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Cork Floor Tile

For more than 100 years, cork tile has been commonly used as a floor and wall covering for residential and commercial use. A new ASTM International standard, F3008, Specification for Cork Floor Tile, specifies requirements for cork floor coverings made from agglomerated composition cork supplied in tile form, which is designed to be used with a factory finish or an in situ finish, or both.

F3008 was developed by Subcommittee F06.80 on Specifications, part of ASTM International Committee F06 on Resilient Floor Coverings.

“Although it’s an old material, many people still do not understand cork flooring, and more important, do not know how to tell the difference between one product and another outside of sales and marketing literature,” says Christopher Capobianco, sales and technical specialist, Spartan Surfaces, and an F06 member. “F3008 established minimum standards that this material needs to meet.”

Capobianco also notes that cork floor covering is considered to be a very sustainable type of flooring material. While the primary bark of the cork oak tree is used for bottle stoppers for the wine industry, material that is not used for this purpose is granulated, compressed and finished for a variety of other materials, including floor tile.

F3008 will be used by manufacturers to ensure that their products are meeting minimum requirements. Architects, end users and other specifiers will use the standard to understand the difference between products so that the correct product is used for particular projects. Finally, testing laboratories will use F3008 to assist manufacturers in product testing, and to assist in the analysis of cork tile involved in product complaints.

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CONTACT Technical Information: Christopher Capobianco, Spartan Surfaces • Patchogue, N.Y. • Phone: 631-275-6494 | ASTM Staff: Stephen Mawn • Phone: 610-832-9726 | Upcoming Meeting: May 7-8, 2014 • Clearwater, Fla. •

This article appears in the issue of Standardization News.