The pros, cons, and the beauty of woven vinyl flooring.
Woven vinyl flooring might just be the perfect addition to your next design! It is beautiful, durable, and of course, functional. However, since it is a fast growing segment, there is a learning curve to overcome. By learning more about this product, you will be able to achieve optimal performance. Additionally, in order to ensure expectations are met, we have highlighted the good, the bad, and the beauty of woven vinyl flooring.
Let’s start with the good! The new design trend calls for a sleek, low profile with architectural finishes. Therefore, woven vinyl has become the best solution for many designers.
But before it got on the market, this product went through extensive testing. It has been discovered that this flooring is very difficult to stain, easy to clean, and can be impervious to both dust and mold. Furthermore, woven vinyl flooring can be used indoors and outdoors. Not to mention, it also comes with a FloorScore® certification, and has long term commercial warranties.
Coupling these features with spectacular aesthetics, designers and their clients are drawn to these products. However, many are making choices based simply on color and design, without understanding the product. This can result poorly for the client if the designer is unaware of what can make this flooring material fail.
First of all, it is important to realize that the machines used to produce the weft threads are not able to completely control the tension of the yarn. As a result, there is shading which is inherent in the product. Fortunately, one can offset that optical issue by installing the tiles quarter-turned. When using roll goods, we advise that designers specify a narrow accent strip of another color or another shade at each seam. While most people will find the seams and shading acceptable, those who are more sensitive to the seams will not notice the shading when like designs and colors are not butted to each other.
It is also important to realize that these floors have a texture. That means they should not receive the same maintenance as solid surface floor, like ceramic or vinyl composition tile. Any attempts at mopping will only spread dirt and stains. Likewise, using a machine with a round pad can cause permanent damage to the flooring. The simple solution? Vacuuming daily! Keep in mind, that if you sweep the area first, it will jostle crumbs from between the fibers to make them easier to vacuum. For deeper cleaning, a floor scrubber that uses two brushes rotating in different directions will restore the floor to its original glory.
The Bad Continued…
Apart from spills and messes, woven vinyl flooring will also show scuffing from shoes that have black rubber soles. There are products that are sold to seal woven vinyl, but our experience has shown that they do not lessen the issue but can make the scuffing a little easier to clean. The best way to mitigate this issue is to choose darker colors or designs with stripes and multiple colors that hide soiling.
Likewise, it’s important to note that woven vinyl material can be permanently scratched. When sliding equipment, like a gym bench or a chair, the material can actually heat up. This will unfortunately result in a scratch. Although you can try using a scrapper to push against the vinyl in the opposite direction, the best solution may be to replace that area. In areas that might take this kind of abuse, we suggest using tile.
Furthermore, many brands of woven vinyl will fray because they are wrapped around polyester thread or fiberglass filament. When the inside pokes through the vinyl, unsightly white strings will sprout. Although this can happen anywhere, it mostly happens at seams. If wrapped around fiberglass filament, these strings are difficult to remove, as they are hard to cut and can’t be burned.
Although the seams can be cold welded for an impervious floor, but we do not recommend doing so unless the application truly requires a waterproof floor. The product is of a low profile and even a careful installer might see the weld loop over the face of the fiber and dry, leaving a milky whitish trail.
In spite of how daunting woven vinyl flooring seems, designers keep asking for it! When specified properly into the right environments and maintained properly, these floors make spectacular spaces.
Here at Summit International Flooring, we import and distribute Fitnice Woven Vinyl Flooring and Wall Coverings. From production to distribution, this company makes the high quality woven vinyl that you are looking for!