Flooring is another very important factor in kitchen comfort and efficiency. A new floor will only be as good as the preparation and the expertise of the installer. The following are some types of floors which you may want to consider putting in your kitchen:
Clay bricks are cheap and readily available. They give excellence durability and are relatively easy to install. You can create a number of interesting patterns and once sealed, they need little maintenance. Clay bricks need a strong subfloor. Because they are not always of uniform size, thickness and colour, they really only suit rustic, country-style kitchens. It is difficult to cut them accurately and to get smooth joints.
Wooden floors are warm and comfortable to stand on and their resilience minimizes breakages. They can withstand heavy wear-and-tear, and can be rejuvenated by resanding and restaining, if required.
Rubber and plastic
Both these materials have good durability in high traffic areas and come in a wide range of patterns and colours. They are comfortable, resilient and can be easily cut to fit specific areas. They must be properly installed. A particular disadvantage is that they are not easy to keep absolutely clean.
This is attractive and easy on the feet. It has excellent thermal properties and is available with a factory sealant to prevent staining. It is expensive and needs special installation skill. It is also vulnerable to denting and tearing and needs a careful waxing routine to maintain its looks.
Marble and stone tiles
These are the most expensive floor coverings. They have a wide tonal range and attractive natural graining, combined with excellent durability. With the correct grouting, they are totally waterproof. Disadvantages are that they are cold and hard. They must be sealed to prevent staining.
Very attractive in both new and older homes, quarry tiles are very durable, whether glazed or unglazed, and have good thermal properties. However, they are quite expensive and there isn’t huge choice of colours. If they are unglazed, they must be properly sealed. As with ceramic tiles, they need specialist installation, are hard underfoot and lack resilience.