Common Mistakes When Installing Vinyl Plank Flooring and How to Avoid Them


The luxury vinyl flooring has gained popularity among homeowners for its remarkable durability, cost-effectiveness, and hassle-free installation process. However, even with its many benefits, there are still common mistakes that can occur during the installation process. These mistakes can not only affect the overall appearance of your flooring but also potentially cause damage and decrease the lifespan of your luxury vinyl planks.

In this guide, we will discuss the most common mistakes that people make when installing vinyl plank flooring and how to avoid them.

What Is Vinyl Flooring

Vinyl planks

First, let's start with understanding what vinyl flooring is. Vinyl flooring is a type of synthetic flooring that mimics the look of hardwood or stone but at a more affordable price point. It is made up of multiple layers, including a backing layer, core layer, and wear layer.

Types of Vinyl Flooring

Before diving into the common mistakes, let's familiarize ourselves with the different types of vinyl flooring. Each type has unique characteristics that may influence the installation process and how it should be maintained.

The two types of flooring are luxury vinyl tile flooring and vinyl composite tile. Understanding these types can better equip you to avoid potential pitfalls during installation.

  • Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP): This type of luxury vinyl flooring is a popular choice due to its close resemblance to hardwood or stone. It provides a luxurious look and feel, making it a preferred option for residential spaces.
  • Vinyl Composite Tile (VCT): Typically utilized in commercial settings, VCT offers durability and easy maintenance. It is a cost-effective solution that can withstand heavy foot traffic and is available in a variety of colors and patterns.

Mistakes to Avoid When Installing Vinyl Floors

While Luxury Vinyl Tile Flooring (LVT) is highly praised for its durability and visual appeal, improper installation can compromise these qualities. It pays to be aware of the common mistakes that might occur during the installation process.

This knowledge facilitates a smoother, more effective installation, ensuring that your flooring serves you optimally for the longest time possible. In this section, we delve into these common pitfalls and provide practical tips on how to avoid them.

Lack of Proper Preparation

A lack of preparation

One of the biggest mistakes people make when installing vinyl plank flooring is not properly preparing the subfloor. This can include not cleaning, leveling or repairing the subfloor before installation, which is crucial for achieving a flat surface.

Skipping this crucial step can result in an uneven surface, which can cause the planks to not click together properly or create gaps between them. In addition, any debris or imperfections on the subfloor can also transfer through the vinyl planks, affecting their appearance.

To avoid this mistake, make sure to thoroughly clean and level your subfloor before installing vinyl plank flooring. If there are any cracks or holes, fill them in and allow sufficient time for the repairs to dry before proceeding with installation.

Leaving Baseboards Installed

Baseboards in a home

Another common mistake during vinyl plank flooring installation is leaving the baseboards installed. This can create a gap between the wall and the planks, resulting in a loose or uneven fit.

To avoid this, remove the baseboards before installation and then reattach them after all of the planks are in place. This will ensure a snug fit and a more professional-looking finish. It's allways a good option to reach out to a professional if you are not sure about how to do something. Our team at Floors & Tiles in Style would love to help any questions you may have.

Not Acclimating the Vinyl Planks

Vinyl planks

Another common mistake is not acclimating the vinyl planks before installation. Acclimation refers to allowing the planks to adjust to the temperature and humidity of the room they will be installed in.

Failure to do so can cause expansion or contraction of the planks once they are installed, leading to gaps or buckling.

To acclimate your vinyl planks, leave them in the room where they will be installed for at least 48 hours before installation. This allows the planks to adjust to the temperature and humidity of the room, ensuring a proper fit.

Poor Cutting Techniques

A man cutting vinyl plank flooring

Cutting vinyl planks may seem like an easy task, but poor cutting techniques can lead to mistakes that are difficult to correct. This can include uneven cuts, jagged edges or incorrect measurements. These mistakes can make the installation process more challenging and affect the overall appearance of your flooring. There are several flooring contractors who can help you with this process. feel free to reach out to us at Floors & Tiles in Style for any help and or advice. our team of professionals would love to help you with whatever your flooring job may be.

To avoid this mistake, make sure to use proper tools such as a vinyl plank cutter or a sharp utility knife. Measure twice before cutting and always make sure to use a straight edge guide for precise and clean cuts.

Not Allowing Expansion Space

Vinyl planks that need to expand

Vinyl planks, like any flooring material, need room to expand and contract with changes in temperature and humidity. Failure to leave enough expansion space can result in buckling or warping of the planks over time. This is especially important in areas with high moisture levels, such as bathrooms or kitchens.

To avoid this mistake, make sure to leave at least a quarter of an inch of space between the planks and any fixed objects such as walls or cabinets. This will allow for proper expansion and contraction without causing damage to your flooring.

Rushing Through Installation

A team installing vinyl plank flooring

Installing vinyl plank flooring may seem like a quick and easy process, but rushing through it can result in mistakes that can be costly and time-consuming to fix. This includes not properly aligning the planks, not using enough adhesive or not allowing sufficient drying time between steps.

To avoid this mistake, take your time during installation and follow the flooring manufacturer carefully. Double-check your work as you go and make sure to allow enough time for each step, including the extra flooring boxes, to ensure a successful installation.

Frequently Asked Questions

Installing vinyl plank flooring

Do I need underlayment to install vinyl plank flooring?

Using underlayment for vinyl plank flooring is highly recommended as it offers an additional layer of insulation and soundproofing. However, it's important to note that certain types of luxury vinyl flooring already come with pre-attached underlayment, which means it may not be necessary to use additional underlayment in those cases.

How do I clean and maintain my vinyl plank flooring?

To effectively clean vinyl plank flooring, it is important to follow these steps:

  1. Start by sweeping or vacuuming the floor regularly to remove any loose dirt or debris. This will prevent scratching the surface during the cleaning process.
  2. For a deeper clean, use a damp mop. Make sure the mop is only slightly damp, as excessive moisture can damage the flooring. Avoid using excessive water or soaking the floor.
  3. Use a mild cleaning solution specifically recommended by the manufacturer for vinyl plank flooring. Follow the instructions on the cleaning solution carefully, as different products may have different dilution ratios or application methods.
  4. Gently mop the floor using the cleaning solution, working in small sections at a time. Avoid using abrasive scrub brushes or harsh chemicals that can cause damage.
  5. After mopping, rinse the mop thoroughly and go over the floor again with clean water to remove any residue from the cleaning solution.
  6. Allow the floor to air dry completely before walking on it again.

By following these steps, you can maintain the cleanliness and longevity of your vinyl plank flooring.

Can vinyl plank flooring be installed over existing flooring?

In general, installing vinyl flooring can be done over existing flooring if it meets certain conditions. The existing flooring should be level and free of any imperfections. Check out our blog Can You Put Laminate Over Tile for a more in-depth explanation.

However, it is important to refer to the manufacturer's instructions for specific guidelines and recommendations regarding installation. Taking into consideration the manufacturer's instructions will ensure a successful and durable installation of the vinyl plank flooring.

What is a floating floor?

A floating floor refers to a type of flooring installation method where the individual pieces of flooring material are connected, but not attached to the subfloor. This allows for flexibility and movement of the flooring without causing damage.

Floating floors are commonly used for vinyl plank flooring, as well as laminate, engineered hardwood, cork flooring, and luxury vinyl tiles and planks. Luxury vinyl tiles and luxury vinyl planks offer a wide range of designs, including realistic wood and stone looks, providing a durable and stylish flooring option for any space.

What's the difference between ceramic tile and luxury vinyl tile?

Both ceramic tile and luxury vinyl tile (LVT) offer a durable and stylish flooring option for residential and commercial spaces. However, there are some key differences between the two:

  • Material: Ceramic tiles are made from natural materials such as clay, while LVT is made from synthetic materials.
  • Installation: Ceramic tiles require grout and adhesive to be installed, while LVT can be installed with a floating floor method or glued down.
  • Maintenance: Ceramic tiles can be more difficult to clean and maintain, as grout lines can trap dirt and moisture. Though ceramic tiles may be more difficult to clean often times they can last longer thanks to Ceramic Tile Refacing, but in general LVT is generally easier to clean and maintain.
  • Comfort: LVT offers more cushioning underfoot, making it a more comfortable option for areas where people stand for long periods.
  • Options: LVT offers a wider range of design options, including wood and stone looks, while ceramic tiles are limited to traditional square or rectangular shapes.

Overall, both options have their advantages and disadvantages, so it's important to consider your specific needs and preferences when choosing.


Nice vinyl plank flooring

Vinyl plank flooring offers many benefits, including durability, easy installation, and low maintenance. However, it's important to avoid common mistakes that can affect the overall appearance and longevity of your flooring.

By properly acclimating the planks, using correct cutting techniques, allowing for expansion space, and taking your time during installation, you can ensure a successful and beautiful vinyl plank flooring installation. Remember to follow the manufacturer's instructions and recommendations for cleaning and maintenance, as well as proper installation methods over existing flooring.

Floors & Tiles in Style

If you have any other questions or concerns with your flooring project do not hesitate to reach out to our floor tile specialist team. you can reach us via phone (206) 472-8573 email [email protected] or directly from our site contact page our team would love to help and suport you with your project. With these tips in mind, you can enjoy your vinyl plank flooring for years to come. So, it is always recommended to do proper research before purchasing and installing any type of flooring material.

  • 7+ Years Of Experience

    At Floors & Tile In Style, we have more than 7 years of experience in the tile industry.

  • Reliable & trustworthy

    We pride ourselves in customer satisfaction & trust. If you are not satisfied with the job in the end, we will make it right.

  • High quality material

    We only use high quality industry grade material that lasts. No need to worry about your tile being made out of cheap material that isn't durable.

  • Fully Licensed

    We are registered & licensed in the state of Washington.

Does Floors & Tile In Style Offer A Lot Of Material Choices?

Yes, Floors & Tile In Style offers a wide selection of materials that are suited for any style or budget. We carry high-quality tiles in ceramic, porcelain, stone, glass, and mosaic styles. Our team of experienced professionals is always ready to help you select the perfect material for your project. With our large selection of colors and textures, you’re sure to find exactly what you’re looking for!

I Want To Start A Tile Project? Where Should I Start?

The best place to start is by determining what type of material you need for your project. Consider both the look and feel of the tile, as well as any special considerations such as moisture resistance or avoiding a slippery surface if it’s in an area with high foot traffic. Once you’ve nailed down your preferences, our helpful team can help you pick out the perfect tiles for your project!

Can I Use My Own Tile With Floors & Tile In Style?

Yes, you can use your own tile with Floors & Tile In Style. You just need to make sure it is a material compatible with our installation services. We will provide assistance and advice during the selection process to ensure that the tiles you choose are suited for your project needs.

Can I Just Regrout My Existing Tile?

Yes, you can regrout your existing tile with Floors & Tile In Style. We offer a variety of services to help you regrout and repair any existing tiles in your home. Our team will assess the area carefully before beginning work to ensure that any necessary repairs are made correctly and your tile is ready for use afterwards. Depending on the size of the project and any additional repairs needed, we will provide you with an estimated cost as well as a timeline for completion so that you can plan accordingly.

Does Floors & Tile In Style Offer Tile Removal?

Yes, Floors & Tile In Style offers tile removal services. Our experienced team can carefully remove your old tiles and dispose of them in the most eco-friendly way possible. We use specialized tools to carefully break and remove the tiles, ensuring that no damage is done to your walls or floors while minimizing dust and mess. Once the area is prepared, we will install new tiles with ease, making sure they are laid correctly for a perfect finish every time!

Does Floors & Tile In Style Offer Tile Repair?

Yes, Floors & Tile In Style offers tile repair services. Our experienced team can identify and fix any issues with your tiles, such as chips or cracks. We use specialized tools and materials to make sure that the repair is done correctly and your tile looks like new once again! Depending on the damage, we can either fix the existing tiles or suggest replacements for a more durable solution.

Does Floors & Tile In Style Offer Tile Installation?

Yes, Floors & Tile In Style offers tile installation services. We will work with you to select the right tiles for your project and provide expert advice on their installation. Our team is experienced in all aspects of tile installation, so you can rest assured that your project will be done correctly and efficiently. We take pride in offering a high-quality service and ensuring that our customers are satisfied with the final results!

How Fast Can I Get A Tile Estimate?

We can provide you with an estimated cost and timeline for your tile project within 1-2 business days. Our team will assess the area carefully to determine the scope of work required, and we’ll also provide advice on selecting the best materials for your project. We strive to make sure every customer is completely satisfied with their experience, so don’t hesitate to contact us for a free quote today!

Does Floors & Tile In Style Offer Tile Sealing Services?

Yes, Floors & Tile In Style offers tile sealing services. Our experienced team can apply a sealant to your tiles in order to protect them from moisture and dirt buildup, as well as make them easier to clean. We use specialized products that are designed for various types of tiles, so you can be sure that your project will be done correctly and efficiently. Contact us today for more information on our tile-sealing services!

Do You Provide Floor Leveling Services Before Installation?

Yes, Floors & Tile In Style does provide floor leveling services before installation. Our experienced team can use specialized tools and materials to make sure that your floors are level and ready for the installation of your new tiles. We take extra steps to ensure your tile is installed correctly so it looks great and lasts for years! Contact us today for more information on our floor leveling services.

How Long Will My Tile Project Take To Complete?

The length of time your tile project will take to complete depends on the size of the project and any additional repairs that may be needed. We will provide you with an estimated cost as well as a timeline for completion so that you can plan accordingly. Contact us today for more information!

Can I Get An Estimate For A Custom Tile Design Or Patterned Installation?

Yes, Floors & Tile In Style can provide you with an estimate for a custom tile design or patterned installation. Our experienced team will work with you to determine the best layout and materials for your project, and then provide you with an estimated cost and timeline. Contact us today to get started on your custom tile design!

Floors & Tile In Style Logo