Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Eco-Friendly Cork Flooring
Eco-Friendly Cork Flooring:

Cork Flooring is comfortable, tough and very renewable. All of these attributes contribute to the popularity of this great environmentally-friendly flooring over the past several years.

Cork has the added advantage of being anti-allergenic and is resistive to insects, which makes it both healthy and safe for the occupants of a home.

Why is Cork Flooring Eco-Friendly?

To be aware of why cork is one of the most eco-friendly options available, you really have to realize where cork comes from and how it's harvested.

Cork oak trees are native to the Mediterranean area.
Once each decade, bark from these cork oak trees is harvested and manufactured to produce wine bottle corks. It's eco-friendly as a result of the harvesting process doesn't harm the tree at all.

The left-over scraps that are remaining from producing wine bottle corks is gathered and ground up. This material is then refined into sheets and baked in a kiln.

Cork Flooring - The Many Benefits:

It's renewable nature, and eco-friendliness are a couple of the most obvious benefits for it's use. As outlined below, there are a number of other benefits.

  • Because of the cushioning qualities, cork flooring provides a natural sound barrier to foot traffic. This makes it an ideal candidate for multi-floor or multi-family usage.
  •  It is very comfortable to walk on due to it's natural cushioning quality. Cork has shock absorbing properties that make it comfortable for standing and walking. 
  • If you have children, you will value it's softness, making this a wonderful flooring option.
  • Cork flooring has a finish applied during the manufacturing process. Therefore, cleaning involves only occasional sweeping and or vacuuming. This additionally makes it a very long-lasting product.
  • Take care not to mop cork flooring. There are special cleaners available to scrub stained or soiled areas.
  • It is hard to match the attractiveness of a cork floor. There is a wide diversity of shades that are obtainable. The final color of  the flooring depends largely on how long it's baked, but there are definitely options to please just about anyone.
Cork Flooring Made From Cork Industry Scraps
How Much Does Cork Flooring Cost?

A significant consideration for a homeowner's flooring needs is the cost of the product. You will be pleased to know that cork is very reasonably priced. The cost of materials only can vary between $3.50 to $6.50 per square foot.

Variation of price is governed mainly by the plank type of the cork and the finish.

Installation can double the cost of the flooring.

That being said, most cork flooring is a floating type floor and can easily be installed by homeowners who have a basic do-it-yourself understanding.  In most cases, the entire installation can be accomplished in a weekend.

Cork Flooring Care:

Once the cork floors have been installed, care for them is very simple. Follow these simple steps to keep your cork flooring looking brand new.
  • If you spill on the floor, rapidly wipe it up. Even though cork has a finish, you should not let spills rest on the surface for very long.
  •  Use a broom of vacuum often to keep your floors clean. Even though cork is a rather durable product, you need to be vigilant and keep surface debris picked up to prevent surface scratching.
  • Cork flooring should never be wet moped. To clean soiled or stained areas on your floor, utilize specially formulated cleaners.
  • After years of wear and tear, you will encounter that the finish of your floors may need attention. You will need to employ the services of a finish specialist as your finish fades to bring back the original luster and beauty of your flooring.
In closing, cork flooring is eco-friendly, attractive, durable, and extremely comfortable to walk on.  Add to that the reasonable cost of this green flooring and it's no wonder that cork is so popular!

If you wish to learn more about Cork Flooring, visit our article Cork Flooring an Eco Friendly Option. An additional green flooring article you may be interested in may be Sustainable Cork Flooring.