Is Laminate Flooring Eco-Friendly?
Laminate flooring is an environmentally friendly option that incorporates sustainability in both manufacturing and construction of the floor. Each manufacturer will differ in sustainability practices, but there is an industry wide sustainability initiative to protect forests and the environment. Eco-friendly laminate floors are a great option for residential and commercial spaces. Here’s are the main reasons laminate is eco-friendly:
Many laminate floors are sustainability manufactured. Main ways manufacturers are going sustainable is by:
- Energy Efficient Facilities & Processes
- Using Recycled Wood Fibers and Pulp
- Board Recycling Programs
- Forest Preservation Measures
- Local Materials Sourcing
A majority of laminate floors are also Green Building Council certified and can count toward LEED certifications.
No need for harsh chemicals! You can clean laminate easily with a mixture of 1 parts vinegar to 3 parts water. This is a natural way to clean, disinfect and bring shine back to your laminate floors.
Install without Chemicals
Due to the floating floor installation method, laminate flooring needs no adhesives or sealants to install! Just click together and go.
CARB 2 and E1 Certifications
CARB 2 (California Air Resource Board) is a certification program through the Air Resources Board (ARB) that is a stringent standard for formeldehyde emissions, specifically in composite wood products. Laminate is made out of composite wood products, such as High Density Fiberboard and Medium Density Fiberboard. The state of California requires laminates to be labeled as CARB2 compliant, but this is also a standard throughout the USA.
The U.S. EPA regulates a Formaldehyde Standards for Composite Wood Products Act throughout the nation. Manufacturers of regulated products must conduct ongoing testing, conduct an initial inspection through a third-party certifier (TPC) and conduct mandated quarterly quality control testing.
Emission standards are (PPM = parts per million):
Medium-density fiberboard (MDF): 0.11 PPM
Thin (<8mm) MDF: 0.13 PPM
Particle Board: 0.09 PPM
Composite Core Hardwood Plywood (HWPW-CC): 0.05 PPM
Veneer Core Hardwood Plywood (HWPW-VC): 0.05 PPM.
E1 is the European emissions testing that is very similar to the American standards, and actually slightly more strict. The CARB2 compliance is .11 parts per million is acceptable, while E1 emissions are at a .10 parts per million level.
You can be sure your family is safe with either one of these designations!
A perk to laminate flooring is the ability to uninstall a floor and re-install it elsewhere. Also, you can also recyle your laminate floors. Check with your manufacturer or local landfill for information on recycling your floors.
Be sure to visit your manufacturer website to learn more about their sustainability practices. You can find manufacturers here.