Do I buy my waterproof vinyl flooring at the big box store or from my local flooring store?

Do I buy my waterproof vinyl flooring at the big box store or from my local flooring store?

Everyone has been to Lowe's, Home Depot, or your local home improvement box store. When shopping for waterproof flooring, they make it so convenient for you to walk in and buy what you want and go home with it. They even have 12 months no interest if you put it on their credit card if you don't have enough to buy it all or need installers to put it in. The flooring says it has a Limited Lifetime Warranty plus a lot of other things on the label. What does all that other stuff mean and is it really that important? Is it just marketing to get you to buy the flooring? Is this the same information that you will find at a flooring store or will they tell you more? There is a saying, "If you want paint, go to paint store. If you want lumber, go the the lumber yard. If you want flooring, go to the flooring store." There is a reason that there are flooring stores and why you should buy your flooring there and not at the big box store.

When you go to the box store, do you get one on one attention? If you want to go in and buy something and leave, box stores are great. You may know what you want and you just want to get it done. Unfortunately, that isn't everyone that goes into the store. There have been many times that I went into a store and found someone pushing the button for help and no one shows up. The other thing may be that the salesperson is not as informed about the products and will read the same label that you already read to explain it to you. Because flooring stores are a specific type of store, there are less customers at one time and usually enough customer service representatives to help everyone. Do not be ashamed to go into a store because you may not have enough money to buy something. The store representatives should be able to help you understand the pricing so that if you don't have enough, you will know what to expect the next time you come in or possibly help you with financing so you can get your project done.

Does the label on the flooring tell you everything you need to know? The answer to this is yes and no. When you go the the box store, the labels have all this wonderful information on it. How stylish and easy to install it is and how great a product it is. Then at the bottom it tells you what kind of warranty it has. This information doesn't help a lot when trying to understand why there are different price points in the waterproof luxury vinyl flooring. They don't give you the main reasons they are different. When you go to the flooring store, many times they don't carry inventory but they have a large showroom with samples of the flooring on them. On the samples, they give a different kind of information and not as colorful.

The first thing that most samples will tell you is how it is installed. Glue down, click, or loose lay will be what you will see. The other information may be more technical, but it is very important. Samples usually tell you how thick the product is, the thickness of the wear layer, and what the warranty is for. The thicker the flooring is, usually means it will be a higher costing product. Click products increase in price as they get thicker, but they also get a little easier to install yourself since the edge is more defined. The wear layer is very important. The thicker, or higher number, the wear layer is, the longer the surface will be able to hold up under traffic. You may see this as 8 mil, 12 mil, 20 mil, or 30 mil. The higher the number, the more durable the print on the surface is. There are lower wear layers and other thickness numbers, but those are the most common. The warranty will usually say what kind of residential and commercial life span it will have. If you are looking for a longer lasting floor, go for the highest commercial warranty. Many of the lower mil wear layers have lifetime residential warranties. The commercial warranty really help determine how tough it is.

The best benefit of going to your local flooring store is selection. They will usually have a better selection than the box store since they don't have to keep inventory. Planks can be ordered 6" to 9" wide and as long as 3' to 5' long. They may have a slight texture to the surface or an embossed print with a heavier texture. You will also have a better selection in colors and prints. Wood planks may vary from rustic and old worn prints to clean and smooth looking prints. It allows you to design your home to fit your taste easier. As you go to different flooring stores, you will find that there are a large number of companies that make this type of flooring as well. This increases the variety and pricing so that you can find what you really want. Don't get stuck at the box store. Take the time to look around and get educated to what will work best for you.

At BPS Southeast, we take the time to gauge what type of flooring you're looking for and help you pick out a selection that works best for your specific needs. Contact us today to see how we can help you. We service Western North Carolina and Upstate South Carolina from out location in Rutherfordton, NC.