Monday, October 24, 2016

Cork Floors 101: Part 3

The last couple of columns we have explored where cork comes from and some of the attributes and benefits of it. Today we will explore how it specifically translates to flooring and what you can expect.

Most cork flooring comes in tiles or planks. The most common is an engineered laminate-style application which is installed using a glue down or floating installation process. As with any floor, make sure proper attention is given to the subfloor before installing it to get the best long term results. Many cork fans love its natural variations in tone and texture and like with most natural products, it has a richness and depth that manufacturers cannot replicate. Cork can be dyed or stained in a myriad of colors to fit any design aesthetic.

Cork is a natural product and with any natural product there is some maintenance. Sweep or vacuum it on a weekly basis to keep dirt and crumbs from permanently marring the surface. Some cork flooring comes prefinished and some manufacturers recommend waxing or applying clear polyurethane. Just like hardwoods or carpet, sunlight can fade it over time.

Ok, ok-I’ve convinced you to use cork for your flooring. But how much does it cost? A good budget number is about $12 per square foot which includes installation. Be careful skimping on the quality of the material. Lower density cork flooring won’t hold up very long in the long run. 

Like when selecting any flooring material, consider the other spaces and materials around it before deciding on color or style so that it blends in with the rest of your aesthetic. We’ve installed cork flooring several times and every customer has loved it! If you decide to use it, I’d love to see pictures of your finished space. Email them to me at

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