By: Ezra Plank
Last updated: November 5th, 2014
Rubber flooring is often seen in schools and fitness centers. But it is also a good choice for certain rooms in your home. Children's rooms and rec rooms are perfect areas for rubber flooring, since it reduces foot fatigue, and makes a safer cushion against falling.
Alessco Soft Floors Burgundy
Available in 14 different colors at
FastFloors for just $1.66 / sq ft, the
cheapest rubber flooring on the net!
Rubber is a material that is very durable, resiliant, and hard to damage. It resists stains, and water will not penetrate or damage it in the short run. Unlike other materials, all you need do to maintain it is to keep it clean. It's main disadvantage is its price, which is definitely higher than other types of flooring.
There are basically three ways to produce the rubber used in flooring:
- Natural Rubber comes from rubber trees, which are easily replanted after harvesting, making it a sustainable material.
- Recycled Rubber is made from used automobile tires, an ecologically sound method of production. I can be made to be ber and more durable than natural rubber.
- Synthetic Rubber was introduced during World War II, since most of the rubber tree plantations were under control of the enemy. It is manufactured from petroleum, and is a type of vinyl, which is actually more durable and stain resistant than natural rubber.
Alessco Jumbo Reversible
You can make patterns out of
these interlocking rubber tiles.
Only $1.89 / sq ft at FastFloors.
Rubber flooring comes in three different configurations, only one of which is recommended for home use:
- Sheets. This is the cheapest type of rubber flooring. It must be cut to fit from a large roll, and glued to the floor. This makes it difficult to install, and mistakes are costly. Prices run from $0.99 / sq ft for 3/16" thickness to over $3 / sq ft for 1" thick material. It comes only in black, and is used primarily for gym floors.
- Glue-down Tiles. Squares of varying sizes, color, and textures are available, at prices upwards of $5 / sq ft. These tiles are easier to install, and easy to replace, but are mainly used for commercial properties.
- Interlocking Tiles have jigsaw type edges, and fit together without the use of glue. As such, they are popular with do-it-yourselfers. Prices depend on quality, thickness, color, and texture.
Roppe Rubber Tile- Textured Design
Commercial glue-down tiles. FastFloors has 30 different colors for $7.57 / sq ft
Ezra says: Assuming that you are not interested in black gym-type flooring for your home, the cheapest residential flooring available on the internet is manufactured by Alessco. Comparing prices is not easy, as some sellers show the price per square foot, while others show the price per package.
However, we calculated the sq ft price, and found that, as usual, FastFloors has the best prices. As an example, we compared prices for Alessco Softwoods Set in Light Oak, and found that Wayfair is asking $2.50 / sq ft, whereas FastFloors has the same product for only $2.30 / sq ft.
Here are the links to search pages for Alessco rubber flooring:
- The FastFloors page shows the products pictured above, as well as specialty floors for children's play rooms.
- The Wayfair tiles page has 50 results, but it also includes some flooring usually only used in gyms and fitness centers.
Here are some photos to show you what a rubber floor can look like if installed creatively. Hover your cursor over each thumbnail to see a larger picture.
Rubber flooring is popular
in academic settings
Even a gym floor pattern
can sometimes look good
Rubber flooring can be
used to create patterns