Ecofriendly Kitchen: How to Select Flooring
Going green with your own kitchen flooring brings benefits beyond which makes you feel great about your choice. Durability is the biggest prize. Think of homes with wood flooring which may be nearing a century old — this can be sustainable thinking at its finest, because a very long life expectancy born of durable substances means conservation of natural resources. And this approach is kind to your fiscal resources too.
Ecologically speaking, wood can be the very best or the worst of substances. It can be almost ideal when harvested . It is durable, it has a very long life cycle, and milling could be easy and require minimal energy. However, wood that is not harvested sustainably could be environmentally harmful. When choosing wood flooring, start looking for the next to make certain you’re making the most sustainable choice.
FSC-certified: The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an independent service that offers certification, or consent, to wood that’s been chosen in a responsible way. Consider it as timber’s equal of organic. Neighborhood species: Wood that’s been chosen locally minimizes transportation-related energy, supports the local economy and strengthens the feeling of location. Hardness: The Janka scale measures the resistance of a species of wood to wear and tear. The scale ranges from 22 around 5,000. Teak comes in at 1,000.
Reclaimed wood flooring. Smart makers are trying to find sustainable chances. Viridian Wood salvages shipping crates made of tropical hardwoods and repurposes them into high performance FSC-certified flooring. This home showcases Viridian’s dark combination of Jakarta wood throughout the kitchen and the rest of the house.
Tropical hardwoods would be the hardest woods on the planet, occupying the top positions on the Janka scale, making them a great selection for durable flooring. On the other hand, the harvesting of tropical forests causes significant environmental destruction. Seeking FSC-certified wood is especially significant with tropical hardwoods, since it will see to it that the wood was harvested in a sustainable way.
Alan Mascord Design Associates Inc
Engineered hardwood flooring. Extending wood flooring into the kitchen is a great way to seam together several areas, as this house shows. Doing this requires a stout flooring that can take the wear a kitchen doles out. Engineered wood flooring might be durable choice, since they have a thin veneer of completed wood endorsed by various layers, or plys, of more wood. This layered method makes engineered wood more stable than solid wood and less likely to warp when faced with temperature changes and humidity. Start Looking for FSC-certified and formaldehyde-free Choices.
Salvaged hardwood flooring. Why use material with recycled material when you’re able to upcycle stuff? Doing this sets the bar high for sustainability and is a chance to attract some history and personality to your kitchen. Salvaged beams out of a 100-year-old warehouse roof were milled into tongue and groove floors with this kitchen.
Debra Toney, AIA Assoc.
Linoleum flooring. Poor linoleum. Over time it has been confused with ubiquitous and frequently not-so-nice sheet vinyl, when actually the two have little in common. True linoleum is made of natural substances, including linseed oil, also is inherently dressier — a fairly neat attribute for a kitchen.
Linoleum can be found in sheets, tiles or boards. If you’re not creating a blueprint with tiles, I suggest using sheets, since you are going to have fewer joints and fewer areas to the flooring to reveal its age. Ensure any adhesives are free of solvents and labeled”no-VOC.”
Forbo’s Marmoleum, the best known linoleum, carries a 25-year warranty and offers over 120 colours of sheet products. This kitchen demonstrates how linoleum can be an artist’s canvas for colour and layout.
Cork flooring. The warmth and comfort of cork underfoot makes it a great selection for the kitchen, in which we often stand for extended periods of time. Cork additionally simplifies a great deal of green cred: It is a fast renewable and carefully protected source. Every nine years producers in Portugal and Spain strip the thin bark of cork trees into long, wide slabs, using care to not harm the tree. Wine corks are stamped out , and the scraps are subsequently pressed and ground to earn floors and bulletin boards, so that every piece that is chosen is used.
Cork is available in the two tiles and boards. With both I search prefinished products with a no-VOC finish. With any prefinished plank or tile merchandise, the vertical borders frequently aren’t prefinished, so it is well worth adding a top coat of finish after installation to protect the joints and edges.
Cork makers have broadened their palettes to add pale, dark and coloured possibilities, as well as a selection of patterns.
Brennan + Company Architects
Rubber-cork-blend flooring. Cushy cork gets a new look when combined with recycled rubber, such as in CapriCork’s And/Or line, made with 35 percent preconsumer recycled material. The product is available in both tiles and rolls, and comes in 17 different colours, from neutral to bright shades.
Abramson Teiger Architects
Concrete flooring. The ultimate multitasker, concrete flooring are often the finished flooring as well as the structural flooring too. Simplifying a intricate flooring system to one material is a clever, efficient, cost-effective solution. To green your concrete, you can increase the fly-ash material (a by-product of coal processing), but do this only if coal is processed in your area. Otherwise the environmental effects of transporting the fly ash outweigh the benefits. Alternatively, consider adding recycled glass to decrease the amount of virgin aggregate utilized.
Wheeler Kearns Architects
Terrazzo flooring. Seemingly indestructable, terrazzo gets an A+ for durability, and for its great looks. This material, made of chips of granite or marble set in concrete and polished, can score high to sustainability too if no- or low-VOC sealers and low-impact aggregates (such as recycled glass) are utilized. Terrazzo’s one shortcoming is it can be challenging to stand on for extended periods of time.
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