The last time I was renovating my bathroom I was looking at the options I had for new flooring. It is quite a compact bathroom and my budget was tight. As I looked at the selection available I began to get a little overwhelmed. There were a variety of options available. The salesman that was with me advised to stay away from rolled linoleum because it was not really durable and I would have to replace it in a few years. He suggested that ceramic tiling was the way to go because it would last many years and looked better. Of course, much of this was true but ceramic tiling is far more expensive than linoleum so that was another consideration given my tight budget. This article will discuss the types of bathroom flooring available and the relative merits of each.
One of the common arguments for getting long lasting, highly durable flooring, like ceramic tiling for instance, is that the bathroom is a busy place. It is used by everyone in the house and is susceptible to wear and tear. This argument is debatable, especially if you are on a tight budget. Whilst everyone uses the bathroom, it is generally only for a short period of time and then it stands empty for the rest of the day. You do not have people walking across it constantly like you do a kitchen floor so spending top dollar on bathroom flooring is not essential in my opinion. However it is important that the flooring prevents water or moisture from getting under it. Dampness of wood or even concrete sub flooring can cause problems for the structural integrity of the house in the long run.
Linoleum or Tiling ?
Going back to my bathroom flooring renovation, I ended up using a rolled linoleum. This was partly for cost but the pattern made it look attractive and perfect for the bathroom. A word of warning about rolled linoleum; it looks like rolled linoleum and it will continue to look like rolled linoleum for many years to come. If this look doesn’t suit you then you can opt for linoleum tiles. This is a half way house between rolled linoleum and ceramic tiling.
Linoleum tile gives the room a different look to the rolled variety but it is obviously harder to install. Rolled linoleum is easy to install and creates a great barrier for any moisture getting to the sub-floor. If you are installing linoleum tiling then you have to make sure the join between each tile is tight as moisture will get through.
If you want more elegant style for your bathroom then ceramic tiling is the way to go. Again, it is important to install the tiling correctly or the moisture will get under the tiling. This will not only lead to problems with the under floor but it will make the tiling loose and susceptible to cracking.
You can get some fantastic designs in ceramic tiling and there is no comparison to the sensual feeling of having ceramic tiling under the feet than linoleum. Although it can be cold in winter.
Other alternatives for bathroom flooring are hardwood and carpeting. Both would seem to be open to moisture and I don’t think are a good choice for bathroom flooring.