Installing a Cork Floor Yourself

by Ken Morris

When most people think of or hear of a cork floor, they think of a bulletin board. There is much more to cork than this. Cork flooring is a beautiful alternative to the traditional flooring and is available in many colors and shades, from light to very dark. Regardless of what your home dcor is, you’ll be able to find a cork floor to compliment your home. There are also different patterns and textures including wood grain and marble.

Using cork flooring has its advantages in addition to its appeal. Cork, being a great insulating material, will keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. It is more energy efficient that discount wood flooring or even Armstrong laminate flooring. Cork floor will help cut your energy costs in the winter, and every little bit helps. It also serves as a great insulation against sound, helping to cut down on the noise from other rooms or floors.

You’ll also love how soft cork floor is on your feet. It’s probably the softest flooring around with the exception of carpeting. It’s one of the most comfortable floorings for your kitchen, which is the room you spend the most time. Your dishes won’t be so quick to break when you drop them on cork as they do on tile. In addition, cork is fire retardant, making it a safe, economical and efficient addition to your home.

Everyone today is conserved about the environment. Using cork works right into our concerns as cork is good for our environment. Cork comes from the back of cork oak trees, but they don’t have to cut the trees down and deplete the supply like with bamboo flooring. They strip the bark away, without killing the tree. The tree will immediately begin to grow once again.

Installing flooring may seem difficult to many, but installation of cork consists of merely nailing or gluing it down. You can install cork flooring over concrete or wood. Make sure the subfloor is clean and dry before installing the cork. You may want to apply a sealer to the subfloor to help prevent moisture. You can also buy cork tiles that are ‘peel and stick’, which make installation very easy.

Spread the adhesive on the subfloor with a paintbrush or roller. If you do a good job, you shouldn’t be able to hardly see the seams when you’re finished. If you need to cut any of the cork tiles to fit around appliances or corners, they cut easily with a utility knife. When the flooring is finished, it will need to be rolled with a 100-pound floor roller, which can be rented from most flooring installation companies or hardware stores. When it’s finished, put a layer of urethane over it for protection and shine.

Cork flooring is very easy to maintain, needing only a sweeping with a broom and mopping with a damp mop. If the finish tends to fade, you can use a sander and reapply another layer of urethane.

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