Get your project estimate
Find Pros
Interior Renovation

Linoleum flooring - Costs, distinctive features, pros and cons

Linoleum is a flooring material with a long history. It was invented in 1860 by Frederick Walton and widely used for commercial and residential facilities across Europe. In the mid-90s, linoleum migrated to the US as a green and affordable alternative to traditional flooring materials. Since then, it has stayed in trend, appearing on the shelves of home improvement stores in the form of sheets and tiles. The secret of linoleum flooring's popularity lies in its qualities. This material is sustainable, water-resistant, highly durable, and visually appealing. It feels comfortable underfoot while its natural ingredients shrug off dirt and bacteria. Besides, linoleum flooring is cheap compared to hardwood, tile, and stone floors. That is why if you're looking for a green and reasonably-priced flooring option that will allow you to unleash your creativity, look no further than linoleum. Below you will find tons of valuable information about this flooring type which is aimed at helping you make an informed buying decision.

Linoleum flooring - Costs, distinctive features, pros and cons

Linoleum flooring - What to know before installing?

Linoleum is a resilient material with a jute backing that comes in 2 by 12-inch tiles or 12 by 36-inch planks. This flooring is made of cork and limestone and coated with linseed oil. All components of the linoleum floor are renewable. Besides, the scraps left over from the manufacturing process can be reused when ground into powder. That means linoleum is an eco-sustainable material that can be recyclable endless times, letting little to no waste. 

Besides being renewable, linoleum flooring is also extremely robust and resistant to abrasions. Its average lifespan ranges from 7 to 25 years. However, depending on the room where this flooring is installed and the upkeep regularity, it can serve more or less than mentioned by the manufacturer. Besides, linoleum's consistent pattern and color contribute to its longevity as the signs of wear are less noticeable on it.

Linoleum planks vs. Linoleum sheets vs. Linoleum floor tiles

There are three main variations of linoleum flooring available on the market. Their performance is mostly similar but requires different installation and maintenance approaches. Keep reading to find out which linoleum type suits your budget and needs best.

  • Linoleum sheets

This type of linoleum comes in rolls with a jute backing that can be cut in sheets of arbitrary length and widths ranging from 6 feet to 12 feet wide. This helps to conceal the seams and makes linoleum flooring installation quicker and smoother. 

Sheet linoleum is cut to fit the room's shape and then laid over the prepared subfloor through flooring adhesive. After that, the floor coverage is subjected to pressure from a heavy roller tool. 

Subfloors should be thoroughly examined for defects to ensure an even surface. All damages, unevenness, or bumps should be eliminated before installation. The best way is to entrust sheet linoleum installation to accredited professionals, as this process is complicated and can only be accomplished with special tools. 

Maintaining sheet linoleum floors involves annual sealing and polishing to prevent moisture and keep dirt from becoming embedded. Regular floor mopping without abrasive detergents will help to keep them in good condition for years. 

  • Linoleum tiles 

Linoleum floor tiles are pretty different from their sheet counterparts. They come in thick 12-inch by 12-inch tiles with polyester backing and are installed by adhering to the prearranged subfloor. The edges of linoleum floor tiles are slightly beveled, which ensures a tight fitting of the pieces and hides seams.

Expert DIYers commonly install this type of linoleum flooring without external assistance. All that is needed is a bit of patience and expertise, as well as the tiles themselves and a quality adhesive. 

Linoleum tiles should be sealed and polished at least once a year. It will help to maintain their water resistance and prevent premature wear and tear. 

  • Linoleum planks

This variation of linoleum flooring is relatively new compared to its tiles and sheets counterparts. Planks come in pieces up to 60 inches long that are installed as a floating floor by locking together over the subfloor or underlayment. 

The installation of this flooring option is DIY-friendly and does not require any special skills or equipment. It must be annually sealed to preserve its water-resistant properties. Besides, it's recommended to be polished from time to time for a more consistent and smooth look. 

The abovementioned variations of laminate flooring come in different designs varying from consistent colors to intricate marble patterns. They are also available in solid commercial grades that can withstand high foot traffic without showing signs to wear and tear. 

Downsides and benefits of linoleum floors

Linoleum is a widespread flooring option that is extremely durable, resilient, eco-sustainable, and aesthetic. Compared to vinyl flooring, linoleum has a design embedded throughout the material that ensures a more consistent look. Keep reading to learn about the pros and cons of linoleum flooring.

Here are a few reasons why you might be interested in linoleum as the flooring material for your home: 

  • Durability. Linoleum has exceptional durability and can last for over 40 years with annual upkeep. This flooring material can be installed in rooms with high foot traffic as it can easily withstand wear and tear. 
  • Comfort and softness. Linoleum is a resilient material that offers a soft and warm feel under the feet, ensuring superior comfort no matter the temperature inside and outside the home. This flooring is commonly installed in bedrooms and living rooms and can be used without zone carpets.
  • Affordability. The cost of linoleum installation is much lower than other flooring materials. Options like linoleum planks can be installed without professional assistance. 
  • Diversity of styles and color stability. Linoleum comes in a wide array of patterns and styles, allowing homeowners to experiment with their interior designs. Besides, this flooring option is known for keeping the color well for years. 
  • Eco-friendliness. Linoleum is made from renewable materials like jute, cork powder, linseed oil, tree resin, and wood flour. This flooring is biodegradable and does not pose any risk to the environment.
  • Ultimate safety. Linoleum flooring is a safe material that does not emit volatile organic compounds that might negatively affect human health. This makes it a safe choice for your home.

Here are the downsides of linoleum to consider while making the final decision about the flooring material for your home:

  • Vulnerability to dents. Linoleum falls into the resilient flooring materials category, making it susceptible to dents and tears. However, following precautionary measures like putting protective pads on furniture legs and taking off shoes while at home helps to prevent these issues.
  • Yellowing. If linoleum flooring is regularly exposed to direct UV rays, a linseed oil begins oxidizing, and the surface takes a yellowish cast. Fortunately, some manufacturers add a protective coating to the floors to prevent their darkening or yellowing. 
  • No immunity to water damage. While linoleum is considered to be water-resistant, it can get damaged if exposed to standing water. That is why it might not be best to place it in areas where spills and high humidity cannot be avoided.

How much does it cost to install linoleum flooring?

The national average cost of linoleum flooring varies from $2.5 to $10 per square foot. Still, the ultimate estimate will vary depending on the linoleum type and the project size. Here are the popular linoleum flooring variations and their costs per material and installation. 

 

Material cost 

per sq. ft. 

Installation cost 

per sq. ft. 

Additional

costs

Linoleum tiles

$3 - $4.5

$1.4 - $2

None

Linoleum sheets

$3 - $6

$2 - $3.5

Getting subfloors ready for installation 

($60 - $250)

Linoleum planks

$3 - $5

$1.9 - $2.5

Installing underlayment 

($30 - $90)

To sum up, it is worth mentioning that materials and labor determine the price of linoleum flooring per square foot. If you want to save a few hundred bucks on your installation, you can always go for laminate flooring of a plain design that can be installed without professional help. But please remember that sheet laminate installation is best left to the professionals. Besides, old flooring removal and subfloor inspection should be held only by expert contractors.

If you need professional assistance in installing floors in your home, consider cooperating with the HomeQuote contractor-matching platform. We cooperate with an extensive number of flooring contractors around the country who can offer you good service at a reasonable cost.

Sought-after home repair services near you
Roof repair & restoration

Roof
repair & installation

The lion's share of the house remodeling cost should go for roof restoration

Find pros
Window restoration & repair

Window
replacement & repair

Homeowners should keep a close eye on their window efficiency

Find pros
Solar systems installation

Solar
panels installation

Going solar should be an ultimate part of any major home renovation project

Find pros
HVAC Installation & repair

HVAC Installation
& repair

Install an advanced HVAC system to improve your home's air quality

Find pros
Bathroom remodeling & installation

Bathroom remodeling
& installation

Add to your house value by updating the look and functionality of your bathroom

Find pros
Kitchen remodeling & repair

Kitchen
remodeling & repair

Consider a kitchen remodeling to make it more welcoming and comfortable

Find pros
Gutters & Gutter guards installation

Gutters & Gutter guards installation

Keep the gutter system in mint condition to prevent any damage to the integrity of your home.

Find pros
Flooring installation & repair

Flooring installation & repair

Install new flooring to enhance your home's appearance and add extra value to it

Find pros

WE DON'T SEND THE NEWS

GET THE ESSENCE OF RELEVANT HOME
IMPROVEMENT TOPICS IN LESS THAN 5 MINUTES

Please enter a valid email
Thanks for joining our homeowners’ community.

Thanks for joining our homeowners’ community.

Stay tuned!