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Vinyl| Glossary

Acclimation
The adaptation of the laminate floor to its installation environment.

Adhesive
A substance that bonds the floor product to the subfloor or substrate.

Beveled Edge
Angular edging or end construction used on many types of flooring.

Board Width
The width of the individual boards – Planks are wider boards that measure over 3” wide, Wide Plank denotes boards that are more than 5” wide.

Durability
How a floor withstands wear and tear over time.

Dye lot
Each time a production of material is run, different dye or color lots are created. Each manufacturing production process cannot precisely re-create the exact same color lot or dye lot, but the resulting product closely resembles the sample.

Embossed
A manufacturing process that intensifies the depth, texture and realistic look of a floor by lining up the printed design with the embossing.

EVP, or Engineered Vinyl Plank
The top layer is constructed from the same materials as luxury vinyl planks.  It is then manufactured together with a dimensionally stable high-density fiberboard (HDF) or medium-density fiberboard (MDF) to form a plank or panel, then fastened to a secure backing.

Finish
The surface coating on a floor.  Urethane type finishes provide durability and resistance to stains; enhancements such as aluminum oxide can be added for extra strength.

Floating
Installation method where individual boards are placed together to join up at the edges or end joints.  No direct gluing or attachment to the substrate or subfloor.

Grade Level
Based on construction levels – below grade is below the ground level, on grade is at the ground level and above grade is above the ground level.

Heat Welding
Used by professional installers on commercial vinyl sheet flooring to seal seams.

Interlocking
A term used to describe systems used without glue or adhesive to join flooring together by a tongue and groove system resulting in a floating floor.

Loose Lay
The method of installing vinyl sheet flooring without adhesive.

Luxury Vinyl Tile
Referred to as “LVT”, the most popular type of vinyl product today.  Beautifully printed designs in tiles or planks, protected by durable urethane finishes on the wear layer.

Modular patterns
Patterns that use different sized pieces to create a new overall pattern.

Reducer Strip
Moulding that finishes the spaces between one flooring surface and another.

Resilient
These types of floors have some "give" or elasticity when you walk across them. This category includes linoleum, cork, rubber, vinyl and specialty resilient.

Roller
Heavy tool used after installing vinyl sheet or vinyl tile to press the flooring into the adhesive and to help to remove any entrapped air.

Seam
The line or area where two tiles or planks meet.

Seam Sealer
A liquid adhesive used to seal the seams of both residential and commercial grade vinyl sheet flooring on large jobs where seaming is required.

Sheet Vinyl
Realistic looking designs that mimic wood, stone and other natural materials are printed onto large vinyl sheets, and then coated with a protective finish coating designed to resist scratches and stains.  Many offer an additional layer of cushioning for warmth and softness.

Specifications
A detailed selection of all materials, methods of application and labour to be used on a project.

Straight Edge
Made from durable steel, these tools are used to establish a straight line for cutting vinyl sheet flooring.

Structural Integrity
When properly maintained, the ability of a flooring product or its components to withstand normal wear and tear without breaking down.

Subfloor
A structural layer providing floor support.  Used directly or with an underlay if the surface is not suitable.

Substrate
The smooth surface on which the vinyl flooring will be laid – concrete, existing resilient flooring or underlayment.

Texture
The look or feel of a flooring product.  With vinyl flooring, textures can be visual or raised with embossing techniques.

Transition Strips
Accessories used to bridge the height difference between two floors.

Underlay/Underlayment
Materials used between a floor, subfloor and a finished flooring product.  Used to smooth out surfaces, provide a cushion and act as a water-resistant or waterproof barrier in some flooring products.

Urethane
Floor finish products that are better able to resist scratches, daily wear and tear and stains without the need for polishing. All manufacturers have their own versions of urethane finishes, some imbued with other products to enhance their durability.

Vinyl Tile
Varying sizes of resilient flooring generally cut into 12x12” up to 12x36” pieces. Installed as individual units, their ability to mix and match patterns and sizes makes this type of vinyl a popular choice.

Wear layer
A layer of material applied to the top surface of vinyl flooring, or the layer that contains and protects the pattern or textured effect.  The thickness of the wear layer varies with each vinyl product collection, or series, and is generally measured in mils. The thickness of a mil is about the same as a page in a phone book. Premium wear layers are the most durable, and offer a higher resistance to stains, scuffs and scratches.