they are greatly affected by UV light.
Taralay Initial has five layers which ensures its durability although they are not that thick. Even then, it remains solid and durable with a softness that gives them a cushioning effect to the touch. For installation, the planks come with a specific glue that is applied on each plank as they are being installed.
One can consider using these planks for commercial offices, hotels, classrooms, churches, mosques, halls and conference rooms.
Cost: Each square metre is Shs190,000.