Hardwood flooring is all the rage these days. And, it's not going out of style. But what if you want a hardwood look in an area that's prone to water or moisture? What if tile won't do it for you? (Because it's hard on your feet and cold in the winter).
Well the good news is that there is a new solution, and it's called Coretec Plus. This product is made by US Floors and it's been around for 4 or 5 years, and we absolutely love it! And, so do our customers. Even the installers love it!
It's perfect for areas where you may have more moisture such as basements, kitchens and bathrooms. They are 100% waterproof. So, you don't need to worry if you have water intrusion, or if something overflows or if your furry friends make a mess with their water bowls.
Please note that this article contains affiliate links. You can read my full disclosure in the right side bar (scroll down a bit).
What is Coretec Plus?
Coretec Plus is a high quality luxury vinyl that looks like hardwood. (They also have options that look tile tile and stone, but the hardwood selections are much more popular). They are individual planks that click together (similar to a laminate). But, they look and feel way better than a laminate. They are 8mm thick and look like engineered hardwood. But, unlike laminate and engineered wood, Coretec Plus is waterproof.
Most of my customers are stunned at how real this product looks and feels.
The top layer is a clear wear layer (.5 mm) which protects the floor from wear and tear. Then, you have a layer of luxury vinyl and then a sturdy layer made from recycled limestone, wood and bamboo dust. On the bottom, you have an attached cork underlayment. All 4 layers are waterproof.
In addition, the cork underlayment gives you a bit of cushioning, insulation and sound absorption. It also helps camouflage minor imperfections in the floors (and reduced the need and cost for floor prep.
Advantages of Coretec Plus
- Looks very real (way more real than laminate, and I often more real than engineered wood).
- Feels (and sounds) more real (especially vs laminate)
- Easier on your feet - a bit softer and warmer
- Can go on top of concrete or tile (or virtually any hard/flat surface)
- Doesn't require plywood subfloor, nor acclimation
- Doesn't crack (like tile does)
- Very easy to clean
How is Coretec Plus installed?
Coretec Plus is a floating floor, so it clicks together like a laminate floor would. (But, unlike laminate which absorbs moisture like a sponge, Coretec Plus is waterproof). For many that are handy, this is a good do-it-yourself product. If you feel you can install laminate, then you can also install Coretec Plus.
Note: you can see more details on how to install Coretec Plus, including a video and tools you need in my full article here: Coretec Plus full product review.
What colors are available?
Coretec Plus comes in a variety of hardwood shades, from light to dark. There are mid tone and red/cherry colored options as well. And, they have a wide variety of grays and white washes from light to mid to dark grays.
Most of the luxury vinyl planks are 5" or 7" wide and 4 ft long. They also have some longer and wider options, but these cost a bit more.
Coretec Plus is also available in tile, slate, concrete and other stone options. Most of these come in 12 x 24" or 18 x 24" options (and you have the option to stagger them and install on a brick lay which both looks nicer and makes your space look larger.
How much does Coretec Plus cost?
Obviously, this is going to vary based on where you buy, where you live (cost of labor) and which line you buy. As the name implies, luxury vinyl isn't cheap. It's high quality material that is durable and looks great. But, generally, it costs less than hardwood and less than glue down luxury vinyl (as it's clickable and doesn't require adhesive nor much floor prep). And, of course, if you are doing this yourself, it will be much less expensive vs. paying an installer.
Luxury Vinyl costs more than most laminates...because most laminates are cheap and flimsy and don't last long. They will often delaminate just from cleaning and fluctuations in humidity. But, Luxury vinyl is probably comparably priced vs high quality laminates.
Also, things get tricky when you just look at the product cost itself. Coretec Plus has an attached cork underlayment; for laminate, you usually need to add the cost of the underlayment (which could be an additional .35-.65 cents per square foot. So, always be sure to look at total delivered costs, not just the cost of the product.
Oh, and I would recommend staying away from their cheaper line called Coretec One. This is an inferior product - it does not have a cork underlayment and the patterns don't look as real. Yes, you get what you pay for.
Where can you buy Coretec Plus?
- In most local flooring stores (but not in big box stores such as Home Depot)
- Amazon has a few colors available (and very reasonably priced)
- Fast Floors (has a wider selection and also reasonably priced)
You can order some samples from Amazon or Fast Floors. I believe there may be a nominal charge for samples (e.g. $1).
You can read more about Coretec Plus my full article here: Coretec Plus full product review.
You may find these articles helpful:
- What is a floating floor?
- What’s the difference between laminate and vinyl flooring?
- Recommended cleaning products and accessories to maintain floors and reduce scratches.