The tremendous excitement surrounding the waterproof flooring category has spurred an array of both natural and synthetic products—and even some innovative, water-resistant hybrid materials. From wood-look SPC, WPC and LVT floors to rigid core brands that feature a real wood veneer, retailers and distributors have a wealth of brands, formats and styles to offer their customers.
Following is an overview of some of the waterproof/water-resistant brands that are resonating with retailers and distributors.
Customers say they love the classic, coastal neutrals presented in the Longboards collection, now with new colors. Planks are longer and wider (707/8 x 9) to speed up installation and make rooms feel bigger. The products are also 100% waterproof, allowing for “whole home flooring” with authentic hardwood visuals in every room. Built-in acoustic insulation completes the luxury experience.
What retailers had to say: “Our customers love the uniqueness of Cali Longboards as it gives the beautiful look of wood with consistent, extra-long planks that are easy to maintain with a consumer-friendly price point,” said Gregg Fishman, president, Carpets Galore, Las Vegas.
NovoCore Q (the Q is for quiet) is an engineered vinyl flooring line that brings high-performance, sound absorption, fast click installation and waterproof attributes all in one product.
What distributors had to say: “NovoCore Q was recently launched at our regional shows and the feedback from our sales reps and dealers was fantastic,” said Austin Starnes, product manager, BPI. “NCQ not only answers the call for waterproof flooring but is quieter than standard SPC. We have a product with features nobody in the market has today.”
Create Flooring offers its customers forward-looking technology, exquisite workmanship and extreme environmental protection standards as denoted by its stringent certification curriculum and customer-service record. Create Flooring has been growing its business—and retailer base—for the past 12 years. The company has roots in laminate, hardwood and WPC, but today about 75% of its business is in the waterproof rigid core segment.
One standout product offering is Maritime, a rigid core lineup based on an MSPC (magnesium core) platform. The highly innovative core is topped with a durable melamine wear layer.
What retailers had to say: “They are a new supplier for us, and their product and service have been spot on,” said Mike Hayes, CEO, David’s Abbey Carpet, Knoxville, Tenn. “They have the product, and they deliver it when they say they will. We’ve bought quite a bit from Create in the six months we have had their products and have had no issues at all with them.”
European design, GreenGuard Gold and FloorScore certified, Paladin rigid core stone polymer composite includes the most popular European oak colors with minimal knot design. Paladin is enhanced by the company’s TruEmbossed deep wood grain textures and four-sided painted beveled edges for maximum realism. The 20-mil surface wear layer is enhanced with a ceramic micro bead finish.
What retailers had to say: “We’ve been selling a lot of the Paladin collection,” said John Bermudez, owner of Carpet Town Outlet, North Hollywood, Calif. “It’s a really good product and customers like it for the pricing, quality and colors—which all come together for a great collection.”
Manufactured using Ceramin technology, Sono Eclipse is a new generation of sustainable, health-conscious flooring. Its proprietary production process uses propylene and mineral powder to create a high-performing floor that is healthy for the home and the environment. The product is extremely stable and can be installed in 100 x 100-foot installations without transition strips or moldings. What’s more, its unique product make-up enables Sono Eclipse to be part of a circular economy by being 100% recyclable while using 25% post-consumer material.
What distributors had to say: “Sono Eclipse is in a category all its own,” said Scott Rozmus, president, FlorStar Sales, Romeoville, Ill. “Plasticizer- and phthalate-free and [recycling code] no. 5, blue bag recyclable—including the pad, which is a frothed version of the core—Sono Eclipse is an environmentally friendly product that performs technically as well.”
The wide range of stylish, high-performance offerings in Karndean’s line of LVT products includes its signature Korlok Select. It features the company’s signature waterproof K-Core technology for extreme performance. New visuals within this premium rigid core range include: a design developed from floorboards from a Scottish railway station, which features fully registered embossing; a Baltic Oak design achieved by mixing wood grades; and two visuals in an additional herringbone format. A 5G fold-down mechanism facilitates easier installation.
What retailers had to say: “Of all the many luxury vinyl products we carry, we have had the least amount of trouble with Karndean in all areas,” said Dean Merrell, president and owner, Castle Floors, Mesa, Ariz. “When I think of Karndean I think ‘consistently good quality.’ We have been with them from the very beginning—when we were small—and our allegiance with them has only grown over time.”
Natural Essence Plus, one of Lions Floor’s signature waterproof SPC lines, offers rich, distinct colors and textures with the latest registered embossing technology for intricate hardwood aesthetics and authentic replications of natural wood. Made from 100% ecological ingredients, Natural Essence Plus represents both luxury and supreme craftsmanship and is crafted with the highest environmentally friendly standards.
What retailers had to say: “Natural Essence has a very competitive price with a great selection of colors, and we have sold hundreds of thousands of feet of it with no problems,” said Mike Gorsky, sales, Belmont Carpets and Wood Flooring, Anaheim, Calif.
Billed as the ultimate performance hardwood, UltraWood features the latest technologies: Everlast, WetProtect and EasyClean. These innovations, including a lifetime surface and subfloor waterproof warranty, give retailers a differentiated product.
What retailers had to say: “We are actually installing it now with the click method, which is outstanding,” said Mike Halsey, president, Affordable Floors, Cicero, NY ”The board lengths are almost 7-feet long, which makes open-area installation fast. Customers love the final product.”
Smithcliffs—a rigid core/wood wear layer hybrid flooring product—features extra-thick, solid core construction with a pre-attached, 2mm closed-cell comfort and acoustic pad. With MSI’s proprietary DryLuxe technology, Smithcliffs collection provides 100% waterproof protection, along with the new, innovative CrystaLux Ultra layer for improved scratch resistance.
What retailers had to say: “The value and visuals MSI provides are unbeatable,” said Bobby Yates, owner, Yates Flooring Center, Lubbock, Texas.
Republic Floor, an innovator in the development of resilient vinyl flooring, offers its signature Pure SPC flooring lines. Republic Floor uses advanced manufacturing techniques to deliver winning visual designs that focus on performance, quality and environmental sustainability.
What retailers had to say: “The quality of Republic’s product is great, and their products are competitively priced for the quality you get,” said Carlos Hernandez, owner, Wholesale Flooring, Commerce, Calif. “I’ve never had a claim with them, either.”
Repel Splash-Proof Hardwoods from Shaw Floors offers customers beauty that’s built to last in a 100% real hardwood that’s designed to resist moisture incursion. These engineered planks aim to offer greater protection against topical moisture caused by everyday household accidents.
What retailers had to say: “Some folks still want a hardwood floor, but one they can maintain,” said Bo Perkins, sales manager, Broadway Carpets, Knoxville, Tenn. “Repel Hardwood fits that bill. This is another example of Shaw being the leader, the innovator.”
The Hardened Wood Flooring line from Välinge gives end users a durable, waterproof product that’s still easy to install. The product offers the feel of a real wood floor combined with the durability of a true waterproof product—all in long/wide plank format.
What distributors had to say: “Not only does it have an incredible waterproof story, but the large format with a real wood surface will make it a go-to product for the demands of today’s homeowners,” said a former sales manager with, Herregan Distributors, Eagan, Minn.
HDPC Vinyl Shelf
HDPC Vinyl Plank from Wellmade Performance Flooring boasts the latest technology in waterproof SPC flooring. Designed for three-season rooms, the product can withstand temperature extremes while standing up to the abuse of active households.
What distributors had to say: “We had looked at a lot of waterproof wood floors, but Wellmade’s—with the SPC core—stood out for its looks,” said Kevin Gummow, sales manager, The Brandon Company, North Little Rock, Ark. “It’s been a different category for us since we took on the line.”
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