Cork: Toronto Eco-Friendly Flooring
Cork flooring is nothing new. Frank Lloyd Wright used it in his classic design for the residence known as “Falling Water” which was completed in 1937.
There were lots of innovations in Falling Water, but cork flooring wasn’t one of them. By the time Falling Water was built, cork flooring was in use for half a century.
Cork flooring was very popular in public buildings such as courthouses and churches because of its durability. There are cork floors in churches that were installed over a century ago that are still in use. The Manitoba Legislative Building installed cork floors in 1920. People still walk on them today.
They installed cork flooring for the same reasons that Wright chose it for one of the most famous homes in the world. They’re the same good reasons for you to consider cork flooring today.
Consider cork for its distinctive look. Every cork floor is unique and it looks different from hardwoods.
Consider cork for its durability. Those hundred year floors should be proof that cork can last.
Consider cork for its soft, warm feel when you walk on it. Durable as it is, cork is filled with air pockets. That makes it easy on the feet. Some families with small children have chosen cork because the falls are softer, too. That same softness gives cork insulating and sound-deadening properties.
Consider cork because it’s anti-allergenic and insect resistant. A waxy substance called suberin is a natural part of cork. It repels bugs, mites, and even mold.
With all those advantages, you probably wonder why cork flooring isn’t more popular. The answer is “fashion.”
When Frank Lloyd Wright installed cork flooring, it was the traditional choice. Synthetic floors like vinyl became popular during and after World War II. Then wall-to-wall carpeting was the fashionable choice.
As hardwood flooring has become more popular, cork has been making a comeback. One big reason is that cork is an eco-friendly choice.
Cork is the ultimate renewable resource. That’s because cork flooring is made from the bark of the cork oak and not the tree itself. That bark regenerates every decade or so. There are cork trees that have been producing cork for over 150 years!
Sounds almost perfect, right? Well, you know that nothing is perfect so let’s review some things you should think about if you’re considering cork flooring.
There are two basic types of cork flooring. One type is cork flooring that is cork all the way through. The other type is a veneer of cork over a stabilizing veneer of high density fiber. The veneer offers greater design flexibility, but cannot be re-sanded like floor that is completely cork.
When you’re considering a cork floor, consider all of the following. There will be costs for materials, installation and maintenance. Often a decrease in materials costs results in increased cost in the other categories. It’s smart to consider your total cost of ownership.
Make sure that the company that installs your flooring understands some of the special requirements of cork. In many cases, the cork needs to be the last big thing installed at a site. The cork needs to be brought to the space several days in advance to so that the material has time to adjust to the environment.
As flooring professionals, we can help you make sure that cork is right for your specific application. And we’ll assure that it’s installed using eco-friendly methods and materials that meet manufacturer’s specifications and preserve your warranty.
Don’t choose an eco-friendly flooring material and forget about the installation. We can help you make sure that the materials and methods used to install your eco-friendly flooring are eco-friendly, too. Not only that, we’ll guarantee that your floor will be installed according to the manufacturer’s specifications, so you can be sure that your warranty will be protected.
Eco-friendly flooring is only one set of options that will add beauty and value to your home. TipTop Flooring is a professional flooring firm that will help you make wise choices about your flooring investment.
Explore our site to learn about wood floors and the ways to finish, install, and maintain them. While you’re here, we hope you’ll take a moment to find out more about TipTop Flooring and the professional flooring services that we deliver in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).