Rubber flooring is diversly used in both residential and commercial applications. Commericial kitchens, children’s playrooms, gyms, physical therapy centers, patios, Elementary schools- you name it!
If you are a home owner or in the design/construction industry and are considering a rubber flooring purchase, you may be wondering, "How is rubber flooring made?” Let’s dive into the process of creating both virgin (new) and recycled rubber flooring:
How “Virgin” Rubber Flooring Is Made
Rubber flooring is made using chemicals as well as a strong adhesive using one of two processes: vulcanization or polymerization. While vulcanization is used to cure natural rubber, polymerization is used in manufacturing both natural and synthetic rubber. Rubber is sorced either naturally through tree sap (latex) which is then cured through vulcanization; while sytnthetic rubber, man made from manipulating the elements in natural rubber, is cured through polymerization.
Once the rubber is sourced, it is cut up, mixed with an adhesive, and then piled into a heated vat. The rubber mix is heated at high temperatures. Colored chips are added for unique coloring options, like reds, yellows, and green. Once the process of heating is complete, the rubber is cooled, laid out to be cut into various thicknesses. The cut rubber is then shipped off to distributors around the world, and then purchased by people like YOU!
How Recycled Rubber Flooring is Made
In the U.S., it is estimated that each person disposes of approximately one tire per person per year. With hundreds of millions of U.S. citizens, it allows flooring manuracturers to capitalize on the surplus by recycling them into rubber flooring.
Recycled rubber flooring manufacturers source old tires, grind them up, then put them into a large vat. Within the vat, a certain percentage of colored rubber is mixed with the recycled rubber. Then, the manufacturers add an adhesive that holds all this mixture together.
The vat is then capped off and heated, which will then produced a large cylinder of solid rubber. After the cylinder cools, it is set on its side and cut the thickness of the flooring roll. From there, the rolls can either be sold as is, or further cut widthwise into square-cut tiles, or cut by a water-jet cutter into interlocking tiles.
When using post-consumer products rubber flooring is thought to be one of the most eco-friendly flooring options available. In addition to this, rubber flooring is one of the more affordable materials.
Still interested? Peruse through Discount Flooring's vast array of rubber flooring options now!