Friday, October 14, 2011

Bath Flooring Options

A bath remodel involves many product selections and decisions. There are pros and cons to different bath flooring options.  Plus, those product selections have a great influence on the remodeling price. 

Tile:  Tile is the most typical choice for a bath floor.  Tile is durable, water resistant, and comes in an amazing variety of colors, shapes and sizes.  Pricing can vary significantly from inexpensive to very expensive depending on the exact tile selected and the complexity of the pattern to be installed.  A good tile installation should include a tile backer board substrate to give rigidity and in the long term keep the tile from cracking.  To avoid slipping in a wet area bath floor tile typically has a textured or slightly textured surface.  In general tile is a mid-range cost selection but upgrades in the tile selection plus the optional addition of heating to the floor can increase costs significantly.

Stone:  Stone is similar to tile in many aspects but generally more expensive, and often the most expensive option for a bath floor.

Vinyl:  Vinyl is available as a sheet or in 12” tiles and in a variety of colors and designs.  Vinyl tiles are easy to install and especially a good choice for do-it-yourself remodels.  Vinyl is typically one of the least expensive bath floor options.

Laminate Flooring:  Laminate flooring is made of layers of paper and wood with a top layer picturing whatever surface you want the floor to look like.  It is typically inexpensive and easy to install.  While the top surface is water resistant, if water does penetrate, especially to the pad below, there is no choice but to remove and replace the flooring.  In general this may work for a powder room but is probably not a good choice for a full bath.

Wood Flooring:  Wood floors including hardwood such as oak or engineered wood floors, basically a layer of wood over plywood, are another choice for a bath.  Installation costs are mid-range.  If wood is used in a bath care should be taken to keep in dry and remove excess moisture from the surface.

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