There are many different types of materials that can be used for flooring in your new bathroom. Each choice offers a different look and benefits, and some provide better quality and a longer lifespan than others. Read on for some quick information that will help you choose the best flooring for your bathroom.
Tile is one of the most common choices for bathroom flooring and it is preferred for its durability against extreme conditions. The humidity and high temperatures in a bathroom can cause wear and tear on bathroom vanities, fixtures and even flooring. But tile is water-resistant so you won’t have to worry about it being damaged like with some other materials. Glass, ceramic, granite and porcelain are a few of the styles available. Which to choose for your renovation is simply dependent on your preference and how much you want to spend.
When working with a low budget, some homeowners look to vinyl flooring. While the cost might be appealing, the quality is not. Over time the edges of vinyl will begin to peel off and curl up in corners, next to bathroom vanities and fixtures. Because it doesn’t stand strong against water or humidity, we rarely recommend vinyl flooring for bathrooms. In some cases we have even seen water trapped beneath the vinyl causing damage to the subfloor — and proving vinyl is often more trouble than it’s worth in a bathroom.
While wood adds warmth and a unique look, it is not always the best choice for bathroom flooring. It can be sealed with a polyurethane finish that will protect it against splashes of water but serious damage can occur if you allow water to puddle or leave wet towels on the floor. We typically don’t advise using wood in high-traffic bathrooms, especially those used by children or teens. Limit wood flooring to a common area half-bath or a guest bathroom that doesn’t get much use.
If you like the look of wood but don’t want to commit to the maintenance, treated laminate flooring is the next best thing. Some styles look almost exactly like real wood, while being less expensive and easier to install. In appearance, laminate is a very similar alternative to wood but you will lose some of the qualities of wood, such as its warmth and sound resistance. Laminate can become quite cold and some people have complained about the noise.
Bamboo is becoming a more popular flooring option because it is comparable to wood but much more eco-friendly. Bamboo is a renewable resource that takes only a few years to harvest (versus hardwoods, which can take decades). Those looking to make their home greener may prefer bamboo flooring but beware that its care is much like standard wood and it can be damaged by water. When choosing bamboo, also make sure to look for a variety that has not been sealed with a finish containing formaldehyde.