Luxury vinyl tile, or LVT, is one of the fastest growing hard surface flooring materials on the market today. Everyone making hard surface flooring, and even manufacturers who aren’t, want to jump on the bandwagon of LVT’s popularity.
What drives manufacturers’ desire to enter this product category? First is its versatility from a styling perspective. LVT can be extraordinarily beautiful with vibrant colors and texturing and offers opportunities for customization, from business logos to intricate patterns. LVT can be made into planks or tiles that can resemble wood, stone or metal plates. With all these options for styling, it’s no wonder that LVT is popular; it adds a wonderful design element to a space as a palette against which all other decorative items are showcased.
Not only does LVT look good, but it is also an extraordinarily high performance flooring material, for the most part. I make that qualification because, as every Tom, Dick and Harry enters the LVT market, product quality can be marginalized as producers cut corners, thinking a lower price will increase their sales. The floorcovering industry is notorious for taking a great idea and seeing how fast the price can be driven to the basement, so, if you’re buying LVT to sell or install, make certain that you’re choosing product from a manufacturer not afflicted by the dreaded “make it cheaper” mentality. You want this product better, not cheaper, in keeping with its name—luxury vinyl tile—luxury being the operative word here…”
“…Furthermore, the substrate also needs to be smooth because every imperfection will eventually telegraph through to the top. Installing LVT over old cut-back adhesive, that black gooey stuff exposed when removing old vinyl, laminate or commercially installed carpet, should never be done. The cut-back must be removed, encapsulated or a barrier coat of sealer applied to combat a reaction and failure of the installation. Even when this is done, there could be a failure in the future if you don’t do moisture testing prior to installation. The substrate doesn’t care who you are or how smart you think you are; it answers to the laws of physics and chemistry. Do everything right so nothing goes wrong…”
Read more about LVT benefits and installation:
“Successful LVT installation: Flooring Forensics-Mar 2014”
By: Lew Migliore