Vinyl, cork, rubber, and linoleum, your complete guide to soft tile flooring
Environmentally friendly flooring options are compared side by side based on price, durability, and green factors.
My latest article is a glossary page defining and detailing information about resilient flooring. These versatile materials are flexible, durable, and applicable in a wide variety of environments. In this post I'll be taking a brief look at some up and coming manufacturers of these products.
Based out of Sweden, Valinge is a resilient flooring manufacturer that is most famous for their ACTi02 technology. This uses titanium oxide in the structure of the material, which when activated by light can break down VOC's and other bacteria, contributing to healthier indoor air quality.
MP Global Products
Generally recognized as a manufacturer of underlayment, MP Global Products also has a line of luxury vinyl tile which emulates both natural stone and hardwood plank looks.
A young company, Happy Feet is developing its business around a philosophy of excellent customer service, and a consistently well stocked inventory. They specialize in commercial resilient flooring, featuring the Iron Man collection, and the 12"x24" floating floor click together solution known as the LVT Stone Line.
If you run a school, a nursery, a daycare center, or any space that frequently has children running about, then your liability insurance for potential injuries is extremely high. The type of flooring that you choose to install in this environment can affect both the price of the insurance, and the number of accidents that can occur over the course of a year, making this a crucial decision when designing your interiors.
Softer flooring such as cork, rubber, and resilient materials installed over padding can prevent injuries that occur when trips and accidents occur. Making sure that you choose materials with good traction is also important. Avoid polished stone or smooth porcelain and ceramic tiles, especially in spaces where spills can occur.
Another factor to consider is the indoor air quality of the facility. Some flooring such as vinyl can give off Volatile Organic Chemicals which can infect the air. Other options such as rubber have an odor that can be irritating to some people. Knowing all of the different flooring factors that can affect children will help you to make an informed decision.
In my latest article I discuss some of the safest senior friendly bathroom flooring options that are available. Unfortunately this is a limited list as the nature of the environment restricts the usage of a lot of different materials. The ideal is to find flooring that is soft enough to be safe, but durable enough to resist water damage and staining agents.
Most accidents in the home occur in the bathroom, because this environment tends to be wet, and slippery with soaps. That is why it is important to use soft flooring in a space that will be occupied by an older person, as a yielding surface will be less likely to do serious damage to brittle bones. You also want a material that has good traction to prevent slips from happening in the first place.
Bathroom flooring safety also requires a material that can be easily and readily cleaned and sanitized. Many options are prone to mold, rot, and the growth of microscopic germs when installed in humid wet bathroom environments. Choosing a floor that has antimicrobial characteristics will inherently cut down on these dangers, and contribute to a cleaner, healthier space.