Floating floors Hardwood Flooring and Floating Wood Floors

floating floors Hardwood Flooring and Floating Wood Floors

Posts Tagged floating floors

The Growing Appeal of Cork Flooring

January 10, 2011

The biggest question still holds true in most peoples minds when they think of cork flooring.  Can a piece of cork really last as long on the ground?  The answer is yes. Your cork wood flooring is just as durable as other flooring alternatives. Some cork floorings like Ipocork by Amorim are finished with up to 6 layers of wear resistant technology.

Not only is it highly durable, cork has been known to be a great insulator for heat, sound and moisture. Cork bark is made up of a tiny sealed cellular structure, which contains 90% air. With about 40 million of these cells per cubic centimeter, they provide resiliency and insulation. As you can imagine, cork can be compressed and quickly returns to its original shape, making it a remarkably forgiving flooring material.

The comfort of cork should not be overlooked. The air trapped in the structure of cork flooring provides great support for your feet, making it an ideal product for rooms in which you spend the most time in. Cork contains a natural substance called Suberin, which repels insects, mold and is even fire resistant. Not to worry though, Suberin is completely safe for children and animals.

It wouldnt do it justice to talk about cork without talking about all the environmental benefits that come along with this green product. The reason cork is considered an eco-friendly flooring is because it is a highly renewable resource. Cork oak trees do not need to be savaged to harvest the cork from them. The tree bark is removed, leaving the rest of the tree fully intact.

The bark from cork oak trees can be harvested every 9-12 years for a total of more than 20 times during its natural lifespan. Most cork comes from the Mediterranean, specifically Portugal, which supplies over 70% of the cork production in the world. After the bark is harvested and ground up, it is bound with a non-toxic resin and baked in large sheets and different patterns. This process produces the natural beauty we see in our cork floors .

All these benefits must cost a fortune, right? Fortunately, thats not the case. Cork, being a renewable resource, is relatively affordable. As of 2011, the average price for cork flooring is less than most hardwood species and comparable to bamboo.

Cork flooring comes in glue down or floating. Glue down installation results in lower material costs but higher installation costs. Where as the more common form, floating installation results in lower over all costs and is easier to install. As a result, most cork comes in a click and lock flooring system, making it ideal for the do-it-yourselfer. If you were to hire an installer, hours are typically shortened due to the short preparation time.

Another huge benefit of having a click and lock system floating flooring is the ability to replace certain pieces without damaging the surrounding area. Dishwasher floods are not something anyone can prepare for but the damage just doesnt seem as severe when it is a matter of replacing a few pieces.

Now that you know what all the hype is about, Unique Wood Floors hopes youll keep cork in mind for your next project.

Choosing Quality Floating Wood Floors For your condo, basement, radiant heat floors

You are just a few clicks away from a new Wood Floor for your home! We are talking about clicking together your brand new floating wood flooring.

Floating wood floors are now installed on any hard surface with simple a click lock or tongue & groove system. All floating floors are bound to each other and not to the sub floor. This makes it possible to expand as one piece rather than individual boards. Its ideal for areas with higher humidity such as basements. Since floating wood floors will expand and contract as one unit, the chances of cupping or gapping between boards is greatly reduced, but be sure to leave space along the walls and cover them up with your baseboard as this allows for expansion.

Unlike its counterpart, click lock floating wood floors are much easier to repair if a specific area is damaged. A great example is a dish washer flood. You would simply unclick the flooring up to the damaged area, then replace the damaged boards and reassemble.

Another benefit is installing it directly over ceramic, tile, or any hard surface. Tearing out and disposing your old flooring is quite an extensive project in itself, but thats no longer necessary.

Floating engineered wood floors have become more and more popular amongst home owners due to the simplicity of installation and stability in structure. Besides a few species, they also worked well with radiant heat systems and concrete basement sub floors. Floating engineered flooring is typically installed above the underlayment, a foam or cork material, which acts as a barrier to moisture and sound.

European styled floating wood floors often have a 3-ply design with the top wear layer being hardwood, lumber middle core and balanced base veneer.  When the floor has a 3 to 4 mm (1/8 to 3/16) wear layer, it is considered high quality for several reasons. First of all, the thick wear layer can be re-sanded and varnished a few times giving it the fresh new look as when you first installed it. Secondly, floating wood floors with a thick top layer prevents you from feeling the bounce effect while walking on it because it tends to sit on the sub floor firmly due to the weight of the hardwood.

We have been selling Floating Wood Floors for years at Unique Wood Floors. While most engineered floating wood floors are designed with a click & lock system, some can still be tongue & groove which requires edge glue. There are advantages to each design. Builders and Diyers enjoy the floating wood floors with click & lock system more due to the benefits of easy installation. Meanwhile, contractors could favor the tongue & groove floating wood floors more because they can be installed by nail-down and glue-down.

Now you may be asking yourself. Why should I choose floating wood floors over laminate flooring which is just as easy to install and has the similar wood grains? Well floating wood flooring is real wood that offers all the advantages of real wood floors. The biggest advantage is that real hardwood is warmer on your feet. Like solid wood flooring, floating wood floors with thicker wear layer can also be refinished a few times. Remember the thicker the wear layer the more times you can refinish. Quality floating wood floors should last 40 to 50 years!

For more information about how to choose your next floating wood floor and maintenance tips, please feel free to contact us at 952-994-9696 or email: sales@uniquewoodfloor.com .

Recap:

floating floors Hardwood Flooring and Floating Wood Floors
  • Not all the floating engineered wood floors are made equal. Total thickness and wear layer (top hardwood part) make a huge difference on the performance and life span of your installed floor.
  • All wood products will have some expansions and contractions during season change.
  • 1/8 or thicker wear layer and 1/2” and thicker total make wood floors with optimal floating weight.
  • European styled 3 ply floating wood floors provide good stability.
  • Make sure your sub-floor is leveled within 3/16” for every 10 sqft before installation. The most common cause of hollow sounds and noises are from low spots on your sub-floor.
  • A good 1/8 acoustical underlayment, such as Acousti-Cork or Floor Muffler, will improve your floating wood floors performance and improve sound barrier quality. The bigger area you are covering, the thicker floating floors it requires.

Consider A Floating Hardwood Floor: It’s Hardwood without the trouble!

A floating floor will be basically a hardwood floor that is installed by gluing the floor planks together as an alternative to gluing or stapling them to the floor itself. Since a floating floor doesnt need a unique kind of subfloor to install to, it frees you up to install wood flooring in areas where they previously werent a possibility. You are able to install them over vinyl or ceramic flooring, or in areas of high humidity where traditional hardwood floors have a tendency to warp and crack. If youre looking for the great look of hardwood floors without the installation challenges and limitations, then a floating hardwood floor will be everything that youve been searching for.

Another advantage of a floating wood floor is usually that, given that they are glued together as an alternative to the subfloor, they usually are placed in a bevy of areas where traditional hardwood floors werent a solution. First off, they are often installed over the top of other flooring choices (everything with the exception of carpet), saving you time and trouble of tearing out your original flooring before installing your floating wood floor. And because theyre glued or clicked together, instead of fastened to your floor itself, the entire floor expands united rather then as individual planks. This simply means they may be installed in areas of high humidity (i.e. basements) where hardwood flooring previously wasnt allowed.

Why Use Floating Flooring

A floating wood floor will be placed in almost identical way as a laminate or engineered wood floor. Made out of a core layer of plywood or hardwood, with layers of hardwood veneer as the wear and tear (or top) layer, these planks are designed in tongue and groove style and are usually glued together as you put them to use over the layer of foam padding. If that sounds too challenging to suit your needs, new kinds of floating wood floor are actually being manufactured that happen to be glueless, which enable it to be clicked together upon installation. To make a lengthy story short, a floating hardwood floor combines the simple installation of laminate flooring using the classic looks of hardwood flooring. Thats a combination thats tough to beat.

Floating Floors May very well be Refinished

Finally, among the many big advantages of choosing a floating wood floor over laminate is certainly that they can be refinished more than once, just like a traditional hardwood floor. Consequently a floating wood floor isnt a quick term flooring option. If installed correctly and taken care of properly, a floating hardwood floor can last 40 to eighty years, depending on the thickness with the wear layer of hardwood veneer!

A Few Items to consider When Inserting a Floating Floor

While these floors possess tremendous upside, here are a few things to be aware of to ensure that your new floor wont disappointed you during the years to come. First, fight the temptation going cheap and don’t purchase cut-rate flooring. The cheaper the flooring the cheaper the wear layer, and the cheaper the wear layer, the shorter your new floors lifespan is going to be. Spending a little bit more for the thicker wear layer will be worth every penny if youre considering increasing the life span of your new floating hardwood floor. Also, understand that one of many main important things about these floors can be their downfall. Be sure to leave room for expansion after you install your flooring. Any time you cut your new floor to fit, the complete surface will be almost certain to buckle and heave soon enough. By leaving a tiny space between your flooring as well as walls, thereafter covering that space with baseboard or other trim, you can rest easy knowing your floating floor can last you for a long time.

If youre serious in installing a floating floor in your house, contact Unique Wood Floors today at 952.994.9696 or email us at: sales@uniquewoodfloor.com about selecting the most appropriate style, wood, and installation method for you and your home. Please be sure to visit us at www.uniquewoodfloor.com


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