ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Pros and Cons of Cork Flooring

Updated on June 26, 2012
Duro-Design Cork Flooring
Duro-Design Cork Flooring

Cork flooring has gained a lot of popularity because of it sustainable qualities, but is a cork floor the right choice for your home? Cork can be a great choice or a horrible choice for your new floors depending on where they are located and what you expect from them. Do your research before remodeling!

Cork is the outer bark of a cork oak tree (Quercus suber). Cork is harvested from the trees without permanently damaging them. The bark will grow back and then it will be harvested again. This makes cork a renewable resource and a very sustainable building material. Some cork floors are manufactured from recycled cork, which makes it even more green. In these cases, wine stoppers or scrap cork from the wine stopper manufacturing process are used to make new cork tiles.

Here are the pros and cons of installing cork floors in your home.

Cork Flooring Manufacturers

  • Duro-Design
  • Wicanders
  • Globus Cork
  • WE Cork
  • Yemm & Hart

Pros of Cork Flooring

  • Cork contains a naturally-occuring wax called suberin that is fire and water resistant.
  • Naturally insulating, so it won't feel cold to bare feet! Cork floors can also help save on energy bills.
  • Cork is scratch and dent resistant. The material will easily spring back from minor mishaps.
  • Cork is a natural shock absorber. The material's spring provides cushioning and is easy on your joints. This makes it great for work areas, like kitchens, where you spend a lot of time standing.
  • The softness of the material also means that it absorbs sound, helping reduce echoes and background noise.
  • Most cork floors are sealed with a low-VOC, water-based polyurethane. This is much better for the environment and healthier for the building occupants. Although this is fairly standard, it is best to check that the cork flooring manufacturer you choose uses this type of sealant.

12" x 12" Cork Tile
12" x 12" Cork Tile

Cons of Cork Flooring

  • Because cork is a natural material, it can be damaged by long-term sun-exposure. It will fade in direct sunlight over time. Coating your floor with water-based polyurethane will protect it some, but will not completely prevent damage. You can also apply a UV filter to nearby windows to try to prevent exposure.
  • Cork is a soft material which mean permanent Indentations from heavy items left for long periods. Put pads under heavy pieces of furniture to help prevent damage.
  • The softness also means that cork can be torn or cut by dragging heavy items across floor. Be especially careful moving furniture and appliances.
  • If a colored cork is used, scratches will be obvious, since color is usually only on surface layer of cork tiles. Some manufactures do have the color integral to the whole tile. Do your research before buying!
  • Avoid getting your cork floor wet. Spills should be cleaned immediately and never wet mop. Sweep regularly and damp-mop occasionally to keep your floors clean. Although suberin (the cork's natural wax) will help repel water, frequent or heavy exposure will damage your cork floor, just as it would for hardwood floors.
  • Cork requires regular maintenance, just as hardwood floors do. You'll need to reseal your floor every 2-5 years depending on which manufacturer you choose and how much traffic the floor gets.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • lindacee profile image

      Linda Chechar 

      6 years ago from Arizona

      I just love learning about eco-friendly flooring surfaces. Your Hub is a great source of information for someone considering this renewable material. The pros and cons help homeowners make a well-informed decision. Hopefully alternative flooring choices will lessen our dependence on old-growth hardwood floors. Voted up, useful and interesting!

    • Modern Lady profile imageAUTHOR

      Modern Lady 

      6 years ago from Chicago, IL

      Thanks, Brett! Cork is really a great option for flooring.

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 

      6 years ago from Asia

      A useful hub for anyone considering this option. As you say, cork is a renewable resource that looks good and provides many benefits when treated correctly.

      Shared, up and interesting.

    • Modern Lady profile imageAUTHOR

      Modern Lady 

      6 years ago from Chicago, IL

      Concrete can be quite pretty, and it is indestructible. Though, cracks can be a problem. It is also very hard on joints. Cork is at the other end of the spectrum, but also very lovely.

    • alocsin profile image


      6 years ago from Orange County, CA

      I love the feel of cork flooring but would never use it in my own home because of its delicacy. I much prefer concrete floors, which are indestructible. Voting this Up and Interesting.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)