Choosing the right flooring for your kitchen requires careful consideration and sufficient research. Kitchen flooring choices keep evolving with the introduction of new technologies.
One popular option for kitchen flooring is tiles – either ceramic or natural stone. The advantage of tile flooring lies in its ease of maintenance and durability. Any oil spill can be cleaned with detergents and water and the tiles are as good as new. Tile flooring is quite hard, hence it has a long life. However, this same hardness causes glass items to break if dropped. Aesthetically, tile is a great option if the grout lines are minimized and larger tiles are laid. However, larger tiles are disadvantageous when the tiles suffer cracks.
Another important point to consider before opting for ceramic tile is the impact it has on the legs. It is very uncomfortable to stand on tile flooring for a long period as the hard surface can cause leg pain. Also, people tend to slip and fall when liquid is left on ceramic tile flooring.
Hardwood flooring is not considered for kitchens too often, though it offers superior interiors and a sense of continuity in the open floor plans. Hardwood flooring has bounced back as an option for kitchens today. Previously, hardwood flooring was disregarded for kitchen applications, due to its susceptibility with water. Now, with technology improving the quality of sealers and hybridization, hardwood flooring can be considered for the kitchen. Engineered hardwood is an especially waterproof option. It is made of wood and can cause less pain on the legs compared to tiles. Maintenance of hardwood flooring is also comparatively easy if care is taken to remove water immediately.
Vinyl flooring has come of age with newer technological infusions. Many vinyl and laminate floor products are glue free–they use a click mechanism for installation. Though vinyl sheet flooring is unsuitable for kitchens due to its tendency to tear and become soaked,vinyl planks are waterproof, long lasting and durable. In addition to these benefits, vinyl planks imitate the looks of wood flooring and come at an affordable cost.
Bamboo flooring is an environmentally friendly option and ideally suited for kitchens. It provides a traditional look for the kitchen and resists wear and tear. The durability of bamboo flooring lies in its strands. It can be used in place of hardwood floors.
The other environmentally friendly option is cork flooring. It is available in interesting colors and because it’s softer than tile, cork flooring can save precious glass items from breaks. Cork is porous in nature and bears weight better than hard flooring options. It is softer on the legs when compared to other materials. Its anti-microbial nature is well suited for kitchens, but cork flooring is generally not recommended for wet areas. Care should be taken to lay the cork floor in order to avoid water seepage into the flooring material.
It is best to look at the options available on kitchen flooring without assumptions as newer versions of older flooring emerge with better features.