How is Vinyl Flooring made?

Simply put vinyl flooring is a very versatile plastic. There are vinyl records, shoes, wall coverings, and even fence posts. Vinyl’s most popular use though is flooring. Vinyl flooring is made of layers of material starting with a core of vinyl over a backing of felt or fiberglass. The decorative markings and designs are placed on top of the core. The decorative layer is what makes vinyl so versatile because it can be made to look like almost any other material. This final decorative layer is also called the “wear layer” by some.
The many faces of vinyl flooring is produced by the printing process, called rotogravure. Using a rotary press with photoengraved plates allows manufacturers to create the look of hundreds of patterns and designs. On top of that some manufacturers add color or colored vinyl chips to add depth and to further enhance the design.

The “wear layer” is the most important layer. Not only does it provide the visuals but it also protects the flooring. On average, this layer is about 10 -20mil thick (a human hair is about 1mil thick.) The thicker the “wear layer” the more durable the flooring is. Manufacturers are constantly trying out new materials to make this layer even stronger, resistant and beautiful.

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How Vinyl Flooring is Made