Cork is the ultimate green flooring material.
Cork is a completely renewable resource harvested as bark from living cork trees, never harmed by the harvest. Our cork flooring is composed of 100% post-industrial recycled content from wine-stopper production.
Cork trees store carbon in order to regenerate their bark, and a harvested cork tree absorbs up to five times more than one that isn’t.
Comprised of millions of air-filled cells, corks absorbs sound, impact, stays warm and always remains resilient.
Cork is a natural and eco-friendly product that beautifully warms any room and blends well with any decor. Enjoy honey tones as well as green, yellow, red and gray colors.
Cork Flooring for Your Home
Cork flooring is one of the more interesting eco-friendly options that are currently available for homes and offices. Cork flooring is made from the naturally sustainable wood of the cork tree, which grows extensively in the Mediterranean. These tips will help you decide if cork flooring is the right choice for your home or office.
Benefits of Cork Flooring
Choosing cork flooring will provide several benefits that other flooring options may not provide. First, cork can provide a cushioning that is shock absorbent and comfortable to stand on. Cork is suitable for all areas of your home, and can be purchased in many different colors and styles to meet your specifications, as well. Cork flooring is the perfect choice for playrooms, since the material muffles sounds.
Cork flooring is also an eco-friendly option that provides years of durable wear. If you have chosen cork tile for your flooring, then you will only need to replace small sections if damage does occur. Cork flooring in is a healthy alternative to traditional tile and carpeting, and is easy to care for.
Maintenance of Cork Flooring
Caring for cork flooring is simple. Cork is one of the more durable, easy to care for flooring materials, and has been used in commercial offices for some time. To care for your cork flooring, you will need to vacuum or sweep the floor as you would any other type of flooring material. You may wash the cork flooring with a dampened cloth or mop, as long as you are careful not to use too much water.
You may use mild soap, or a very mild cleaner on the cork flooring. Ask about which cleaner should be used on your cork flooring. Since cork is porous, too much water or harsh chemicals may damage the cork flooring, so make sure to follow the manufacturer?s instructions carefully.
Installation of Cork Flooring
Cork flooring is easy to install, and can be completed in just a few days, depending on the size of the floor. Contempo Floor Coverings can install your cork flooring and complete the task for you at an affordable rate, or you can opt to install the cork flooring on your own with one of two different ways.
You can either glue down cork flooring or use the floating floor approach. Floating floor is the most commonly used type of installation. This type involves using interlocking panels or tiles of cork flooring, which are simply laid on the existing floor. This simple installation can be completed in just a few hours when installing in single rooms.
Cork flooring is an excellent option that can provide years of durable wear when cared for properly. You may want to note that cork is a softer flooring material, and care should be used when placing heavy objects on the material to avoid damage. Many people prefer to use wide coasters under the legs of heavy items.
You can see the rich textures and patterns a cork floor has. The complex designs cork floors create are second to none.
Cork flooring comes in a variety of colors, patterns and textures. But as you can see, the depth and richness that cork flooring can have is very special.
It is also common to mix rubber with cork flooring to create a very special texture. Some companies are known for their very vibrant cork flooring colors. Some patterns resemble plank boards. Whatever your tastes, you’re sure to find patterns and colors that are right for you.
Where does cork flooring come from?
Cork flooring is sourced and harvested from the bark of cork oak trees which are found in the Mediterranean. Cork flooring mainly comes from 7 countries which include Spain, Portugal, Algeria, France Tunisia, Morocco and Italy. Portugal is the largest producer of cork with over 31% of the world’s cork trees and 70% of the world’s cork flooring production.
The tree shown is the Whistler Tree. It got its name from the birds who would nest in it. This Whistler Tree is the world’s oldest currently producing cork oak tree and was planted in 1783 in the Alentejo region of Portugal. Cork trees have to be harvested by hand every nine years and this specific tree yielded more than one ton of raw cork in 1991, enough for over 100,000 wine bottle corks versus the typical yield of 4,000 corks.
Cork bark is made up of very a tiny sealed honeycomb cellular structure containing gas of 90% air. These cells provide and create the resiliency (cushion) and insulation found in cork flooring. There are about 40 million of these cells per cubic centimeter. You can compress cork flooring up to 40% and it will quickly returns to its original shape. These qualities make cork a very special flooring material.
Cork Flooring Maintenance
Cork flooring is not only beautiful, unique, and durable, but it is also easy very is to clean and maintain. Cork flooring requires only periodic damp mopping and vacuuming.
Use the following for good maintenance practices of your cork flooring:
1) Sweep, vacuum or “swiffer” your cork flooring weekly.
2) Use damp mopping monthly but do NOT use too much water.
3) When cleaning cork flooring, use a damp mop with a PH-balanced detergent or mild soap. This will keep the surface free of abrasives such as grit or sand.
4) Always avoid using extremely harsh cleaners such as abrasives, oil or ammonia-based products.
Only use cleaning products approved by the manufacturer.
Glue-Down Cork Flooring
The Glue-down installation for cork flooring means lower material cost but usually much higher installation costs. It is more difficult to repair glue-down tiles as opposed to floating floors. Glue-down cork flooring must be applied over smooth and clean substrate surfaces so that precludes renovation applications over vinyl floors for example.
Floating Cork Floor
Floating floor installations for cork flooring is the more preferred way to install cork flooring. As the photo shows, cork flooring comes with a specially designed edge that interlocks with adjacent pieces. Some manufacturers’ floating cork flooring products can be installed over most hard surfaces such as wood flooring, vinyl flooring and ceramic tile, but softer sub-floors like carpets must be removed. The sub-floor has to be even, flat, dry and level to within 0.1″ in 6 feet.