Vinyl Plank Flooring: Is It Really Waterproof?

Anyone who has had waterproof vinyl plank flooring installed in their home in recent years will sing the praises of this innovative material. It’s all the rage in modern interiors: A hard surface flooring that resists spills and repels stains while looking and feeling a lot like hardwood or tile, vinyl plank flooring is just as aesthetically pleasing, but without the often hefty price tag. 

Created with a rigid core and high-grade wear layers, waterproof flooring stands up to daily wear from pets and kids. Finished with texture and dimension you won’t find in conventional vinyl flooring, it’s able to be installed over nearly any subfloor, even over existing flooring, and makes a great option for kitchens, bathrooms, basements, and playrooms. It also works great as a whole house flooring option!  

But if you clicked on this blog, you’re probably wondering if luxury vinyl plank flooring really is all it’s cracked up to be. Can it truly hold up better against daily spills and messes when compared to other flooring options? Also among the important questions: Is vinyl plank flooring waterproof, really? At Flack’s Flooring, we’re here to answer your questions. Let’s discuss what vinyl plank flooring is and isn’t, and if it actually is “waterproof.”

 What is Vinyl Plank Flooring? 

Vinyl plank flooring is much different from your typical vinyl. Regular vinyl flooring materials are very thin and flexible, and typically come in sheets, but luxury vinyl plank flooring is much more sturdy and thick. This flooring option comes in long planks like hardwood, but snaps together via a tongue-and-groove connection system typically referred to as a “click-lock.”

Luxury vinyl flooring is typically divided into two categories: Luxury Vinyl Tile, or LVT, and Luxury Vinyl Plank, LVP. The difference is just what it sounds like: LVT mimics tile flooring, while LVP mimics wood. The terms tend to be used interchangeably in the flooring industry, so don’t be confused by references to “vinyl plank flooring,” as it refers to the fact that the flooring comes in long planks, but can mimic many materials, including tile or stone. Similar in appearance, price, and construction to some types of laminate flooring, vinyl flooring is made of polymer materials while laminate is made of wood byproducts. 

Vinyl plank flooring has been gaining traction in its popularity due to its easy maintenance, elegant appearance, and affordability. It can be cleaned with a damp or wet mop, unlike laminate, and is incredibly easy to install and remove, unlike hardwood or tile that need to be glued down. Many homeowners prefer this flooring option to more expensive materials for these reasons.

Is vinyl plank flooring waterproof? 

To know the answer to this question, you first need to know the difference between the terms water-resistant, waterproof, and flood-proof. 

When a material is water-resistant, it can withstand water and other spills for a certain period of time, but the liquid will eventually permeate the surface of the material and cause issues. When something is waterproof, it can also withstand daily spills and small puddles, but the water will never permeate the surface, no matter how long the liquid remains on the surface.

Being flood-proof is a different matter. If large amounts of water or other liquids are spilled and not immediately cleared away, and the cracks between the planks have not been sealed, the liquid will seep into a waterproof floor and get beneath it. If your home experiences flooding or standing water for an extended period of time, you will need to replace your luxury vinyl plank flooring before any major damages can set in. Thus, luxury vinyl plank flooring is waterproof, but not flood-proof. 

This waterproof feature sets vinyl plank flooring apart from laminate and hardwood options. Because it is completely synthetic, vinyl plank flooring is able to resist penetration of water and avoid the buckling and warping that can occur with laminate and hardwood flooring that has been exposed to water for a prolonged period of time. In fact, you can submerge a piece of luxury vinyl plank in water and it will come out looking exactly the same. Waterproof vinyl flooring is also more resistant to mold and mildew, though as we’ve mentioned, flooding will likely cause mold and damage to the subfloor eventually, which is why we would recommend replacement in that instance. 

Something else to note is that some types of luxury vinyl flooring are water resistant and not entirely waterproof, so make sure to understand the difference before purchasing! At Flack’s Flooring, we sell only rigid core vinyl flooring, which is completely waterproof.

Types of Vinyl Plank Flooring

When you are shopping for vinyl plank flooring, you’ll quickly learn that there are plenty of styles, textures, and colors for you to choose from. The market for waterproof luxury vinyl plank flooring is huge, so no matter your tastes, you are sure to find an option that fits your unique style. Many flooring stores will offer flooring specials and discounts on their vinyl plank flooring, and this is something to keep in mind for those searching for more ways to reduce costs.

In addition to the various styles of vinyl plank flooring, there are also some technical options to choose from which will affect how the flooring itself will be installed. 

Floating Vinyl Plank Flooring: This is a great option for people wanting an easy-in, easy-out installation method. Floating vinyl plank flooring does not use any glue or other adhesives that would adhere to your floor; the planks simply click together. Floating vinyl plank flooring is laid over the subfloor in a “floating” fashion, and is very easy to install. You don’t even need a particularly level floor in order to install floating vinyl plank flooring; depending on the subfloor, oftentimes an underlayment will be used to level out the floor and provide padding and sound absorption. 

Glue Down Vinyl Plank Flooring: While not necessary when using rigid core LVT or LVP products due to their click-lock method of installation, gluing is an option. Any time you glue a flooring down it is considered to be a more “permanent” flooring solution, as the materials are connected to each other and the floor via strong glue and adhesives. While the permanency can be intimidating, glue down vinyl flooring is typically recommended when covering a large area such as a living room. Gluing makes the flooring more durable and less likely to shift than floating vinyl plank flooring. 

As you can see, each method of installation has its own set of pros and cons, and comes down to the space you’re covering as well as personal preference. At Flack’s, we take care of the installation for you, and will recommend and implement the style that would work best in your space and your lifestyle. 

Benefits of Luxury Vinyl Plank/Tile 

There are many reasons why upgrading your home with waterproof floors is a smart investment. In addition to its affordability, waterproof luxury vinyl plank flooring is easy to maintain and will stand the test of time. This type of flooring is especially suited for families with small children and pets, as it can hold up against daily spills and heavy traffic. Luxury vinyl plank flooring is preferred by many homeowners because it is:

  • Budget-friendly

  • Easy to clean

  • Long-lasting

  • Easy to install and remove

  • Has a real wood/tile/stone look

  • Can stand up to daily spills, scuffs

  • And of course, it’s waterproof!

Flack’s Flooring: Your Source for Waterproof Vinyl Plank Flooring 

If you are ready to upgrade your floors with the best vinyl plank flooring, make sure you shop with a reputable store that only carries the highest quality materials. Flack’s Flooring is your local flooring store: We carry rugs, carpets, hardwood, and a wide range of waterproof vinyl plank flooring for you to choose from. We keep our prices competitive and work closely with each and every customer in order to make sure that they find the perfect flooring for their home. Our showroom features take-home samples that you can use to finalize your decision, as well as vignettes so you can walk on samples of LVP and see firsthand what all the fuss is about. 

When you want to install waterproof luxury vinyl plank flooring in your home, Flack’s Flooring is here with a variety of options. Contact us today to book an appointment: 770-889-9753

Frequently Asked Questions about Vinyl Plank Flooring

How to install vinyl plank flooring?

When you purchase luxury vinyl plank flooring from Flack’s Flooring, you don’t have to worry about installation. Our price includes delivery of the flooring to your home, installation, and moving the furniture, so once you pick out the flooring you want, you don’t have to lift a finger!

How to clean vinyl plank flooring?

Vinyl plank flooring is resilient, and can be cleaned using a variety of regular household cleaners, though a mild wet mopping solution made specifically for LVP or LVT is preferred. For persistent stains, you can try mixing apple cider vinegar and hot water, and then mopping/scrubbing over the area until it is clear.

How much to install vinyl plank flooring?

When you are interested in installing vinyl plank flooring, price can depend on a wide range of factors, such as the square footage of the room and the type of flooring you choose. You can find the best selection of vinyl plank flooring at the Flack’s Flooring showroom, where we can give you a quote for the cost of materials and installation.