Vinyl flooring is inexpensive, practical and attractive. But some kinds can give off harmful chemicals known as VOCs – volatile organic compounds. These can impair the air quality in your home, and have been linked to health harms.
We’ve found seven of the best low VOC vinyl flooring options available today. And we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about them. So step this way to find out more …
Quick Pick: The Best Low VOC Vinyl Flooring Options
The Best Low VOC Vinyl Flooring Options
1. Flooret Lato Vinyl Planks
These Lato vinyl floor planks from Flooret are certified by the independent program, FloorScore. FloorScore tests flooring for emissions of VOCs with the potential to harm health. If flooring meets the required standards, it can carry the FloorScore logo.
Lato is an attractive blonde wood colored plank, with a subtle grain. It makes a neutral backdrop to either a classic or contemporary design scheme.
The planks are “embossed in register”, meaning the grain pattern is replicated in the surface texture. That means it’s tough to tell these apart from real wood.
They also have beveled edges that allow them to lock into each other on all four sides. That means you won’t need to use adhesive, so you won’t have to worry about VOCs from that source either. And it makes installation a breeze.
They come with underlayment pre-attached too, enhancing thermal and acoustic insulation. They’re constructed with a rigid stone composite core, which means they’ll maintain their structural integrity, even at high temperatures.
These planks are also exceptionally large – 9 inches wide and 72 inches long. That gives you a very luxurious look. But if you’re installing them in a more confined space, it does make them more cumbersome to work with.
One other thing to be aware of is that you’ll only be able to buy samples through third party retailers. If you want to go ahead and order the flooring, you’ll need to contact the manufacturer direct.
- Exceptionally hardwearing, with a 40-mil wear layer
- Rigid stone composite core will withstand even high temperatures without distortion
- Embossed in register for a look and texture that’s hard to tell apart from real wood
- The large planks look great but can be cumbersome to work with if you’re installing them in a small space
- Third party retailers stock samples only.
2. Lucida USA BaseCore Vinyl Planks (Our Top Pick)
Lucida USA manufacture a number of different ranges of vinyl planks. Most of these carry FloorScore certification, meaning they’ve been independently assessed as having low levels of VOC emissions. That includes their most economical range, BaseCore.
These vinyl planks come in 13 different finishes, most of which have a woodgrain appearance. And if you’re struggling to pick one, there’s a handy sample collection to allow you to try out different looks.
Each plank is 36 inches long and 6 inches wide. Those are less luxurious dimensions than the Lato planks from Flooret. But that does mean they’re easier to work with, especially in smaller spaces.
The wear layer here is considerably thinner than the Lato planks, at 12-mil. But this is still a resilient product. There are two further layers of UV, plus urethane and ceramic bead. The planks come with a 10-year warranty for domestic use and 5 years for commercial use.
Integrated IXPE underlayment helps keep in heat and reduce the noise of your floor. And installation is easy. This flooring comes with a self-adhesive coating. All you need to do is peel off the backing paper and stick it in place.
But note that the strength of the bond will depend on how smooth your sub-floor is. The material will also make a difference. In some cases, you may find you need to use extra glue. Don’t forget to check the VOC emissions of that before you use it.
- Self-adhesive for easy installation
- Integrated IXPE underlayment keeps in heat and reduces noise
- Comes with a 10-year warranty for domestic use
- The 12-mil wear layer isn’t as thick as some options
- Depending on your sub-floor, you may find you need to use extra glue.
3. BuildDirect Vesdura Vinyl Planks
The Vesdura vinyl planks from BuildDirect come in an attractive wood finish and a mid-brown shade. They’d look good in pretty much any design scheme, whether traditional or modern.
They’re embossed in register, so the texture mirrors the pattern printed on the vinyl for a realistic look. The micro-beveled edges look like traditional floorboards too.
They’re another broad plank, measuring a generous 9 inches wide and 60 inches long. You can buy them in boxes with coverage of 22 square feet, or bundles that will cover 159 square feet.
They’re FloorScore certified, and the click-and-lock design means there’s no need to use adhesive. And a 1.5mm IXPE foam pad is pre-attached, so you won’t need additional underlayment either.
The planks are 8.5mm thick overall. They have a wood plastic composite core and a 20-mil wear layer. The combination makes them very durable. They come with an impressive 25-year warranty for residential use.
They’re also compatible with hydronic radiant heat systems of underfloor heating.
One negative is that it’s only available in one color. And it’s pretty expensive. This costs four times as much per square foot as Lucida’s BaseCore range.
- Click-and-lock design is easy to install without adhesive
- Comes with 1.5mm IXPE foam pad pre-attached for better insulation and a quieter floor
- 25-year warranty for domestic use
- Only available in one color
- Expensive – although this is flooring that will last for ages.
4. Flooret Modin Vinyl Planks
Modin is the second range of vinyl tiles from Flooret to make our list. It comes in a range of different wood shades. And there’s a sample pack of some of the most popular choices to help you make your selection.
This is another FloorScore certified product, so you won’t need to worry about VOC emissions. And the beveled edges lock into one another, so there’s no need for adhesive.
Like the Lato range, these have an exceptional 40-mil wear layer, so they’re very tough. They have a dent rating of 250 pounds per square foot, so they’ll cope with the heaviest furniture.
They have a stone composite core, and they’re 100 percent waterproof. That makes them a safe choice for bathrooms, or any other room in your home. IXPE underlayment comes pre-attached for a warm and quiet floor.
In terms of price, they fall neatly between Lucida’s BaseCore and BuildDirect’s Vesdura. The planks are large, measuring 9 inches wide by 72 inches long. The pattern is extra long, so there’s no repeat within a plank. And it’s embossed in register, so it’s hard to tell apart from real wood.
If you’re installing them in a smaller area, though, you may find them a little unwieldy. And note that you’ll need to visit the manufacturer’s website if you want to buy anything other than a sample.
- Tough 40-mil wear layer
- Rigid stone composite core with a dent rating of 250 pounds per square inch
- 100 percent waterproof
- The planks are very big, so may be unwieldy if you’re working in a confined space
- You’ll need to order anything more than a sample direct from the manufacturer.
5. Flooret Lachlan Vinyl Planks
Flooret’s Lachlan range is the last design from this manufacturer to make our list. It’s an attractive silvery gray shade, with a realistic wood grain. The texture is embossed in register to mirror the pattern on the wood.
Like the other Flooret options, this has a 40-mil wear layer and integrated IXPE underlayment. The result is a floor that’s tough, resilient, warm and quiet. It’s completely waterproof too.
It’s also FloorScore certified, so you know it’s been independently tested for low VOC emissions. And because the planks are designed to click and lock together, there’s no need for adhesive.
The planks here are a generous 9 inches wide and 72 inches long. They look great in a big space. But if you’re installing them somewhere space is at a premium, you may prefer something smaller.
As with the other Flooret designs, samples are available from a range of online retailers. But if you want to go ahead and order a whole floor, you’ll need to visit the manufacturer’s website.
- Texture is embossed in register for a realistic wood-like appearance
- Robust 40-mil wear layer
- Integrated IXPE underlayment for a warm, quiet floor
- The large planks may be tricky to maneuver if space is at a premium
- If you want more than a sample, you’ll need to visit the Flooret website.
6. Lucida USA MaxCore Vinyl Planks
MaxCore is the second range from Lucida USA to make our list. It’s more expensive than the BaseCore range, coming in at slightly less per square foot than the Flooret vinyl planks.
It’s available in a choice of 13 different colors and finishes. Most of these are designed to look like wood, but there’s also a plain black and a plain white option. All the designs are FloorScore certified to be low in VOCs.
Although they look like planks, they’re very wide. 16 inches in all, and 48 inches long. The extra width is a good option for covering a bigger area quickly. And they’re not as unwieldy as super-long planks.
They come with integrated IXPE underlayment for acoustic and thermal insulation. And they’re 5.5 mm thick, with a 22-mil wear layer that’s more robust than the BaseCore range. The warranty here is for 25 years’ residential and 10 years’ commercial use.
The tiles lock together without requiring any adhesive, so installation is simple. Just make sure your sub-floor is level first, or they may not fit together properly.
And check your order on delivery. We’ve heard of some cases where tiles have arrived damaged. And the package is very heavy, making returns expensive.
- Choice of 13 different colors and finishes
- 16 inches wide, helping you cover a large area quickly
- Integrated IXPE underlayment for thermal and acoustic insulation
- Make sure your sub-floor is level so that the tiles click together securely
- Check the package on delivery – we’ve heard of cases where tiles have arrived damaged.
7. Lucida USA TerraCore Vinyl Tiles
The TerraCore range from Lucida USA is about the same price per square foot as the Flooret options. And like those, it’s independently certified by FloorScore to be low in VOCs.
Unlike the other options on our list, these planks are designed to look like stone. They have the appearance of white marble with a subtle gray veining. They’d look great in a bathroom, or as a chic option for any room with a contemporary design scheme.
The tiles measure 12 inches wide by 24 inches long, giving them the look of quarry-hewn stone blocks. They come in boxes of eight, giving total coverage of 16 square feet.
They’re 7mm thick, and have integrated IXPE underlayment to reduce noise and help keep the floor warm.
They’re designed to lock into one another, without the need for adhesive. Note that your floor will need to be level to ensure the tiles click together securely.
One thing to watch out for is that the edges are vulnerable to damage. Check the package on arrival to ensure the tongue and groove is intact.
The wear layer here is 22 mil, and it’s coated in two layers of UV, plus urethane and ceramic bead. The multi-layer construction comes with a 25-year warranty for domestic use, and 10 years for commercial. And the tiles are waterproof and scratch-resistant.
- Great option for stone-look floors
- Click-and-lock design doesn’t require adhesive
- 25-year warranty for domestic use and 10 years for commercial
- Your sub-floor will need to be level for the tiles to lock together securely
- The tongues on the edges are fragile – check the package on arrival to ensure they’re intact.
Time to choose your low VOC vinyl flooring!
That brings us to the end of our round-up of seven of the best low VOC vinyl flooring options! By choosing FloorScore certified flooring, you’ll know it won’t emit high levels of VOCs that can harm your health.
Our top pick is the BaseCore range from Lucida USA. This provides a great balance between price and quality. It’s easy to install and hardwearing. And it comes with a 10-year warranty for residential use.
Whichever option you choose, we hope you’re soon enjoying your new floor. And you’ll be safe in the knowledge that it won’t be emitting harmful VOCs into your home.