New Dedicated Health Care Division – Custom Flooring to be Featured at Starnet Commercial Flooring Show

SelecTech, a vendor partner of Health Care Institute, has recently launched a dedicated Health Care Division. We will showcase our new custom flooring for health care at the Starnet Worldwide Commercial Flooring Partner Trade Show April 26th in Palm Desert, CA. We are the creator of the top performing, 70 percent recycled content, 100 percent recyclable […]

It’s Easy. Simply Place N’ Go. New, Improved “Green” Residential Flooring

Our Place N’ Go interlocking flooring solution has been improved!  Now it’s thinner, lighter and even simpler to install, resulting in a beautiful, seamless finish.  Homeowners can obtain a high quality, affordable, durable floor that can be installed in less than a day.

ImagePlace N’ Go flooring is a “green” solution that enables homeowners to easily install new flooring over a variety of problem subfloors, including old basement floor substrates.  Made with a resilient recycled plastic that resists moisture, Place N’ Go flooring tiles are most commonly used in laundry rooms, basements, game rooms, family rooms, home offices, kitchens, home gyms and bathrooms.  For homeowners with wet basements, Place N’ Go is an ideal solution as the tiles may be removed, allowed to dry out and replaced once the floor is dry.

No Glue, No Nails, No Underlayment

Place N’ Go flooring solution is now even easier to install and does not require messy adhesives, underlayment or padding.  Place N’ Go flooring provides a simplified and convenient installation process that translates into quicker project completion.

Committed to Changing the Flooring Industry & Helping the Environment

Place N’ Go has one of the highest recycled contents (78 percent) of any decorative flooring product, and it is 100 percent recyclable back into new Place N’ Go products. Better still, the interlocking system eliminates the need for adhesive and the VOC’s that come with them.

Meet the Brains Behind SelecTech, Inc.

Thomas Ricciardelli: President/CEO
Mr. Ricciardelli has an MBA from the Sloan School of Business Management and an MS degree in Chemical Engineering from MIT. Prior to founding SelecTech in
1993, he managed the design, installation, and start up of a $5 million facility to recover and recycle plastics from medical waste. Mr. Ricciardelli also worked at the Business Development Group at Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., and as an environmental consultant with HMM Associates.

Michael King: Co-founder, Vice President/Operations
Mr. King has over 15 years of experience in waste processing and recycling services: for over three years he acted as the Deputy Director of Solid Waste with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, and for three years as Associate General Counsel for Biomedical Waste Systems. He holds a law degree from Northeastern University.

Jeffrey G. Lampert: Vice President/Business Development
Mr. Lampert, for the past 30 years, is widely recognized as a business development /subject matter expert (SME) in the Mission-Critical 24/7 & Electronics Manufacturing space. His former company, UTP (United Technical Products) was the first company to design, patent, and market static control, conductive carpet tile flooring and grounding solutions for world class data centers, control rooms, network operation centers, air traffic control towers and sub-assembly, electronics, manufacturing  environments.  Mr. Lampert is a graduate of Ithaca College.

Is Bamboo Flooring Right for You?

Yummy Bamboo

Photo Courtesy of Irargerich

Much like cork (which we examined earlier), bamboo flooring has been lauded as a green, sustainable alternative to hardwood flooring.  Like cork floors, however, there are benefits and drawbacks.

Benefits of Bamboo:

-Renewable Resource – Unlike hardwood trees that take around 100 years to fully mature enough to use for flooring, bamboo only takes about 3 to 7 years to mature.  Bamboo is an incredibly fast growing plant, growing as much as 39 inches in one day!  And because bamboo is a grass, not a tree, it replenishes itself without the need to replant it.  In fact, because bamboo is prone to overgrowth, harvesting it is actually beneficial to the environment.

Giant Bamboo Plants

Price– Compared to hardwood, bamboo floors can be a quite a bit less expensive.

Easy to Install– Most homeowners can install bamboo flooring themselves.  No special tools are need and the flooring is pre-finished, so you don’t have to sand or stain it.

Fire Resistant

-Attractive – Available in light to dark shades, bamboo floors look great and add warmth and style to any room.

-Anti-allergenic

Drawbacks of Bamboo:

-Softer than Hardwood – Because bamboo is a grass it is not as durable as hardwood and can be easily scratched or dented.  You should never wear high heels or drag furniture across bamboo and furniture legs should sit on coasters.  Pets may mark up bamboo floors as well.  There are many brands and variations in quality of bamboo flooring available, so testing your samples by banging them with a hammer is highly recommended.   Also remember that lighter shades of bamboo flooring will be sturdier since the darker shades are achieved by heating the bamboo, weakening it as a result.

-Not Locally Sourced –The majority of bamboo comes from Asia, increasing its embodied energy.

-Fading – Can fade in areas of direct sunlight.

Questionable Labor Practices –Because most of the bamboo flooring comes from China where there are no guidelines for fair labor practices.

Lax Government Standards – Again, due to the countries of origin, the production and construction of some of the bamboo flooring available are unregulated, resulting in a flooring that may have toxic byproducts.  Also, the adhesive used to manufacture the flooring often contains formaldehyde.

So, if you are in the market for bamboo floors, you have little bit of homework to do.  Test various samples of bamboo flooring to see which ones are the most durable; look into the manufacturer to make sure their bamboo flooring is formaldehyde free and fair trade.  And don’t go for the cheapest bamboo flooring available; you get what you pay for, and what you get will most likely be a floor with little durability.

FreeStyle/Place N' Go Bamboo

If you love the look of bamboo floors but want something manufactured a little closer to home and something much more durable that uses recycled material in the manufacturing, an alternative is Place N’ Go flooring in the Bamboo finish.  Place N’ Go uses no adhesives, is water-proof and eligible for LEED points.

Resources – TLC and Green Home Source

Is Cork Flooring Right for You?

Photo Courtesy of Domenic

Cork flooring is becoming very popular with people that want an attractive floor that is also considered “green”.  Cork flooring has many benefits as well as a few drawbacks.

Benefits of Cork:

– Renewable Resource.  It is harvested from the bark of the cork tree which grows in the Mediterranean.  Done every 9 to 10 years, there is no harm done to the tree if harvested properly.  In addition, cork is easily recyclable.

Anti-allergenic – Suberin is a naturally occurring substance present in cork.  It repels mold and pests and keeps cork from rotting.

Fire Resistant –Suberin at work again.

Honeycomb Structure.  This means it’s filled with a lot of air.  This makes cork resilient enough that it can be compressed (up to 40%) and still remain undamaged, in time returning to its previous state. 

Great Insulator.  Cork retains heat and warm floors can help reduce your energy usage during the winter.  Cork also insulates against sound.

– Soft Underfoot.  It’s a great choice for an area where you’ll be doing a lot of standing.  

Cork Tree

Photo Courtesy of notfrancois’

Drawbacks:

– Easily Damaged – While cork can heal itself from minor cuts, it can be easily gouged by heavy or sharp items dropped on it, by pet’s claws, kids or even high heels.  You also don’t want heavy furniture on it, as permanent dents can be left behind; if you must put heavy furniture on it, use coasters under the legs to distribute the weight a bit.  And never drag anything over cork.

– Naturally Absorbent – Cork is not ideal for bathrooms, kitchens or wet basement.  While the polyurethane will repel most water, if exposed to significant amounts of water, cork can warp and peel up.  Spills must be cleaned promptly.  When cleaning the floor, you CAN NOT use a wet mop.

– Must be Sealed – You must seal the floor with a few layers of polyurethane and this must be redone after 5 to 10 years.  When sanding, extra care must be taken because the cork pieces are very thin and brittle.

Color will Change – Cork will naturally fade when exposed to sunlight.  Even when protected from sunlight, the color will change over time.

Cork can be Expensive – There are more affordable brands available, but quality will vary and some brands may have additives you don’t want, such as formaldehyde and phenol.  So do research the various brands.  In addition, cheap cork flooring will be thinner which means it will not be as durable.

– Comes from Europe/Northern Africa – This is a drawback because the cork has to travel such a long way, increasing its embodied energy.

FreeStyle/Place N' Go Cork Flooring

If you love the look of cork but don’t think you have the right location for it, our Place N’ Go free-floating floor tiles are available in a cork finish.  With these tiles you can have the look of cork and the durability, ease of maintenance, and waterproof quality that Place N’ Go offers, all while knowing your flooring has one of the highest recycled content of any flooring product available!

SelecTech’s FreeStyle Flooring Co-Wins the Innovation in Green Design Award for Technology/Product!

Our very own FreeStyle flooring has co-won the USGBC’s Innovation in Green Design award for Technology/Product!  We are very proud to share the award with Arrowstreet Architecture, who won for their City of Boston Green Roofs Study.

The Innovation in Green Design Award “provides a glimpse into the groundbreaking work done in the State of Massachusetts to advance sustainability in the building industry…and…recognizes Massachusetts based projects, products and technologies that are innovative, replicable, and have significant impact in Massachusetts.”

Salon Rocks featuring New England Slate FreeStyle Flooring

FreeStyle flooring, and it’s residential version, Place N’ Go, is made with 50% post consumer and 12% pre-consumer recycled content.  We’ve patented a process that eliminates the need to clean and pelletize plastic flake, thereby eliminating wastewater and reducing energy consumption.  In addition, FreeStyle and Place N’ Go are attractive, water-proof, require no adhesives and are a snap to install!  Moisture problems, uneven floors, even old asbestos tiles are no problem when you choose FreeStyle or Place N’ Go flooring!

Place N’ Go to the Rescue!

Place N' Go Travertine Beige

When the ceramic tile in my basement kitchen started cracking due to an imperfect sub floor, I always knew I was going to replace it with Place N’ Go interlocking, free-floating floor tiles.  Due to their flexible nature, they are a great solution for problematic basement floors.  I did keep putting it off but when our plumbing recently sprung a leak and water seeped under the tiles, I couldn’t procrastinate any longer.  I got my hands on Selectech’s new Place N’ Go flooring – now available online at the Home Depot – and dedicated the weekend to my new floor.

Of course, it didn’t actually take the whole weekend, just one Saturday.  The tiles were much easier to install than ceramic, they look fantastic and we could walk on them as soon as they were down because there’s no waiting for grout or adhesive to dry.  In fact, the kids were scampering all over the floor before the installation was even complete!

The floor looks beautiful and we’ve gotten many compliments on it already.  And while we hope we won’t have any more leaky pipes, even if we do, we can just pull up the tiles, dry the area and the tiles, and then put them back down.  Place N’ Go tiles also added a bit of warmth to the floor; while the rest of the basement has icy cold floors, the kitchen is quite comfortable to walk on barefoot, and here in New England that’s wicked awesome.