Cork Floors

Cork Floors

Cork Flooring

Frequently Asked Questions:

Question 1: Are cork floors new or have they been around and I just haven’t heard about them?

Answer: Cork floors have been used since early in the last century. Europeans are particularly familiar with cork flooring. More recently cork floors have become very popular in North America and Australia and are now sold virtually around the world.

Question 2: Why should I purchase a cork floor?

Answer: Cork floors are as durable as most other floors. In addition, they are a natural product, environmentally friendly, and produced from a renewable resource (bark of cork oak tree when peeled does not damage the tree). In addition cork flooring is antistatic, sound absorbing, insulating (both heat and cold), and a relief for those with allergies.

Questions 3: I thought you couldn’t walk on cork, especially in high heels. Also doesn’t furniture damage the floors?

Answer: Cork flooring is produced in a density high enough to withstand heavy traffic and weight. One of the characteristics of cork is that it has a memory and therefor recovers well from compression, very much like a wine cork being puled out of a bottle expands. A polyurethane surface finish further protects the cork and allows for easy maintenance. Nevertheless, just like other flooring materials, we recommend the use of protective pads under furniture legs.

Question 4: Is cork flooring suitable for kitchens and bathrooms?

Answer. Yes, it is suitable for all rooms — both residential and commercial. Kitchens are one of the most common rooms for cork flooring installations since it is comfortable to stand on and easy to clean and maintain. Surface water spills do not harm cork flooring. Simply wipe up as you would on any other floors. In bathrooms cork is warm underfoot as well. If heavy water spills are anticipated (such as much splashing by children in bathtubs) we recommend that after installation of floor the perimeter of the room is caulked prior to installing molding or base boards.

Question 5: Can we install a cork floor in the basement?

Answer. We recommend the installation of cork floating floors in basements. Due to a risk of moisture migration from the concrete slab floating floors should be placed over a moisture barrier (6 mil film of polyethylene). This will provide you with trouble-free flooring. If you wish to use glue down cork tiles in your basement, you can do so but we would recommend that you first place a moisture barrier over the concrete slab and on top of this barrier you install plywood sub-floor. You then glue the tiles to the sub-floor.

Question 6: What kind of adhesive should I use when installing cork tiles?

Answer. For our Cork Decor glue down tiles, we recommend the use of any water based contact cement. For the Floating floors any carpenter wood glue will do. Both are readily available at most home improvement centers. Simply follow the manufacturers instructions as shown on product packages.

Question 7: Is the color of all cork flooring consistent?

Answer. Cork floorings are high quality, natural materials and should be recognized as such. Some shade variation is an inherent and attractive characteristic of all natural products, whether cork, wood, or bamboo.

Question 8. Should I be installing the Floating Floors or the glue down Cork Decor floors?

Answer: The shape of the subfloor is usually the deciding factor. If the subfloor is in poor condition with many cracks, old vinyl tiles or sheet vinyl, grimy or dirty the use of floating floors would be recommended. The use of a floating floor over poor subfloors avoids the need to prepare costly subfloors as long as the floor is reasonably level. Also, if there is any risk of moisture migration from a concrete slab than a floating floor properly installed with a moisture barrier (see answer 5 above ) is also recommended. The glue down Cork Decor floors can be used over any subfloors (wood or concrete) which are dry, clean and free of dirt, grease, wax or anything that would hinder a good bond and where cracks have been filled.

Question 9. We find that in comparing prices your prices are the most economical. Why?

Answer: You are getting the benefits of a true factory outlet price. Our distribution network is streamlined and allows us to offer factory prices directly to the consumer.

Question 10: Is there a cork filler I can use for touching up my cork floor?

Answer: Take a scrap tile and sand the edge creating cork dust. Mix this with polyurethane to make a putty, then pack this down into the small cracks and allow to dry. Then put a coat of polyurethane over the surface.

Question 11: Can cork floors be dyed or stained with specific colors? Can cork floors also be stenciled?

Answer: Yes, cork floors can be stained any color. However, only cork floors that do not have a surface finish on them (such as urethane or wax) can be color stained. When staining use a water-based stain and apply evenly using a soft cloth or staining sponge. Allow stain sufficient time to dry and then apply three coats of water-based flooring urethane (following manufacturers instructions). For the truly creative, stenciling cork floors before urethane application can create beautiful and unique custom produced floor finishes.

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