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Vinyl sheet versus linoleum

Vinyl sheet versus linoleum

View and download the Altro versus linoleum PDF

The comparison between vinyl sheet and linoleum remains a prominent topic when discussing flooring solutions for commercial applications. Although these two options share similar traits, it is important to consider their individual strengths and weaknesses when specifying materials. Determining the best fit for your project involves a careful assessment of aesthetics, durability and long-term costs. This piece will examine the key differences between vinyl sheet and linoleum design options to provide a deeper understanding of each alternative.

Design versatility

While linoleum flooring has seniority over vinyl sheet in commercial use, its limited selection of simple patterns and colors narrows its design options. Its dyed hues often change when exposed to natural or artificial light, slightly altering its intended appearance. Surface curing and certain cleaning products can also be detrimental to linoleum’s color over time.

Vinyl sheet’s UV stabilizers allow it to maintain its aesthetics regardless of an area’s lighting or routine maintenance. Realistic high quality film prints also allow it to replicate authentic natural looks, like wood and stone, which can provide a more residential feel in commercial settings. For example, Altro Wood smooth vinyl sheet flooring offers realistic visuals that can adapt to the needs of any interior.

  • Limited, simplistic design options
  • Coloration susceptible to change and fading over time
  • Authentic, natural visuals provide greater versatility and residential feel
  • UV stabilizers endure long-term use without compromising aesthetics


Linoleum is susceptible to moisture damage and requires additional sealing post-installation to prevent water and liquid contaminants from accumulating below its surface. This can be a problem even in supposedly “dry areas” as moisture can be tracked inside in the form of melting snow or rain. Conversely, vinyl is a nonporous material and can handle damp conditions without the risk of warping or bending due to excess moisture. Most commercial vinyl flooring utilizes a heat-welded seam to create an impervious seal that prevents water ingress, making it an ideal solution for wet environments.

Commercial flooring is subject to consistent foot and wheeled traffic throughout its lifetime, resulting in increased levels of cleaning and maintenance. Unfortunately, linoleum is more sensitive to cleaning products due to the natural materials in its composition. This can lead to surface erosion and the need to apply a layer of acrylic coating or wax for additional protection. Meanwhile, quality vinyl flooring like Altro’s is easy to clean and does not require supplementary coating to maintain its surface integrity.

  • Susceptible to moisture damage
  • Requires additional sealing and coating post-installation
  • Sensitive to commonly used floor cleaners and frequent maintenance
  • Non-porous material, prevents moisture damage
  • Water-resistant, ideal for wet environments
  • Maintains appearance without additional sealing orcoating post-installation

Long-term costs

As stated earlier, linoleum’s natural materials and susceptibility to moisture require additional coating and resealing post-installation. Over time, this frequent maintenance can negatively affect overhead costs and disrupt workflow with potentially lengthy shutdowns. Vinyl sheet provides a cost-effective alternative with minimal upkeep outside of standard cleaning routines.

Altro vinyl flooring’s heat-welded seams remove the need for constant resealing to prevent moisture accumulation below its surface. It also possesses integrated stain resistance against common contaminants without the application of additional coating or wax. This makes it easier to clean than linoleum and can significantly reduce maintenance costs over the flooring’s lifetime.

  • Extensive maintenance and repairs required postinstallation
  • Lengthy shutdowns can negatively affect workflow
  • No additional coating or resealing - reduced maintenance costs
  • Minimal upkeep, easy to clean
View and download the Altro versus linoleum PDF

Posted: 5/14/2020 2:20:50 PM by Jesse Wade | with 0 comments