What To Know About Cork Floors Now
The year 2020 will be remembered for a lot of things, but in your home, it might just be for the year you decided to spend more time at home.
Suddenly, you discovered you like being at home. All those little projects you left unfinished? They’re finally being completed. You need office space for you and your partner. A place for the kids to do their assignments and homework. And maybe a place where you can continue all of your crafts and hobbies you picked up along the way.
But 2020 is also a year you learned more about cleanliness and finding the perfect materials for everything inside your home. Take flooring; you know that old carpet has to go. What should you replace it with?
It might be time to consider cork floors. Why? For so many reasons. Let’s start with the biggest reason as we move forward from a pandemic.
Cork Floors are Hypoallergenic
If you’ve struggled with any respiratory problems in the past, such as allergies or asthma, you’re going to love cork flooring. It’s mold and mildew resistant, it contains antimicrobial properties, and repels things like dust mites, dirt, and other contaminants that may impact your floors’ cleanliness.
That can be a very big deal this year as you’re trying to keep your home clean. By installing them throughout your house, you know you have a natural material that will work hard to keep the air quality as clean as it can be.
However, keep in mind that if you are concerned about air quality, pay attention to the flooring manufacturer, and the method used for installation. Not all cork is the same. Look for products that were created to keep indoor air quality as safe and healthy as possible.
FloorScore is an index that helps you choose products based on independent certification for the amount of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) it releases into the air. GreenGuard solutions is another certification that demonstrates how committed a product is to creating a healthy environment.
As you select a final product to come into your home, pay attention to te entire installation process. If a contractor uses a harsh adhesive for installation, it negates all the benefits you attain by selecting a reputable cork flooring product. That’s why it pays to get to know your flooring dealer first and trust them to help you make the best decision for you and your family.
Cork Floors are Easy to Maintain
Is everything in your home a little cleaner this year? Are you looking for materials that make the cleaning process easier? Then look no further than cork floors.
While cork isn’t a maintenance-free flooring, with proper care, it can look beautiful for decades.
Many homeowners come in wary of cork, thinking about the topper in their favorite wine or the bulletin boards they used as kids. This is not the same cork. Cork flooring is pressed tighter and mimics some of the best hardwood floors in the industry. When they are sealed properly, they should hold up well against all sorts of spills and accidents. Like other materials, it’s all in how fast you react. If you leave red wine sitting for extended periods of time, it will stain. Just wipe off the liquid quickly, and you shouldn’t have problems.
Daily cleaning can be handled with just a simple dust broom or a vacuum with a bare floor setting. Oil-based soaps will damage the floor, so be sure to use water-based cleaners. Check with your flooring’s manufacturer for the right cleaning products, ones that won’t strip off the finish and leave it vulnerable to stains.
Cork Floors are Durable
Even though cork flooring is comparable to hardwood, it isn’t a hard surface. With small pressure points, it is susceptible to dents and tears. That means if your furniture has small legs that push weight down into the cork material, use coasters to level out the pressure points. If you wear high heels regularly, check them at the door. And be careful if you frequently move large furniture so the legs and other pressure points don’t dig in and tear the cork material.
Another threat to cork flooring can be dirt and small rocks. That’s why we suggest checking all of your shoes at the front door. When you drag in small amounts of dirt, sand, gravel, and other debris, they can become embedded into the cork material, scratching your flooring’s finish. At a minimum, we suggest floor mats at every entrance to wipe your feet and avoid tracking in damaging debris.
Cork Floors are Soft
One of the reasons people often pause before purchasing hardwood floors is the hardness factor. If you take a fall on a hardwood floor, you’re going to feel it. If you drop a dish on a hardwood floor, it probably won’t survive.
But cork flooring is different. That’s because cork isn’t a hard wood, but instead is made from the bark of a cork oak tree. The material is sheared off, ground, processed into sheets, and baked in a kiln until hard. The compressed material will bend and bounce back into shape. But it still contains air-filled pockets that give it that flexibility and sponge-like feel.
If you suffer from leg or back pain, and stay out of the kitchen because of the hardness of your flooring, cork can be a welcome relief. It can make standing for any length of time easier on your body. And if you have small children or elderly at risk of falling, cork flooring is a great way to create a stylish look in your home and still be safe in the process.
Cork Floors can be Refinished
Many homeowners love installing hardwood because it’s a flooring choice that will be around for decades. When the surface dulls and needs refreshing, you simply refinish it, and it looks like new.
Solid cork works in a similar fashion. Solid cork can be sanded down and refinished as well. While you don’t grind it down in the same manner, you can buff it with a palm sander to take a much thinner layer. Then apply a new coat of stain and sealer.
As with any natural product, cork isn’t meant to be a flawless material. That’s part of its charm. Every floor will have unique ebb and flow, based on the way the material comes together.
If you’re looking for something unique that adds to your comfort and durability, look no further than cork floors.
We think you’ll love the results.