How Eco-Friendly and Safe Flooring Materials Work
Eco-friendly and safe flooring materials have become extremely popular with homeowners and businesses alike, as people have increasingly realized the impact of their choices at home on the environment. However, many people may not know exactly what makes a product eco-friendly or safe. The following are some common eco-friendly and safe flooring materials.
Bamboo is a popular choice as it is eco-friendly, grows quickly, and is fairly hard. It also has a natural luster which makes it resistant to stains and marks from dirt, shoes, and pets. According to the Bamboo Information Centre, it can be recycled up to seven times before showing any signs of degradation.
Linoleum is another alternative that offers an eco-friendly option for flooring with a less natural look than bamboo or cork granules. The JEL classification calls linoleum a floor covering with “an uppermost layer consisting of jute backing impregnated with oxidized oil combined with fillers such as limestone.” In one way, this helps contribute to the environment because the use of linseed oil as a key ingredient can help absorb CO2.
Cork granules are useful because they help insulate flooring from temperature fluctuations, which reduces the chances of condensation forming under the surface warmth. The cork itself can be peeled off and replaced once it becomes worn or damaged to give your floor a fresh new look. Furthermore, its natural light color means that stains won’t show up as much as darker tiles would do.
Hardwood flooring is often popular because it’s easy to clean and looks attractive, but there are now eco-friendly versions on the market which avoid using hazardous chemicals in their production process. Some manufacturers have opted for a hard wax oil finish, which coats the top of the bamboo or beech boards to make them less porous. This helps protect against stains and scratches whilst making cleanup easier since you only need water with maybe a little mild detergent for everyday messes. The waterproof qualities combined with drainage system underlay allow moisture from showers or spills to evaporate into the air rather than getting trapped underneath, where it could cause problems over time.
Laminate flooring is popular for its low cost and ease of installation, but it can also be made from recycled material, so you get a useable floor without using more natural resources to produce it. This type of board comes from engineered wood, which tends to comprise around 70% recycled industrial waste paper or plastic. It’s only covered in a thin layer of melamine resin to form a hard topcoat that resists scratching and moisture penetration better than standard MDF lino would provide. Most brands claim to be 100% waterproof without the need for additional underlay or membranes, which makes them easier to maintain and allows water vapor within humid air produced by showers or cooking to escape into the atmosphere instead of becoming trapped underneath the floor.
The Center for Green Building is a great resource to learn about the importance of healthy flooring materials. They offer many resources on their website, including an article that explains how eco-friendly and safe flooring materials work. Aside from the health benefits of green flooring materials, there are many other reasons to consider switching. Give us a call at or visit centerforgreenbuilding.com if you want more information about what we have available in store.