The wear layer and thickness
determine the durability of a particular vinyl. The thicker the wear
layer and vinyl the more durable the vinyl will be. Look for a 20
mil wearlayer for the very best scratch resistance. Ask your Design
Consultant for details.
The uninstalled floor itself is waterproof. The locking systems on the floors are also “waterproof” but not for excessive amounts of water (more on this later). Think of a “waterproof” floor as being topically waterproof, for splashes and spills, pet accidents, wet mopping, typical everyday occurrences like this. Drop an ice cube, your floor will be OK.
We actually prefer to call these floors “spillproof” and not waterproof. Here’s why:What if there’s a lot of water? Waterproof is defined as being impervious to water, not allowing water to go through. And impervious is an even stronger word: not permitting penetration or passage; impenetrable, not capable of being damaged or harmed. A floor? Really? Roofs can leak. Swimming pools can leak. Showers can leak. All of these are made to constantly get wet.
A lot of water can and will get in, around, through, and under the flooring. The quicker you get the liquid up, the better. But if your house floods, the water will reach the perimeter and make its way under the floor. Subfloors, wood trim, walls, all will likely be damaged by excessive amounts of water either on or below the “waterproof” flooring.
Water damage and mold cost the insurance industry $2.5 billion dollars per year, and the average cost of a home water damage insurance claim is over $7,000. The most common water damage issues are caused by plumbing and appliance issues, and less common are weather-related events such as rain, snow, or pipes burst due to freezing temperatures. Your “waterproof” floor is not going to help in situations like this. So please don’t buy a floor thinking it is going to survive a water damage.
You may be thinking can’t I just pull up the “waterproof” floor, dry everything out, and reinstall it. If it is a small area and you are super careful, probably. You must be very careful not to damage the tongues when removing the floor (otherwise you will have a hard time getting it back together) and you should number the planks, because it needs to be reinstalled like a puzzle. However, if there is a remediation company involved, their job is to get the floor up quickly and start drying everything out, because mold is an expensive word to an insurance company. A remediation technician will not know that your floor could possibly be reused, and his focus is NOT going to be on saving your floor.
When you have a flood, you are going to get a new floor. And probably a new subfloor, sheetrock repair, new trim, painting, sometimes a new ceiling and new furniture … that’s why we have homeowner’s insurance.
To summarize, a floor is not impervious to water. Instead, think of your “waterproof” floor as having a surface that is resistant to small amounts of liquid that you clean up in a quick amount of time. You will avoid the disappointment of finding that something you thought would be covered by the flooring warranty is not.