Which Direction To Lay Vinyl Plank Flooring In A Bathroom

The durability of vinyl plank flooring makes it a good choice for any room in the house, including the bathroom. Are you looking for advice on which direction to lay vinyl planks in your bathroom? If you are, this post is for you. We have researched this concern to provide you with recommendations.

You should think about the flow of light and the shape of the bathroom when deciding in which direction to lay a vinyl plank floor.

Follow the source of light or lay your planks parallel to the longest wall of the bathroom to create an appealing look. Think about the size of the bathroom as well, as it can also dictate the way you lay the planks.

In this article, we will talk in-depth about things to consider when laying your vinyl plank floor in the bathroom. We will also discuss other factors you should consider before deciding which direction to follow and if vinyl plank flooring is right for your bathroom. Continue reading to get more details on this topic.

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Laying Vinyl Plank Flooring In A Bathroom

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You may be excited to lay your vinyl plank flooring because of how easy it is to install. Before you do that, consider the direction you’ll follow.

Whether horizontal, vertical, or diagonal, the direction in which you’ll install your floor will directly impact the look of your room—in this case, your bathroom.

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Generally, you want to follow the flow of light, as in the example above. This creates a seamless and appealing look. It helps elongate a space as well.

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Another thing to consider is the shape of the bathroom. If your bathroom is not that big, like one in the picture above, following the source of light is not applicable.

You want the space to look bigger, so install the vinyl flooring horizontally. This pulls the eye from one side of the room to the other and creates the illusion of a bigger space.

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If you want a unique floor pattern, you can also go with a diagonal one. This design helps open up space, too.  This nontraditional way of laying vinyl planks will give a more aesthetic vibe to your bathroom.

When laying your vinyl plank flooring, it's important to start near the wall for easier installation.

When you are installing the flooring, remove everything, including the toilet and vanity. If you have a freestanding tub, you should move that too.

Ultimately, there is no hard rule for laying vinyl plank flooring in your bathroom. These are suggestions you can consider to make the installation stress free.

Why Is Vinyl Plank Flooring Good For The Bathroom?

Under the sink view in laundry room with leak

Admittedly, the usual choice for a bathroom floor is ceramic or standard floor tiles. If you want to go against this tradition, the more modern alternative is vinyl plank flooring.

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Vinyl plank flooring is not that expensive. Most importantly, it is water resistant. In case the water overflows in your bathroom, and the floor is soaked, you can remove the planks without ruining everything.

Cleaning is also not an issue with this type of flooring, as sweeping, wiping, or mopping will do. The floor doesn’t require a lot of maintenance. It is ideal for bathrooms because its top layer is not especially slippery.

How Long Does Vinyl Plank Flooring Last?

Proper use and care contribute to the longevity of your flooring. A vinyl plank is designed to last a long time.

Because of its durability, this type of flooring can last up to 20 years. This is why it is often installed in places that encounter heavy foot traffic.

What Are The Ways to Lay Vinyl Plank Flooring In A Bathroom?

Bathroom with long vanity with two sinks and walk-in shower with half wall and glass. There is a mirror wall above the tile counter with towel hanging on side and vinyl wooden flooring with blue rug.

There are two ways of installing vinyl planks flooring: glued-down and floating.  

Glued-down vinyl planks

This is a way of laying vinyl planks with the use of an adhesive for the planks to stick to the subfloor.

Here are some advantages and disadvantages of glued-down vinyl plank flooring:

  • Because of the adhesive,  shifting or moving the planks is difficult.
  • Uneven subfloors will not be an issue with glued-down vinyl planks, because they can hide those imperfections.
  • Repairs are a bit easier with this one, because you only need to remove the damaged plank.
  • Glued-down vinyl planks are thinner than floating vinyl planks.

Floating vinyl planks

This method of installation doesn’t use adhesives. The planks are either connected by rubber backing or interlocked together. There are two types of floating vinyl planks: - click together and loose lay.

  1. Click-together vinyl planks have interlocking grooves that keep the planks in place. Once connected, the floor floats on top of the subfloor.
  2. Loose lay vinyl planks do not have locks. They are connected by rubber backing that holds them in place.

Here are some benefits and disadvantages of floating vinyl planks. 

  • Installing floating vinyl planks is like working with puzzle pieces. You fit and lock each piece. Overall, with the right tool, laying this flooring is easy.
  • Repair of a piece may be challenging, as you need to unfasten a couple of planks around the damaged one before replacement.
  • Uneven subfloors may cause the floating planks to not seal properly. Later on, water could slip between the gaps and damage the entire floor. So it is important to even out the subfloor before installation.

You can also try using stick-and-peel planks. These planks are self-adhesive and waterproof.  The self-adhesive ones can also be used on any part of the house, including bathrooms.

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At the end of the day, no single way is better than the other. There are pros and cons for both ways. You should choose the best one based your needs.

Can You Put A Toilet On Vinyl Plank Flooring?

Vinyl tiles stack sample collection for interior designer. New wooden pattern vinyl tile. Vinyl flooring material isolated on white background. Polymer vinyl sheet set for new home floor. PVC material

Vinyl plank flooring is very versatile and durable. Not only can you put it around your toilet, but you can also put a toilet on top of it. Vinyl planks can support the toilet.

You should put the toilet on the vinyl instead of around it. If you cut corners and install the planks around the toilet, the toilet won't have enough support on the base.  The result will also look unfinished because there may be visible gaps.

Can You Put A Freestanding Tub On Vinyl Plank Flooring?

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Freestanding tubs are not attached to walls. These can be placed in any area because all the sides are finished. In this case, flooring should be installed first before the tub is placed.

If you’re worried about placing heavy objects on top of vinyl plank floors, don't be. This flooring can withstand the weight of heavy objects.

A single plank can hold up to 500 pounds. When the planks are installed, the weight is distributed so it will be able to carry a freestanding tub.

Keep in mind that you should use glued-down vinyl planks instead of floating vinyl when you have a freestanding tub.  

Can You Put A Vanity On Top Of Vinyl Plank Flooring?

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As a general rule, flooring comes before cabinets. However, if you are planning to install floating vinyl plank flooring, you should go around the vanity, not underneath it.

If you are using glued-down vinyl planks, then you can put the vanity on them.

Is It OK To Change The Direction Of Flooring Between Rooms?

You may be tempted to experiment and change directions when laying vinyl planks on your house. You may do this to satisfy your unique style, but you have to consider what is visually appealing. 

Although it is up to you to design your floors, it is still important to note that going in different directions in each room creates visual conflict.

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In the example above, the same flooring is used in the room and the bathroom. The planks are laid in the same direction as well. This creates a unified look because the floor has one flow.

Final Thoughts

When laying vinyl plank flooring, consider the flow of light and the shape or size of the room. These factors contribute to the overall appeal of your floors.

Although, at the end of the day, there is no hard rule when it comes to which direction you should lay your vinyl planks floors, it won't hurt to consider the suggestions listed here.

Now that you are aware of these factors, you'll be more confident in executing your bathroom DIY floor.

If you liked this post, be sure to check out these related articles:

5 Best Waterproof Bathroom flooring Options 

7 Tips To Keeping A Bathroom Floor Dry After Showering

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