Here's a great idea for flooring your home, it's called cork flooring and is a fantastic material very popular with eco friendly people.
Here are a few good points as to why it would be beneficial for you to use cork flooring instead of lino of wooden flooring.
Cork is harvested from trees making it a renewable source of environmentally friendly wood, which re-grows very quickly.
Using cork can be cheaper than using even bamboo.
Cork is resistant to such things as mold and mildew.
Cork is a good metarial to use in many varying temperatures and is typically flame retardant.
This material is light weight and can even float on water, giving it many uses.
Cork is hard to scratch and not even insects can cause damage to the material.
As you can see in the points stated above Cork is harvested from trees, the tree that it took from is called the Cork Oak tree. The bark is stripped away from the rest of the tree meaning that there is no reason for cutting it down leaving the tree still very much alive. The cork is then taken and ground and flattened into sheets, these are then placed into a kiln and literally baked and then cut into tiles, this helps with it being so durable. Each Oak that is used must first be over 25years old before they can even lay hands on it. Once the bark is stripped away the tree instantly starts to re-grow new bark and this is why it's a renewable resource. Of course this may still be unexpected to the trees, so there is a limit of nine years for the trees to be harvested. A good place to use Cork flooring would be places like the kitchen or if you have pets, why not put the Cork floor everywhere in the house. Since Cork is made using the bark from a tree and the way it's processed it has many microbubbles in and can for that reason being a great insulator of sound making it perfect for covering walls in say your music room (eg One of your children play the Drums).
So you can get a hard wearing material that does not scratch and has multiple uses while also thinking about the environment for a small amount of money.
Do not worry if you have a wonderful decorated room and do not want to ruin the room with the Cork flooring. For Cork can come in a wide variety of colors and even different styles to match and style of home. You can install the Cork over most surfaces such as the most likely concrete and wooden subfloors.
Cork flooring is so easy to lay down it does not make sense. But before you start installing the flooring here's the equipment you'll need.
A Tape measure, you will be needing this to make sure you have the right measurements of the room you wish to install the Cork in, otherwise you might find yourself with too much or too little of the material you need.
Something to cut the material with such a stanley knife. You'll need to cut down some of the tiles or planks to make sure it fits perfectly into the room.
You'll also need a Paint Brush and some rollers.
Something to mark the ground where you are placing the Cork, something like chalk would work.
A rubber mallet, do not use anything other than rubber mallet or you'll ruin the surface of the Cork.
Some sort of adhesive to stick the material down. Try to get a water based adhesive this will make things easier.
100-150 lb Roller to press the material firmly onto the ground.
To make your job a little bit easier and to ensure that the floor goes down well here is a list of some things you'll need to do before starting.
First it would be a good idea to place the Cork in the room you plan on flooring, when the Cork changes temperature it'll change in size, if you place the material on floor and it warms it it may warp and then ruin your hard work.
Second, you need to clean the surface, the adhesive will not work well if it stick to the dirt instead of the floor. So you will need to sweep then mop the floor leaving it to dry after.
Use the tape measure to find out the length of each wall to find out the surface area of your room, this will help to find out exactly how much material you'll really need. You can get a bit more material then you need just to be safe and not leave your room half completed.
You'll need to check the floor is level, if not you'll need to use some sort of floor leveling compound that you'll have to spread across the floor, latex seems to be a popular one to use.
Finally after all that you can begin your installation of the Cork flooring.
First thing is to do a layout test place all the tiles or planks on the floor by placing them without the adhesive. If you find some tiles or planks do not fit measure the gap left over and mark the shape onto one of the tiles then use the cutting tool to cut it into shape. When the tiles are down mark out sections.
Starting off with a fairly small sized section place your adhesive on the floors surface then leave it to dry slightly so that it is tacky, this should give you some moderate control.
Then place the tiles or planks onto the floor, after this use either the Mallet to lightly knock the tiles securely into place or go over the tiles with the roller making sure to go over several times in different directions. I suggest using the roller this will give a better finish and will make sure the tiles are firmly placed.
Using a damp clothes wipe off any excess adhesive after placing each section.
Depending on the time it takes for the adhesive to dry, do not walk on the cork flooring this can cause some warping in the material.
When cleaning the Cork flooring try not to use things such as bleach or anything else strong this can ruin the surface of the Cork just use a mop with a small amount of surface cleaner.
There you have it, a brand new flooring at a next to nothing price.
Avoid harsh cleaning products when keeping your cork flooring clean. Regular mopping using a damp mop will be sufficient. Use paper towels or a sponge for spill to avoid permanent stains.