Green Housing – Bamboo and Cork Flooring Solutions
If you are wondering how you can minimize the environmental footprint with the surface you walk on; you should contemplate eco-friendly flooring options. Thanks to the green movement becoming the main stream, green flooring designs are offering bountiful of beautiful flooring options for your green home. Two standard eco flooring options are Cork and Bamboo flooring, which we will discuss in this article.
Fallen bark from Oak trees gets hand harvest after a couple of months of drying in the forest. The fact that the trees stay in tack and are not cut down to create this product makes cork flooring super eco-friendly. After wine bottle corks are punched out from the bark, the post industrial waste gets processed into sheets, baked and cut up to form tiles for flooring. Cork flooring can be designed in different styles, shapes and can come in up to 40 variety of colors.
The comfort cork flooring has to offer, will make you feel like you are walking on clouds, as the cork is very springy and flexible and this means it is shock absorbent as well. Cork is also very sound resistant, and it keeps warmth which is excellent for energy saving. Another plus factor of having cork flooring installed in your home is that it does not accumulate dust and it will guard against mold, mildew, rot, and pests as it contains a natural substance called suberin.
It is evident that cork floors are eco-friendly due to its resources, the way of production, its sufficiency and the fact that acts as insulation for your home. Even more, cork is not a bad choice if you are looking for something that is aesthetically appealing and it can be found in the color and design that fits your style.
Despite the comfort cork has to offer under your feet, it may have its downside as well, and that is why you should keep in mind that dents can be caused by large furniture resting on the floor for an extended period of time or scratches from a cat sinking its claws into the cork. Therefore before laying your whole house out with cork floors, consider in which area of the home it will benefit you more and where it might not be such a good idea.
In bedrooms, cork floors can add to your comfort, especially for children who like to play on the ground for whom it will provide extreme comfort and warmth when it is cold. Areas where you tend to stand for a long time and where spills might often occur, like in the kitchen, will also gain from cork flooring. Keep in mind that cork does not do well in a humid area because it might warp and change color and therefore having cork in your bathroom might not be such a bright idea. Cork also has the tendency to fade in color, and if you do not offer it some shade through blinds or curtains, it is best to keep cork away from the areas that get direct sunlight during the day.
Cork flooring can come in the form of planks or tiles in different varieties which are manageable to purchase on a budget. High-quality cork is stable which is only needed to be renewed every eight to ten years if necessary.
After mature Bamboo poles or culms are harvest, the manufacturers crosscut them to length and then slice them into strips to begin the bamboo tiles production. Skin, nodes get removed from the poles before the time while the pieces get boiled in a boric acid or lime to remove the starch and sugars. After the bamboo has been dried and planed it can be colored darker through a carbonizing process of steaming under a heat pressured controlled method, this also causes the planks to become softer.
Bamboo flooring is an eco-friendly alternative to hardwood flooring as it is physically similar. Bamboo flooring is strong, durable and has a natural resistance to insects and moisture. Just like wood, bamboo flooring can look very stylish as well and will keep beautiful for a long time as it is easy to maintain.
Bamboo is more water resistant than the average hardwood flooring and all it needs is a semi-regular sweep and an occasional wipe with a damp mop to keep it shiny. Do however take caution when applying bamboo to a humid area in your home as humidity can cause the planks to crack, and excessive water caused by flooding can cause mold and warping. Even when the floor gets discolored over time or gets covered in scratches, you freshen its look again when you reapply a finish coating after sanding it down.
Despite the fact that the nature of bamboo flooring and the way it is harvested are very eco-friendly, many final products contain VOC. The adhesive which holds the pieces of shredded bamboo stalks together may release volatile organic chemicals which are not good for the environment–so be sure to ask your flooring provider about low VOC options.
With an extensive selection of affordable bamboo flooring available on the market, it is easy to find any style to suit your home. Bamboo has a distinctly elegant look and is making a trend in green housing.
On the contrary to flooring, roofs over our heads that are both sustainable and a growing trend are green roofs.