When thinking about garage flooring options, the main requirements are for a material that is water, flame and stain resistant, slip-proof and durable even in the semi-outdoor conditions of a garage. Vinyl garage floor tiles are a cheap and easy way to fulfil all those requirements, and they also allow the homeowner to be creative and give the garage its own personal twist. Garage vinyl flooring is not your delicate domestic vinyl, though. To be able to endure the heavy usage expected of garage use, industrial vinyl flooring that is manufacturer to be extra resilient is the best alternative.
Domestic Vinyl Flooring tiles are made of three layers: a felt or fiberglass backing that can be glued to the substrate, a vinyl filler and a texture or pattern layer which gives vinyl its looks. On top of the design layer, which is very thin, there is often a protective layer of clear acrylic sealant, which makes vinyl resistant to stains and water and can be treated to be resilient to scratches. However, this treatment is not enough for the features required of garage vinyl flooring.
Vinyl garage floor tiles don’t have a pretty design layer. Instead, they are made from a single thick sheet of polyvinyl, treated to be slip resistant and extremely durable. Garage vinyl flooring can be purchased as a sheet that can be rolled over the existing concrete floor, or interlocking tiles that are more difficult to install but often provide a better visual appeal.
Benefits of Vinyl Garage Floor Tiles
The main benefit of installing vinyl tile flooring on your garage is that is non-porous and as such it won’t be affected by anti-freeze fluids, battery acid or even road salt brought in by the car wheels. Vinyl tile flooring for garages is also designed to be easy to install, and doesn’t require glue. Instead, it is simply laid over the existing garage floor and can be removed as necessary to either replace broken tiles or to clean it using a hose. There are many different finishes available, of which anti-slip is probably the most popular one. Industrial vinyl flooring doesn’t come with a decorative layer, so the patterns available are limited, however you can buy it in many different colours.
Disadvantages of Garage Vinyl Tile
The main disadvantage of garage vinyl tile flooring is the chemicals involved to make it resilient, fire-resistant and slip-proof. Some of them, such as cadmium and lead, are known toxics and associated with a higher risk of cancer. Paraffin, also in garage vinyl tile as fire retardant, is also a known toxic and there have been accusations that the chemicals used to make PVC flexible and suitable as garage flooring have caused asthma, obesity or even insulin resistant diabetes. While this is probably not a major concern for somebody who only uses the garage to store items and vehicles, it may be an issue if you expect to spend more time there, such as those using the garage as a workshop. Research your garage vinyl tile flooring options thoroughly and look for those with an acceptable level of potential toxic chemicals even if they are marginally more expensive.