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Choosing the Bathroom Flooring in Your Home

How to decide which flooring to use for your bathroom

If you have built or moved into a new house, choosing the flooring for different areas in the home can prove to be quite difficult. In addition, choosing the flooring in your bathroom can be the one of the most difficult decisions. The flooring in your bathroom must be perfect – it should be stylish, robust and also it should match the chosen wall finish. Furthermore, the flooring in your bathroom should be able to withstand moisture and humidity and should require low maintenance. This article explains in detail different types of flooring for bathrooms and you can choose one according to your liking and preference.

Perplexed about what bathroom flooring you should go for? This is your guide!

In general, most surface types will work for a family with older children or adult inhabitants — but if you have very young or older people at home, certain hazards must be addressed.

Family with Young Children

This will need a floor which can withstand frequent splashes and puddles of water during bath time. Suggested bathroom flooring: Rubber and vinyl are hard wearing and withstand water well. The vast choice of colours and patterns means more opportunities for a playful and fun design scheme. What’s more, rubber and vinyl are much softer should your little ones take a tumble.

An Elderly Person

The bathroom will need to be accessible with a good level of slip resistance, and a floor which is soft underfoot in the event of falls. Suggested bathroom flooring: Vinyl is a great choice as it comes in a variety of finishes and can emulate stone and wood. Rubber is good from a maintenance and comfort point of view, but it can be very slippery so choose one with a high slip resistance rating. Engineered wood floors look great and are warmer than tiles (and not as hard), but they do require a bit more care to be kept in good condition.

Porcelain tiles are:

  • Hardwearing
  • Impervious to water
  • Resistant to stains
  • Easy to clean
  • Tiles designed for the wall should never be installed as bathroom flooring.
  • Some products are suitable for both floor and wall but always check with the supplier.
  • Tiles can come glazed or unglazed. Glazed do not need to be sealed when installed (unglazed do) but they are vulnerable to chipping. Unglazed are less slippery, so better from a safety point of view.
  • One complaint with tiles is that they can be cold and unforgiving underfoot, so they are often paired with underfloor heating for comfort.


Water resistant and available in bright colours, rubber is the perfect choice for the children’s or family bathroom flooring. It looks great with white walls and sanitary ware, for a fun look that can be easily evolved. Rubber is:

  • Tough wearing
  • Warm
  • Soft underfoot and shock absorbent
  • Available in pretty much any colour, pattern or texture
  • Perfect for creating a hygienic surface which is easy to clean
  • Easy to maintain

Preparing the Subfloor

The subfloor is vital to the longevity of your floor finish. If sound and level, surfaces like porcelain and LVT can last for years. A self-levelling compound may be required on an uneven floor, however there are some situations in which an entirely level floor is not going to be achievable such as in old homes.


It is recommended to install floor finishes across the entire floor rather than cut around sanitary ware. This is for futureproofing purposes as replacement sanitary ware may be smaller or wall hung, leaving gaping holes in your flooring.

Author: Claire Lloyd

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