As concern about our impact on the environment grows, everyone is talking about “going green”.
That’s a good thing, but as it relates to floor covering, what exactly does that mean?
First, in manufacturing, it means sustainability – finding a way to meet the needs of today’s consumer without taking away the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
It means not using up the earths resources but being ecologically intelligent: developing new bio-based products from renewable plant sources, using more recycled content, and producing more environmentally preferable products.
It means developing programs that use raw materials in the most expedient way, expanding research that extends the life of new products, and recycling carpet into new carpet or other products, keeping it out of our landfills.
All of these things go along with reducing our carbon footprint and being envionmentally responsible- helping to save our earth. It’s important to all of us.
Here are some green flooring options to consider for your new floors:
Bamboo – A Great Grass
If you like hardwood flooring, consider bamboo. Although technically a grass, bamboo is very hard and scratch resistant. It is a great green option, because it can also be planted and harvested up to eight times faster than traditional hardwood flooring. The Moso bamboo is renewably harvested over and over from the same root stalk. It makes a great looking floor, and typically comes prefinished with oxide finishes and topcoats of scratch resistant polyurethane.
There are many sources out there for reclaimed wood for hardwood flooring. Reclaimed wood flooring can come from older homes or commercial spaces that are being remodeled or torn down. There are many businesses that deal exclusively in reclaimed materials. Reclaimed flooring is a great way to recycle.
Cork is another option when choosing green flooring. It is a natural, renewable product that has recently become popular again (Armstrong used to be called the Armstrong Cork Company). It comes from the bark of the cork oak tree, and only the bark is used, the tree is never felled. Most corks are available in planks and tiles, and come with envitonmentally friendly urethane finishes. Cork is not as durable as bamboo or hardwood, but has a softer feel and is antimicrobial.
Carpet – Made with Eco-Smart Fiber
Mohawk Smartstrand carpet with DuPont Sorona renewably sourced polymer contains ingredients made from corn sugar- a renewable resource. These renewably sourced ingredients replace ingredients that traditionally were derived from petroleum- a limited resource. You get a beautiful and durable carpet available in any number of styles and colors, and by choosing eco-smart technology, you are choosing to reduce your environmental impact. Smart living.
Carpet – Go All Natural
If you would like another option, consider wool carpeting. While a bit more costly, it does offer a very luxurious feel and is of course a renewable resource.
You may also want to consider carpets that are woven from natural materials such as seagrass and sisal. They can be installed wall to wall, but have become extremely popular as bound area rugs of any size.
Linoleum and Marmoleum – Coming around again
Linoleum and Marmoleum are sheet floorings or tiles that have been mainstays in the flooring industry for years. Today, they are enjoying a resurgence because they are one of the few products made primarily from all natural raw materials-linseed oil, wood flour, rosin, and jute. Quite and warm under foot, they are asthma and allergy friendly, and can be bordered or patterned with any number of colors.
Ask our Design Team
Confused about what “green” means, what products to use, how to use patterns and colors? Ask our design people what will work best for you, and they can show you a world of possibilities to suit your needs, style and environmental concerns.
The installation process is just as important to a successful project as the products that we sell. Our craftsmen deliver the end product that ulitmately makes our clients proud of their project. We pride ourselves on our quality of installation. Each member of our team knows our commitment to doing a job right. We reinforce this by a system of continuing education and certification, training programs and seminars, and on the job implementation. Our installers are our own employees and work strictly for us, unlike the independent installation subcontractors that most others use. LEARN MORE