engineered wood vs "luxury" vinyl or any other ideas

(17 Posts)
bonzo77 Sun 14-Feb-16 13:48:21

We are replacing the floor in our kitchen / dining room. It needs to be hard wearing, not too cold and ideally not too noisy.

We cannot have tiles or slate as the sub-floor etc required will raise the floor level enough to cause to significant step and therefore trip hazard from the hall. The builder cannot lower the floor sufficiently to accomodate this as it will cost too much.

The builder (who I have no concerns over, this will be the 4th time we have used him, I trust his judgement) is very keen on Amtico as he has used it a lot and has it at home. He also says it will work out the cheaper option as far less prep work will be needed. But as he says himself, he doesn't have children so is not sure how hard wearing it is. My understanding is that it can scuff badly when furniture is moved over it (even chairs being moved about), and the scuffs cannot be buffed out. The area will get fairly heavy traffic, as it leads to the garden, I have 3 boys and a cat.

Anyone here had either or both for a longish time (say over 5 years) in a high traffic area and can tell me what you think?

filigree2015 Sun 14-Feb-16 17:20:14

We have Karndean in our kitchen / dining area (which has the only garden access) and are planning to run it through the living room too. We also have it in a different colour in our hallway. Our supplier told us that to keep it looking good it's best to pick a style that has a textured 'grain' as that's more forgiving than a smooth one. We've got felt pads on our chair and table legs but aren't super careful. If I get down on my hands and knees I can find a couple of scratches, but they really aren't noticeable day to day. No children yet but our neighbours have three and they recommended it to us.

We took the view that we'd like something that would both look good and be hard wearing, as well as surviving kitchen spillages, and Karndean/luxury vinyl won. To be honest the main criticism of it tends to be that the 'wood' styles don't look authentic, rather than the degree of wear and tear, but we didn't mind that compromise. Overall we're very happy with it. Hope that helps!

langlandgirl Sun 14-Feb-16 18:19:13

We had Kahrs in our conservatory/playroom. It got a battering and i still loved it. Some Kahrs cane be sanded in its lifetime if you needed to spruce it up but not sure whether it would be too thick. Watching with interest as have no idea which flooring to get given cannot afford UFH.

wowfudge Sun 14-Feb-16 18:27:37

Amtico, Kardean and Polyflor are all excellent and, ime, hard wearing. Almost identical product at different price points.

bonzo77 Sun 14-Feb-16 19:15:59

all very useful. thank you. langlandgirl our builder suggested getting a product with the thickest layer of wood possible as it can be sanded up to 4 times. Would have loved ceramic with UFH but builder says no (unless we want to spend a small fortune on getting the floor lowered). DH is dead set on wood. I'm less certain. He wants the dining area to look "nice" for when we have guests (very rarely ATM). He grew up with a formal dining room, and I did not, so I see this as a very functional, fun relaxed area, whilst he has slightly different ideas.

langlandgirl Sun 14-Feb-16 20:11:03

I've seen a lovely Kahrs in a really limed colour. Also thinking about bamboo too. We dh is not very good with spillages so have ruled out wood for kitchen until now. He says he will learn to behave better but i am not banking on that hmm

Quodlibet Sun 14-Feb-16 20:12:45

How about rubber? Look at www.colouredflooring.co.uk

bonzo77 Sun 14-Feb-16 20:33:40

No to rubber. We had it in our bathrooms in the last house and despite correct sealing and maintenance it marked and stained badly. My brother has it in his kitchen and when my nephew dropped a glass on it, the sharp edge gouged a big chunk out of it. It's a shame as I love the look / feel and lovely colours.

CointreauVersial Sun 14-Feb-16 20:39:49

We had Kahrs engineered wood in our kitchen/diner in our old house, and it was lovely. Nice and warm underfoot, and quite hard-wearing/water resistant. Yes, it got little dents and marks, but they just added to the wood character really. Spillages, if dealt with quickly, were no problem.

We have Karndean in our bathroom (same as Amtico), but there's not so much traffic in there, so difficult to tell how well it would stand up to hard use. It is much "thinner" than engineered wood, though, if you were really worried about floor levels.

Quodlibet Sun 14-Feb-16 20:46:03

Oh bugger. I was planning on rubber in our kitchen. What marks it?

CointreauVersial Sun 14-Feb-16 21:02:26

Quod - I've also heard a few issues with rubber, particularly the lighter colours, or if it's the nobbly type (impossible to clean). OK for a small area like a bathroom but take care in a ktchen.

Tubbyinthehottub Sun 14-Feb-16 21:11:35

Are you sure you can't have tiles? I wanted wood/engineered wood for our kitchen diner but we ended up with tiles laid straight onto polypipe UFH as this was the option that kept the floor level as low as the rest of the house. Underlay plus engineered wood or posh vinyl (which I looked at but couldn't bring myself to like) would've made the floor level higher.

bonzo77 Sun 14-Feb-16 21:25:59

tubby Tiles totally out. They're so cold we'd have to have UFH. That plus the subfloor would mean dropping the floor around 2cm to prevent a trip / step from the hall and to fit it under our kitchen units while leaving space for appliances, which we are not touching.

quod we had the knobbly sort in 2 bathrooms, and DB has it in his kitchen. Shoes with marking soles left marks that were removable but irritating. Water marks would not shift (like where I used to leave my shower cap to dry), and urine (hopefully not an issue in the kitchen) quickly became ingrained. Hair dye also wouldn't shift (whilst it comes straight of tiles if you get it within half an hour or so).

I've been researching the engineered wood. The thing about it is that wood look acceptable a bit scuffed, and can be resanded. In fact the oiled (rather than lacquered) stuff can be sanded just in blemished areas rather than doing the whole lot. It's looking increasingly attractive.

langlandgirl Sun 14-Feb-16 21:41:08

thank you bonzo for starting this post - i now have the courage to go for engineer wood floor in our kitchen diner living room - will watch with anticipation as to whom you choose!

zipzap Sun 14-Feb-16 22:22:44

When I needed some flooring for my kitchen I was very tempted by bamboo flooring - seemed to be cheaper than expensive wood for a good quality one, was waterproof and more resistant to marks than wood too, yet still gave a natural wood feel.

Close to where I lived at the time there was a car showroom that used it as its flooring - cars driven on it, people wandering in to look around, etc etc. Always looked good and they always used to speak really highly of it (they were the ones that made me think about it!)

In the end we moved so i didn't need to buy it so can't report back on how it wears but it is definitely one to think about if you haven't already as it often gets overlooked as it isn't very well known.

CockwombleJeff Sun 14-Feb-16 22:29:01

I vote for Polyflor.

Jibberjabberjooo Sun 14-Feb-16 22:47:53

We have Karndean, I love it. It looks great and doesn't feel cold. The children happily play on it.

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