Vinyl Plank Flooring vs. Laminate Flooring: Pros and Cons Before Buying
- Andrew Uhacz
Whether you own a home or a business, flooring is more important in how people perceive you than you think. Flooring makes up much of the aesthetic you set in your home’s interior design or place of business. For entertaining at home, guests are going to form an instant first impression about who you are if your floor looks worn. It’s no different with a business where branding is everything and determines customer perceptions. You’ll want to choose wisely on the flooring brand you use. Armstrong is your best choice for various reasons like Diamond 10 Technology and best in class warranty. However, you may have to narrow your choices down to vinyl plank flooring or laminate flooring. Which is best to use for your setup depends on the application, here are some things to look out for when making your next flooring purchase.
Pros of Vinyl Plank Flooring
The greatest pro when installing Armstrong vinyl plank flooring is its ability to convincingly mimic real hardwood. Thanks to new technologies involving printing and photographic techniques, these vinyl planks often fool the experts. But don't take our word for it just check out the many Armstrong vinyl plank flooring reviews available on Armstrong products at Floor City!
When you’re looking for a more rustic theme in your home or business, there isn’t any reason to invest in real hardwood. Considering real hardwood costs thousands of dollars and won’t hold up any more than a few years, a vinyl option is an easy decision.
On top of the superior aesthetics, vinyl plank flooring also gives you guaranteed durability and resistance to water and dirt. Buying from Armstrong is going to guarantee these attributes thanks to their attention to patented features ensuring quality. Armstrong PRYZM vinyl plank flooring is 100% waterproof, meaning the planks won’t swell, buckle, or lose integrity over time.
These planks are also scratch, stain, and wear resistant. Obviously, this is perfect for your household if you entertain or have kids and pets running across your floor often.
Having the ability to clean your Armstrong LUXE plank vinyl flooring easily is a plus. Spills wipe up easily, including other liquids that would stain other types of floors. While the pros far outweigh the cons for vinyl plank flooring, you’ll want to know a few cons to make a more educated buying decision.
Cons of Vinyl Plank Flooring
Since you’re weighing options between vinyl plank flooring and laminate flooring, it pays to look at a few cons to the former. One of the most significant is vinyl plank flooring doesn’t have the feel of wood like laminate flooring does. Armstrong laminate flooring manages to create a texture that helps it feel like real hardwood to the touch, something you may want to make it more convincing.
This all depends on the kind of aesthetic you’re going for in your home or business. In situations where your floor is just viewed from afar, vinyl plank flooring will still look like real hardwood. Another con is it’s not biodegradable. Also, it might become a little hard to remove the planks when glued down.
Still, these are minor compared to the longevity this floor is going to provide in all situations. Through Armstrong, you also have lifetime warranties for all their best products, with “best” being a brand name.
Pros of Laminate Flooring
To help you make a more educated decision on what to buy, you’ll want to know what the pros are of laminate flooring. One thing comparable with vinyl plank flooring is laminate flooring is also very durable. Much of this is thanks to Armstrong’s patented VisionGuard® technology using a clear, hardened wear layer.
The above layer protects your laminate flooring from scratches, surface spills, stains, and fading. You’ll also find HydraCore™, otherwise known as HydraCore Plus in the floor’s inner core. Thanks to this technology, you’ll be able to enjoy more stability, durability, and moisture resistance.
As an added bonus, you’ll have sound absorption, something ideal if you hold loud parties in your home often. Your business may have overly loud sounds as well if using noisy equipment or dealing with intense crowds. Having a floor with sound control is going to do muchtoward making guests and customers feel more comfortable.
Laminate flooring from Armstrong also has a balancing layer to protect the floor from warping after experiencing water exposure. Just like vinyl plank flooring, laminate flooring is equally affordable compared to real natural materials. It’s possible to find imitation hardwood, stone, and metal materials here.
Cons to Using Laminate Flooring
Perhaps laminate flooring isn’t your best choice if you’re susceptible to flooding. This type of flooring isn’t quite as waterproof as vinyl plank flooring is. Nevertheless, Armstrong makes theirs very durable as long as you don’t experience excessive water. To protect from water damage, you can glue down all edges during installation, including sealing with silicone caulking.
Also keep in mind you can’t refinish laminate flooring like you would with real wood. With Armstrong, though, you receive reliable warranties for residential or commercial purposes. Having a warranty lasting 20 years or more will help you get your laminate floor replaced when worn out.
Your next choice should hone in on whether to buy either of these floors for a commercial business or for a home. For the former, it might mean finding a new floor during a business remodel. Vinyl plank flooring for businesses has numerousadvantages when you buy directly from Armstrong. One of their most popular features is Diamond 10 Technology, which uses real cultured diamonds. With these properties, your vinyl plank flooring stays looking like new for longer periods. This also helps protect against scratches, stains, and scuffing.
To protect against heavy foot or rolling load traffic, this is the type of flooring you need. Many companies like yours should choose this floor rather than invest in real materials. With an easy install method using customized designs, it’s perfect for branding purposes.
Likewise, laminate flooring for commercial businesses has many of the same features. Armstrong even has high resistance to fading if you have sunlight shining on your floor all day. You’ll even find underlayments capable of providing an acoustic barrier as a form of sound control. Unique visuals, mixed species, and multiple plank widths are also available.
With residential options being available for vinyl plank flooring and laminate flooring, you have equally as many features, sometimes through Armstrong’s internal brand names. It’s not uncommon to see vinyl flooring referred to often asluxury vinyl tile (LVT). Armstrong refers to this when talking about their residential vinyl flooring products.
These products make up two different collections: LuxePlank™ and Vivero™ with tile or plank options. Using Luxe Plank, you’ll have a feature called FasTakInstall, making it simpler to install your flooring on your own. Through Luxe Plank, you’ll get traditional, rustic, and exotic wood looks with wide planks six or seven inches long.
Another great option is the offering of natural stone-inspired vinyl tiles and concrete-inspired vinyl planks. For the Vivero brand, you can get a more exotic wood aesthetic with narrower and extra-wide planks available. Vivero manages to blend the look of stone and wood together in the planks or tiles.
Residential laminate flooring from Armstrong gives you various styles, ranging from traditional, rustic, to modern. These encompass everything from hardwood looks to stone and custom designs.
One standout for this residential brand is the authentic texture. You can create embossed-in-register to elevate realism by integrating the texture with the design image. It’s possible to create overall textures and hand-scraped textures as well.
Plank widths for this type of laminate floor are also larger, including at least four inches wide. Stone-look tiles are as large as 12-15 inches.
What is the Average Price Per Square Foot?
We’ve already shown you how vinyl plank flooring and laminate flooring are far less costly compared to using real natural materials. When you buy any Armstrong flooring product through Floor City, you’re going to find even more discounts. Those who visit our website are frequently amazed at how inexpensive both types of flooring really are.
Many of the Armstrong products we offer under this category are only $2.39 per sq. ft. as a true bargain. Laminate flooring products from Armstrong go for around $2.96 per sq. ft, a price you won’t commonly find in any box stores.
The Cost of Installation
Installing your vinyl plank flooring or laminate flooring might not cost anything if you’re a DIY type of person already familiar with these types of products. Not everyone is an expert, though, so Armstrong recommends you hire a professional if you don’t know what you’re doing.
For small spaces with no adhesives involved, you could easily install these on your own. Many of Armstrong’s products with FasTak allows a peel-and-place self adhesive for simple installation on your own.
Nevertheless, they offer a helpful link to find a local Armstrong Flooring dealer and installation crew. While Armstrong provides manuals on installing these floors on your own, we can help find the right suggestions here at Floor City.
As we mentioned, Armstrong’s warranties are better than what you’ll typically find through box stores or other flooring companies. Keep in mind warranties are going to differ slightly, depending on if you buy your floor for your business or home. Most vinyl plank flooring products at Armstrong have 15-year warranties for commercial, and lifetime warranties for residential.
For laminate flooring, it’s somewhat the same, though some products have 10-year commercial warranties. This is still useful because your laminate flooring would generally need maintenance by a decade, proving its longevity.
Glueless vs. Gluedown
The choice you make using a glueless or a gluedownmethod determines the easiness of installation. You may want a gluedown method for your vinyl plank flooring if you’re used to having heavy floor traffic. Having the glue underneath will help the flooring hold more firmly in place compared to glueless.
Not having to bother with an adhesive makes it easier to install the floor on your own. Ultimately, using a gluelessmethod is best for floors that only have minimal floor traffic every day. With laminate flooring from Armstrong, you’ll be able to enjoy Lock&Fold® technology where you simply insert the long end of one plank into another, then fold into place. Laminate flooring is your best bet for installation simplicity.
Do-it-Yourself or Hire an Installer?
Armstrong stands out because they make it so easy to install most of their flooring products on your own. To decide whether you should DIY or hire an installer, you’ll have to determine things like the size of the project and the materials used.
For a business, you may have to install flooring over a wide area, perhaps requiring a professional install. It’s no different for an overly large home if you’re doing a complete re-flooring project, or installing a floor in a new home.
One thing you’ll discover is Armstrong makes it the easiest of any flooring brand to install vinyl plank or laminate flooring by yourself. When installing these floors in one or two rooms, you shouldn’t have any trouble being a do-it-yourselfer.
Cleaning or Vacuuming
Cleaning your vinyl plank floor is just as simple without it being a burden. Armstrong offers tips on how to go about it in the right way to avoid any damage. Sweeping and vacuuming are fine as long as you don’t use your vacuum’s beater bar. Never use any detergents, or abrasive cleaners since they leave a dull film on the floor’s surface.
Did you know Armstrong also offers their own branded floor cleaning products? They offer Once ‘n Done® Floor Cleaner, as well as New Beginning® Floor Stripper. On your laminate floor, it’s best to use a microfiber or terry cloth mop. Or, you can use one of Armstrong’s own floor cleaners for the best results.
Like with vinyl flooring, sweeping and vacuuming are okay for laminate flooring, as long as the vacuum used isn’t too harsh.
Pick Up Your Flooring Today!
At Floor City, we’re here to help educate you on the best possible flooring choices for your home or business. We make it easy to order and pick up your flooring at the nearest local location.