Pros and Cons of Flooring Materials

While style, color, and ease of cleaning are major factors in choosing flooring, so are potential health hazards associated with a flooring material, as well as environmental concerns in your home that would create unfavorable conditions for certain materials. The following table highlights the pros and cons of specific types of flooring:

▼ Pros and Cons of Flooring Materials

Type of Floor Pros Cons Carpet Soft, slip-resistant Absorbs spills, prone to staining, not great for allergies, can allow mold to grow, VOC exposure Hardwood Durable, easily refinished Liquids can damage, humidity levels can make floor strips move, must be installed above ground level Bamboo Can be refinished, some are very durable Some can be easily scratched and dented, can crack or warp with significant humidity change Laminate and vinyl Spills are easily wiped away, will not scratch or dent easily VOC exposure can aggravate asthma and allergies Stone and tile Spills are easily wiped away, antimicrobial Hard surface can be painful for falls, acids can cause damage Linoleum Antimicrobial, antistatic, hypoallergenic, spills are easily wiped away Cannot be refinished Cork Soft, sound-absorbent, hypoallergenic, antimicrobial, antistatic May move with humidity changes

Choosing a flooring material is not something that should be done quickly just because a store is having a three-day sale. Flooring can be a major expense, so you do not want to have to install a new floor several years down the road after you find out that your first choice wasn't a great fit for your home or your family. With so many potential health hazards associated with certain flooring materials, as well, a little bit of research and thought can go a long way in creating a healthier home.

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