Environmentally Friendly Linoleum
Among the “greenest” of floors, linoleum is made from natural materials: linseed oil, resins, recycled wood flour, cork dust, limestone and mineral pigments, mounted on jute backing. It’s naturally anti-bacterial and biodegradable. Sheet linoleum is sold in two-meter (or 6’ 7”) widths and several thicknesses.
Linoleum vs. Vinyl
Most people who choose vinyl sheet or luxury vinyl over linoleum do so because vinyl is easier to maintain. Depending upon foot traffic and the wear layer of the product you choose, linoleum can require a little more maintenance to look and perform its best.
Known for its vivid, saturated colors, linoleum flooring is available in traditional marbled patterns, solid colors, contemporary flecked designs or graphic patterns. You can also find linoleum in softer earth tones that highlight its organic qualities.
In an older home, linoleum flooring can smartly complement the original period design. In modern settings, linoleum can shine in radiant colors or be custom-cut to create beautiful and creative patterns on the floor.
Linoleum gloss is variable, depending on the product line you choose and its coating.
Linoleum can be installed in most any room in the home, though it’s most popular in non-residential settings. Linoleum flooring is not meant for stairs or bathrooms. (Armstrong does not recommend use of linoleum in full baths due to the moisture and its contribution to excessive expansion and contraction of the product).
One of linoleum's most distinctive qualities is that the entire thickness of the wear layer (everything except the jute backing) is homogeneous. This means that the color and pattern extend throughout the entire floor surface.
Kids, Pets and Durability
Armstrong linoleum is very resistant to gouging and scratching and stands up to heavy traffic. Even if it does get scratched, the color and pattern still remain the same. Linoleum can last more than 40 years if it’s installed and maintained properly. Linoleum is soft underfoot making it easy to stand on for long periods of time. It’s more forgiving of dropped objects and resists scratches, so it’s perfect for a household with kids and pets.
Linoleum flooring will cost from $2.00 to $3.00 per square foot. Determined DIYers should consider luxury vinyl, because linoleum installation is best left to skilled Armstrong Certified Installers.
Linoleum requires low ph cleaners to avoid damaging the floor.
Don’t forget to factor-in the cost of getting rid of your old floor. Depending upon where you live, the type of floor you are removing, and your installer, budget around $2.00 per square foot to have it removed and hauled away.
If you choose linoleum flooring, professional installation is highly recommended. Linoleum is stiffer and harder to work with than vinyl sheet and most other flooring types. Special tools and training are required to properly install linoleum. Contact an Armstrong Certified installer for an estimate.
Linoleum can be installed over most subfloors, including concrete. Your installer may do a test to determine emission rates and pH factor and do a bonding test of the concrete to assure good adhesion. Precautions like these are important, especially if your floor is going into a basement where moisture can be an issue.
Sealing Up Seams
Your installer will seal up the seams in your linoleum floor to keep out moisture and dirt. The heat-weld method uses a Linoleum rod that is melted between sheets and worked with a special tool to create the seam. Rods are color-coordinated and produce seams that become part of the design. Alternatively, specialty adhesive can bond floor edges to each other, sealing joints.
Expansion and Contraction
Over time, linoleum has a natural tendency to grow in width and shrink in length. This is just one more reason to work with professionals who understand how to anticipate this movement and compensate for it in their installation work.
Armstrong Certified Installers
No one provides more depth and breadth of knowledge and installation experience with our products than an Armstrong Certified Installer. We recommend that you speak with your retailer to find an Armstrong Certified Installer to provide you with an accurate installed cost estimate.