Cost Guides

Karndean Floor Cost

Written by  John Davies
Last updated: August 23, 2023
Karndean flooring

Karndean flooring is arguably one of the best synthetic floor solutions of the past few decades and the holy grail of Vinyl flooring. Why?

Because the average LVT (Luxury Vinyl Tiles) is usually head and shoulders above any other synthetic floor solution when it comes to recreating the look and feel of natural wood and stones, with Karndean floors, the textures and patterns are so realistic that most people can’t tell the difference.

This, and the fact that they perfectly combine aesthetic appeal, design versatility, durability and affordability, is why more people are choosing to install Karndean floors. There is an abundance of styles and designs to choose from. And although many use them in kitchens and bathrooms (because of their waterproof quality), Karndean floors can go anywhere.

They are perfect for bedrooms, living rooms, offices and receptions alike. The only place you might want to avoid installing Karndean flooring is outdoor or anywhere with lots of direct sunlight. This is because too much sunlight causes fading.

Aside from this, Karndean floors barely have any other weakness. They are both hardwearing and easy to maintain, allowing them to withstand use and abuse without being much worse for wear.

Installation costs are also very affordable. Expect to pay between £300 to £2,000 depending on the flooring type and installation methods. There are four types and three installation methods.

We will discuss them soon enough, along with factors affecting price, maintenance, alternative flooring solutions (vinyl floor or otherwise), and finding the right Karndean floor fitters to have a smooth installation and enjoy all the benefits of Karndean flooring.

How Much Does Karndean flooring installation cost?

Table 1: Cost of installing the four most popular types of Karndean flooring in three different rooms

Type of Karndean Flooring7 square metres (£)13 square metres (£)20 square metres (£)
Opus250 – 300400 – 450575 – 625
Palio Clic300 – 450470 – 520600 – 650
Da Vinci320 – 450440 – 490620 – 670
Korlok430 – 500570 – 620850 – 900

Table 2: The cost of using the three methods of installing Karndean flooring for three different rooms

Installation method7 square metres (£)13 square metres (£)20 square metres (£)
Glue-down300 – 450500 – 600800 – 1000
Rigid Core400 – 650600 – 800850 – 1200
Looselay500 – 700750 – 10001000 – 1500

Tables 1 and 2 are mere estimates. They are only created to give you ideas of what to expect. To find out the cost of installing Karndean flooring in a particular room, floor or entire house, I suggest measuring the dimensions of the space. Then multiply it by the average cost of fitting Karndean flooring, between £25 and £48 per square metre.

Remember, this depends on flooring type, installation method, and other factors. However, no matter the variables, 55% of the expenses will go to supplies, 35% will go to labour, and the remaining 10% will be spent on waste removal. Let’s talk about each of them briefly.

Supply costs

You can either buy the flooring materials and other supplies yourself or let the installer do it, whichever seems more comfortable and smarter. If buying by yourself, I suggest speaking to the installer first about what and how much flooring materials to get.

Labour costs

The average Karndean floor fitter will charge between £100 to £200 per day. Now, this depends on your location and the complexity of the work. The installation takes between 1 to 5 days, depending on the size of the space and the complexity of the work.

A complex installation will take longer and may lead to the fitter charging higher rates. Add that to any additional work and you may spend more than we estimated on labour and the entire project altogether.

Karndean Flooring Cost: Labour

Waste removal costs

The installers/fitters usually include waste disposal fees in their quotes. If they don’t, you can hire a waste removal company/individual or skip. Expect to pay £3 to £5 per square metre for the former and £100 to £150 per day for the latter.

However, at the end of the day, it all depends on the quantity of waste you need to dispose of and this is mainly affected by whether or not you had to remove the existing flooring.

What are The Factors Affecting the Cost of Installing Karndean Flooring?

After mentioning the cost factors a few times already, it is finally time to tell you about them. This seemingly insignificant section of this article contains everything that can blow up the overall cost or help you spend lower than estimated.

So please consider how they matter to your project before approaching the flooring specialist. You will need them during negotiations.

Size of room

The larger the room, the more supply, labour and time needed to have Karndean flooring installed. Even waste removal will cost more. All of these will affect costs because size is the biggest cost factor. Just take another trip down memory lane to tables 1 and 2. There, I provided Karndean flooring prices for rooms of three different sizes.

The sizes are not random: the average bathroom is around 7 square metres, the average bedroom and some large kitchens are around 13 square metres, while the average living room is around 20 square metres. From the table, you can see as Karndean flooring cost increases gradually with size.

Type of Flooring and Installation Method

During the introduction, I said there are three of the latter and we will only discuss four of the former. Then in Tables 1 and 2, I provided the Karndean flooring costs for the former and latter, respectively. Did you notice that the items are arranged according to ascending prices?

This doesn’t mean that some are necessarily better than others. They all have their advantages are disadvantages. We will cover them soon and hopefully help you choose the one that suits your needs and preferences.

Structure of the Room

This affects both accessibility and the complexity of the work. Let me explain. The basement and attic are usually not as accessible as the main floors of a house. And a room with irregular shapes, multiple levels and nooks will be much more difficult to work on.

So if a room is not easily accessible and or has a complex structure, you will likely have to spend more. Only this time, labour cost is affected more than anything else.

The condition of the subfloor

Not all Karndean floor installation method requires that the current floor be removed. The only requirement is a healthy subfloor. That is the only way to get an even, smooth and beautiful Karndean flooring.

So you need to ensure that the new flooring, Karndean or otherwise, is not fitted on an uneven and unhealthy subfloor. The flooring specialist will take care of this, but you can also do your part by ensuring-

  • that the flooring space is even, undamaged and not creaking or squeaking
  • and don’t need new skirting boards

If there are any issues, have them fixed by other specialists or by the same people who will also handle the Karndean flooring installation. This will increase flooring costs, but you don’t have a choice. It may also be a great opportunity to look into additional works like underfloor heating installation.

Installing a new subfloor usually takes a few days or weeks. The actual installation should be over in a day or two but you will have to wait longer for the newly-installed subfloor to dry. You can’t lay Karndean floor tiles on a surface with a relative humidity of more than 75%.


So now we are at the final factor affecting the cost of Karndean flooring installation. Location affects both labour and material cost. These two and, as a result, the entire project will cost more in big cities like London. You may be looking at 10% to 25% more.

What are the Types of Karndean Flooring?

Table 3: Average cost per square metre of the four most popular types of Karndean flooring 

Type of Karndean flooringCost per square metre (£)
Opus24 – 36
Palio Clic26 – 38
Da Vinci28 – 40
Korlok36 – 48

Table 4: average cost per square metre of the three methods of installing Karndean flooring

Installation methodCost per square metre (£)
Glue-down20 – 30
Rigid Core30 – 50
Looselay40 – 80

There are two ways to classify Karndean flooring- according to individual product type or installation method. Most people will use either classification and even refer to installation methods as “types of Karndean flooring.” It’s not wrong, but it can be confusing.

So, to avoid confusion, I decided that it is better if we cover both types of classification. In fact, we already have. We have looked at estimates for both and how they affect Karndean flooring costs. Now it is time to dig a little deeper. As always, it is about choosing the best fit for your needs and preferences, not the cheapest or most expensive.

Types of Karndean flooring

  • Opus Karndean flooring: This is the cheapest and one of the latest products in the Karndean range. It comes in stone and wood designs with many sub-categories of designs, textures and colours. Opus flooring is versatile, water-proof, durable and easy to maintain.
  • Palio Clic Karndean flooring: This is also mainly a collection of stone and wood designs. However, the effects are more realistic and the design range is larger. It is also very durable and hard-wearing. The installation method is the biggest factor that sets Palio Clic Karndean flooring apart. It only uses rigid core flooring.
  • Da Vinci Karndean Flooring: This product range comes in beautiful and intricate wood, stone and ceramic designs. It has a protective polyurethane coating to prevent germ growth, and various shades and patterns of finishing.
  • Korlok Karndean Flooring: The products in this range cost more than the rest. This is probably because of the raw material and noise reduction qualities. Like the others, Korlok flooring is hardwearing and comes in various styles and designs.

Types of Karndean flooring based on flooring Installation Methods

  • Glue-down Karndean flooring: For this method, the new Karndean floor is installed by glueing the tiles to the floor. The glue makes the floor steady but also difficult to remove. Glue-down flooring is cheaper than the other methods but requires special adhesives and experience to execute properly.
  • Rigid Core Karndean flooring: It is also known as a floating floor because it involves laying the new Karndean floor on the old flooring. There is no need for removal. However, it may require an underlay. Rigid core flooring uses click technology, which simply means fitting and clicking the tiles into place like a jigsaw. Obviously, this is not as secure as glue. So the floor tiles could shift, although they rarely do.
  • Looselay Karndean flooring: It involves using a coating to stick the tiles to the subfloor. This coating harnesses friction to secure the bond, resulting in a secure yet relatively easy to remove flooring. The only issue with looselay flooring is the price.

What are the Benefits of Karndean floors?

There are flooring solutions that might be better in price, durability and aesthetic value. We will discuss some of these alternatives soon. But since you are already at this point in this article, it is safe to assume that you are seriously considering Karndean flooring. So, here are what you have to gain.

  • It is waterproof: This is arguably their most well-known quality. Many people discover Kardean flooring while looking for great waterproof flooring or in someone else’s kitchen or bathroom. Due to this quality, water and oil spills are easy to clean and barely leave dents.
  • It is durable: Your new Karndean flooring can last for 35 years. That is 1o to 15 times more than the lifespan of other luxury vinyl flooring solutions.
  • It is easy to maintain: Maintenance is very easy. Just read on for a little while longer to find out more.
  • It is children- and pet-friendly: You won’t have to worry that your kids and pets will damage your new floor. It can withstand all forms of abuse, scratching, spills etc.
  • There are lots of designs and styles to choose from: Karndean flooring has several beautiful designs of various shades, colours and textures. However, they mostly consist of wood and natural stone styles.

What are some alternatives to Karndean Vinyl flooring?

Let’s approach this in two categories, namely LVT and non-LVT alternatives. The former offers direct alternatives, while the latter is just in case you decide against vinyl flooring.

LVT Alternatives

  • Amitco flooring: They are more expensive but equally as popular. Amtico also has a wide range of high-quality flooring options.
  • Quick-Step Livyn flooring: The products are cheaper and mostly use glue-down and rigid core installation methods.
  • Parador flooring: Like quick-step livyn flooring, price is Parador’s other major advantage over Karndean.

Non-LVT Alternatives

  • Wood flooring: Both softwood and hardwood flooring options are much more expensive and prone to wear. That is why we have synthetic flooring solutions as alternatives.
  • Natural stone flooring: Like wood, natural stone flooring solutions are also more expensive. However, they are very durable.
  • Laminate flooring: Laminate is a synthetic flooring solution like Karndean. However, it is created from high-density wood and photographic applique layers instead of vinyl.
  • Tile flooring: Tiles come in all forms, stone, metal, clay, brick etc. They are also durable and easy to maintain. However, the biggest problem is how cold they feel underfoot.

How is Karndean flooring fitted?

This is just a breakdown of the installation process. It doesn’t provide enough information to fit the floor yourself, so you still need a professional installer. So after this, we will discuss how to find a registered Karndean fitter.

  • Measure and plan: At this stage, you or the professional installer measures the dimension of the space/room. Then use this information to decide how to approach the installation, quantity of supply needed and labour costs.
  • Prepare the room/space: this is where you clear the room of loads and prepare the subfloor to lay the Kardean tiles. It also includes adding underlay, removing old flooring and repairing skirting boards.
  • Cut and fit flooring: After the floor has been prepared, floor fitting can start. First, measure the floor again, then start cutting and fitting the floors from one side of the room. This is the most important, strenuous and time-consuming part of the process.
  • Finish: After the entire surface has been fitted, you will use a roller or mallet to smoothen the floor. Then clean up and wait for it to dry.

How do I Find a Qualified Kardean Floor Fitter?

You can ask for recommendations or check amongst local and reliable tradespeople. Try to get a registered Karndean fitter instead of a regular floor installer. This increases the odds of hiring someone with enough experience with Karndean flooring products or who can offer discounts and guarantees.

Whatever you do, make sure-

  • the installer has a level 1 award in basic construction skills or flooring operations
  • the installer has employer’s liability insurance
  • ask for proof of successful similar projects
  • get written quotes from 3 to 5 installers
  • ask what their quotes cover and guarantees

How do I Care for My New Karndean Floor?

Karndean flooring is very durable and easy to maintain. So, here is all you need to know.

  • Clean once or twice a week: You can use steam, soapy warm water or cleaners. Only use recommended or pH-neutral cleaners. Other chemicals like bleach are usually too hard and may cause fading. To clean, sweep the floor first, then use a damp mop to apply the cleaning solution.
  • Apply sealant: This will protect the floor from rubber stains (another weakness) and scratches.
  • Repair: The only repair possible is to remove the affected tiles. You may also have to lift surrounding tiles to do this.


What is Karndean Flooring Made of?

Karndean flooring is made up of polyvinyl chloride, pigmentation and calcium carbonate or limestone. It has five layers.

  • Two PVC backing layers,
  • a high-def photographic layer,
  • a clear PVC embossed layer
  • and a polyurethane coating.

How Long Does it Take to Install Karndean Flooring?

It depends on the size of the room and flooring type but your new flooring should be ready within 1 to 5 days. After the installation, wait for at least 8 to 10 hours or as recommended by the installer before you start using your new Karndean floor.

What Should I do Before Laying Karndean?

Here are three things you need to do before laying Karndean flooring.

  • Clear the room: The project might be faster and cheaper if you can move furniture and other items out of the way before the flooring specialists arrive.
  • Inspect the floor: the specialists will do this themselves, but you can try it too.
  • Let the Karndean tiles acclimatise: Lay the naked tiles in the room to let them acclimatise to room temperature and humidity. Maintain room temperature ((64-79°F or 18-26°C) during installation and at least 24 hours before and after.

Can I fit Karndean floors myself?

Yes, if you have enough DIY experience.

However, I don’t recommend this because floor installation is strenuous and time-consuming. It takes a lot of patience and experience to align the tiles properly. If not, you will make mistakes. And when that happens, it’s either you manage the ill-fitted floor or go back to correct those mistakes. Trust me. Both options are a lot worse than they sound.

Is Karndean Better Than Laminate?

Compared to laminate flooring, Karndean is easier to install and better replicates the texture and look of natural stone and wood.

Does Karndean Need Underlay?

This depends on the flooring type and the condition of the subfloor. So check on those two or ask your installer.

How Long Does Karndean Flooring Last?

A Karndean floor can last for up to 35 years. However, that depends on proper maintenance and installation.

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