When you decide to install a new floor in your home, it’s important to choose the right type. Different styles have different strengths and weaknesses, so it’s best to understand them before you commit to an installation.
Today’s carpeting offers increased performance, style and design compared to years past. New fibers such as sisal, seagrass and wool are becoming more popular. With so many fibers available in a range of colors and styles, carpeting can fit any budget and enhance any home’s décor.
Prefinished hardwood floors have a more durable and easy-to-maintain finish. Many prefinished hardwood floors have an ultraviolet-cured polyurethane finish, and many have added aluminum oxide particles for exceptional durability. Whether you choose solid, engineered or long-strip, hardwood floors can be touched up or refinished in case of accident or wear.
With the look of real hardwood, ceramic or stone tiles, laminate flooring offers style, texture and durability. Laminates carry warranties against staining, sun fading and finish layer wear. They don’t need to be polished, refinished or waxed, making them ideal for active households.
Vinyl floors offer the broadest range of color, style and performance options. The quality of a vinyl floor generally corresponds to the price—the higher the cost, the more sophisticated its style and the better its performance and warranties. The availability of 12-foot-wide rolls provides seamless installation for larger rooms. Vinyl is the best option for areas exposed to spills, water and moisture, such as kitchens and bathrooms.
When it comes to maintaining your new floors, Ron Leach, owner of Rafael Floors, Abbey Carpet Center in San Rafael, recommends simply following the carpet manufacturer’s directions. “For laminate or vinyl, avoid soap-based cleaners, which can cause soap build-up and streaking. To protect your floor, install felt glides on furniture legs.”
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