Dwellings, Home Projects

Bathroom Floors Update

When I bought my house, I knew that I would probably want to do something with the bathroom floors. After a considerable amount of research, I decided on doing floating vinyl wood planks over the tile.For the cost and the look of the finished product, I knew this was the right choice for me. Vinyl wood like flooring is great for bathrooms since it is durable and moisture resistant as long as you prep the flooring underneath the right way. I would have loved to do a wood like porcelain tile, but alas, that project was considerably out of budget. This picture is what my downstairs, master bathroom looked like before.

This is a photo of the tile that is on the floor and also here on the tub surround for the upstairs, guest bathroom. It is definitely newer than the downstairs tile, but wasn’t installed correctly and had cracks in multiple tiles due to that. Plus, it’s just not my favorite tile in general. Pretty blah in my opinion.

To really do it right, you should probably remove the baseboards in the bathroom. However, I read in many sources that it wasn’t necessary, so up to you. I would at least remove any quarter rounds if you have them. Then to properly prep the floor, I used pre-mixed thin set mortar and a plastic spreader to level out all of the grooves of the grout to get the floor as even as possible, and prevent the vinyl flooring from getting depression spots over time.

After the level floor way all set and dry, it was ready to install the planks. I ended up buying TrafficMaster Iron Wood Plank Flooring at Home Depot. It is not a stock item, so if you fall in love with a specific flooring, just be prepared that you may have to order it in advance and then wait for it to be shipped to the store (that’s what happened for me).


Here is an in progress photo. I will tell you that there is a learning curve with this stuff, but installation is actually very simple. The most important thing is to make sure that you start in the furthest corner. You can see in the photo below that I started in the wrong place. I should have started in the little nook there where a stool would go. Thankfully I was able to go back and get the planks under there with a little creative maneuvering. You will need a measuring tape, a utility knife, a metal straight edge or ruler, and something to cut on like a cutting board.

And that’s it! The instructions are pretty easy to follow and installation (minus the prep work) can really be completed in a day for small bathrooms like mine. I am so so happy with the end results. It instantly made the bathrooms feel updated and refreshed, and the cost in comparison to the alternatives was more than reasonable!

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