When choosing a new flooring material, it’s not that hard to come across eco-friendly options these days. By choosing a natural flooring material you’re less likely to suffer the ill effects of volatile organic compounds found in carpets and other synthetics. And choosing a sustainable material will put less pressure on the environment and endangered forests. In this article we’ll go over six eco-conscious flooring choices.
Although many people think bamboo is a wood, it’s actually a grass. And a very fast growing grass as well. It only takes five years for bamboo to reach a maturity level where it can be harvested. When choosing bamboo you’ll be using a sustainable material that’s easily replaceable.
Cork is actually composed of the bark of cork trees. For this reason it’s also quick growing. It can be harvested after three to five years and the tree doesn’t even need to be felled. This is another sustainable flooring option that allows for quick regeneration and avoids deforestation.
Reclaimed wood can come from many different sources. The underlying common factor is that it’s wood that’s been previously used. Because no new trees need to be chopped down when using reclaimed wood it’s considered a sustainable material. You’re also preventing it from ending up in the landfill.
Engineered wood is composed of several layers of plywood that’s bound together with adhesive. This strong core is topped with a thin veneer of sustainable hardwood to give it the look of solid hardwood without the corresponding price. By giving scraps of plywood a new life, engineered hardwood planks are an affordable eco-conscious choice.
Linoleum is often mistaken for vinyl. Unlike vinyl, linoleum is actually a natural product composed of materials such as oxidized linseed oil, pine rosin, wood flour, cork dust and calcium carbonate. Linoleum is a much more eco-friendly material than vinyl as it doesn’t contain the toxic chemicals.
Concrete can be considered an eco-conscious flooring choice due to its longevity. As opposed to many of the other sustainable flooring choices, it’s very unlikely you’ll need to replace it once it’s been poured. Polished or stained concrete can actually look quite attractive as well.