Basement flooring is a challenge for any homeowner. They are sensitive to moisture and can feel chilly and damp on your feet. Basements are often the location of appliances like washers and water heaters that can break and cause flooding. Family rooms, playrooms and game rooms in basements go through a lot of wear and tear.

Despite all these challenges, it might surprise you to learn that many types of flooring can work in a basement as long as it is correctly installed. Here is a quick rundown of each:

Vinyl 

It is one of the most popular choices for basements since it can go directly over prepared concrete and comes in planks, tiles or sheets. These are the advantages:

  • Resists moisture
  • Flexible and somewhat soft underfoot adding more warmth and comfort than tile or cement
  • Sturdy, durable and virtually maintenance-free
  • Available in a wide variety of colours and patterns
  • Easier installation

The main disadvantage to vinyl flooring is that even though it can look like wood, stone or tile, the best grades still look like vinyl up close. It is essential to consider the sturdiness and thickness of the vinyl flooring as well as the price when choosing a type for your basement.

Laminate 

It is constructed of dense fiberboard, plastic or plywood core with a photo-realistic pattern beneath a transparent plastic protective layer. Laminate can be installed over a concrete slab or a foam pad. These are the advantages of laminate flooring:

  • A large variety of colours, styles, and patterns that mimic the look of wood, tile or stone
  • Spills wipe up effortlessly 
  • Affordable
  • Stain-resistant and easy to clean – ideal for high-traffic areas
  • Easy installation even without adhesive

Because it is not actually wood, its repetitive pattern can it look obviously artificial. It must also be replaced once the outer layer has worn off. There is a wide range of quality when it comes to laminate flooring. The best grades are durable and scratch-resistant with a more realistic look, feel and sound.

Ceramic Tile 

Similar to vinyl and laminate flooring, ceramic tiles can be installed directly over prepared concrete. It is the choice of most designers because of its beauty, variety, and the ability to create custom patterns. The advantages of ceramic tile are that it is:

  • Available in many sizes, shapes, colours and textures
  • Moisture-resistant
  • Durable and resistant to scratches, wear, dents and stains

Ceramic tile, on the other hand, can crack, and some types of grout can stain easily. It also requires more time and skill to install. Ceramic is cold on your feet, but you can alleviate that by adding radiant heat in your flooring.

Engineered Wood

Even though solid hardwood floors should not be used for a basement, engineered wood flooring is a viable option. It is made from a thin solid wood veneer layer over a plywood backing. Plywood is more durable than solid wood and can resist changes in temperature and moisture without warping. Some pros of engineered wood flooring are that it:

  • Looks and feels like real wood with moisture resistance that is comparable to laminate
  • Available in a wide assortment of finishes
  • Click-together planks and tiles make for easy installation

Most engineered wood is not as durable as laminate as the wood veneer layer can still dent, scratch and undergo water damage.

Carpeting

Even though it is not water-resistant, carpeting is still the basement flooring of choice for many homeowners because of its many advantages:

  • Adds warmth
  • Provides some soundproofing
  • Available in a wide variety of textures, colours and patterns
  • One of the least expensive basement flooring options

The main disadvantage of carpet is that it does not resist moisture well, which can be a problem in an especially damp basement, and if flooding or spills happen. Moisture-resistant pads cost more than standard carpet pads but are a good investment if you are set on having carpet. Keep in mind that they won’t relieve chronic moisture problems though and requires more upkeep than solid flooring materials.

Basement Bottom Line

When it comes to choosing basement flooring, don’t cut corners. Choose durable, high-quality flooring that can stand up to frequent use. Talk with the flooring professionals at New Trendz Flooring about which option is best for your basement. We have a wide selection of flooring materials for you to choose from for reasonable prices. Call us today to find out more or for a quote.