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What is the difference between a PVC and a linoleum floor?

There are several aspects that you have to take into account with regards to the selection of a floor on board of a ship. Also, there is a lot of confusion around different types of floors, for example with PVC floors and linoleum floors. What are the differences between PVC and linoleum? We’ve listed them for you here.

IMO certified / non-IMO certified

PVC floors are manufactured with synthetic materials. Basically, PVC floors are created to make wood-free alternatives for laminate, wooden floors and ceramic floors. PVC is very suitable for areas which require high quality floors, due to the heavy duty it has to endure. Linoleum floors are created with natural materials, such as linseed oil, natural resin, filler (cork or wood flour) and jute. With the correct subfloor, and optionally with floor heating, linoleum floors can be very warm and comfortable. Due to the fact that linoleum floors are created from organic materials, this type of floor can never comply with the strict requirements that the IMO (International Maritime Organization) demands from the shipbuilding industry. Regularly the definitions ‘lino’ and ‘PVC’ are used as synonyms for each other: on board of seagoing vessels our strong advice is to apply IMO certified PVC floors.

Difference in maintenance

PVC floor coverings are versatile and easy to maintain. These floors are maintenance-friendly and for cleaning this a mop, broom or vacuum cleaner can be used. The floor does not require any special maintenance. However, the quantity water that is used when cleaning the floor is crucial to prevent any damages; try not to use too much water. Linoleum floors require different type of specialized cleaning products. Aggressive cleaning products can affect the floor.

Application of a subfloor underneath hard floor coverings

With the application of a PVC floor on board of any vessel, it is essential that the subfloor is levelled (this is also required when applying linoleum floors). This is mainly to prevent any irregularities in the hard floor covering. Besides, a new subfloor is usually applied which is often not completely self-levelling. Levelling the floor on top of the subfloor helps with the final result of the PVC floor.

Which floor is preferable on ships?

A PVC floor is strongly recommended on board of vessels, mainly due to the fact that this type of floor is IMO certified. PVC floors are both available in homogenous floors (consists of a single layer) and heterogenous floors (consists of multiple layers). All our products in our maritime assortment are IMO certified and have a wear layer that defines the quality of the floor.

Our floors are wear-resistant, making them very suitable for corridors, common areas and stairways on board of ships. However, other floors, such as rubber, carpet and Epoxy and PU flooring are also suitable to be applied on board. Each area requires its own type of flooring.

Contact us

Do you want to apply flooring on board of your ship? Do not hesitate to contact us! Our team of experts would be glad to support your ship.

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