If you are considering a new kitchen floor, you’ll be dazzled by the wealth of materials and styles out there. But it’s not just about the wow factor – you need to find a solution that fits in with the idea of your kitchen as the heart of the home.
As Chris Burton at The Brighton Kitchen Company says: “Your kitchen is so much more than just another room in your home. Our kitchens are now the hub of our homes where we not only cook, but we congregate, socialise, work and relax. It’s a multi-functional space that needs careful understanding and planning.”
When it comes to choosing the best floor for your kitchen, your decision should take into account the function of the floor in a high traffic area that’s prone to household spills, the maintenance required to keep your kitchen flooring looking great for years, and of course the look and feel in your kitchen and the rest of your home.
Keep an open mind as you take a look at these 5 practical flooring options for your kitchen provided by Dakota Murphey.
The great thing about contemporary vinyl flooring is that it can very accurately replicate lots of surfaces, including stone, metallics and wood. The latest wood-look vinyl flooring planks are realistically textured to mimic wood grain – they’re not only easy to install, they’re water resistant enough for kitchen and utility room floors. If you prefer patterns, vinyl can offer something for everyone’s taste. The image – from geometrics to polka dots or flowers – is digitally printed onto the vinyl, giving fantastic results.
Vinyl comes in sheets or tiles; sheet vinyl will need professional installation and a flawless subfloor. There are different qualities of vinyl – the softer spongy type is cheaper and of inferior quality while hard, thin vinyl is very robust.
On the downside, the printed image can fade in strong sunlight over the years. And although there’s usually a scratch resistant coating, if the material gets damaged, it cannot be repaired.
Lino has come a long way and is now a favoured flooring product used in many stylish kitchen designs. It is made from natural materials such as linseed oil, wood and cork dust and resin, with a jute backing. A very eco friendly flooring solution that harbours no dust mites (allergy sufferers please note!), Lino comes in a vast choice of colours and designs.
Lino is a hard material that is available in sheets or tiles, or it can be cut into intricate and beautiful designs that have to be fitted by experienced professionals. Once laid, it must be cleaned, sealed and left to dry thoroughly to avoid additional maintenance later on – Lino should require no more than soap and water for regular cleaning.
It is suitable for underfloor heating and can be laid over an existing floor. Despite its robustness, Lino, like vinyl, is relatively soft underfoot, meaning less risk of damaging dropped crockery.
Rubber flooring is a strong and hardwearing kitchen flooring choice that is perfect for contemporary spaces. The material is available in a huge range of colours and textures, both as tiles and in sheets.
Installation requires a very smooth subfloor (or floorboards overboarded with plywood) but other than that, it’s easy to install. Its high grip properties mean that adhesive is not usually needed. For an environmentally responsible kitchen floor, choose recycled rubber flooring, which will also cost you less.
Rubber is warm to the touch and has a soft, padded feel that’s forgiving on both feet and crockery. Unless it has been polished, the surface is naturally non-slip, as well as highly water, stain and fire resistant. It’s also super easy to keep clean – making it one of the most practical kitchen floors you could choose.
Good quality laminate wood flooring should be tough and resistant to wear, stains and colour fading. It’s a purse friendly option to get that wood look into your kitchen. With the addition of underlay, you should get the best of both worlds: a wood floor that is soft and ergonomic underfoot.
Laminate kitchen flooring is very easy to install over an existing floor, with no sealing required. Boards comes in a wide variety of colours and styles – from White Ash to Ebony. For the most realistic look, choose laminate boards with a thin veneer of real wood.
Of course, you don’t have to choose a wood look. Underneath a scratch resistant ‘wear’ layer, there’s a high definition digital image that accurately imitates the look of ceramic tiles, slate or marble.
Laminates are a durable, cost effective and eminently practical flooring solution for modern homes. They’re low maintenance, moisture and stain resistant.
An age old flooring material that’s making a comeback, cork is a sustainable material made from tree bark (primarily from the Cork Oak). It has a uniquely cellular structure that makes it waterproof and compressible, providing a surface that is comfortable and moisture resistant.
Cork is not only an environmentally friendly choice of kitchen flooring, it is also highly practical. Being antibacterial, it is resistant to mould and mildew, insects and pests. What’s more, as a natural insulator it protects against noise as well as temperature changes, while the naturally textured surface makes it slip resistant.
Exposed cork can be sanded and resealed periodically to help guard against scratches and prevent moisture ingress. Both natural wax and polyurethane can be used for sealing cork. Many cork tiles now come ready coated with vinyl for extra protection and to allow for a greater choice of finishes.
Cork is easy to install, warm and cushioned underfoot, easy to clean with a damp mop – a great solution for kitchen floors.
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