Five Myths about Rubber Flooring

  1. Rubber flooring is great for use as garage flooring.

This myth is one of the most common we have seen and is the single reason why we decided to get into the garage flooring market years ago. In fact Google itself says that 590 people search for the term “rubber garage flooring” every single month in the USA. So why isn’t rubber flooring good for use in garages? Well the reason we don’t recommend using rubber flooring in garages is because 90% of the rubber flooring sold in the U.S. is made from rebonded rubber.  Rebonded rubber is essentially rubber that is held together by polyurethane based glue. If oil or solvents spill on rebonded rubber flooring, the polyurethane glue will break down over time and thus break down the flooring. That is why we do not recommend using rubber flooring in garages but rather recommend different alternatives such as PVC or polypropylene flooring. If you did want to use rubber flooring as garage flooring, then we would just advise that vulcanized rubber flooring or virgin rubber flooring be used. Vulcanized and virgin rubber are not adhered together with glue but rather melted together with heat to form extremely durable rubber flooring that is resistant to break down from oils and solvents.

Types of Rubber Flooring

Types of Rubber Flooring

An example of vulcanized rubber flooring can be found here:

An example of virgin rubber flooring can be found here:

  1. Rubber flooring can be used as basketball court flooring.

We do not recommend rubber flooring for use as basketball court flooring due to the fact that rubber flooring is very slip resistant. Just imagine diving onto the floor to grab a loose ball and tearing your exposed skin off and forming a huge rash from the abrasion. That would not be any fun and that is why we cannot recommend rubber for use as basketball court flooring. With that being said, there is a brand new solution that does work for this purpose. We recently began offering a hybrid flooring solutions that uses a rubber backing and a top vinyl layer that looks like wood that can be used as basketball court flooring. Here is a link in case you are interested:

Rubber flooring with a vinyl top for use as basketball court flooring.

Rubber flooring with a vinyl top for use as basketball court flooring.

  1. Rubber flooring will make your home smell like a tire store.

OK this myth is a little tougher to dispel. Rubber flooring is indeed made primarily from rubber and thus it is going to smell like rubber. Some rubber flooring products will smell stronger than others depending on the type of raw material used or how the flooring was made. What we can tell you though it that most of our customers (>99%) don’t seem to have any issue with this. What usually happens when you first get your flooring is the smell will be the strongest. After installing the flooring, the room and the flooring will air out over the next few days to weeks to where the smell is not even noticeable without bending over and physically putting your nose up to the flooring. There are some people however who do have highly sensitive senses of smell and who are bothered by the smell of rubber. If you are that type of person, we recommend that you look at one of our other gym flooring options such as PVC or foam tiles.  As with all of our flooring products, free samples are available so if you are unsure how the smell will affect you, please feel free to order samples and smell the products yourself.

  1. Rubber and foam floor tiles are the same thing.
Colorful Rubber Tile Example

Colorful Rubber Tile Example

This statement is 100% a myth. We have noticed some of our competitors calling some of their tiles foam rubber. Well which is it? It can’t be both. It would be like saying a flooring product is made from steel carpeting or something similar. It just doesn’t exist. Here is the truth. Foam floor tiles are made out of EVA (Ethylene-vinyl acetate) foam. This is the same kind of foam used in wall pads, kids folding mats, bicycle seats, basketball pole pads, etc. Rubber tiles are made from SBR Rubber (the black stuff recycled from tires), EPDM Rubber (The bright colorful flecks mixed in with the black stuff), or virgin rubber made from trees or synthetically. Foam is light and inexpensive. Rubber is heavy, denser, and more durable. If you are unsure of the difference or unsure what product would be right for you, ask for a sample whether it be from us or from one of our competitors.

EVA Foam Tile Example

EVA Foam Tile Example

  1. Rubber is an excellent Insulator.

Ok this is actually half true and half a myth. It really depends on what kind of insulating you are looking to achieve. It is true that rubber is an excellent insulator against sound transmission. Rubber however is not very good at insulating against temperature transmission. If you put rubber flooring down over a cold basement sub floor, it will feel cold. However it will make the room and the sounds of your weight lifting sound much quieter in other rooms. For that reason, many of our customers who install rubber flooring also grab a foam mat or two to do any floor work on. Foam mats are excellent heat insulators and more comfortable to do workouts like sit ups on since they have more cushion than rubber flooring.

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