Vinyl tiles or Vinyl Composite tiles are flooring material which mainly is used in industrial or commercial setups. These consist of chips made of polyvinyl chloride. These are then formed into sheets of different thicknesses.  When installing, these tiles are applied to the sub floor to which a specially formulated vinyl adhesive is added. Some of these tiles are even waxed as well as buffed when they are used for commercial applications.

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The reason for their use for industrial and commercial setups is:

  • Durability
  • low maintenance
  • low cost
  • These tiles resist abrasions
  • They resist damage due to impact
  • They can also be easily replaced
  • They are available in different colors and can even resemble concrete, stone, wood, terrazzo or varied patterns.

 

What are the properties of Vinyl tiles?

  • Vinyl tiles have an anti-microbial nature
  • They are coated with UV coating and so minimum dust accumulates on the sheet so these tiles are easy to clean
  • Glass fibers and foam are built into these tiles and so the flooring neither shrinks nor expands and the dimensions of the material are maintained
  • They absorb footfall better than other flooring and so reduce noise
  • They do not react to reagents and so are used in clinics and hospitals
  • Vinyl tiles are easy to install and can be installed even on top of existing floors
  • They are easy to remove as well

 

How to lay a vinyl floor?

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When you want to install vinyl floor, you need a person who is strong, patient and has an eye for detail along with a steady hand. One day will be required to prepare the floor then a few more days will be required to lay the tiles.

  • Before shopping for the tiles, you need to measure the room and draw it on graph paper and then you should experiment as to how different colored tiles or patterns will look like on this graph sheet.
  • Once you have decided on the pattern and the color combination, then you need to count how many tiles will be required and add 15% to it – for wastage. You will also need adhesive. One gallon of it can be used for 200 square feet.
  • For the doors and openings, you will need transition strips. You would require wood base shoe molding for covering tile edges along the cabinets and walls.
  • The concrete should be dry and sound and there should not be cracks or uneven sections. Bumps should be chipped off and scraped. Low spots should be filled with a floor leveling compound. The surface should be smooth and clean.

 

It is important to remove the base shoe moldings and carpet strips, to make the floor clean:

First you need to remove the base shoe moldings, metal carpet strips or door thresholds. Then the door casings should be undercut. The underlayment should be cut and stapled. The layout lines should be marked in pencil. The adhesive should be spread on the floor. Excess glue should be wiped off immediately. When the adhesive dries, it turns clear. Then you can lay the tiles. Tiles need to be put with great care because once they are placed, they are extremely difficult to reposition or even remove. Excess glue needs to be cleaned with mineral spirits or a damp rag. The shoe moldings can then be reinstalled. Curing takes around 5 days. After which it can be sealed with high quality floor polish of acrylic or a sealer. This should be done after sweeping and cleaning the floor with a mild detergent.