Tired of those old floors at home and thinking of replacing them? Well, you are not alone and many people are facing the same question and want to make changes but in an eco-friendly way. Follow these guidelines and you should be able to make your planned project as green friendly as it is possible to be from the start until the finish.
Check out the raw materials around you
Look at your old flooring, is there anything that you can work with here, improve rather than rip and replace is the given advice. You may able to improve upon the flooring you already have buy sanding, refinishing and varnishing the existing wooden flooring. This process is not just limited to wooden floors, but extends to deep cleaning carpets; polishing and rejuvenating stone floors. Take time to consider replacing broken tiles in your tile flooring and this can make your tile floors literally appear as good as new.
Outgassing from your carpets
You may not be familiar with the chemical problems that your carpets could be causing but one of these could be outgassing. You may never view your carpets in the same light when you get to know about outgassing, but essentially you don’t want your carpets causing environment pollution problems. What you should do is to consider a carpet seal from an approved supplier recognized by the American Formulating and Manufacturing Association that confirms that the odor-free seal stops outgassing of harmful chemicals for up to five full cleanings or for a full year without needing to be sealed again.
If repair is not an option chose an eco-friendly replacement
In many cases, you will come to the conclusion that your floors are really beyond repair and you will need to look for a suitable replacement. There are many effective eco-friendly flooring materials available today; wood is your best option as wood flooring comes in many varieties including bamboo, cork and eucalyptus. These woods are good choices as they can easily be regrown and sustainably harvested. In addition the salvaged wood and recycled plastic sectors are growing with new suppliers entering the market and making it easier for buyers to get local access to these products.
While you are considering your options, you should not overlook salvaged stone floors or even those based on recycled glass because their environmental impact helps to conserve resources and reduce the impact on the environment.
Buy locally whenever possible
At all times, consider where the material and the final product for your floors is coming from. There is a basic rule of thumb that works well and that is to set you catchment area to source your floor material from suppliers who grow and supply from within a radius of no more than 500 miles from your home. Simply put the cost to get the flooring material to your home for installation drives down the greenhouse gas emissions that will be caused by long distance transport, this is a smart move.
Now, turn your attention to where the products are harvested, it is not difficult to find good information about countries where your flooring products are being produced are careful to promote and practice regeneration or are lax with slash and burn style production that pays no attention to respecting environmental legislation. Look out for the Forest Stewardship Council certification label on any wood products that you are considering buying as this confirms that the wood was grown and responsibly harvested and in all ways respects the environment.
Attention to the small details is important too
Every component that will be involved in laying your flooring is important as you consider just how eco-friendly you are being. Glues, chemicals and finishes may all need to be used to install your wood floors and if you are serious and passionate about not causing environment damage you should be particularly aware of their composition and their potential effects in your own home.
Stain sealants are an attractive solution to ensure that your flooring remains well preserved for the longer term but the chemicals that they use emit chemical gases and these could directly have an impact in your home causing nausea and headaches at worst and an unpleasant smell at the least, so take great care when you are considering using them. Look out for products that are certified from well-respected consumer agencies that confirm that the products are certified to only feed low emissions of any volatile organic compounds known as VOCs into the atmosphere.
Floor laying professionals and installers recommend that you always make a smart choice by using recycled materials for your subflooring. Take care if you are following this recommendation to not inadvertently use materials that include formaldehyde that has been proven to be a direct cause of lung cancer. When installing your new flooring using nails instead of adhesives and glues is actually a simple but fully effective way of reducing any environmental impact. In many ways, simplicity makes sense!