Floors are the horizontal elements of a building structure which divide the building into different levels and provide the support for the occupants, furniture and equipment. Flooring:
Flooring can be anything from rough concrete to luxurious materials. It includes concrete stone, tiles and wood. These are considered as structural materials. Which may be treated or covered with a flooring finish. Flooring materials are determined by functional, budgetary and aesthetic consideration. The ranges of flooring material are many, such as marble, mosaic stones. It is the covering over the sub-floor and is meant to provide a hard, clean, smooth, impervious, durable and attractive surface to the floor. Floor coverings:
Floor coverings make a room comfortable and give an aesthetic appearance. Soft floor coverings include the carpets and rugs. A carpet as the floor coverings softens footsteps, subdues sound and enchants the eye. Floor coverings can be wall to wall carpet and rug can be an area rug. Usually carpets and rugs are available in the standard sizes.
Floor consists of two components
- Sub-floor or base course: The purpose of this component is to import strength and stability to support the flooring and all other superimposed loads.
- Flooring or paving: Covering over the sub floor and is to provide a hard clean smooth impervious durable attractive surface.
Historical development of flooring materials
Natural stone can be beautiful but as a natural product they are less uniform in color, pattern and this requires planning while installing. However produced or cut stone tiles are uniform in width and length. Granite or marble tiles are sawn on both sides and then polished the facing up side in order to have a uniform thickness. Another natural stone viz., slates are split on the facing up side and thickness of the tile varies from location to location and tile to tile. This variation has to be handled by adjusting the amount of mortar while laying. polished granite and marble are very slippery when wet.
The word Marble is derived from the Greek word Marmown meaning rock, shining stone. It is a metamorphic rock composed of re-crystallized carbonate minerals, calcite and dolomite. It is commonly used as a building material for flooring and for wall cladding. Pure white marble is the result of metamorphism of a very pure limestone or dolomite protolith. Many colored marble varieties are usually due to various mineral impurities such as clay, slit, sand, and iron oxide, which are originally present as grains or layers in the limestone. Green coloration is often due to serpentine resulting from originally high magnesium lime stone or dolostone with silica impurities.