Armstrong vinyl asbestos floor tiles 1955 (catalog photo)Asphalt or Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tiles Product History and Product Name List

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Identify vinyl or asphalt-asbestos flooring by brand name & image:

Photo guides to asphalt asbestos and vinyl asbestos floor tiles, 1900 -1986: this article provides a guide to identifying asphalt-asbestos flooring (1917 - ca 1960) & vinyl asbestos floor tile (ca 1952 - 1986): identification photographs, product names, styles, colors, and vinyl-asbestos floor patterns, and colors for asbestos-containing floor tile products made between about 1930 and 1986 - flooring materials that are reported to or have been confirmed to contain asbestos in asbestos fiber or asbestos powder-filler form. These flooring products typically contain chrysotile asbestos, and possibly other asbestos forms.

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Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tiles Product History and Product Name List

Armstrong sheet flooring (C)

Sorting out Flooring Names: Armstrong, Congoleum-Nairn, Linoleum, Lincrusta

This photograph of sheet flooring was identified by a reader in a 1964 home. She found remnants in the bottom of a kitchen cabinet on which was imprinted "Armstrong". While the reader referred to this as "Armstrong Congoleum sheet flooring", Armstrong and Congoleum are separate individual companies.

The sheet flooring shown above is identified as an Armstrong resilient flooring product. As we detail at our FAQs section at the bottom of this page, another reader had a sample of this resilient flooring tested and confirmed a 70% asbestos content.

[Click to enlarge any image]

Dont' mix up product names. Armstrong is a separate company from Congoleum-Nairn.

Linoleum is a term invented in 1860 by Frederick Walton to describe sheet flooring. Original linoleum products were made using linseed oil as an ingredient, often with a jute (burlap or fabric) backing. Descendents of Linoleum include Anaglypta and Lincrusta (many writers spell it "Linocrusta or linacrusta", an embossed patterned covering used on walls and ceilings.

NOTE: Armstrong, although an enormous producer of flooring, was by no means the only manufacturer of floor covering products that contained asbestos as fibers or asbestos powder filler. Below we provide photographs and descriptions from a variety of flooring manufacturers, followed by a detailed list of floor tile product names we've been able to collect. You'll note that the Armstrong product list extends from 1954 to 1980. Other asbestos-containing flooring products from various manufacturers were produced between around 1920 to 1986.

Amitco International, another larger producer of floor tiles has operated from 1964 to the present. Amico flooring is discussed at AMITCO ASBESTOS FLOOR TILES.

How to Find Your Floor Tile or Sheet Flooring in this Flooring Reference Photo Guide

Vinyl asbestos floor tile identification photo U.S. Library of Congress Vinyl asbestos floor tile identification photo U.S. Library of Congress Vinyl asbestos floor tile identification photo U.S. Library of Congress

Asphalt asbestos and vinyl-asbestos floor tiles were produced in 9" x 9", 12" x 12", and even 18" x 18" as well as in decorative strips, and in thicknesses of 1/16", 3/32", and 1/8", also in 0.08 gauge. Some sheet flooring or resilient flooring also contained asbestos, as did floor tile mastics.

This photo guide to asphalt asbestos & vinyl asbestos floor tiles for each year shows at least one color photo of each floor tile style or pattern in an example color. A list below each group of photos includes the names of and links to additional photos for other colors of these styles.

Asbestos is safe and legal to remain in homes or public buildings as long as the asbestos materials are in good condition and the asbestos can not be released into the air.

To identify a particular asphalt-asbestos or vinyl-asbestos floor tile pattern & color, start in the image group most likely to be the same age as your building.

If you don't find your floor tile or sheet flooring by looking forward from that that year, you should also look backwards in the earlier years as your specific flooring pattern & color may have first appeared in an earlier year. For other tile brands than Armstrong, see the brand name floor tile links included in this list.

If you can identify your floor tile collection name or model number, or if you recognize it in the extensive library of flooring color and pattern photographs provided in these pages, laboratory testing of the sample to screen the flooring for asbestos may be unnecessary. Our home page for asbestos-containing floor tiles is at ASBESTOS FLOOR TILE PHOTO ID GUIDE To send us photographs of possible asbestos-containing flooring that you are trying to identify, use the email address found at CONTACT.

We have split this guide to Armstrong Asphalt Asbestos or Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tiles into the individual year range pages (dates of production) below in order to cut web page load time.

Many of the colors and patterns of asphalt-asbestos or vinyl-asbestos floor tiles were manufactured over many years and may appear in more than one of the floor tile photo collections listed by date range here.

For each year we list the names of the tile patterns sold during that year, we include representative color images of the floor tiles, and throughout the entire floor tile pattern & color history series we include each floor tile color & pattern of the floor tile in the first year that it appeared , and we include representative colors and patterns in other years.

Examples of floor tile packaging, labeling, and other information can be found throughout the flooring photo collections listed here.

Modern Armstrong 12"x12" x 1/16" (1.5mm) Self-Adhesive "Stick-on" Floor Tiles

Vinyl Floor Tile self-stick Armstrong 12-inch tile

Self-Adhesive Stick-on Tiles, Asbestos - peel and stick floor tiles that contain asbestos

Self-Adhesive Stick-on Tiles, Current - modern peel and stick floor tiles: information below.

This Armstrong flooring tile is 12" x 12" x 1/16" or 1.5mm thick.

Unlike the older vinyl-asbestos floor tiles whose photographs we provide below, this more recent flooring product is built from a thin vinyl layer containing the tile's design pattern and a fiber/paper backer (shown in our photo above) to which an adhesive was coated so that the tile could be installed without use of a mastic.

A typical pattern is the embossed design shown at left.

The floor tile thickness (about 1.5mm or 1/16") suggests that this product was produced after 1980 and probably does not contain asbestos.

Below we show a photo of the Armstrong© Stamp found on the under-side or "back" of 12 x 12 "stick-on" self-adhesive floor tiles produced by Armstrong.

Vinyl Floor Tile self-stick Armstrong 12-inch tile

Armstrong Excelon Vinyl Tile (C) Daniel Friedman

Depending on the age of manufacture, some paper-backed flooring products used asbestos as a primary ingredient (see Asphalt & Vinyl Floor Tile History). Tests of our example floor sample (above) for asbestos confirmed that some early peel-and-stick floor tiles sold in the 1980's did contain asbestos.

Contemporary resilient flooring products do not contain asbestos however.

Shown at left: Armstrong Excelon Vinyl Floor tile, contemporary, popular, sold in 70 colors at retail outlets including Home Depot stores, this modern resilient floor tile does not contain asbestos. [Click any image to see an enlarged, detailed version].

A catalog of floor tile identification photographs for products that contained asbestos, 1952 - 1980, is provided below at Armstrong Vinyl-Asbestos Floor Tile Photo ID Catalog - 1952 - 1986. And at Armstrong flooring history we provide a history of Armstrong flooring and links to company information.

Contact Us to send a photograph of your own floor tile pattern or for assistance in identification if you can't find your floor tile image, pattern, or design in this floor tile color and pattern library.

Asphalt & Vinyl Asbestos based Floor Coverings & Floor Tiles 1900 - 1986

Asphalt resilient floor tiles Manufacturers, Brands, Styles, Photo Guide

Armstrong Asphalt Floor Tiles - 1950's to 1980's Compared to Contemporary Vinyl Flooring Products

Armstrong asphalt-based floor tile

Armstrong produced asphalt-based floor tiles, possibly including asbestos in their formulation, before 1952 and in later years as we indicate with examples and photographs in the detailed photo guide that is found below.

For more information about these older flooring types, see Asphalt & Vinyl Floor Tile History - history, dates, and description of the production process and ingredients in asphalt floor tiles, asphalt-asbestos floor tiles, & vinyl-asbestos floor tiles 1900 to present. Kentile flooring produced through 1986 may contain asbestos.

Also don't assume that only "vinyl asbestos floor tiles" include asbestos. According to Rosato, asbestos filler (powder) and fibers were used in asphalt based products too. "The first publicized installation of asphalt tile was in the Western Union office in New York City (1920). By the end of 1930, 3 million square yards of tile was being produced annually.

Below in this document we provide detailed year-by-year photos of Armstrong asphalt or vinyl-asbestos flooring products from 1952 to 1982. Records show that many but not all flooring products produced during these years, including 9" floor tiles, 12" floor tiles, peel-and-stick floor tiles, and sheet flooring indeed contain asbestos.

Later Armstrong flooring products, for example Armstrong's Accoflex 2005 series semi-flexible vinyl tile sold (at least) in the U.K. were produced from " ground limestone bound with polymers, plasticizers, and stabilizers, and colored by pigments" not including asbestos.

At FLOOR, RESILIENT VINYL or CORK we discuss the choices, selection and installation details for contemporary vinyl and other resilient flooring products.

Guide to Armstrong Floor Tile Photographs

Sorry but the VAT (Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tile) photo catalog became so huge that the file was slow to load and unwieldy. Scan through our images of asphalt asbestos or vinyl asbestos flooring, both tiles and sheet flooring) using the links below by starting at the earliest year that might pertain to your building or to when you think the flooring was installed. Because many floor tile patterns were produced over many years there is of course overlap among these year ranges.

Styles, & Pictures of Congoleum-Nairn Vinyl-Asbestos Floor Tiles & Congoleum Linoleum Sheet Flooring: Resilient Floors

Details about Congoleum floor tiles and resilient sheet flooring and linoleum are found at CONGOLEUM-NAIRN FLOOR TILES & LINOLEUM. Excerpts are below.

Congoleum Gold Seal Linoleum Flooring, Life Mag Ad 1955

Congoleum Nairn, was established in 1886, and presently headquartered in Mercerville, NJ, U.S., produced resilient sheet flooring, vinyl asbestos floor tiles in patterns such as their Congoleum-Nair Romanaire pattern.

Details about the history of Congoleum Nairn flooring are at Congoleum Flooring History and at FLOOR TILE HISTORY & INGREDIENTS.

Sequin Pattern for Congoleum resilient flooring is shown at left.

Congoleum Gold Seal Rugs along with Nairn Linoleum were marketed from the 1920's into the 1950's when Congoleum-Nairn was producing 12-foot wide sheet vinyl-based flooring.

Watch out: the backing on some of these vinyl flooring or linoleum products may also contain asbestos.

Congloeum linoleum Sequin pattern (C) D Friedman M Barnicle

The Congoleum linoleum photograph (above) of Congoleum sheet flooring installed in a 1949 Tampa Florida home is provided courtesy of M.B. in Tampa, FL.

See  CONGOLEUM-NAIRN FLOOR TILES & LINOLEUM for our complete set of photos and text about Congoleum Nairn flooring products that may contain asbestos.

Vinyl asbestos floor tile identification Photos KenFlex Kentile Vinyl asbestos floor tile identification Photos KenFlex Kentile

Photo Guide to Ever-Wear Vinyl-Asbestos Floor Tile

Everlast Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tile (C) D Friedman D Grudzinski Everlast Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tile (C) D Friedman D Grudzinski

Kentile Floors: KenFlex Asphalt-asbestos & Vinyl-Asbestos Floor Tiles - 1950's - 1980's Photo Guide

A detailed photo guide to identifying Kentile and KenFlex flooring is at  KENTILE KENFLEX ASBESTOS FLOOR TILE GUIDE and Kentile history and dates are found at Kentile Flooring History. Excepts are below.

Kentile flooring sample 1963

As we detail at Kentile Flooring History KenFlex floor tiles were produced by Kentile Floors, a Brooklyn NY company that filed bankruptcy in 1992. (founder Arthur Kennedy 1898) (at least) as 9" x 9" resilient flooring in a variety of patterns (left) and shades (below).

Kentile produced both Asphalt floor tiles using an asbestos filler (see our Rosato comment above), and Vinyl-Asbestos floor tiles. The dark floor tiles shown at left may have been asphalt-asbestos. If the floor tile is thicker than 1/16", particularly, 1/8" or more, we suspect you're looking at an asphalt based tile, rather than a later vinyl-asbestos floor tile.

(Additional Kentile floor covering photos wanted - CONTACT US)

Montgomery Ward Asbestos-Containing Floor Tiles, Photo Guide

Vinyl asbestos floor tile identification Photos KenFlex Kentile Vinyl asbestos floor tile identification Photos KenFlex Kentile

Details about Montgomery Ward vinyl asbestos tile flooring are at MONTGOMERY WARD ASBESTOS FLOOR TILE IDENTIFICATION. Excepts are below.

Sears & Roebuck asbestos-Containing Floor Tiles & Flooring, Photo Guide

Sears vinyl asbestos floor tiles (C) Daniel Friedman A Cramer

Details about Sears vinyl asbestos tile flooring are at SEARS ROEBUCK VINYL ASBESTOS FLOOR TILE RECOGNITION . Excepts are below.

Below our photographs show the embossed pattern on these Sears vinyl asbestos floor tiles. The tiles are solid through in color and material and are about 1/16" thick and 9" x 9" in size. Below right shows these Sears floor tiles installed.

(photos wanted for Sears Roebuck, Montgomery Ward and other asphalt & vinyl-asbestos floor tile producers or distributors - CONTACT US)

Armstrong Vinyl-Asbestos Floor Tile Photo ID Catalog - 1951 - 1986

Armstrong floor tile - Rosato (C) Daniel Friedman

Our photo above from Rosato, shows an Armstrong asphalt floor tile installation.

Our reproduction of vinyl-asbestos floor tile patterns and colors at ASBESTOS FLOOR TILE IDENTIFICATION PHOTOS by YEAR selected representative images of each style or floor tile identification pattern in which tiles were produced. Within each pattern there were various colors available as well.

By minimizing repetition of patterns and colors, across the set of years we show at least one example of nearly every pattern and color produced for these floor tiles.

On occasion, the original flooring packaging or installation literature may be available for a given home: often an extra box of floor tiles was kept for future repairs.

The vinyl-asbestos floor tile package label information, combined with a simple comparison of tiles in the package with tiles installed in the building may be sound confirmation of asbestos-containing materials. See Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tile Packaging.

Historical information about the dates of flooring installation may also be sufficient to rule in or out the possibility that flooring in a building contains asbestos.

Vinyl asbestos flooring Poughkeepsie NY (C) Daniel Friedman

Where the same floor style pattern was produced for multiple years, in subsequent years we show other colors in which the tile pattern was made. Just scroll through this vinyl asbestos floor tile photo guide to find the first occurrence of each floor tile style, pattern, name, dimensions, and colors. Or if you know the approximate year that your floor was installed you can scroll down to that very year in our photo library.

It is instructive to take a close look at our tile photos from 1973 and 1974. Some floor tile colors and patterns, especially among the "standard" tiles, include both asphalt-based tiles and vinyl-asbestos tiles that look quite alike. But the combination of color, pattern, and size can help distinguish among these.

For example, "Standard Pattern" floor tiles were produced in both vinyl-asbestos form and in an asphalt tile without asbestos in 1973. But asphalt-based tiles that did not contain asbestos were produced in 1973 only in 9"x9". So flooring made for that year and particular pattern, the tile size provides important information.

Watch out: Because flooring products may have been produced in years earlier than the year of installation, don't assume that a floor installed in a building built shortly after 1980 could not possibly contain vinyl-asbestos product.

As we warned just above, don't assume that only "vinyl asbestos floor tiles" include asbestos.

Key to Thicknesses or Gauges of Vinyl-Asbestos Floor Tiles & Floor Tile Application or Usage by Thickness

Vinyl asbestos floor tile guide

Vinyl Asbestos Floor Tile Thickness & Usage Guide

Shown at left is a vinyl-asbestos floor specification summary and usage guide from 1959 - Armstrong.


Continue reading at ASBESTOS FLOOR TILE IDENTIFICATION PHOTOS by YEAR or select a topic from closely-related articles below, or see our complete INDEX to RELATED ARTICLES below.





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Questions & answers about how to identify brands & types of vinyl & vinyl-asbestos floor tiles & sheet flooring & about the asbestos content of these products.

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