How is cork normally installed?
Cork comes in a variety of methods of installation. It comes in planks or as tiles in glue-down, interlocking (glue-less), or floating installation methods. There is no grain to match up in the installation process.
How much cork flooring do I need?
- Divide the floor into rectangles
- Measure the length and width of each individual rectangle
- Multiply the length by the width of each individual rectangle
- Add your total for each rectangle together to get the total square footage
- Add an additional 5-10% (depending on the manufacturer’s recommendations) of the total square footage to cover the waste factor.
What is the average lifetime of a cork floor?
With proper maintenance and care, cork flooring can last for decades or a lifetime.
Is cork flooring recommended for a self-installer?
There is wide variety of floating cork flooring available that offers easy installation for a self installer. These simply snap or click together and do not use any adhesive. Other glue-down installation methods require more patience and special tools. Cork tiles usually require a little more attention to preparation of the subfloor than planks. Because it is made from grinding the bark of the Cork Oak tree, cork lacks any grain to match up in the installation process.
Should I roll my floor after installing glue-down cork and what should I use?
Yes, you should roll the floor after it is set to ensure proper bonding to the subfloor and sealing of the seams. This will also help to ensure proper spreading of the adhesive. Spread small areas at a time from the middle of the tile or plank outwards before the working time expires. To do this you can use a 100 or 150 lb. professional roller, or if one is not available, use a kitchen rolling pin with strong pressure. You may want to cover the rolling pin with plastic to prevent it from being contamination from excess glue. Before you finish make sure that all the edges are down flat. If you cannot get an edge to stick set some weight on it until it sets.
Can sunlight fade the color of my cork flooring?
Like any natural material, cork flooring fades with exposure to the UV radiation in sunlight. It is recommended that you close drapes and blinds on sunny days to protect your flooring. Another alternative is to apply a U-V protective film to your window or buy windows that have this built in.
Can cork be used over radiant floor heating systems?
Yes, cork flooring can be used over radiant floor heating systems. It does slow the transmission of heat slightly from the slab below just like any wood floor would.
Is there a difference from tile to tile or plank to plank in the same box when purchasing cork flooring?
Yes. Cork is a natural product that is ground and then baked into a tile or plank. Due to the process of manufacturing, the pattern, color, or overall look of the floor can slightly vary.
Is it important to acclimate my cork flooring with the room in which it will be installed?
Yes, cork flooring acts like solid wood flooring after it is installed, therefore it can contract and expand due to changes in temperature and should not be installed in a room that does not have a controlled climate. You should allow the cork flooring to sit in the room that it will be installed in for at least three days before installation to allow it to acclimate to the temperature and humidity of the site.
Should I use an underlayment when installing my cork floor?
Unless your subfloor is uneven, it won’t usually require an underlayment beyond a moisture barrier. However, if needed, a cork underlayment can be used for additional insulation, moisture resistance, or to build up the height of the finished floor.
Can I install cork flooring on steps?
Yes, it is fine to install cork on steps as long as a hard stair nosing is installed.