How to Minimise Environmental Damage When Updating Your Flooring

In a changing world where climate change and protecting the environment is constantly making headlines, we want to do the best we can to vote with our money and make options that help the planet. Home renovations can be tricky to navigate when we want to live in an environmentally conscious way.

Regarding flooring, in particular, there are numerous things to consider. In this article, we explore the best flooring surfaces and how to dispose of your old flooring.

how to dispose of your old flooring

Is Solid Wood Flooring an Environmental Choice?

Solid wood flooring is an excellent choice when looking to make environmentally conscious renovation decisions. Trees are a sustainable choice, and although cutting them down isn’t the best thing for the planet, many flooring companies are offsetting this by supporting reforestation efforts.

Reducing consumption is one of the most important aspects of living an environmentally conscious life. When we inevitably do have to update things, such as our flooring, it is therefore important to choose flooring that will last for as long as possible.

High-quality wood flooring can last a lifetime. Compared with other surfaces, such as laminate – which has a lifespan of between 15 and 25 years – solid wood flooring helps reduce the amount of usage over a longer period of time. This allows time for reforestation efforts to take effect and neutralise the impact of your purchase.

Is Bamboo Flooring an Environmental Choice?

Bamboo flooring is another great environmentally friendly flooring option. Bamboo grows much faster than wood used for solid wood flooring. It doesn’t require replanting as it is harvested above the root and continues to regrow after harvest. All while still offering many of the same benefits as hardwood floors.

Bamboo is also slightly more water-resistant than solid wood flooring, as well as more resistant to mould, making it a great choice for your household.

How Can You Reuse Old Flooring?

When you replace your flooring, you’ll have to decide what to do with your old floors. Reusing and recycling are two great ways to manage this without contributing unnecessary waste. Here are some examples of how you can repurpose your old floor. If you’re into DIY or crafts, these are for you.

1. Laminate

You can cut down old pieces of laminate and use them to resurface areas of your house, perhaps a workbench in the garage, an upcycled desk or a dressing table. This can be a great way to turn vintage pieces into something chic and shiny and give them a new lease on life.

You can also use laminate flooring for craft projects. Why not create picture or mirror frames? With some glue, paint and tools, you can make an endless range of crafts, just use your imagination.

2. Solid Wood

Many of the same things you can make with laminate will also work with old solid wood flooring. You may also want to try using your previous floor in other ways in your home. You could consider making a new headboard, or adding a feature wall.

3. Tiles

Tiles may not be easy to pull up without damaging them, but not to worry! Broken tiles have been used for hundreds of years in the art form of mosaic. You can use this intricate art detail to decorate almost anything or to make your old tiles into a standalone art piece of your own.


Disposing of Old Flooring

If you cannot find a use for your old flooring, you will want to dispose of it in the least environmentally-damaging way possible. Although sometimes, it is unavoidable for things to end up in a landfill, there are still some options to consider.


New kinds of laminate flooring often have the ability to be recycled. Up to 85% of the materials used to construct laminate can be repurposed by recycling facilities to create wood chips or fibres. This won’t be a case of just popping it in your recycling bin, however, you will need to find a company that offers this specific service.

Solid Wood

Likewise, solid wood flooring can be recycled. Wood is a widely recycled material, so it’s always best to take old flooring to the recycling centre rather than to landfill. If the wood is in good condition, you could also donate it so that it can be used again.

Tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

About Salman Zafar

Salman Zafar is the Founder of EcoMENA, and an international consultant, advisor, ecopreneur and journalist with expertise in waste management, waste-to-energy, renewable energy, environment protection and sustainable development. His geographical areas of focus include Middle East, Africa, Asia and Europe. Salman has successfully accomplished a wide range of projects in the areas of biomass energy, biogas, waste-to-energy, recycling and waste management. He has participated in numerous conferences and workshops as chairman, session chair, keynote speaker and panelist. Salman is the Editor-in-Chief of EcoMENA, and is a professional environmental writer with more than 300 popular articles to his credit. He is proactively engaged in creating mass awareness on renewable energy, waste management and environmental sustainability in different parts of the world. Salman Zafar can be reached at or

Share your Thoughts

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.