Vinyl vs Linoleum: Quick Facts to Know

At Ashley Fine Floors, our experts are happy to help home, and property owners find the best flooring fit for their space. One of the topics we frequently discuss with customers is the difference between sheet vinyl and linoleum tiles, which, while similar, have many key attributes that help distinguish between the two. To help alleviate any confusion, check out our quick list of facts below!

Composition

Vinyl

Vinyl is manufactured using petroleum and other chemicals to create a pre-finished product.

Linoleum

Linoleum is made from biodegradable, eco-friendly materials including cork, tree resin, and wood. This may be the preferred option for customers looking for an environmentally conscious product.

Installation

Vinyl

Vinyl is easy to install, and due to its water resistant nature, requires no sealing or waxing. Simply peel and stick, or snap together! (Certain types of sheet vinyl may require more precise measurements than others)

Linoleum

Linoleum is also easy to install. However it does typically require a water sealant to be applied and for the seals between tiles to be thin, to prevent water from seeping through the cracks.

Maintenance

Vinyl

Vinyl is easy to maintain, requiring minimal sweeping, mopping, and vacuuming to keep its lustre.

Linoleum

Linoleum requires more upkeep compared to vinyl, but is still relatively easy to clean. When mopping, be careful to avoid harsh cleaners, as the surface can be sensitive to chemicals. Microfibre cloths and warm water are your best bet for basic cleaning.

Durability

Vinyl

Vinyl is a resilient material, with an average lifespan of anywhere between 10-20 years depending on traffic levels etc. Despite its durability, vinyl may not be the best fit for commercial properties, or spaces that need to handle heavy foot traffic.

Linoleum

The lifespan of linoleum products can be considerably longer than vinyl, average between 20-40 years. Highly durable, it may be suitable for certain commercial or industrial applications, and can withstand higher strain than its vinyl counterparts.

Both linoleum and vinyl provide property owners with a stylish, reliable option to outfit their space. To learn more about these two products, contact a member of our team today!


Laminate Flooring Winter Care

As those of us that live in colder climates will know, the winter months can be harsh on your property, especially when it comes to caring for your flooring. If you’ve read our previous blog on winter carpet maintenance you’ll know that snow and dirt present some unique challenges for homeowners. In this blog, we’ll highlight a few best practices to keep your laminate floors looking their best year round!

Moisture is a Chief Concern

With winter comes the dreaded trudge of melted snow and mud. Luckily, laminate’s composition means it’s already resistant to moisture build-up. Even so, to make sure your floors last as long as possible it’s important to minimize the presence of extra moisture in your home. You can do this by placing extra mats in high traffic entrance areas, taking off shoes as you come and go, and by immediately mopping up any sudden spills or puddles.

Protect Against Debris

Another challenge presented by cold weather is the presence of de-icing materials that have abrasive qualities that may damage your finish. Protect your floors against salt, sand, and grit by wiping your shoes before you enter your home, and by sweeping at least once a week. Regular cleaning prevents buildup and saves you the headache of further potential damage.

Avoid Exposure to the Elements

If you’re constantly coming and go from your house, there’s a chance that your flooring may experience negative effects from being exposed to cold air full of moisture. Over exposure to the elements can warp your laminate over time, meaning that it’s best to minimize the presence of cold air or sudden temperature changes when possible.

To learn more about caring for your floors and the benefits of laminate tiles, in particular, contact our team today!


How to Waterproof Your Bathroom

Bathrooms are a vital part of any home or property. Due to their natural association with water, choosing the right kinds of tiling, flooring, and finishes are integral to ensuring your space stays in top shape for the long-haul. Ashley Fine Floors has a team of experts on hand to help you make sure your bathroom selections are moisture resistant, as well as stylish. To help answer a few basic questions, we’ve compiled a few of their top tips for bathroom waterproofing below.

Look Up!

It’s no surprise that you’ll want your shower area and sink space to be water friendly, but one area people tend to forget about when it comes to renovating their bathroom is the ceiling. Since hot air rises, your ceilings are subject to exposure quite a bit of condensation, so using waterproof paint and ensuring proper ventilation is present is crucial to avoid premature wear.

Check Your Walls

Much like your ceilings, moisture can cling to your walls, peeling away wallpaper and soaking through the paint to create a mildew or rotting hazard. Avoid these risks by making sure your walls have a moisture barrier behind them, and that walls are properly sealed to withstand steam and condensation

Install the Right Flooring

Finally, having the right kind of flooring materials will save you a lot of grief when it comes to maintenance and longevity. For most bathrooms, a moisture resistant vinyl or ceramic tile is your best bet to keep water out. You’ll also want to check your grouting to make sure there is no room for leaks etc.

The team at Ashley Fine Floors is here to help you with your bathroom flooring and tiling needs. To learn more about our services, contact us today!


Choosing the Best Flooring for Your Rental Unit

If you’ve part one of our series of choosing the best flooring for your rental property, you’ll know that there are a few key considerations you need to have in mind when making your selection. You’ll want your floors to stand up to the demands of tenants, remain cost-effective, and meet the needs of each area of your unit. Below is a list of four flooring options, along with the pros and cons of each.

Vinyl Tile

Vinyl tile offers an incredibly diverse style range at a favourable price point for most property owners. Vinyl planks are easy to install, clean, and are water resistant. Moisture resistance makes installation suitable for bathrooms, laundry rooms, and kitchens.

Challenges to keep in mind include the fact that vinyl can still rip and tear, and despite being water resistant, prolonged exposure to moisture may result in the growth of mould or mildew. Vinyl also lacks in the insulation category, meaning it may not do much to keep your space warm if you live in a colder environment.

Linoleum

Like vinyl tile, linoleum is affordable, easily cleaned, and quickly installed. As an bonus, linoleum is an eco-friendly product, making it a solid choice for environmentally conscious owners. However, drawbacks to the product include a lack of insulation quality and the potential to rip or tear if proper care isn’t taken when moving heavy objects etc.

Laminate

Laminate often draws the eye of property owners looking for the elegant finish of hardwood without the cost and need for constant refinishing. Laminate planks are easy to install, resistant to water and stains, and do not chip or dent easily, meaning they are a great fit for high traffic areas and family rentals.

The drawbacks to laminate are minimal but include a shorter lifespan than real hardwood as well as an inability for the product to be refinished. While it is moisture resistant, it is still not ideal for use in bathrooms or other areas of a property that will have regular exposure to considerable condensation.

Cork

Cork is a lesser thought of, but still a viable option for property owners looking to outfit their rental. Like linoleum, cork is a green product made of sustainable materials. It is an affordable option, costing considerably less than hardwood, and installation is uncomplicated. Also, cork’s natural absorption qualities make it a great option for dividing main floor and basement suites, and will also help to lock in some warmth during colder months.

The most prominent downside to cork is its susceptibility to water damage. Because of cork’s sponge-like quality, it’s important to make sure it’s not used in areas where a heavy moisture presence is likely, ruling out bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms. Extra waterproofing measures are available, however, mitigating this inconvenience slightly.

To learn more about outfitting your rental units with the best flooring match, contact our team of experts today. We’re happy to help!


Choosing the Best Flooring for Your Rental Unit

With the rental market becoming a popular secondary source of income for property investors and owners, many first-time buyers find themselves tasked with the challenge of renovating their purchase to create a viable unit. Painting, plumbing, and all of the other aspects of a home renovation can be overwhelming without a clear guide to success. That’s why the team at Ashley Fine Floors has put together a two part list of things to consider when it comes to outfitting your rental properties with the best flooring options. Check out our top tips below:

3 Things to Consider Upfront

Before you get to work extensively planning your designs and layout, there are a few things you’ll want to have in mind from the start.

1. Rentals take more abuse than your typical property

As elegant as hardwood flooring may look, it may not be your best bet to stand up to the demands of tenant life. Rental properties are (unfortunately) subject to more wear and tear than the average abode. Planning ahead and choosing a flooring option that’s capable of withstanding the extra demand of tenants will save you time and money in the long run.

2. Remember your end objective

At the end of the day, the goal of a rental unit is to net a profit for the owner. Choose a flooring option that is not only stylish and durable, but also cost-effective for your space. Vinyl, laminate, and cork flooring all tend to be price friendly and able to withstand the high demands of rotating residents without the need for constant repair.

3. Understand the needs of each room

A key aspect of making sure your rental property is well-equipped is knowing the unique needs of each room. Bathrooms, kitchens, industrial spaces, and basements will have very different requirements then your typical living space. Be mindful of the necessity to waterproof and protect against other environmental hazards associated with the use of a certain space to prevent premature aging or damage.

Now that you know you a few of the basics to have in mind, part two will cover some more specific aspects of outfitting your rental unit. Stay tuned to learn more, or contact our team directly!