Here at Tile Mountain, we’ve just added a shedload of Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) products to our ever-growing range, meaning that we’ve got pretty much every hardwearing flooring option covered. Our new range of Luxury Vinyl Click Flooring comes in wood-effect plank format, as well as a selection of rectangular stone-effect vinyl tiles, all of which are designed to look the business in bathrooms, kitchens, lounges and hallways. But what exactly is it?
What Are Luxury Vinyl Tiles?
The short answer is that LVT are tiles that look like real wood or natural stone but are made from a hardwearing vinyl instead of real wood or natural stone or ceramic or porcelain that replicates those materials. If you delve a little deeper though (like we’re going to do in this here article), you’ll see that LVT are a multi-functional floor covering that are extremely easy to fit and are constructed in a way that makes them stand up to almost anything you can throw at them. Not only that, LVT offers flexible design applications compared to another resilient floor coverings – the loose installation LVT Click Flooring variants can be easily removed as there is no adhesive involved.
What Are Luxury Vinyl Tiles Constructed From?
LVT is constructed from PVC and its build comprises multiple layers. It’s made in this way to increase durability and make it dimensionally stable too. The exploded view diagram below details the composition of a typical LVT product:
What Are The Benefits of Luxury Vinyl Click Flooring?
LVT Click Flooring is designed for quick and easy installation. Each piece simply locks directly into place (a bit like that ropey laminate flooring that everyone was so keen on at the turn of the millennium, only much better!) giving the same stunning aesthetic qualities as a traditional installation, only faster and without the need for adhesive. LVT Click Flooring also ensures a solid installation through an enhanced vertical locking system, outperforming other products on the market. The plus points don’t stop there though, just take a look at this little lot:
An easy clean moisture resistant wear layer makes LVT Click Flooring suitable for any room, even bathrooms and kitchens. Whilst you can’t use it in areas subject to direct water such as shower cubicles, it will withstand all manner of splashes and spills and can be mopped without any trouble.
LVT Click Flooring absorbs sound, giving better acoustics in the home, meaning no more clip-clopping of shoes and heels or kids charging round to disturb you when you’re having a kip of a nice sit down with a brew.
No expensive cleaning agents are required to keep your floor at its best; just a simple run over with a broom, mop, or vacuum cleaner will keep these floors looking shipshape. LVT Click Flooring will not harbour dust mites and other allergens either, so it’s great for those who suffer from allergies.
Scratch and Scuff Resistant
The upper Superguard® layer is scuff and stain resistant and is easy to clean, offering maximum protection with minimum maintenance. This comes in especially handy for those with busy homes that have kids and or/pets – general running about and dropping things quite literally won’t leave a mark in these things.
LVT Click Flooring adhere to all strict standards concerning residual indentations caused by chairs, cupboards, heels, etc, so you needn’t worry about your dining table set-up or armchairs leaving you with a depressed floor if you want to rearrange your interiors a bit.
Our LVT Click Flooring products all feature a strong wear layer, which, when combined with the PU layer, make them specifically resistant to spots and shoe marks. Just a quick wipe down with a sponge or floor-wipe and your flooring will be tarnish-free in minutes.
All our LVT Click Flooring features a top R10 slip-rating, meaning that they can be used in areas where the floor is sometimes wet such as kitchens. Please be aware that LVT Click Flooring cannot be used in areas subject to direct water such as wetrooms or shower cubicles. You can use them in bathrooms without worry though.
Great Heat Insulation
As wonderful as tiles, timber and natural stone are to look at, they can be a bit chilly underfoot (especially in winter). With LVT Click Flooring though you can say goodbye to cold feet as the PVC that LVT products are constructed from retain warmth and are much less cold to the touch.
Dependable and Durable
A 12-year warranty is available for LVT Click Flooring used in a domestic installation whereas commercial installations qualify for A 5-year warranty. In either situation, these fantastic vinyl tiles will stand the test of time and look great for years.
How Do I Install Luxury Vinyl Click Flooring?
Installing LVT Click Flooring is ridiculously simple thanks to its handy Click technology. Just follow the step-by-step guide below and you’ll have your new LVT Click Flooring laid in no time at all:
- Tape measure
- Set square
- Utility knife
- Hand roller
- Recoil – or rubber hammer
- Tapping block
- Spacers for setting the rows in an uneven wall
LVT Click Flooring must acclimatise in the room it will be installed in (or an equivalent area) for at least 24 hours prior to installation, or until such time as the product has achieved an ambient temperature. Again, this is a minimum temperature of 18°C and a maximum of 27°C.
Unpack the LVT Click Flooring and check all planks or tiles in daylight for possible defects or discrepancies in colour.
Stack the plank or tiles in straight piles away from heating, cooling or windows with direct intense sunlight. This is to achieve a gradual acclimatisation.
Begin by laying the first row in the corner of your room from the left-hand side as you look at the wall. Always work from left to right and with the groove facing towards you. A 5mm expansion joint must be incorporated at the perimeter of the room/area in which the LVT is being installed.
Lay the first row in a straight line and click the head ends together. It’s recommended that you use the Xtrafloor® Hand Roller to connect the head ends together.
For the last piece, measure the last plank so that the required expansion gap is maintained. Cut away the marked piece and fit the end panel in the same way as previous panels.
Fit the second row; start on the left-hand side and slide the tongue of the panel at an angle of around 25° into the groove of the previous row, clicking the tongue into the groove.
Use a recoil or rubber mallet and tapping block (or an off-cut piece of LVT) to ensure that the click mechanism is firmly locked.
Fit the second panel; position the left corner of the head end against the previous panel and then drop the short side of the profile into the head end of the previous panel then push into place using the Xtrafloor® Hand Roller. Repeat until all rows are complete.
The last row nearest the wall will most likely require a cut. Simply measure the correct width required to fill the gap, cut the panel to size using a utility knife, then fit into place using the same method as previous panels.
If you need a quick recap or would like to see those steps again, you can check out the handy installation video guide below:
Can Luxury Vinyl Click Flooring Be Installed Over Existing Floors?
Yes, these floors can easily be installed on flat hard subfloors such as concrete, anhydrite, wood/plate material or tiles. The only thing that you must consider is that the surface you’re laying LVT Click Flooring on to is level and free of bumps and depressions. The subfloor must be properly prepared – any residual floor coverings, glue, plaster or other irregularities must be removed prior to installing. If the subfloor is not completely flat, it must be levelled with levelling compound. It’s also worth noting that LVT Click Flooring cannot be installed over parquet or other lacquered or oiled wood floors. Installation over laminate, resilient floors such as vinyl, cork, or softwood floor covering is not possible due to the amount of residual indentation of these floor types.
Do I Need Underlay When Installing Luxury Vinyl Click Flooring?
Loose installation LVT Click Flooring can be laid without underlay, although in order to enjoy the full benefits of improved sound insulation (from 13dB), reduced creaking noise, and increased dimensional stability, we recommend Xtrafloor® Base Underlay – a fantastic elastic eco-friendly underlay that features a Lightly tackified surface & dust-capturing protective foil for easy installation. It is possible to use ‘regular’ underlay but this will take the floor level past the 6mm thickness of LVT Click Flooring and Xtrafloor® Base Underlay combined, so please take this into account when measuring for skirtings, profiles, expansion gaps, and stair nosings etc.
How Do I Finish Luxury Vinyl Click Flooring Using Skirting etc?
Just like ‘regular’ tiled or laminate flooring, you can easily finish the floor around the perimeter area using standard timber skirting and would install it in exactly the same way as you would if finishing any other type of floor. When it comes to our LVT Click Flooring, there are a couple of other options:
Combine any design floor with any other type of floor, without a hiccup. Carpet or laminate? Higher or lower lying flooring? Xtrafloor’s multifunctional profiles effortlessly join different heights and flooring types.
LVT Floor Strips
These ingenious edging strips have a wide variety of applications. Either use on top of your LVT floor covering at the edges of a room for a seamless floor-to-wall transition, as a perfect no-silicone finish for LVT Click Flooring, or as a clever solution for those places standard skirting cannot reach. No need to worry about adhesives or glue either as all Xtrafloor® Floor Strips feature a self-adhesive backing for super-quick and effortless installation.
Can I Use Underfloor Heating with Luxury Vinyl Click Flooring?
LVT Click Flooring can be used with traditional water-based underfloor heating systems, provided there is a constant room temperature of 18°C for the acclimatisation period, installation, and for 72 hours after installation. once 24 hours have elapsed after installation, the underfloor heating must be gradually increased by increments of 5°C per day until it reaches the standard operating temperature conditions, with a maximum operating temperature of 27°C. Please check the underfloor heating manufacturer’s instructions for details of the system’s suitability for use with LVT Click Flooring.
How Do I Clean Luxury Vinyl Click Flooring?
LVT is low-maintenance, and unlike some other types of flooring, they are very easy to clean. The Superguard top layer finish removes the need for any specific post-treatment and immediate maintenance after installation. Should any visible contaminations begin to develop after a period of time, thorough cleaning with a PU gloss polish will fully restore your floor. You can easily clean your floor with an ordinary broom, microfibre cloth, vacuum cleaner, or damp mop. Regular cleaning will keep your floor looking great for longer. Please avoid the use of aggressive cleaning agents though as these may damage the top layer over time.
Hopefully, any questions you might have had about this new-fangled LVT Click Flooring will have been answered after reading through that. If you’re suitably impressed by their features and benefits (and we can’t think of a reason why you wouldn’t be), then why not check out our full range of LVT Click Flooring and see if any take your fancy by ordering a free cut sample?
If you’ve already jumped on board the LVT bandwagon and are looking for some products to keep it looking shipshape then check out the excellent Xtrafloor® Starter Kit. And don’t forget that if you’ve already installed LVT Click Flooring in your home and want to show off your completed project, send your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll send you a crisp £20 Amazon voucher if we use your pics on our website!