Natural hardwood provides a beautiful, rich look to any home. Unlike carpet, it doesn’t trap dust and allergens. However, it’s one of the more expensive options as far as flooring goes. Consequently, many people opt for synthetic vinyl, but which is best? In this post, Claghorn Custom Flooring reviews the difference between vinyl versus natural hardwood. 

Hardwood Flooring: Vinyl Versus Natural Hardwood

Versatility and Cost

Today’s technology allows vinyl prints that mimic any natural hardwood in various shades and textures. Luxury vinyl flooring is much more affordable than genuine hardwood. In fact, the cost generally begins at only a couple of bucks per square foot. 

Natural hardwood flooring is, of course, the real thing, and nothing ultimately beats the real thing. Still, choosing natural hardwood flooring means that you’re subject to the effects of supply and demand. In other words, you may not have access to the specific material you want, or you may have to pay much more depending on its availability. No matter how prevalent, natural hardwood flooring costs more than its vinyl counterpart—up to ten times more. Depending on your budget, you may have to settle for a type that’s more available, less durable, and, therefore, less desirable. 

Longevity and Durability

Printed vinyl hardwood often comes with a protective coating that prevents wear and damage. The material’s longevity directly relates to the thickness of the protective layer. Additionally, the manufacturer often provides a 10-20-year guarantee. On the other hand, solid vinyl doesn’t tend to have the same coating or last as long. Still, a decade or two isn’t a bad length of time for this type of investment. 

Natural hardwood can last for generations upon generations. Different woods vary in terms of their durability and resistance to damage. Moreover, you can always treat, repair, or refinish natural hardwood. Doing so revitalizes worn flooring and brings it back to life. When it comes to longevity and durability, natural hardwoods win every time. Still, you pay for this upfront, contributing to its higher cost per square foot. 

Moisture and Water

Luxury vinyl hardwood’s synthetic material makes it nearly invincible to moisture and water. However, the adhesive that connects it to the subflooring isn’t. Therefore, the moisture can wear away the bond and cause some curling. However, the vinyl itself stands tall. For this reason, using vinyl hardwood in areas like kitchens, bathrooms, or rooms that get wet can be a great option.

On the other hand, natural hardwoods soak up moisture, including humidity. Therefore, the material is more susceptible to staining, mold, shrinkage, and more. Consequently, it’s essential to maintain your flooring, including re-sealing and refinishing as necessary. 

The Bottom Line

There’s no correct answer as to which flooring material is better. It’s really just a matter of practicality and personal preference. No matter what material you choose, Claghorn Custom Flooring can meet your needs in Zionsville, Carmel, Westfield, and all over Hamilton County. Give us a call at (317) 873-6202 to schedule a consultation.