Do Vinyl Floors Need to Be Sealed? (Read This First!)

Vinyl flooring is a pretty inexpensive but efficient way to get your floor all fixed up. It will improve the aesthetics of your house.

If you are thinking about getting vinyl flooring done, you may think about getting the maximum longevity of the flooring. Sealing the seams of the vinyl flooring will help you in this regard.

Do vinyl floors need to be sealed?

Vinyl floors do require sealing. There is a seam between two sheets or tiles. These seams are to be fused with a sealer to prevent any debris accumulation in the seams. If the sealed seams get damaged in any way, it is necessary to reseal them. Sealants are typically used for sealing vinyl floors.

4 reason why do vinyl floors need to be sealed

Sealing vinyl floors is necessary for proper maintenance of the floor. You need to seal the floor for proper maintenance, cleanliness, and durability.

Protection of the surface of the floors:

Vinyl flooring may face risks of getting damaged over time due to exposure to moisture. Seals can effectively prevent this from happening by stopping the flooring from coming in contact with moisture.

Cleanliness:

Dirt and different kinds of debris may get into the seams between the sheets or tiles. Accumulation of dirt in the seams is not desirable as these dirty seams may harbor numerous harmful microbes that may spread diseases.

Seals can help minimize the gathering of dirt and debris and thus, keep the flooring clean.

Maintaining the vinyl flooring’s luster:

Seals can make the floors look more attractive as they cover up the seams and help smooth the surface. As a result, you can cover all of the uneven surfaces to some extent. It improves the outlook of the floor.

Increasing the durability of floors:

Apart from having visual advantages, seals can prevent damage to the floor and thus, increase the lifespan of the vinyl flooring to a great extent.

While it may cost a bit more, it will save money in the long run. You do not need to replace the floor in a pretty long time.

Do you need to seal a concrete floor before laying vinyl flooring?

If you want to lay vinyl flooring on top of concrete flooring, you need to seal the concrete floor. Concrete flooring has definite properties for which they are good floor material. These properties include durability, hardness, and strength.

But concrete floors do not look good because of their lackluster dullness. So, you can do vinyl flooring on top of it. Before doing that, you should seal your concrete floor so that it can adhere to tile easily.

This sealing can help to prevent corrosion beneath the vinyl tile due to corrosion. So, get that concrete floor all sealed up.

What can you use to seal vinyl flooring?

You can use caulks or sealants to seal the vinyl floor. But before choosing the type of caulk, you need to keep the properties you need in mind which properties you need to focus on. You want to seal the floor to prevent moisture.

So, the caulk must be water-resistant. Acrylic latex caulk is water-based. You can dissolve acrylic latex in water.

When you mop the floors, the seal might get damaged. As a result, you need to reseal it. It is better to use Silicone caulk or acrylic latex with some percentage of silicone.

Silicone caulk is hard to clean. So, you need to apply the sealant precisely.

Polyurethane caulk has good expansion property. And this property makes it suitable for vinyl flooring too.  Not to mention polyurethane caulk is also water-resistant.

Again, another property to look for is the temperature range. Silicone caulk can withstand extreme temperatures. But acrylic latex caulk has a low temperature withstanding ability.

So, silicone caulk is very appropriate for vinyl floor sealing.

How to prep vinyl floors for sealing?

It is quite easy to prep the vinyl floor for sealing. You do not need to put in a lot of effort.

A few steps are all you need.

Cleaning the debris:

You have to make the vinyl flooring squeaky clean before sealing. You have to use a broom to sweep the floor. There may be remaining debris on the floor.

You can remove it with a vacuum cleaner. The corners and the seams can gather the minuscule particles. So, you have to give special attention to it. 

Striping old wax and polish:

If your floor has old wax and polish, you have to use a striping solution that is manufacturer recommended to get rid of it. You can use a sponge wet with the stripping solution to dampen the floor. You have to rinse the floor. Afterward, you have to let the floor air dry.

Testing for residue:

Check if some of the old polish or wax is remaining on the vinyl floor. Use a scraping tool or your nail for checking. If you see some amount of old polish material coming off, repeat step 2.

Protection from the sealer:

If the sealer gets on the newly painted wall or an expensive piece of furniture, it’s going to be a hassle for you. So, there is an easy method.  You use painter’s tape on the corners of the wall.  You use it on that expensive furniture that you want to protect.

How do you seal the edges of vinyl flooring?

Sealing the edges of the vinyl flooring is a little tricky. If you use a silicone sealant and it gets onto your wall, you are going to have a hard time removing it. So, use painter’s tape and follow these steps.

  • Step 1: You have to take your sealant and attach a nozzle to it. Then you cut an angle in the nozzle so that the sealant can come out of the hole.
  • Step 2: You have to put the nozzle of the sealant on the edge between the flooring and the wall. Now, comes the tricky part. Squeeze it in the middle applying the required pressure so that your desired amount of sealant comes out.
  • Step 3: You have to run your finger along the top of the sealant.  Doing this makes sure that the sealant blends with the wall and the edge of the vinyl flooring.

How often do I need to reseal my vinyl floors?

The use of the floor mainly determines how often it is to be replaced. The vinyl seal done for a residential area will last longer in comparison to the vinyl seal done for a commercial area.

Usually, commercial flooring requires sealing every two years. A residential flooring requires resealing every 3 to 8 years. The longevity ultimately comes down to the foot traffic and also to the quality of the materials used.

Not to mention, if the job of sealing was done by a professional, it will ultimately last longer.

Can you put a sealant on vinyl flooring?

You can put a sealant on vinyl flooring. The reason is quite simple. There are seams between the two tiles. If you use sheets, there is space between the edge of the sheet and the floor wall.

Moisture can get in and destroy the flooring. Also, dirt can accumulate. So, you can use sealants on the seams and the edges.

How do you protect vinyl flooring?

Vinyl flooring is a pretty durable flooring if you take proper care of it. To increase the longevity of any flooring, care and maintenance are required. 

Avoiding permanent staining

If anything soggy falls on your kitchen floor, you need to clean it up immediately. Otherwise, you will end up staining the floor permanently. You can be relieved as vinyl floors are easier to clean. Vacuum and sweep the floors regularly.

Using doormats of natural fibers

Doormats keep the dirt away. The dirt and sand that come with shoes act like sandpaper and damage the surface of the flooring. Natural fibers must be used for the doormats and rugs. If it has latex on the back, it might damage the floor.

Using floor protector

Heavy objects might create dents on the floor. As a result, you should place floor protectors beneath the legs of chairs and heavy furniture. As a result, dents will not form on the vinyl flooring. Heavy furniture can also cause cracks in the floor.

Moving furniture by lifting; not dragging

You can move heavy furniture by lifting. Dragging might cause scratches to the floor. Also, the polish might wear off.

Not using abrasive detergents

Abrasive detergent and shiny products leave a layer on the vinyl floor. So, you have to avoid using these products.

Avoiding abrasive cleaning tools

Abrasive cleaning tools like bristles, brooms, and vacuums with beater bars can harm the floor surface.

Placing a rug underneath the wheels of a rolling chair

A rug underneath the wheels of a rolling chair can help to prevent denting.

Avoid using wax-based polishes

Wax or solvent-based polishes can cause damage to the vinyl. So, you should avoid using wax-based polishes.

Final Thoughts

Installing vinyl flooring is efficient and economically feasible. If you are thinking about changing your floor to a vinyl floor, you have a lot of pros going for you. So, go for it.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is Vinyl Flooring Cold in Winter?

How to Get Paint Off the Vinyl Floor?

How Often Should Laminate and Vinyl Flooring Be Replaced?

How Soon Can You Walk on Vinyl Flooring?

Why Are My Vinyl Floors Sticky?

What is a Vinyl Floor Cloth?