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What’s the best type of flooring for elderly people?

Slipping and falling are common causes of injury for elderly people and as you get older it becomes harder and harder to recover from a nasty accident. This is why lots of thought should be given to the type of flooring that you have installed in your home if you are worried about slips and trips, or perhaps if you are choosing flooring for an elderly relative’s home.

First of all, it is important to note that, regardless of what type of flooring you decide to have installed, it must also be installed properly and by professionals.  A carpet that is lose, saggy and badly fitted can move under your feet and cause you to fall. Should you be carrying hot food or drinks then this could result in a very nasty accident.  This is particularly important when deciding on flooring for stairs where sagging carpet is very dangerous. Here at Lincolnshire Flooring we employ all of our own carpet and flooring fitters which means that we can be sure that they are trained to the highest standard with both internal and external training, and we offer full site surveys, measuring services and aftercare for peace of mind.

When it comes to deciding which flooring to install to reduce slips and trips there are three good choices that we often recommend. The flooring you choose needs to be not only safe but also comfortable and easy to maintain. It should be comfortable and cushioned to reduce the impact of a fall, and easy to maintain so as to reduce the chances of causing an injury while cleaning. With this in mind, vinyl, carpet and other soft flooring types like cork and rubber flooring are often safe options. Carpet and cork are naturally resistant to slips and offer plenty of friction underfoot which aids stability. While vinyl flooring is slightly tougher and provides less cushioning it is very easy to maintain and only requires a mop or brush to keep clean. In general it is best to avoid laminates and wooden flooring which can be particularly smooth and may increase the chances of slipping over and having an accident.

Bathrooms are one of the most common places where slips and trips occur. After showers and baths these types of rooms can become a slip hazard due to build ups of water and moisture. While ceramic tiles, stone and concrete floors are easy to keep clean, which is important, they are very unforgiving in the event of a slip or trip which means they aren’t always the best choice. Hardwood flooring is also tough and may not provide much cushioning if you have a fall and the moisture of a bathroom tends to make it an unsuitable choice as swelling and cracking can occur. More friendly options for your bathroom include rubber, cork, bamboo, vinyl and carpet. However, carpet can be difficult to keep clean and dry in a bathroom.

No one person’s situation is the same and beyond reducing slips and trips you may also have questions about issues like wheelchair access, warmth and other concerns that need addressing.  At our showroom in Lincoln we have a wide range of different flooring options and our team are always on hand to answer any questions you may have and help you find something suitable. To learn more give us a call on 01522 524374 or pop in to our showroom in Lincoln on Outer Circle Road.

Important carpet care advice for autumn and winter

clip_image002While it’s sad to see the sun pack its bags at this time of year, the autumn and winter brings with it a whole host of opportunities for adventures. You now have the chance to wrap up warm and enjoy a muddy walk around the countryside.

Unfortunately, while a brisk walk and dose of country air can do wonders for our physical and mental health, the same can’t be said for our carpets which can fall victim to muddy boots and paws. Here are a few ways to protect your rugs and carpets during cold and wet weather.

Sweep often
Debris from outside can quickly bed its way into your carpet fibres, which can make it appear dirty even after vacuuming. One way to stop this from happening is to regularly sweep away leaf piles and other dirt from the entrances to your home.

Stop dirt in its tracks
The next step to preventing dirty carpets is to minimise the amount of dirt that makes its way into your home. To do this you try and encourage good behaviour from all your residents by placing a doormat and shoe rack in your hall way. When these are spotted they will encourage guests to wipe their feet and then remove their shoes, minimising the amount of dirt that makes its way inside.

This is particularly important in the colder periods of the year as mud and slushy snow or ice is more likely to be brought inside, along with salt used to grit roads which can wreak havoc on your carpet fibres.

The same goes for your pets. If you’ve taken your dog out for a walk then make sure to wipe off their paws and give their coat a quick rub down before they make it through the rest of your home.

Cleaning mud
As awful as it may seem at the time, mud isn’t impossible to get out of a carpet. Generally if you tackle a stain quickly then you have a better chance of removing it. So if mud does make its way on to your carpet then allow it to dry before giving it a quick vacuum away. After you’ve removed as much mud as you can you should grab a cloth, add a little detergent and begin to gently blot the stain away.

Don’t despair! If you fail in your attempt to stop dirt from making its way to your carpet, in this blog we detail some tried and tested methods of removing stains that are sure to work.

For more tips on cleaning your floors, please read our guide on how to maintain and clean your floors and carpets.

Incredible flooring tricks to make your rooms appear larger

imageIt’s very rare for anyone to find a home that is completely suitable. Whether it’s one less bathroom than you wanted or a living room that just doesn’t feel big enough, we almost always have to compromise in some way. However, if you’re stuck with a living room, bathroom, bedroom or kitchen that just feels way too small, there are a few tricks that you can employ to open up the space. Here we will look at how flooring can help play its part in creating a spacious atmosphere.

Use large tiles
When Estate Agents offer tips to home owners on making their homes ready for viewing day, they generally suggest that you shouldn’t have any small items on tables or mantelpieces as it clutters up the room and distracts the eye from the rooms best features. The same goes for tiling. The smaller the tiles you select, the more grouting will be visible around the room distracting the eye and making the room feel crowded. By selecting tiles that are larger than the standard 12 inch, you can make your bathroom, kitchen or hallway feel much larger than it is.

Use wide planks of wood and lay them strategically
Wooden flooring can also be used to your advantage. Next time you walk into someone’s house and you notice they have a wooden floor, take a moment to look at how the planks are laid. Occasionally you may see that the planks are laid in an unusual way – at a right angle. By laying beams at right angles beginning on the longest side of the room, you work with the room’s natural features to make it appear more spacious than it is. Similarly to tiles, you can also select wider surfaced beams to achieve the same effect.

Keep a uniform theme
Another way that you can really open up a room is to adopt a uniform theme throughout. This means ensuring that the flooring is consistent; all the same shade and free of rugs and mats. This fools the eye into thinking there is more space than there really is.

While you might not be able to afford an extension on your home just yet, using some of these flooring tricks can at least make it feel as if your home is larger.

For more information on choosing flooring for each room of your home please refer to our full room by room guide by clicking here, visit our company showroom on Outer Circle Road, Lincoln, or give us a call on 01522 524374.

What’s the best type of flooring for a hair salon?

clip_image002When it comes to choosing flooring for a hair salon there are a few key factors in making your decision. You will need a type of flooring that looks good, is safe, easy to clean and durable among other things. Here are some of the flooring options available to you for your hair salon or barber shop.

Hardwood Flooring
Many barber shops and salons are going for a stripped back, rustic design for their shops and this means that many are choosing organic and natural materials like wood to fit-out their shops. Solid wood flooring has an instant impact on visitors to your salon and leaves a strong impression.

One potential downside to hardwood flooring is that it can scratch quite easily, so if you think that your salon chairs or customers might leave scratches on the floor then you might want to consider an engineered wooden floor which has a thicker top layer. The thicker top layer of an engineered wooden floor is able to be sanded down to make scratches disappear.

Another downside with hardwood flooring is that although it can be brushed, the gaps could allow for a build up of cut hair, which might then be difficult to remove and clean.

Vinyl flooring
Another popular option for salons and barber shops is vinyl flooring. Not only does it look great but is probably the easiest type of flooring to maintain, making cleaning away hair from sticky floors a doddle. It’s also comfortable underfoot which is important for your staff who may often spend long periods of time on their feet.

Carpet
Every business is different but in general you should try to avoid carpet in your salon. This is because loose hair will require vacuuming away and can’t be swept away like on vinyl, tile or hardwood floors. It can also prove to be a headache should you spill hair dye or accidentally burn the carpet with hair straighteners.

Tile Flooring
Tile flooring is a popular hardwearing choice for salons and barber shops, as it is easy to clean and long lasting. However, poorly fitted tiles can sometimes begin to ‘lift’ which could become a Health and Safety hazard for both your staff and your customers.

Here at Lincolnshire Flooring we have been installing commercial floor coverings for over 50 years. For a no obligation quotation please call us on 01522 524374 or visit our website for more information: http://www.lincolnshireflooring.co.uk/commercial/.

How to stop your cat from clawing at your carpet

clip_image002Cats have a physical and psychological need to scratch. It helps them to keep their claws sharp which are their natural hunting weapon and also helps them to mark their territory. Unfortunately, this can be something of an annoyance for pet owners who are left frustrated after having invested their money in new furniture or flooring which has been damaged by their cat.

So what are some of the ways that you can prevent damage to your carpet? Sadly, you cannot stop your cat from clawing but you can redirect it away from your carpet, or furniture.

One of the best ways to redirect your cat’s need to claw at things is to purchase a scratching post. You should place the post near an area where your cat has been known to scratch and wipe your cat’s paws gently across the post. This will leave some of their scent there and if repeated you should be able to encourage your cat to use it.

While scratching is a natural behaviour for a cat, clawing can also be brought about by feelings of insecurity or stress. You can make an indoor cat feel more comfortable by restricting its movement within your home to just one or two rooms where it can begin to get familiar with its surroundings. You can also help it feel at home by spreading its scent around a room. To do this give your cats face a wipe and then use the cloth to spread the scent around the room, being careful to avoid any areas you don’t want it to spend time in.

Another reason for scratching can be that your cat isn’t getting enough attention. While cats are often solitary creatures, they do enjoy playing with toys which stimulate and keep them occupied, especially if they are left home alone.

One final solution for scratching on carpets, floors and furniture is to consider cat claws. Cat claws are a type of plastic cap which are fitted by a vet and prevent your cat from scratching. However, you should always seek advice from your vet to make sure that it is the right solution for you and that your cat is comfortable.

For further advice, click here to read our article “A guide to the best flooring for pets” for a comprehensive guide to the best options of flooring available for your home.

The truth about dogs and solid wood floors

clip_image002It’s a common dilemma - you want all the perks of a warm, authentic wooden floor but you’re worried that your dog may slip and get hurt, or might ruin an expensive floor with their scratches and scuffs.

The truth is that sharing a home with a dog often means that you have to make sacrifices; this could be sacrificing your time to take them for a walk and give them attention, sacrificing money for their dog foot and vet bills or perhaps the type of flooring that you can have in your home.

Every type of dog is different and while some dogs will move quite slowly, others will launch themselves around in excitement. The fear with solid wood flooring is that they can slip and hurt themselves as they launch themselves with their back legs which may then slip out from under them. This could result in injury for the dog, such as pulling a muscle.

The other common fear is scuffs and scratches which can be caused by dog’s claws as they move around your wooden floor. Natural wood can be quite susceptible to marks such as this.

So what are your options? Well first of all you might want to consider an alternative to solid wood flooring as other types of flooring can replicate the same look but offer more protection for your dog as well as protection against scuffs and scratches.

One example of this is laminate flooring which does an excellent job of mimicking wood. Laminate is often more resistant to scratches and is very low maintenance when it comes to cleaning – so you can easily clean up after a dog that sheds its coat. Another great alternative is LVT flooring, which is also a good choice if you are looking for a scratch resistant floor which replicates the textures of wood.

Tile is often popular with dog owners. They are very tough so aren’t very comfortable under your pet’s feet but they can be cleaned easily and are highly resistant to scratches. Whilst you might not want them in the main room of your home, they help to create a buffer zone in your utility room or entrance hall.

Of course if you are willing to go for something entirely different to wooden flooring then you could always look at vinyl flooring or carpet which are both very comfortable underfoot and can take more punishment from your dogs’ claws.

Finally, if opting for a different kind of flooring is a step too far for you and you’re determined to have a solid wooden floor installed in your home then you might be able to make it work by making sure that your dogs nails are kept trimmed and rugs are put down in places where they might launch themselves from.

Click here to read our article “A guide to the best flooring for pets” for a comprehensive guide to the best options of flooring available for your home, or alternatively come and talk to us at our showroom on Outer Circle Road in Lincoln.

3 ways to pet-proof your new floor

cat-649164_1280Our pets are our best friends but they sure do know how to make a mess - dragging their rear across the carpet, scratching floors and causing general chaos in our homes. When you’ve spent time and money finding the perfect flooring you want to be able to protect it. So, here are some tactics that you can use to help preserve your carpet against some of your pets more destructive tendencies!

Create a buffer zone

One approach to take to deal with the problem of messy pets is to create a buffer zone between your front or back garden and areas of your house that might have delicate flooring such as carpet or wooden floors where mud, grit and dirt could wreak havoc.

This could either be a simple mat, a rug or a different form of flooring such as tile which is more resistant to dirt.

You should also make sure to give your dog or cat a dry with a towel if it’s been raining while they’ve been outside to avoid that “wet dog” smell in your home.

Protect your cat’s claws

Some people suggest that if your cat tends to leave lots of scratches in carpets, floors, and furniture that you should consider cat claws. Cat claws are plastic caps which are fitted, usually by a vet, to a cat’s claws making them less dangerous. However, all cats are different and you may find that they don’t enjoy having the claws on and that they feel uncomfortable – if in doubt seek out your vet for their advice.

Dinner time

When it comes to keeping your pets fed and watered you need to make sure that you have a mat in place under their food and water bowls. This can stop any liquid seeping into your flooring and damaging it. Some flooring such as laminate can be very susceptible to water damage, so it’s important to protect against any splashes.

For more information about choosing the right flooring for your home if you have a pet, click to read our article, or visit us in store on Outer Circle Road in Lincoln.

What’s the best type of flooring for a commercial kitchen?

clip_image002When it comes to commercial kitchens, the most important factor is always going to be hygiene, closely followed by durability.

Restaurants and commercial kitchens are among some of the most demanding environments for flooring. Constant heat, humidity and movement mean that flooring must be carefully selected. So, what’s the best flooring to choose?

The flooring for a commercial restaurant needs to meet many different criteria. First of all the floor needs to be durable as the expense and time involved in laying down new flooring to replace old damaged flooring could be costly to a business, especially when considering the downtime that could be involved.

Secondly, the flooring must be hygienic and meet all the relevant HSE and EU regulations. This means that it needs to be easy to clean and properly fitted. A floor which is not easy to clean is not only a breeding ground for bacteria and dirt but will also be a nuisance for the staff who have to clean down at the end of a long shift.

The flooring must be able to withstand high temperatures and the humidity associated with a busy kitchen, so it shouldn’t take in any moisture or begin to crack like some types of flooring do.

This criteria all points towards one key type of flooring and what is often the most popular form of flooring for busy commercial kitchens and restaurants: vinyl.

Vinyl is a strong, durable and low maintenance form of flooring. It is very resistant to high temperatures and will not take in any moisture, ensuring its longevity and making it an enemy of bugs and bacteria, especially is it so easy to clean.

Of course, flooring in kitchens needs to be fitted extremely well. It should be finished and installed well so that no gaps are left for build-ups of debris from food, moisture or spillages. It should also be installed with an underlay ensuring comfort and underfoot cushioning for the busy chefs of your restaurant.

For more information about choosing appropriate flooring in commercial settings, please click here to read our free online guide.

How flooring helps create a cook-friendly kitchen

clip_image002If you’re planning to remodel your kitchen then there are lots of things that you will need to consider, and flooring is one of them. However, despite it being extremely important, it is often the aspect that is most overlooked.

Today, kitchens aren’t just the place that we cook our meals. They also act as a hub for the home, the place where we catch up on each other’s days, reluctantly do homework, eat meals together, relax with a glass of wine. Kitchens aren’t just a key room for humans either – they are often the main home for our pets. The uses for the modern kitchen are therefore almost endless. However something that hasn’t changed in recent years is the idea of making your kitchen as comfortable as possible for whoever is designated chef that particular meal time.

Comfortable flooring
When creating a friendly working environment in your kitchen, flooring should be one of the first things you think about, not the last as is so often the case.

While hard flooring such as stone, ceramic and tile can often look great in the right kitchen they also aren’t the most forgiving, not only on expensive cutlery but also on your joints, on bare feet or on little hands and knees if you have babies, toddlers or young children.

So if you want to avoid replacing broken glasses and plates and would prefer something softer and gentler underfoot then there are some great options available.

Here at Lincolnshire Flooring we recommend vinyl flooring for its minimum maintenance and hard wearing properties. It makes it very easy to clean up all of the inevitable spills and stains that will happen in a kitchen. Luxury vinyl tiles are also a great choice and offer a great way to incorporate a high impact and designer style floor into your home. Like vinyl flooring it is also low maintenance, resistant to most of the things that life in the kitchen will throw at it, and as a result will still look great many years down the line.

Wood is not a good choice for a kitchen but less for comfort and more the fact that kitchens tend to have high humidity which can cause wooden flooring to gain volume, expand and then shrink – ruining your floor.

The work triangle
clip_image004Once you have sorted out your choice of flooring, you can then start to think about the layout of the kitchen that is going to go on top of it! Over 70-years ago the idea of the ‘work triangle’ began popping up in kitchen planning circles. This idea talks about how important it is to reduce the distance that a cook should have to travel between the prime working areas of the kitchen, making it much easier and quicker to prepare meals. This is achieved by having the 3 key elements of refrigerator, stove and sink close enough so that ‘wasted steps’ are reduced, making the kitchen more efficient.

Of course, in those days kitchen appliances were much larger and kitchens were smaller than they are now. Today’s appliances can be far smaller and our kitchens much more open plan. However, the idea still remains that we should try and split our kitchens up into key areas, and that these key areas of the kitchen should be grouped together for ease. For example an area for food stuffs, an area for plates and cutlery, an area for cleaning, an area for preparation and an area for cooking.

To find out more about choosing the perfect floor for your kitchen then take a look at our room-by-room flooring guide, where we explain the pros and cons of each different type of flooring for each room of the house. Alternatively, pop in to see us on Outer Circle Road in Lincoln, or give us a call on 01522 524374.

Lincolnshire Flooring is recruiting!

clip_image002We currently have a number of exciting career opportunities available at Lincolnshire Flooring.

This is due to the continuing growth and expansion of our established Lincolnshire business. Our latest job vacancies are detailed below.

Warehouse Operative
We are looking to recruit a warehouse operative to work in a warehouse environment, receiving and dispatching goods.

The job includes the cutting of vinyls and carpets and the allocation and monitoring of company plant.

A fork lift license would be an advantage but not essential as training would be given.

We are not necessarily looking for a person that has experience in warehousing, but rather someone that can add something to the existing team with enthusiasm and a good work ethic.

Experienced carpet and vinyl fitters
We are always on the lookout for experienced carpet and vinyl fitters.

With an ever expanding workload, the potential for earnings are great.

We offer full employment, company van and uniform along with paid holidays.

Alternatively we are always on the look-out for people to train through apprenticeship schemes to become carpet and vinyl fitters.

If you are interested in either of these opportunities, please send a CV and covering letter to Lincolnshire Flooring’s Managing Director Graham Jefferson by email: graham@lincolnshireflooring.co.uk or please phone 01522 524374 for an informal chat.

About Lincolnshire Flooring
Located on Outer Circle Road in Lincoln, Lincolnshire Flooring is Lincolnshire’s premier independent flooring company. We have been installing commercial floor coverings in Lincolnshire and the surrounding areas for over 50 years and carry out contracts of values up to £200,000. We also offer our professional and friendly service to the general public. We supply and fit all types of carpets, timber flooring, laminates, vinyl's, linoleum, carpet tiles, safety flooring and luxury vinyl tiles. We carry out work for private homes, schools, colleges, universities, hospitals, local authorities and main contractors for whom we work for on a formal and informal partnering basis. We pride ourselves on providing a professional service from quotation through to completed installation. For more information about Lincolnshire Flooring, please visit http://www.lincolnshireflooring.co.uk/.

How carpet flooring can help create a luxury feel in your shop

clip_image002Today the retail business is more competitive than ever, with many shoppers choosing to stay indoors and shop from the comfort of their homes rather than venture on to the High Street. So, how can flooring help to create a luxury environment that shoppers love to visit?

Currently in the UK online sales are peaking at over £50bn every year, while brick and mortar retailers struggle to keep up. However, while many shoppers are making their purchases from laptops and mobile phones, there are many who still prefer to do their shopping in person – particularly when buying medium to high value products.

This means that is more important than ever for retailers to create an environment that shows their products in the best light and creates a pleasant atmosphere for shoppers to enjoy. Together with good use of lighting, spacious design and well designed fittings, flooring can play an important role.

When a customer walks into a retail store, one of the first things that they will notice is the feeling of the flooring beneath their feet and that is bound to leave an impression. Think about when you visit your favourite budget retailer; the colour of the flooring, wall decoration, fixtures and fittings will all create an impression that savings are being passed on to the customers through their simple approach to furnishing their store. In this same way, a luxurious carpet that is warm and comfortable underfoot will instantly provide an impression of luxury to a customer visiting your store.

The most common types of flooring that are used in retail environments are vinyl tile, hardwood flooring and carpet, all of which can come in a variety of different colours and patterns and can help to create a luxurious atmosphere in a retail store.

Here at Lincolnshire Flooring we have been installing commercial floor coverings for over 50 years, carrying out contracts of values up to £200,000. For a no obligation quotation please call us on 01522 524374 or visit our website for more information: http://www.lincolnshireflooring.co.uk/commercial/.

Planning the perfect loft conversion

clip_image002Developing your loft space can be a fantastic method of driving up the value of your property. A loft conversion can provide you with room for an office, allowing you to work from home, a games room to impress your friends or can even act as an additional bedroom for children or guests.

However, not every loft is right for a conversion and before you begin you’ll need to decide whether the space you have is right. You will need to consider issues such as how high the ceilings are and subsequent head height, whether your home can take the extra weight of the conversion, your roof structure, fire safety and available access routes. With so much to consider it may be wise to seek the advice of an architect, especially if this kind of project is new to you.

Fire regulations are a legal requirement and will need to be met. Conversions need at least 30 minutes fire protection and can usually be met through the use of fire doors and plasterboard. You will also be required to have a staircase which can serve as an escape route in the case of an emergency.

Building regulations will also need to be met, although not all attic conversions require planning permission. However, you should seek it out anyway, as even if you decide against a conversion you will still have added some value to your property by having approval, should you decide to sell it later down the line.

Features
Stairs are a key part of a loft conversion but they need to be both practical and safe. Building Regulations require that a staircase should always lead to a hall or an external door but you will also want to think about the visual aspects. Often stairs for attic conversions are made from pine and MDF materials; however stained wood and other materials may be available at an extra cost and can look more impressive.

Natural light is important and skylight windows are a convenient option for lofts as they don’t require big changes to the structure of your home like dormer windows do and are less likely to require planning permission. However, you may want to invest in blinds to block out the sun at certain times of the day. Lofts are often large and shaped unusually so it can sometimes be a chore to get them lit up in the evenings. Try spotlights and wall lights to get around this problem.

Flooring
When you choose flooring for your loft conversion you need to think carefully about the use of the room. A loft conversion can serve a number of different purposes so there is no one size fits all solution.

After you’ve had your floor reinforced, insulated and had any necessary cables laid you will need to consider soundproofing your floor. Most uses for a room will involve noise and there is likely to be bleed through from stamping feet, music, children playing or wheels from office chairs rolling across the room, so you might want to consider rugs or a carpeted floor for additional soundproofing.

If you are looking to create a stylish and modern loft then you can’t go wrong with wooden flooring, however if you are more concerned with comfort and warmth then you may prefer a cushioned carpet. As always you should look to the colour scheme and overall style of your room for inspiration. Light, natural coloured carpets can create a real sense of space while natural wood furnishings or exposed joints can be nicely complemented by a wooden floor.

For more information on finding the right type of flooring for each room of the house, please see our free room by room guide.