Environmental practices are increasingly informing how consumers shop and what they choose to buy. This habit also plays into flooring options: be it carpet, wood, tile, or another material, customers want to know where the supplies come from, how sustainable the material is, and how long it will last before needing to be replaced. Businesses will do well to have these answers on hand — and to sell more products that can be reused or come from repurposed goods in order to appease environmentally-conscious shoppers. Fortunately, today there are plenty of eco-friendly flooring options, including the five types listed below.
Cork flooring, like wood flooring, will come from trees, however cork is made from the bark of the tree, meaning the tree does not have to be cut down in order to create the flooring planks or panels. Bark takes only a few years to regenerate, and the same tree can provide needed cork for centuries. This makes this flooring option very green-friendly, plus cork floors will have a softer finish in addition to built-in insulation, also saving you money on heating energy.
Bamboo has the best of both worlds: it looks like wooden floors made from trees but bamboo is actually made from grass. Bamboo grass is extremely fast-growing, only taking about four years to reach optimal heights, whereas a tree will need decades. Bamboo plantations also fight erosion, and the flooring itself is rather durable so it will keep for years to come.
Recycled PET Carpet
Synthetic carpets can get a bad reputation because of their VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and offgas levels, but PET carpets feel similar to these fuzzy synthetic ones even though they are made from recycled plastic bottles. PET stands for polyethylene terephthalate and is part of the polyester family of plastics — some PET carpets can even be made of up to 100% of recycled materials. These are also naturally stain-resistant, making them easier to work with.
Wool comes from sheep without harming them, is a renewable resource, and has been sustainably used for centuries. Wool makes for a very eco-friendly carpet option because it is highly long-lasting and biodegradable. Wool can also trap dust, chemicals, and other allergens to improve air quality in a home while still being easy to clean.
A popular choice for commercial buildings, linoleum floors are durable and easy to clean. Additionally, they are made of natural, renewable materials such as linseed oil, wood dust, cork, plant resins, powdered limestone, and more. Much more environmentally sound than other hard floors such as vinyl and laminate, linoleum also comes in a super sustainable (and newer) floor type called marmoleum, which is equally water-resistant and can last up to half a century.
ACS expertly installs residential and commercial flooring for The Home Depot. To learn more about what type of eco-friendly flooring might work for you, check out your nearest Home Depot and check out the extensive options available to you!