Eco Friendly Flooring as a Low Impact AlternativeDownload Audio Version
Eco friendly flooring is affordable, durable, and versatile, and comes in different colors and designs. There are various flooring options that are made from glass, wood, wool, concrete, and other materials.
Types of Flooring and Materials
Concrete is considered eco-friendly due to the fact that once installed, it doesn’t need replacement. It is easy to maintain and clean and is very durable. Concrete can be combined with other materials such as glass and can be layered with fixtures, furnishings, and rugs. Concrete floors are affordable and sustainable and feature different finishes, from simple and elegant to more elaborate. In addition, concrete flooring is versatile and long-lived and is a good choice for indoor-outdoor transitions.
Glass tiles are a popular choice because they are versatile and don’t stain. One of the main advantages is that they are mold and mildew resistant and can be installed in different areas. Glass tiles are featured in a large array of finishes, patterns, designs, and colors. Recycled glass tiles are an eco-friendly option for residential units. They are easy to recycle and reuse and are made from non-toxic materials.
Linoleum is another option and a better alternative than vinyl which contains harmful petrochemicals. Linoleum is made from ground limestone, pigments, and wood flour. It also contains tree resins, cork dust, linseed oil, and other substances. One of the main advantages of linoleum is that it is a water-resistant and fire-retardant material. It is very durable and a good choice for rooms with a lot of foot traffic. Linoleum is an environmentally preferred alternative because it is biodegradable and has anti-bacterial properties. Some homeowners choose vinyl because it requires less maintenance. The problem is that it is unsafe. Some studies have shown that vinyl curtains cause health problems because they release toxic compounds. The list of dangerous chemicals includes methyl isobutyl ketone, toluene, and cumene. They are volatile compounds and are considered air pollutants. Health problems associated with volatile compounds include respiratory diseases, liver problems developmental damage, as well as reproductive problems. Linoleum, on the other hand, is a renewable and environmentally-friendly option that is made of natural substances.
Other Types of Eco-friendly Flooring
There are other alternatives to conventional flooring, including bamboo, cork, rubber, berber floors, as well as wool carpets. Rubber floors are durable, versatile, and suitable for different areas, including bathrooms and kitchens. Recycled tires are used to manufacture rubber flooring. There are three main varieties – recycled, natural, and synthetic floors. Synthetic rubber is the least desirable option because petroleum is the main component. On the good side, the manufacturing process is low impact and safe for the environment. Natural rubber flooring is one alternative, but it is made of latex, and some people are allergic. Polyester carpets are another option to consider. Recycled plastic bottles are used to make P.E.T carpets, and the manufacturing process does minimal damage to the environment. The advantages are that polyester carpets feature a large variety of patterns and shades and are spill-resistant and very durable. Another advantage is that they are an affordable option for residential and commercial units.
Reclaimed hardwood and leather are two other options. Leather flooring is durable and soft and is designed for areas such as closets, studies, and small bedrooms. It is not suitable for offices, stores, kitchens, and other areas that receive a lot of foot traffic. Some manufacturers offer green leather tiles that can be used anywhere, except in moist areas. Leather tiles are a good option for gyms, lobbies, board rooms, staircases, ceilings, and other rooms and areas that require special décor solutions. Recycled weather tiles are durable and handle wear and tear. Unlike them, hide leather contracts and expands with temperature fluctuations and has a shorter useful life. Other advantages are that leather absorbs noises and is free of hazardous compounds. Some manufacturers even offer tiles with a moisture- and water-resistant coating. Leather tiles are safe for babies and small children and are an affordable option. They are odor-free and easy to maintain.
Reclaimed hardwood is another environmentally-friendly option for wood lovers. Salvaged wood is reused to manufacture flooring and help minimize the effect of deforestation. It is a better alternative than synthetic petroleum-based products that contribute to air pollution. Moreover, reclaimed hardwood comes from different sources, including warehouses, factories, barns, and old residential buildings. They are built using different tree species such as pine, chestnut, oak, and others. Timber is durable and strong and can be reused to stop deforestation and the overuse of constantly diminishing natural resources. Bamboo is also a great choice for eco-friendly flooring because it is durable and comes in a large variety of hues and grains.
Eco Friendly Building Materials for Sustainable Living
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