Does LVP Flooring Scratch Easily?

When looking for a floor within your home, one of the many things to consider is if they have scratch-resistant qualities. In some cases, people love that floors can scratch effortlessly because it adds character to your home.

You might go back and remember a specific instance as to why it was marked, creating a special memory within. However, some homeowners do not want this quality because it does not look appealing to them. In this case, you may want to find a floor that will not divvy up bumps and bruises effortlessly. So, does LVP, or luxury vinyl plank, flooring scratch easily?

On average, LVP flooring does not scratch or scuff easily, making it the perfect floor for pets and children. However, they can still roughen if you move heavy furniture without pads or a hidden nail under your belongings scratch the floors. In this case, taking the proper precautions is acquired to ensure your floorings’ life’s longevity. 

On average, LVP floors last anywhere between 10 to 20 years but can go much longer, given the proper care required, which does not take a lot. In this article, we will be going over what we need to do to make sure your LVP floors do not scratch at all and how you can fix a plank that just so happened to get a bruise along the way.

How Should I Clean LVP Flooring?

First and foremost, it is essential to know how you should clean and take care of LVP floors to ensure their longevity. Cleaning your home’s ground will also help ensure that nothing sharp is on the foundation for an extended period. Accidents happen, and we may not notice it until it is too late. I have LVP flooring and realized that a nail was on my floor for a while in a low-traffic area, and it wound up scratching a bit. I was devastated!

Let’s make sure this does not happen to you by following these few, yet simple, protocols:

  • Sweep daily. In high traffic areas, you bring in mud or crumbs daily, whether we realize it or not. Sweeping every day will prevent grime from sticking to the floor.
  • Vacuuming: Although this does not need to happen every day, when you vacuum any rugs within your home, doing a quick pick up on your bare floors is a great way to get the grime off the ground. Just make sure you put the setting to “bare floors” to ensure a better clean. 
  • Mop 2 to 4 times a month. With vinyl flooring, you do not need to mop as often as you think, but swabbing your floors with merely soap and water is an excellent preventative to keeping your floors from scratching. Not to mention, the floors will feel nice on your feet afterward.
  • Use a dust mop. Despite sweeping and mopping, using a microfiber dust mop will further ensure no smut will be on your floors. Dust mopping can happen roughly once a month, but there is no harm in doing it more if you deem fit.

How Do You Stop Scratches On Vinyl Plank Flooring?

Moving further, along with what was said above, you want to ensure that nothing hinders your new LVP flooring. One of the most significant ways to prevent this from happening is by getting a good-quality LVT floor, like through Mohawk or COREtec flooring, which both have excellent reviews. Luxury vinyl floors can last you a good while. More specifically, up to 50 years by taking precautionary measures.

Here are good ways to take preventative measures while having LVT flooring installed:

  • Use furniture pads. Life happens, and we are continually getting rid of and adding furniture within our homes. On every piece of furniture you own, it is best to use felt padding underneath each leg or surface.
  • Check areas that do not have high traffic once in a while. We often do not think to clean under our couches or chairs because they remain within the same place, but making sure the dust bunnies out of those areas every few months is adequate. Something sharp might have fallen within that time.
  • Place rugs all around. Not only does this add character to within your home, but it does wonders for preventing any scratches that might be made, especially in areas that are higher in humidity or are prone to more frequent spills, such as the kitchen or bathroom. In this case, a memory foam rug will be your best friend. Make sure they do not have rubber or latex backing since that will scratch your floors as well.
  • Keep furniture off the floor for 24 to 48 hours after installation. Furniture being off the new foundation for the first couple of days is important because it allows the flooring to settle within their new home.  

How Do You Remove Scratches From LVP Flooring?

You just got your vinyl flooring installed, and oh no! You see your very first scratch, then think to yourself, “I have been so careful! What went wrong?” So you might be wondering how you can fix this issue before it becomes something you regret. Even though you are taking extra precautions, accidents still happen. In this section, we are going to walk through a step-by-step process to fix this issue if it were to occur:

Step 1: Clean The Floors Thoroughly

The very first thing we should do is clean the floors. If you want to guarantee a better finish to the affected area, use a fourth of dish soap and warm water to scrub down the damaged plank or planks thoroughly. Cleaning the surface first and foremost will ensure no dirt or grime is in any cracks or crevices. Make sure the floor is dried off before moving onto the next step.

Step 2: Sand Down The Area

Once your floors are cleaned and drained, sanding the area will give it a smoother finish without removing the final product. You mustn’t skip this process. Using light strokes going the same direction as the scratch and taking your time with this step is necessary to make sure it is correctly done. If the case is too severe and your gash is too deep to wax, replacing the vinyl tile is required. 

Sanding your floors down is very easy. All you have to do is:

  • In the beginning, use 320 grit sandpaper until most of the scratch is wiped off. Be careful not to damage the vinyl.
  • Secondly, repeat the process using 500 grit sandpaper.
  • Lastly, smooth the plank out with 800 grit sandpaper.
  • By rubbing your hand over the area, make sure the surface has a smooth finish.
  • Once everything is finished, use soap and water and clean it thoroughly, like in the first step. 

Step 3: Wax The Distressed Section

Using a low-speed buffer or car wax, put it around the area to ensure a clean finish. Fill the entire scratch with this wax or butter, and be careful to wipe away any excess polish. It is essential not to use a high-speed burnisher, as this can destroy the floors in their entirety, and many flooring companies do not recommend it for vinyl flooring. 

After you finish this process, take a clean rag and gently rub the area to ensure a smoother finish.

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Why Home Inspections Are Important

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can You Put a Refrigerator On Vinyl Plank Flooring?

Absolutely. A single vinyl plank can hold up to 500 pounds in weight, so you rest assured that there will be no issues placing a fridge on top of your flooring. The reason is that vinyl floors are mostly made from heavy-duty plastic, and the floors are waterproof, which means that not even rough water can damage the planks. 

Are Swiffer Wet Pads Safe For Vinyl Plank Floors?

We went over the fact that you can mop your floors, but can you use an all-famous Swiffer sweeper to clean your floors? Using a Swiffer is one of the best options for your flooring because it gives a better clean than a regular mop. When using it, do not use the abrasive scrubber, as this will damage your vinyl planks.  

Does LVP Flooring Look Cheap?

Asking if the flooring looks cheap is an excellent question to ask in itself because, although LVP floors are inexpensive, indeed, they will LOOK cheap, right? On the contrary, LVP flooring looks very similar to hardwood. As I mentioned above, I have these floors, and it feels like I have real wood throughout my home. The main difference I notice is that they do not scratch easily, which is the main topic we are talking about today. 

Conclusion

To sum everything up, luxury vinyl tile doesn’t scratch easily, which is a massive factor in why they are so popular today. Ensuring you take the right precautions by a quick clean daily, furniture pads, repairing or replacing damaged vinyl, and using rugs that do not have rubber or latex on the bottoms, ensures the longevity of its life. If you are considering them, you will not be disappointed with adding LVT floors in your home! 

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Hubert Miles

I've been conducting home inspections for 17 years. I'm a licensed Home Inspector, Certified Master Inspector (CMI), and FHA 203k Consultant. I started HomeInspectionInsider.com to help people better understand the home inspection process and answer questions about homeownership and home maintenance.

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