It seems like every supplier of flooring has jumped on the waterproof bandwagon to reap the benefits of the industry’s fastest growing category—and for good reason. Dealers across the country report that “waterproof flooring,” when positioned correctly, draws in more consumers than any other tagline in today’s market.
From luxury vinyl to laminate and even hardwood—virtually every hard surface flooring category is capitalizing on craze surrounding waterproof. As such, flooring suppliers across the board offered up some of their best innovations yet.
Following is an overview of some of the standouts.
Unilin’s Unicoat, a water-repellent edge-coating technology, actively repels water away from the joints of the floor, making it an ideal waterproof solution for wood-based flooring. How it works: Unicoat is applied on the edges of the floorboard during production, resulting in a fully sealed surface when the panels are locked together. First, the coating seals the surface of the floor and prevents water from penetrating in between the joints of the flooring panels. As such, it prevents standing water underneath the floor, which could cause mold. Second, the coating prevents swelling of the edges of a floorboard by forming a shielding layer that minimizes its moisture absorbing nature. In addition, the coating protects the short-side edges of a wood top-layer from discoloring after it has been in contact with water. Not only does Unicoat have a triple function, but it has also been triple tested.
Wellmade’s new “Ultimate Solution” HDPC/SPC rigid core flooring collection is designed for DIY, multi-family commercial or professional installations. It features an innovative installation system and is available in vinyl plank and vinyl tile options. In addition to 100% waterproof performance, the Ultimate Solution is said to substantially streamline the installation process.
The product features a self-adhering IXPE pad that bonds easily to subfloors without additional adhesives, while its interlocking edge and end system includes a “crack-n-peel” adhesive that increases locking strength and further prevents moisture incursion. In a nutshell, the Ultimate Solution includes everything needed for a successful installation right out of the box and requires no acclimation. The Ultimate flooring collection is available in a variety of durable wear layers ranging from 12-mil to 28-mil.
Lions Floor uses the latest EIR embossing technology with an impressive eight to 10 repeats on film designs. This pioneering capability delivers a premium look of rich and vivid wood-like flooring. The company’s innovative 6-foot planks offer a premium look that aims to achieve the realism of a wood grain embossed veneer. The seven collections of classic yet stylish SPC flooring options all feature state-of-the-art, registered-embossing technology that results in highly durable 100% waterproof flooring.
The 5G Dry patented technology from Välinge might be a small innovation in size, but it is making a huge splash in the world of floor locking systems, the company said. It is the same fast, easy and durable installation technology as the popular 5G Fold Down but updated with a unique, watertight joint. The result is zero-leakage through the seams of the floor panels.
The new, watertight technology adds advantages to any type of flooring and is invaluable to extend performance and longevity of laminate, engineered wood and real hardwood products. Today, many wood-based floors on the market claim to be waterproof but allow water to seep through the joints. When upgraded with 5G Dry, product performance is proved to be significantly enhanced without the need of any extra coating or chemicals.
Mannington’s TimberPlus combines the natural beauty of hardwood with extreme durability. TimberPlus is 100% real hardwood that is said to be 2x more scratch resistant and 3x more dent resistant than typical hardwood and is waterproof, thanks to the company’s SpillShield Plus technology, the 5G Dry profile that keeps water from seeping down to the subfloor and a high moisture resistance core.
TimberPlus is real hardwood from top to bottom. Featuring European white oak in a long-and-wide format, TimberPlus boasts extra-large hardwood planks that are 8 inches wide x 7 feet long and are made with a technique allowing 10x more flooring to be produced from the same amount of lumber as traditional wood floors.
The Dixie Group
The new TRUCOR Prime Pinnacle collection offers the largest WPC planks available today, according to The Dixie Group. The planks are 12 inches wide x 90 inches long. The Prime Pinnacle collection will be at home in large homes with big open spaces and will also fit in average sized homes with today’s open floor plans, making any space look bigger.
The robust construction provides an IXPE attached pad, 20-mil wear layer, TruWear Acrylic coating, embossed-in-register technology and painted bevel edges. Prime Pinnacle has introduced 12 new colors that align with residential and commercial interior trends alike.
i4F’s i-Click4U is a water-resistant, one-piece drop-lock system flooring installation system. Focused on the installation of laminate and engineered wood flooring, i-Click4U complements the company’s successful Click4U technology and has exceeded all North American Laminate Flooring Association (NALFA) requirements relating to water-resistant flooring, including the requirement that panels must withstand water for a minimum of 24 hours. The system has also been independently tested and approved by accredited German and French testing institutes.
Unlike other one-piece floor locking systems, I4F’s i-Click4U technology eliminates the need for any chemical sprays or additional sealing substances—like wax or paraffin—normally required to prevent water leaking into flooring panel joints.
Designed to be softer, warmer and quieter underfoot, Titan Platinum, part of the Floorté Classic Series, offers the style customers want with the performance they need. The design and performance layer boasts authentic wood visuals and texture while the company’s signature Armorbead finish protects from scratches and dents. The thicker WPC core is 100% waterproof with added foaming agents for enhanced warmth and comfort. When it comes to unwanted noise, Titan Platinum features an attached Soft Silence acoustical pad, providing increased peace and quiet.
Calypso Oak, part of the COREtec Originals (WPC) collection, puts an emphasis on comfort and luxury. The line features a thick, cushioned 8mm core and enhanced bevels, giving dealers an elevated visual story to share with customers.
As an “Available Now” style, Calypso Oak has guaranteed stock and guaranteed priority shipping. For retailers, that means quick sales and happy homeowners—all backed by COREtec’s 100% waterproof, pet-proof, kid-proof promise and a limited lifetime residential warranty.
NovaFloor’s Dansbee is available in a waterproof rigid core format. The line features blonde tones, clean visuals and generous proportions—all designed to emulate chic, effortless style inspired by Southern California living. Color options include French Oak, White Ash, Brushed Oak and Contemporary Maple. Designed to accentuate the organic elements of home, Dansbee features a clean aesthetic designed to add warmth to the home.
Featuring MSI-exclusive engineering, the Smithcliffs hybrid rigid core flooring series features extra-thick solid core construction with a pre-attached, 2mm closed-cell comfort and acoustic pad for a luxurious experience. With MSI’s patent-pending DryLuxe technology, the Smithcliffs collection offers 100% waterproof protection and the new CrystaLux Ultra protection layer, providing durability and longevity, protecting against everyday wear. With anti-microbial protection built in, Smithcliffs is ideal for any setting.
Pergo Extreme Ultra makes it easy to offer customers extreme durability at any price point. Pergo Extreme Ultra is dent-proof, kid-proof, pet-proof and waterproof—which translates into fewer customer claims. Featuring WetProtect technology, Pergo Extreme Ultra offers the right kind of waterproof with water-tight joints, a proprietary waterproof finish and a lifetime surface and subfloor warranty.
The latest example of innovative laminate flooring from Eternity is called Ecoessent Incore eco-engineered composite water-resistant laminate flooring featuring an Aqua Fiber waterproof core with an overall thickness of 12.3mm. Ecoessent Incore is engineered and tested to withstand everyday household spills left for up to 72 hours. Incore is 100% child and pet-friendly and 100% wet-mop safe. It features Digitalism 20/20 Technology, digitally enhanced exclusive patterns and colors designed in California.
Eternity also launched a Made in USA waterproof laminate line called AquaFi. This exclusive line up consists of 10mm and 12mm collections with acoustical pad attached. Eternity AquaFi also features the Aqua Fiber waterproof core system with AC4EVERPLUS scratch and dent resistance, Spill-Resist technology, lifetime residential warranty and, most importantly, AquaFi is GreenGuard Gold Certified.
Made in Germany, Inhaus’ Elandura is a new generation of health-conscious eco-vinyl. Constructed using Ceramin—a proprietary production process—the collection is beautiful, high performing and 100% waterproof and recyclable. Through Ceramin technology, Classen Group, Inhaus’ parent company, can craft a highly robust product that is truly waterproof, can withstand temperature changes and has ultra-low VOC emissions. Elanduras are also 100% recyclable.
The collection is made up of 13 styles (11 wood and two stone). Designs feature 21 (16 tile) unique planks or 51 square feet of unique décor. Visuals are printed using HD digital printing with UV-protected inks for an ultra-realistic look.
Up to 6x quieter than standard SPC, NovoCore’s Quiet is a sound choice in waterproof flooring. Quiet is an engineered vinyl flooring that champions the quest for a quieter, high-performing hard surface solution. It consists of multiple distinct layers of different materials engineered to each block specific frequencies for a greatly improved acoustic performance, adding sound absorption to all the other advantages a waterproof, click floor has to offer.