The advantages and disadvantages of cork flooring
Cork coatings appeared not so many years ago, but already managed to conquer an army of fans. This happened due to the numerous advantages of the material, its environmental friendliness and the ability to use it as the main coating in residential premises. In the best way cork floor caught on in bedrooms, living rooms and children's rooms.
Cork is made from the bark of a special oak tree that grows on the Mediterranean coast. An interesting feature of the plant is the regeneration of the removed layer of bark, thanks to which virtually every tree supplies raw materials for the future floor from cork multiple times. The interval between the removal of each layer is approximately 7-8 years.
As a finishing material in the interior, cork has spread throughout the world from Europe, where it has successfully established itself in the market. Its properties, such as low thermal conductivity and high noise absorption, are a distinctive feature of the material, and the tactile sensations of contact with this flooring can not be compared with any other.
Cork flooring itself is produced in the form of a sandwich panel up to 6 mm thick. Today you can find two of its varieties:
- A variant with a locking fastening consisting of several layers: bases of pressed agglomerate, MDF with grooves and spikes, another protective layer of sinter and wood veneer to which the final is applied - in the form of varnish or protective film.
- Plates on the glue base, which consists of the following layers: bases made of pressed agglomerate and glue, then there is a veneer on which a glossy or matte finishing layer is applied.
One or another option is chosen for finishing the house, depending on the estimated budget and method of laying material.
Key features, advantages and disadvantages
Cork flooring can blend in harmoniously with any room: it is quite suitable for office premises, it will perfectly manifest itself in the bathroom and in the kitchen, it will become a highlight in the living room, it will give coziness and comfort to the nursery. Do not ignore the numerous advantages of traffic jams. High-quality coating features a number of amazing properties that distinguish it from other outdoor varieties:
- Naturalness and environmental friendliness. The structure of the basis does not include substances that can damage human health. Cork floor does not cause allergies even to those who are disposed to this disorder.
- Elasticity and strength. The residual strain of the plug is rather low, therefore, even after a substantial load on the surface, the appearance of the coating is quickly restored.
- High thermal insulation. After installing the coating, you can forget what a cold floor is. The cork itself is a warm, pleasant to the touch base, but its thermal insulation characteristics become a real barrier to the cold emanating from the concrete screed.
- Good noise absorption. The special structure allows the material to absorb any noise, improving the acoustic characteristics of the room and increasing comfort.
- Water repellent properties. Unlike most tree species, cork oak does not absorb water and does not rot on time. This property becomes important for rooms with high humidity - kitchens and bathrooms, in addition, the risk of slipping on slippery floors is minimized.
- Unique appearance. This is due to the different texture and originality of the picture.This option can be the dominant interior solutions in the apartment.
- Orthopedic effect. While walking on the floor, the flooring seems to spring under your feet, which has a beneficial effect on the locomotor system.
- The ability to repel odors. Cork oak has the unique property of repelling not only water, but also smell. This has a positive effect on the comfort and freshness of the air in the rooms.
- Resistance to burning and decay. The material is absolutely fireproof.
- Easy to clean and care for the floor. Thanks to its water-repellent and dirt-repellent properties, it will be very easy to keep the house clean.
Of course, the material has its own disadvantages, which include:
- Exposure to sharp objects and significant point load, so do not install cork oak floor in rooms where heels are used, and it is recommended to install special pads under the furniture legs.
- Ambiguity of the installation procedure. If in the case of the castle type, the installation is quick, then the adhesive coating is much more difficult to install, and the procedure will take much longer.
- The disadvantages of flooring include its cost, which is much higher than the price of a conventional castle laminate.
- Instability to solid particles of garbage, which can easily be pressed into the surface.
- The impact on the floor of the sole of rubber leaves traces on it, which will be very difficult to wash.
Cork flooring is an excellent interior solution that will last a very long time. However, the lifetime is directly dependent on some conditions that must be strictly observed. To ensure that the material serves as long as possible, you should not walk on it in thin heels or in footwear with a rubber base, and also leave any solid garbage on the surface.
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