Cork Flooring – Pros and Cons

Cork Flooring Example Courtesy UTC Library- Flickr

Cork flooring is also known in some areas as a cork floor covering. When I first heard about cork I didn’t think it would be very good at all because I could only think about the cork in champagne bottles. But then I did some research and found out that it is actually very popular. Cork flooring is available in small tile form as well as larger pieces. It is prepared from the cork tree bark.
The first step is to remove the bark but don’t worry, this does not harm the tree and in fact new bark can be harvested again in about seven to nine years. The thrashed bark is evenly mixed with various resins, stains and adhesives to form a tile of cork floor covering. It is becoming highly popular among modern day home improvement and repair contractors.

However, the use of cork flooring has some benefits as well as limitations. For its benefits cork flooring offers you the following:
– The ease of smooth walking on the surface of the floor covering.
– It helps in achieving complete noise reduction as it is one of the best sound absorbers.
– It helps in reducing fatigue in your legs and back and it acts as a physiotherapy as the softness of the cork floor covering in bare feet gets your sensational system activated.
– It helps to give your home a natural look.
– The various cork floorings are fire resistance. Thus it helps you in achieving thermal insulation of your home along with being a good sound absorber.

On its cons side, the cork floor has the following;
– The cork flooring is costlier than most other floor covering materials.
– Its installation requires attention to detail and accuracy of measurements.
– The cork flooring dampens with time, does not provide much moisture resistance, and thus affects the humidity level inside a room. As a result, your thermal insulation inside the home will become less effective over time.
– There is a maintenance issue attached with the installation and use of cork flooring. They do not provide long life of much more than 10 years. With high levels of traffic, it tends to lose its shape, integrity etc. After a certain time, it requires complete replacement.
– You always have to maintain certain safety measures as heavy items cannot be dragged or pulled on the cork flooring.
– If you drop liquids or sharp edged items you will almost always leave some mark.

Apart from the pros and cons of using cork flooring, some environmentalist groups claim that it does not make the home green. However, this is not true. The cork oak tree reproduces its bark about every nine years. The floor covering tiles are manufactured when the bark becomes old and the tree itself is going to drop them off from the trunk and branches.

If you decide to use cork flooring, make sure it is properly installed. Apart from the installation consideration, there are various types of cork tiles available in different finishes. Consider climate change, level of moisture, active presence of humidity and other environmental factors such variation of finish treatment is applied to cord tiles. To ensure a quality installation you need the service of an experienced professional for home improvement. He or she will guide you through out the process of selecting the appropriate type of cork flooring for your home and will ensure proper installation of the same.

Discount Cork Flooring
When you are thinking about the pros and cons of cork flooring one of the big things to consider is the type of use the floor will get. The resin in the cork floor tiles will give it strength but it still can be damaged. I would be sure to get a quality product and be careful of cheap cork flooring because the cork flooring prices should not be the only consideration. You want to be sure it is a well constructed product and that you are dealing with a company that will stand behind their product. If you buy online to save a few bucks you may not be very happy at all with the results.
I mean think of it this way. The total cork flooring cost is going to be spread over several years so really, if you save a hundred bucks and the product ends up not lasting very long you haven’t saved yourself much money at all. The older I get the more concerned I am about quality because I really don’t want to go back and do the job again.

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