Flooring For High Traffic Areas: What type of flooring is completely waterproof?

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Written By Maisie Steele

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High traffic areas in homes and commercial spaces require flooring that can withstand constant wear and tear without compromising on aesthetics and durability. Choosing the right flooring material is essential to ensure longevity and ease of maintenance in these busy spaces.

Here’s a comprehensive guide to help you make an informed decision for flooring in high traffic areas.

Flooring For High Traffic Areas- Overview:

1. Tile Flooring:

Tile flooring, particularly ceramic or porcelain tiles, is an excellent choice for high traffic areas. These tiles are highly durable, resistant to scratches, moisture, and stains. They come in a wide variety of colors, patterns, and sizes, making it easy to find a style that suits your space. Grout lines might require periodic cleaning, but overall, tile flooring is low-maintenance and long-lasting.

2. Luxury Vinyl Flooring (LVT):

Luxury vinyl flooring is gaining popularity as a resilient and stylish option for high traffic areas. LVT mimics the appearance of hardwood or stone while offering better resistance to moisture, scratches, and dents. It’s comfortable underfoot and often comes with protective layers that enhance its durability, making it suitable for both residential and commercial spaces.

3. Hardwood Flooring:

While hardwood is susceptible to scratching and water damage, it can still be a viable option for high traffic areas if properly maintained. Choose harder wood species like oak, maple, or hickory, and consider using rugs or mats in heavily trafficked spots to prevent wear. Regular maintenance, such as refinishing, can extend the life of hardwood flooring in such areas.

4. Laminate Flooring:

Laminate flooring offers a budget-friendly alternative to hardwood or tile. It’s engineered to be scratch-resistant and durable, making it suitable for high traffic zones. However, laminate isn’t as moisture-resistant as other options, so it’s important to wipe up spills promptly to prevent damage.

5. Concrete Flooring:

For industrial or contemporary spaces, polished concrete flooring is an option worth considering. It’s exceptionally durable, resistant to heavy foot traffic, and can be customized with various finishes and stains. Concrete is also easy to clean and maintain, making it a practical choice for busy areas.

6. Commercial Carpet Tiles:

In spaces where noise reduction and comfort are priorities, commercial carpet tiles provide a good balance between aesthetics and practicality. These tiles are designed to withstand heavy foot traffic, and if a section becomes stained or damaged, individual tiles can be replaced without redoing the entire floor.

What Type of Flooring is Completely Waterproof?

When it comes to completely waterproof flooring, certain options stand out due to their ability to resist water damage and moisture infiltration. These options are particularly suitable for spaces prone to spills, humidity, or water exposure.

1. Porcelain Tile Flooring:

Porcelain tiles are fired at high temperatures, making them extremely dense and water-resistant. Their low porosity prevents water absorption, making them an excellent choice for areas like bathrooms, kitchens, and basements.

2. Vinyl Flooring:

Luxury vinyl flooring (LVT) and vinyl plank flooring are highly water-resistant due to their synthetic composition. They are particularly suitable for areas prone to water exposure, such as bathrooms, laundry rooms, and even basements.

3. Sheet Vinyl Flooring:

Sheet vinyl is another option known for its water-resistant properties. With proper installation and seam sealing, it can create a nearly impermeable surface, making it a popular choice for areas where moisture is a concern.

4. Epoxy Flooring:

Epoxy flooring is a versatile choice that offers excellent water resistance and durability. It’s often used in commercial and industrial settings due to its ability to create a seamless, waterproof surface that’s easy to clean and maintain.

5. Rubber Flooring:

Rubber flooring is naturally resistant to water and is often chosen for areas where spills are common, such as kitchens and gyms. It’s durable, slip-resistant, and easy to keep clean.

Comparison of Waterproof Flooring Options:

Flooring Type Water Resistance Durability Maintenance Aesthetics
Porcelain Tile Excellent High Moderate Versatile
Luxury Vinyl (LVT) High Moderate to High Low Stylish
Vinyl Plank High Moderate Low Wood-like
Sheet Vinyl Excellent High Low Varies
Epoxy Excellent High Low Industrial
Rubber Excellent High Low Modern



1: Is hardwood flooring suitable for high traffic areas?

A1: Yes, hardwood can be used in high traffic areas, but it’s important to choose harder wood species and use rugs to protect the surface. Regular maintenance is essential to preserve its appearance.

2: Can laminate flooring handle water spills?

A2: While laminate flooring is more water-resistant than hardwood, it’s not completely waterproof. Promptly wiping up spills and avoiding prolonged water exposure is recommended.

3: Are there waterproof options for basements?

A3: Yes, porcelain tiles, vinyl flooring (LVT or vinyl plank), and epoxy flooring are all suitable for basements due to their water-resistant properties.

4: Can I use carpet in high traffic areas?

A4: While carpet isn’t inherently waterproof, commercial carpet tiles designed for high traffic can withstand wear. For water-prone areas, consider other options.

5: What’s the maintenance routine for waterproof flooring?

A5: Regular sweeping and damp mopping are generally sufficient for most waterproof flooring options. Avoid abrasive cleaners and excessive water use.


Choosing the right flooring for high traffic areas involves considering factors like water resistance, durability, maintenance, and aesthetics. There are various options available that cater to different preferences and needs, ensuring that your floors remain functional and visually appealing for years to come.

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