Office Flooring: Types and Guide on the Best Flooring

The type of floor you choose for your office contributes greatly to your productivity even when most don’t realize that. It determines the sound control (echo and noises), the temperature, ease of cleaning and the beauty of your office. 

You have a choice between tiles, wood boards, carpets, linoleum and many other floor types for your office or home office. Factors such as the cost, noise levels, wear and tear and others will also play a role in the floor you choose to go with. We assessed the types of office floors available and the determining factors below. 

Types of Office Flooring

The most popular types of office floors include the following:

1. Tiles 

Tiles are great for both home offices and your workplace. There are many types of tiles each one having different traits which makes them suited to different conditions. The various types of tiles include:

  1. Natural stone

Natural stone is quite costly but it gives the most unique look in your office. It requires frequent cleaning and general maintenance and thus not suited to office space. Instead, it fits best in a corner office with less foot traffic in general. 

  • Quarry tile

Quarry tile is made from shales and clay and is one of the toughest materials. Due to this, it’s used frequently for kitchen areas as it’s also easy to use and can withstand high temperatures (it’s made at high temperatures like bricks). 

  • Hardwood

Another environment-friendly type of flooring is hardwood. For this one, you have a choice between wood species such as hickory, lauzon, maple, white oak, red oak and many others. With proper maintenance, hardwood can be quite durable and usable in any location. It usually keeps the room warm owing to its heat retention capabilities. 

The downside to wooden floors is that they can get indented, scratched or scuffed by foot traffic especially high heeled shoes. 

  • Vinyl 

Vinyl floors {Vinyl Composite Tile (VCT) or Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT)} are among the cheapest flooring options both in the purchase cost and the maintenance. They’re easy to clean and can be treated to resist scratches and stains. You also have an endless number of designs, colors and styles with vinyl. You can also choose between vinyl tile, vinyl plank or sheet vinyl. 

  • Carpet tiles

Also called modular carpet tiles, they are basically pieces of carpet put together rather than one large piece of tiling material. They’re great for controlling the noise, temperatures and cushioning the feet for those who work a lot on their feet. 

They have cushion backing which makes them absorb more foot impact and thus more durable than single-piece carpets. This also reduces muscle fatigue by up to 24% when standing. 

  • Ceramic tiles

Ceramic tiles are among the most durable flooring options as they can withstand heavy foot traffic without losing their great looks. They’re also quite easy to clean even when they have serious stains. Putting them in place, however, requires a professional for the best results in terms of looks and durability. 

  • Laminate

Laminate tiles are quite easy to keep clean and can be used to give the look you want in your office. You can have them looking like hardwood or even stone flooring since they’re simply a board with a photographic layer on top. You have options between smooth laminate, patina laminate, embossed laminate and wood grain laminate. 

2. Wooden floors

There are many wooden floors you can pick on including locking hardwood, engineered hardwood and solid hardwood. They give the office an elegant classic look and are thus best suited to conference rooms or lobbies. 

Wood can cost quite a hefty figure to purchase and maintain since it requires frequent waxing and other maintenance routines. You can go with engineered hardwood which is a better option as it offers the same design and durability while being more environment-friendly. The biggest problem with wooden floors is that they don’t handle moisture well. 

3. Carpet flooring

Carpet floors are the best when it comes to controlling the noise and temperature levels in your office. You can also get them in various patterns, designs, colors and even thicknesses. You should ideally go for wall-to-wall (broadloom) carpets given how they give the office a complete look. 

The cleaning routine for carpet floors should be strictly adhered to keep them in good shape. Compared to modular carpet tiles, broadloom or wall-to-wall carpets are harder to replace as you’ll need to replace the whole floor unlike the modular ones which only need a single piece to be replaced. They thus create more waste when replaced. They’re also less durable compared to carpet tiles in terms of their structure. Lastly, they absorb up to 25% less sound than carpet tiles. 

4. Terrazzo

Terrazzo is among the toughest and most dynamic flooring materials. It’s LEED-friendly and can be crafted in a limitless number of colors and designs with logos or pictures easily imprinted on it. It’s also easy to maintain and clean and can thus be used for any room in the office. 

5. Rubber 

Rubber is another very durable material for high-traffic areas such as the kitchen, lobby, restaurants, healthcare facilities and airports. It’s resistant to heat and water, absorbs some sound and is slip-resistant when dry. You can also get it different colors and textures. 

6. Linoleum

Linoleum is an ingredient-based type of flooring which has a high level of durability and is good for the environment. It’s made from materials like ground cork dust, solidified linseed oil, wood flour, and pine rosin. Mineral fillers like calcium carbonate are also used. These items are then put on a canvas or burlap backing. 

While highly durable, linoleum floors can be quite tough maintaining as they easily absorb liquids that spill on them. As such, they should always be finished before using the room. For floors with linseed oil, they can be giving off the vapors for a few weeks after installation. They’re thus not the best for the kitchen or dining area. 

These materials above mean that they can fit different rooms in your office and home as per their advantages and disadvantages. 

How to Choose the Best Office Flooring

Keeping the above aspects in mind, the factors to consider when choosing the flooring type for your office space include the following:

1. The amount of traffic

Areas of the office with high traffic such as the lobby, airports, restaurants, hospitals and meeting areas require tough materials that last long and are easy to clean. Materials such as granite, marble and even terrazzo can last for years with very little maintenance. 

2. Ease of maintenance

Marble needs polishing, wooden floors require waxing and polishing, terrazzo requires buffing, carpets need vacuuming, vinyl requires replacement and so on. Basically, every floor type will require maintenance and it all depends on the frequency and cost of the maintenance. You should go for the type with the least and cheapest maintenance routine especially when it’s under heavy use. 

3. Reusing or recycling capabilities

Flooring materials such as rubber, vinyl and others can be reused and recycled with ease once they come to the end of their useful lifetimes. They are thus environment friendly as they don’t pollute it once out of their usefulness. 

4. Reparability 

The floors you choose especially for high-traffic areas should be easy to repair to reduce the amount of time and money spent on repairs. Also, they should reduce the time taken to divert traffic to other areas. 

5. Rated service life (longevity)

You should go for flooring materials that are durable and can serve you for long. This also depends on the maintenance levels and the traffic in that part of the floor. 

6. Cost 

It’s quite complex when it comes to the cost of flooring materials since you need to consider both purchase and maintenance costs. For the most part, you should balance the two. In our experience, it’s better to buy high and maintain low as cheaper materials don’t always cost less to maintain. If you can save on both costs, the better. 

Keep these aspects in mind before settling in on the type(s) of flooring materials to get 

Office Rooms and the Best Flooring Options

Each room in your office has a different function. As such, they will do great with different types of flooring as stated below:

1. Break rooms and open office spaces

For open spaces with lots of foot traffic, you need flooring material that matches the look of the area, withstands the heavy foot traffic and absorbs the excess background noise in such areas. Their costs of maintenance also need to be manageable since they get lots of abuse. 

For such areas, the best options are as follows:

  • LVT
  • Carpet 

2. Kitchen and dining areas

Kitchen and dining areas receive lots of foot traffic and need frequent cleaning due to the spills they are subjected to. For this reason, the floor type you choose should have good resistance to water, spills and slips. They should be easy to clean and be quick in drying. 

The best materials include the following:

  • Linoleum
  • Quarry tile
  • LVT

3. Reception and the lobby

The lobby and reception areas are the most used in terms of foot traffic and even machineries being moved into the office for cleaning and repairs. They’re also the areas everyone sees when they come into the building. As such, the flooring material you use should withstand heavy traffic, be easy to clean and look great as well. 

Some good materials for such areas include the following:

  • Wood finishes
  • Terrazzo
  • LVT

4. Conference rooms

Conference rooms receive some of the lowest levels of foot traffic as they’re used sparingly. However, they have some of the most important people in the firm and should thus look good and be comfortable too. 

The bets materials for a conference room floor are as follows:

  • Luxury carpet
  • Wood 
  • LVT

The right flooring materials in the right room will cost less in maintenance and last long. 

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