Hardwood Floors vs. Vinyl Plank Floors

Hardwood Floors vs. Vinyl Plank Floors

Really, those two? Usually we're comparing either of them to laminate flooring, not each other. This topic was suggested by friends of ours, and I'm glad they did, as it might never have occurred to me to cover it.

  Which of these are which? Hover over each to find out.
Vinyl Plank Maple - Supreme Click Elite Waterproof Vinyl Plank Brazilian Cherry - Supreme Click Elite Waterproof Vinyl Plank Rustic Oak Hand Scraped - Supreme Click Elite Waterproof
Hardwood - Caramel Maple Engineered Hardwood Flooring from Mohawk Unilin Hardwood - Brazilian Cherry Handscraped from CFS Fiji Hardwood - Santa Barbara Plank Harvest Oak Hand Scraped from Mohawk
Hardwood and vinyl. First, how are they alike?   Mainly, in the way they look! Obviously the look of a vinyl floor is a fabrication of something else, but the same technologies that have made laminate floors look so real also apply to vinyl flooring, especially the plank style vinyl floors. This paragraph is sandwiched between selections from our current catalog. If you hover your cursor over each, their names and types will show up. Even when we don't have vinyl products that intend to be exact matches of specific hardwood floors we carry, you can see how close they still get.   These days choice really comes down to the features you want, or problems you want to avoid.
Hardwood - Solid Oak Winchester from Mohawk Hardwood - Gunstock Oak Hardwood - Weathered Brown Handscraped Oak from Kingsmill
Vinyl Plank Floor Oak Plank - Supreme Click Elite Waterproof Vinyl Plank Gunstock Oak Vinyl Plank Flooring Sierra Oak - Tuff Guy Standard Luxury


In Praise of Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood adds value to your home, and here I mean money. If you have hardwood floors, you can sell your house for more. That's pretty much not true of any other type of flooring.

Genuine hardwood is warmer to walk on. It's much thicker. Just look at these samples from our warehouse.

Vinyl & Hardwood Samples With some hardwoods, you can also have padding underneath. This often isn't an option with vinyl plank.

Hardwood floors are known for their longevity, some lasting generations. One reason is that rather than replacing an entire floor after it has become worn, you can sand and refinish a hardwood floor. This is usually less expansive than the cost of replacing flooring of any kind, and keeps the look around which the rest of the home was established.

The Dark Side of Hardwood Flooring

This stuff can be expensive! Very generaly, hardwood is going to be the most expensive type of flooring you can buy. Since we are discount flooring specialists, we can probably beat most stone and tile prices, the second most expensive, but verses vinyl, the range of prices is higher with hardwood.

Installation is a much more difficult affair with hardwood. Even comparing floating, click together versions of both, hardwood requires more care and preparation.

Damage is more of an issue with hardwood. Wood and vinyl have different kinds of durabilities. One breaks, one bends, both can dent from high heeled shoes. Aside from that, hardwood is usually more susceptible to permanent damage from dents, scratches and the like. Real wood has natural crevices which can harbor dust. As problems go, it's generally slight if the floor is taken care of to a normal degree, but comparatively, this is a problem vinyl just doesn't have.

Water and moisture. If wood has a downfall, this is it. You can't let your hardwood floors get wet, and if they do, you must clean the spill immediately. Even humidity can be an issue with wood floors, especially solid hardwoods.


In Praise of Vinyl Plank Flooring

Vinyl flooring can be one of the least expensive kinds of flooring you can buy.

Installing a click together, floating vinyl plank floor is as easy as doing the same with a laminate floor, the cream of the do-it-yourself flooring crop. For a video showing the angle angle style of click together system, we used one of our best vinyl plank floors to do the demonstration. You can see how easy it is right here.

Generally, vinyl plank flooring has a tougher surface for foot traffic than hardwood, enough to recommend it for public and commercial areas such as hotel lobbies or hospitals.

Vinyl is easier to clean. You can mop it. You have more chemical cleaning options, though all you need is a light soap and water mix. Also, locked together your vinyl floor won't have the gaps and crevices natural to a wood floor, which means less trapped dust.

Waterproof. Vinyl plank flooring can be 100% waterproof. Now add to durability the ability to handle snow covered boots, rain drenched clothes, mud, spills, puppy training mishaps - none of these are an issue for the floor. Floods? Bad for the house, yes, no question, but a 100% waterproof vinyl plank floor will survive it.

The Dark Side of Vinyl Plank Floor

It's colder to walk on than hardwood flooring.

It adds no value to the home. It doesn't take any away, but it isn't a selling boost, just a good, durable floor.

Damaged planks must be replaced. You can't sand and refinish a vinyl floor.  

So what do you think?

Hardwood Flooring         Vinyl Plank Flooring

– – – –
David is has written and made videos about flooring products and installation since 2011 at Floors To Your Home (.com), where he is also the PPC Manager, a Researcher, a Website & Marketing Strategy Team member, Videographer, Social Strategist, Photographer and all around Resource Jito. In my spare time I shoot and edit video, put together a podcast, explore film history, and mix music (as in ‘play with Beatles multi-tracks’). Connect with  W. David Lichty


Follow Team Floors To Your Home on  Facebook  

You'll find discount flooring, in stock, ready to ship to you just by clicking this button