There can be no denying that society has shifted towards purchasing sustainably. But is there such a thing as sustainable flooring? Are some materials more environmentally friendly than others? And if so, are they really more sustainable – or just marketed that way to appeal to customers who shop within society’s adopted paradigm of sustainability? In truth, when it comes to flooring there are certainly some materials that are more sustainable than others – namely timber, as compared to carpet or ceramic tiles. This blog will outline six key environmental and health benefits that timber can provide your home – whilst not sacrificing on aesthetic.
It’s often easy to forget about the processes that precede a product landing on the shelf, but it’s important to note that timber requires the least amount of energy of the most common flooring materials. Carbon emissions from timber floor manufacturing are less than 2 tonnes of CO², in comparison to the 5, 11 and 12 tonnes from tiles, steel and concrete respectively. That’s a big difference!
Purchasing timber floors means that you’re providing a place for carbon to live. Up to half the dry weight of wood is carbon that’s been absorbed from the atmosphere by trees as they were growing – meaning that the timber stops it from escaping into the atmosphere.
Timber is a hard, and incredibly durable material that can last a lifetime! Compare this to materials such as carpet, which needs to be replaced roughly 10-15 years – which comes at an environmental cost!
Timber acts as an excellent insulator, with a cellular structure that allows for air pockets, helping to slow the conductivity of heat. Less use of heating and cooling systems = better for the environment (and your pocket!).
Recent studies have found numerous health benefits of timber flooring, including lowered stress levels, heart rate and blood pressure, improved levels of self-expression and emotional state, and improved air quality through wood’s ability to moderate humidity levels. And unlike textile flooring materials such as carpet timber floors do not harbour nasty allergens that might aggravate respiratory conditions.
Timber floors are naturally robust and even if surface damage occurs they can usually be refurbished throughout their lifecycle to maintain their natural beauty. Keeping them clean is incredibly simple! Simply sweep and use a PH neutral cleaning solution with a slightly damp mop or even better, Bona Floor Care Mop Kit, no wet mopping, no steam cleaning or hard scrubbing required. So next time you’re considering flooring choices for your home – think of the environmentally sustainable, healthy and energy saving convenience factors that timber flooring provides!