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Bathroom floor types, DIY vs pro and more

Choosing a bathroom flooring material involves several factors. Since it will be exposed to moisture almost constantly, it's essential to install a floor that's durable and can tolerate dampness and water spills without incurring extensive damage or becoming slippery underfoot. Bathroom floors are subject to high traffic and heavy wear, so ease of repair and maintenance is important. Aesthetic value is also a consideration. Your floors should complement your home and personal style. Before you make a decision, take a look at the most common bathroom flooring types.

Types of Bathroom Floors

Ceramic tile is the most popular choice for bathrooms. It's affordable and durable, and it lasts for decades. Glazed tiles may chip and crack over time. Cleaning ceramic tile is easy, but periodic grout maintenance is required.

Glass tile is a beautiful option that reflects light and makes rooms look larger. It's extremely durable and moisture-resistant, and it requires only minimal care and grout maintenance.

Natural stone such as travertine, marble, slate and limestone lends a luxurious look, but it's an expensive option. The surface of stone may become slippery when wet, but you can purchase textured stone tiles to solve this problem. Stone is porous and may stain. It requires periodic resealing to keep its good looks.

Vinyl flooring is available as tiles or sheets. It's inexpensive, easy to install, moderately durable and moisture-resistant. Vinyl sheeting performs better than tiles in moist areas, but both are difficult to repair when damaged.

Hardwood and laminate are generally not considered good options for bathrooms because of their vulnerability to water damage and high repair cost. If you want the look of genuine wood in your bathroom, engineered wood flooring is a more cost-effective and durable option.

Bamboo and cork are trendy, eco-friendly options that are strong and resistant to moisture, mold and mildew.

Carpet is soft and comfortable underfoot, but it mildews and rots when exposed to water. If you install carpet in your bathroom, it's likely that you'll need to replace it frequently.

DIY vs. professional installation

Before you hire a contractor to install your flooring, obtain accurate measurements of your bathroom and make note of any unusual features in the room. Installing the floor yourself can save money, but you must factor in the cost of tools and materials as well as your own experience level and your ability to commit the required amount of time to the project. Each type of flooring has its own specific installation requirements. Before choosing your floor, obtain quotes for professional installation, and research the do-it-yourself procedure for your top picks.

Take a closer look

With the right floor, your bathroom will become the practical and stylish oasis it was meant to be. If you're not sure about the look or texture of a flooring material, visit your local home improvement store to see displays and samples, or visit websites that offer detailed information and photos of various flooring options.

Bathroom Flooring DIYS

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