NATURAL BENEFITS OF CORK
Most of the benefits of cork are derived from its specialized cellular structure. Cork has a honeycomb cellular structure and each cubic centimeter contains roughly 40 million hexagonal cells. The cork tissue is nearly 85% comprised of an air-like gas that makes the material very lightweight and low density. We recommend the glue-down cork tiles to get all the benefits of cork because they are 100% cork. The standard cork floating floors are constructed with more fiberboard than cork so you lose some of the softness, sound reduction and green benefits of cork.
Cork is a beautiful natural product and now with Globus Cork's proprietary colouring process, there are so many design options available. Nearly any design that can be done in ceramic tiles can now be done in cork. Globus Cork is unique in its tile size and shape offerings. More than 20 sizes are available as well as custom designs and colours.
Cork flooring is a very durable choice. Its been popular for use in public buildings such as court houses, churches, banks and libraries. The softness and give of the floor causes less of a grinding action to occur with normal foot traffic than on harder surfaces such as hardwood floors. Cork flooring has a very long life and can be repaired if damaged. The oldest cork floor installation in the US is in a church near Chicago dating from 1898. Here are some of our cork tile installations.
The air contained in the millions of cork cells provides a cushioned feel underfoot. It is not so soft that it feels spongy, but it does provide noticeable relief for those who stand on their feet for many hours. Whether standing on your feet at work all day, working in your kitchen, or if you have small children that play on the floor, you'll appreciate the soft quality of cork floors.
SOUND & VIBRATION REDUCTION
Cork reduces the transmission of sound, vibration, heat and thus is a great insulator. The tiny cellular compartments seal air in each compartment insulating each from the other with a moisture resistant, waxy-like substance. This makes cork a great material for recording studios, entertainment rooms, and any other places where sound needs to be reduced. Cork has long been used in commercial buildings between floors and on roofs under heavy machinery for sound and vibration reduction. Cork reduces impact sound (IIC) as well as sound transmission (STC).
Cork reduces heat loss in rooms and even body heat loss through the feet. Cork naturally maintains a comfortable median temperature, never getting very hot or very cool. Walk barefoot on a cork floor and the warmth is immediately apparent. In tests its been shown that less heat is lost through the feet with a cork floor than with hardwood, vinyl or ceramic floors. Cork is a natural thermal insulator because of the encapsulated cells containing mostly air.
ANTI-ALLERGENIC AND INSECT RESISTANT
Bugs, mold, mites and even termites are repelled by cork due to a naturally occurring substance in cork called Suberin. This waxy substance also prevents cork from rotting even when completely submerged under water for long periods of time.
Globus Cork tiles are pre-finished and pre-glued. This means that your flooring installer will spend far less time installing your floor and if you like to tackle home improvement projects, you can do this job yourself. Globus Cork tiles have a micro beveled edge that allows tiles to expand and contract as all natural products do without the edges of a tile peaking above another.
Cork cell membranes are very flexible allowing cork to be both compressible and elastic. When cork is subjected to pressure or heavy weights, the air in the cells is compressed. An example would be when a cork stopper is pressed into a bottle opening. Once the pressure is released (or in the example, the cork is removed from the bottle), cork returns to its original shape. In cork flooring, this means that although its possible to make a dent in cork with a heavy object or high-heeled shoes, the cork will recover to its original shape, unlike hardwood floors.
The natural waxy substance Suberin makes cork a natural fire inhibitor. Cork is fire resistant and also does not release any toxic gases on combustion.