A special section filled with “green” tile and related allied products to provideTILEreaders with a quick reference of what’s new and exciting in products that contribute to carbon footprint reduction, environmental quality enhancements, LEED point contributions, and more. For additional "green" products, see theGreen Tile Products Reviewsection in this issue.

Bostik, Inc.

Greener Flooring Systems for a Greener Future
Bostik, Inc: Greener Systems to Meet Your Flooring Needs

By Christine Krisko

It’s hard not to be aware of the benefits of building green these days when everywhere, you turn and everything you read, is about something “green.” Advances in adhesive technologies have allowed the development of formulas that reduce or eliminate VOCs without reducing the durability and performance of the products. Architects, designers, developers, installers, and builders now realize the importance of sourcing, low-VOC, green products, but more importantly, they are concerned with finding a green “installation system.” An important requirement of these systems is that they, not only meet the standards set forth by the green building authorities such as the US Green Building Council through its L.E.E.D Guidelines, but that the system is warranted for a long term by a reputable, financially-stable, manufacturer. At Bostik, we not only ensure a greener future with our low VOC portfolio of products but we back them with Installation System Warranties to protect our customer for the long term.

This is the reason why more building professionals across the world are choosing Bostik Systems for their current and future projects. Bostik offers Installation Systems and Warranties for Wood Flooring, Ceramic, Carpet, and Resilient Flooring. Visit www.bostik-us.com to see what products are available for your next project.

Case Study:The Sovereign

Project Team

Designers:Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart, Stewart & Associates, Inc.
Developer and Property Management:Regent Partners, LLC a property development and management company
General Contractor:Hardin Construction CompanyInstaller:Tiede-Zoeller, Inc.
Flooring Installation Systems Distributor:Design Tile by Zumpano, Norcoss, GA
Flooring Installation Systems Manufacturer:Bostik, Inc.
Tile Distributor:Ceramic Technics, Ltd.

The Sovereign is a 50-story, multi-use building that includes “class office” space, retail & restaurant space and 82 high-end ($1M-$11Million) condominium residences. Each of the 82 condominiums is lavishly decorated with an exterior balcony space. All of the balconies (totaling 55,000 square feet of tile) were tiled with 6” x 12” porcelain.

The installation system of choice was from Bostik Hydroment and the products included the following: Hydroment Ultra-Set Advanced Waterproofing, Crack Isolation, Antifracture and Sound Reduction Membrane which contains Blockade Antimicrobial protection; Hydroment PM Thin Set Mortar and all of the balconies were grouted with Bostik EzPoxy 100% Solids Epoxy Grout & Mortar.

EzPoxy 100% Solids Epoxy is the newest edition to the Grouting Systems offered by Bostik and its benefits include Ease of Use (from Mixing, Applying and Cleaning), zero VOCs stain resistance and superior durability.

According to Moe Karichu, Project Manager of Tiede-Zoeller “The designers were looking for a system to ensure maximum performance and Hydroment brand products fit the bill. Bostik systems are backed by an Installation System Warranty and I always feel confident when using any Bostik installation system.”


CertainTeed Gypsum meets customer demand for sustainability
Products deliver comfort, protection and performance
By Amy Lee

Known for being a leader in interior and exterior building products, CertainTeed provides innovative solutions for commercial, institutional and residential designs.

From its GlasRoc® paperless, fully embedded glass mat gypsum panels to its ProRoc® wallboard and finishing products, CertainTeed Gypsum’s product portfolio includes a wide range of exterior sheathing, fire-rated assemblies, area separation and shaft wall, abuse resistant board, moisture and mold resistant board for walls and ceilings, glass mat tile backerboard, and joint compounds and tapes. The company’s new ProRoc® Moisture and Mold Resistant Gypsum Board with M2Tech™ and GlasRoc® Tile Backer products contribute to sustainable design by combining moisture and mold resistance for residential, commercial and institutional applications.

GlasRoc® glass mat gypsum products with Embedded Glass Reinforced Gypsum™ (EGRG™) Technology
CertainTeed Gypsum’s GlasRoc product line features patented technology with reinforcing glass mats, fully embedded into a water-resistant core for complete protection inside and out. GlasRoc technology is available in a high performance exterior sheathing with a 12-month exposure warranty to protect a building project during construction, and an interior tile backerboard for high-moisture areas such as bathrooms and kitchens. With an innovative, built-in moisture-blocking acrylic coating that resists moisture at the surface, GlasRoc® can help protect wall cavities from moisture intrusion. Lightweight and easy to cut and install, GlasRoc meets ASTM C 1177 for sheathing and ASTM C 1178 for tile backer.

ProRoc® Gypsum Board and ProRoc® with M2Tech™
ProRoc® wallboard is a paper-faced gypsum board for everyday interior wall and ceiling applications. CertainTeed Gypsum also offers abuse board for use in schools and healthcare facilities, as well as gypsum board designed for use in area separation firewalls for multi-family dwellings, shaft liner for elevator shaft walls and stairwells, and numerous UL-listed fire-rated assemblies. The ProRoc® Moisture and Mold Resistant Gypsum Board with M2Tech™ and Type X M2Tech™ lines combine a water resistive core and a moisture and mold resistant face paper for added protection against moisture, and thus improved indoor air quality.

ProRoc® Finishing Compounds, Spray Textures, Plasters, and Finishing Joint Tapes
CertainTeed has united our quality finishing products with our top-of-the-line wallboard to bring a complete drywall solution under a single name...ProRoc®. The result is professional-grade performance properties that help speed up application and minimize costly callbacks.

CertainTeed continues to look for ways to reduce impact on the environment while meeting customer demand for sustainable products that deliver comfort, protection and performance. All ProRoc® wallboard paper consists of 100% recycled content. CertainTeed Gypsum operates its manufacturing facilities with a responsible and environmentally conscious ethic that includes reclamation, preservation of natural resources, recycling and waste management.

Call (800) 233-8990 or visit certainteed.com for more information.

ECORE International

QT: The Sustainable Sound Control
By Paul Downey, P. Eng., Director of Business Development at ECORE International

QT sound insulation is a line of high-quality sound control underlayment, manufactured in the USA by ECORE International, a leading innovator in recycled products technology. QT has been tested in over 200 different laboratory and field test assemblies and has been proven to repeatedly perform as engineered to meet design requirements.

The QT product line includes QTscu and QTrbm, resilient sound control underlayment and a dimpled, resilient base mat. QTscu is used directly under floor finishes, yielding exceptional results even under hard surface flooring and over concrete and wood joist construction. QTrbm can be applied under gypsum or full weight concrete to produce some of the thinnest sound rated systems in the industry.

At ECORE International, manufacturer of QT, we are committed to operating our businesses and facilities in a manner that uses resources wisely while protecting the quality of our environment and the health and safety of our associates, families, and community. We use environmental processes of reducing, reusing, and recycling to produce QT. This is achieved by reducing the amount of scrap tires that are discarded in America’s landfills, reusing scrap rubber from our production process to minimize waste, and recycling and converting scrap tires into viable and durable products.

As North America’s largest user of scrap tire rubber, we salvage over four million tires annually from landfills and convert them into product solutions for industrial and architectural applications. We make sustainable production and products our top priority, as evident by our active membership with the USGBC and other environmentally focused organizations.

Made from 92% recycled tire rubber, the QT brand of products provides an environmentally responsible solution for quality sound control. QT products support the use and reuse of industrial and post-consumer waste. They are designed to meet the stringent criteria required to earn points in two out of the six categories of LEED-NC. Based on these criteria, QT products can potentially assist architects and engineers in acquiring up to five points toward a project’s LEED certification. Additionally, QT products have passed the strictest indoor air quality tests and assurance methods for low emissions of total volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Florida Tile

Florida Tile Helps Historic Renovation Look to the Future
By Dan Marvin – Director of Technical Services

Florida Tile is proud to be a pioneer in the greening of America. We were the first tile producer to receive GREENGUARD and GREENGUARD Children and Schools certification for our tile products. We are pleased that GREENGUARD has now been included in the new LEED ratings, California’s CHiPs program, and the National Green Building Standard developed by ANSI and NAHB. We are also one of the early adopters of the Certified Porcelain program that certifies that our products are low in porosity so they won’t harbor mold or allergens.

Our work doesn’t stop at indoor environmental quality; we strive to have a minimal impact on the outside environment as well. Our state-of-the-art manufacturing facility uses the latest technology to reduce our energy usage in making our tiles. Our factory is closed loop, recycling materials and water back into our products. Tiles that can’t be sold are donated to charity where they can be used to better underprivileged communities both here and abroad. We allow our customers to send back pallets for re-use, and our cardboard, wood, and plastic packaging is recycled as well. These projects are all part of Florida Tile CARES (Creating A Responsible Environmental Strategy).

We’re pleased that our hard work is paying off with innovative green installations like two homes that were recently built by Banister Homes in Charlotte. Banister was struggling to get the materials credits because the house was being built in an historic district and had to use traditional materials on the exterior. As Ellen Smith of Banister puts it, “…the historical society insisted that we use real wood siding to fit in with the neighborhood, so we really had to work hard to get our material credits on the inside. The GREENGUARD tile really helped in that aspect.”

Banister chose our Contessa and Retroclassic products which allowed them to achieve regional materials credits under LEED for Homes MR 2.2 for being less than 500 miles from the factory as well as indoor air quality credit for using GREENGUARD certified hard surface flooring. By using Florida Tile, they were able to certify one building as the first LEED home in Charlotte, and the second home was certified green under the Healthy Built Homes program administered by the North Carolina State University Solar Center. The projects have gone on to win the Green Award for a single-family project by the Charlotte Business Journal.


Lighter, Stronger, “LEED” Point Tile Backer & Underlayment
By Richard Chunta, VP Business Development, MagBacker™

MagBacker™ is a Class “A” fire-rated, moisture resistant high-performance tile backer, floor underlayment, and wet area panel that is resistant to mold, mildew and insects, while being 25% lighter and 20% stronger than other panels used in the residential and commercial construction industry.

MagBacker™ is free of both gypsum and Portland-based cement. It is also produced with 20% recycled post-industrial waste, and 15% recycled post-industrial “no added urea formaldehyde” wood cellulose fiber. The production process is chemically reacted, which requires less energy to produce - potentially leaving a lower carbon footprint compared to similar traditional building products.

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) points can be awarded for indoor air quality for “no added urea formaldehyde,” which naturally resists mold and mildew. Additionally, MagBacker™ surface construction is paperless and has no living food source, which can also mitigate mold/mildew growth.

MagBacker™ panels can be cut three ways: with snips; a utility knife; or power tools. Due to the fine inherit dust generated when cutting with power tools, wearing safety glasses and a Niosh-approved dust mask is recommended. MagBacker™ can be recycled to divert construction debris from landfills or incinerators.

Potential LEED points when using MagBacker™:
Indoor air quality; EQ 4.3 & 4.4
Construction IAQ management Plan; 3.0 & 3.1
Waste construction management; 2.1 & 2.2
Recycled content; 4.1 & 4.2
Building durability; MR8

MagBacker™ is produced in thicknesses from 1/4” to 1/2” and available in panel sizes of 3’x 5’, 4’x4’ and 4’x8’. For more information, please contact MagBacker™ at (866) 610-0359.


MAPEI helps you contribute to LEED certification points
  • Dust-Free Technology helps contribute to LEED EQ Credit 3.2: “Construction IAQ Management Plan: Before Occupancy” by reducing dust up to 90% during pouring, mixing and use.
  • MAPEI’s Ultrabond ECO products, such as Ultrabond ECO 285, meet the standards for reduction of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) required in LEED EQ Credit 4.1: “Low-Emitting Materials: Adhesives & Sealants.”
  • Contractors who use installation materials with recycled content have an advantage when bidding for projects seeking LEED certification. For example, MAPEI’s Ultralite Mortar has more than 20% recycled content, which can help contribute to LEED points in LEED MR Credits 4.1 and 4.2: “Recycled Content.”
  • MAPEI production facilities are strategically placed to provide service within a 500-mile radius to the majority of our customers - an important contribution to LEED certification points for the LEED MR Credits 5.1 and 5.2: “Regional Materials.”

Mer-Krete Systems

Underneath is what counts...
Products used today make a difference tomorrow
By Mark Cooke, Mer-Krete Product Manager

ParexLahabra, Inc. is an innovative and responsible manufacturer of wall coatings, tile installation materials and specialty products with the ambition of:
  • Promoting systems that are reliable and that go beyond official code requirements.
  • Marketing products and offering services that exceed customer expectations.
  • Having all employees committed to permanent and continual improvement.
Mer-Krete Systems (ParexLahabra’s Tile Installation Division) has developed Mer-Stik™; a new revolutionary ZERO VOC dry polymer mastic adhesive with intergraded anti-microbial protection. Developed to enhance nearly all installations of ceramic tile, natural stone and glass tile; this quick-gripping non-slump product allows the tile contractor to grout most tiles in less time than conventional mastics. Mer-Stik™ possesses excellent non-sag and bond strength features that are critical for large format tile and stone installations. It mixes easily with water and has exceptional workability characteristics; it is the ideal choice for a wide range of applications including periodic wet areas, such as bathroom shower walls. It is use over properly prepared masonry, concrete, and cement backer board and waterproof membranes such as Mer-Krete’s low odor Hydro Guard 2000.

Bright white Mer-Stik™ is freeze-thaw stable and will maintain its consistency even over an extended period of time in the pail. The product, which offers versatility for both residential and commercial construction, is the latest in Mer-Krete’s extensive LEED®/GREEN line of tile and stone installation solutions.

The United States Green Building Council (USGBC) developed Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) as a voluntary, consensus-based national standard to support and validate successful green building design, construction and operation. The LEED Green Building Rating System™ is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction, and operation of high performance green buildings by the USGBC. Mer-Krete Systems is proud to be a member of the USGBC.

For more information on Mer-Stik our other innovation products such as Dust Less™ thin sets and low VOC-compliant waterproofing membranes, contact Mer-Krete Systems, at (800) 851-6303 www.merkrete.com.

MP Global Products

Certified “Green” versus “Green-Washing”
By Jack Boesch

“Green” and “Environmentally Friendly” have become buzzwords in the building products industry. Truly, sustainable building products are increasingly sought-after for both commercial and residential building projects. More and more owners and developers want to build “green” to improve their image and reduce potential liability for health problems resulting from allergens that may be an ingredient of certain products. Bad indoor air quality can cause anything from eye irritations to allergies and beyond.

If you doubt the popularity of “Green” products, just think to yourself “How many of those curlicue fluorescent light bulbs – CFLs - do I see on store shelves today compared to three or four years ago?” However, “caveat emptor” (let the buyer beware) that not all green claims are 100% proven. We all know the truth gets stretched by many a marketer trying to sell a product. Companies often tout “Green” but can’t substantiate their claims with verifiable data. Their environmental advertising statements are often vague, suggesting they are “saving the world from global warming” but when pressed hard, have no way to prove it. So how do you know if the product you’re purchasing is truly recycled or will not make you sneeze? It’s easier than you might think: look for a symbol or seal that can prove certification by an independent lab or industry organization.

There are three generally recognized methods of certification a manufacturer can use.
  • 1. First-party certification is essentially self-certification, with the manufacturer certifying the material itself, which can raise questions about the evaluation parameters and how any testing was conducted.
  • 2. Second-party certification results from assessment by a trade association or other organization.
  • 3. Third-party certification – generally the most thorough and rigorous – uses unbiased, independent laboratory testing or detailed evaluations of claims that cannot be verified through testing. Energy Star, which certifies consumer electronics, and the Forest Stewardship Council, which certifies sustainably managed forests, are two generally well-known third-party certifiers.
Many reputable manufacturers take the time and spend the money to get third-party certification which helps define and measure green buildings in the LEED Green Building Rating System. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is a green building certification system developed by the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED is a nationally accepted benchmark for design, construction, and operation of high performance buildings. One reputable environmental certification program is available through Scientific Certification System (SCS). SCS has certified hundreds of companies and thousands of products for indoor air quality and recycled content.

MP Global Products, known for their most popular flooring underlayment product “QuietWalk” has been manufacturing “green” products since before it was trendy. MP Global has now introduced a new acoustical and crack suppressant underlayment for tile that is 100% recycled material, and is also certified to SCS’s highest level of indoor environmental quality, Indoor Advantage™ Gold. This certification, evaluates products for the 80 volatile organic compounds (VOCs) with Chronic Reference Exposure Levels established by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. Goods that meet these standards make it easier for architects and designers to determine which products can be specified for building projects such as schools, hospitals and government buildings.

Discerning architects, contractors and consumers look for products that are genuinely certified as “green”, and not just telling a green story.

Tile of Spain

Performance-Based Design
Design for function. For form. For life.
By Amanda Eden, Tile of Spain Representative 

When designing Spain’s Alhambra Palace in the 14th Century, the terms low lifecycle cost, high-performance and sustainability never crossed the minds of the architects. Yet the magnificence they created stands centuries later as a shining example of these contemporary concepts. That’s keeping lifecycle costs low! Today, most projects come with a long list of performance requirements. And all can benefit from the performance of ceramic tile from Spain.

You would be hard pressed to find a material more enduring than ceramic tile. Most others require replacement four to six times over a building’s lifespan. Carpet loses pile and shows wear. Wood rots, warps and curls in wet environments and requires frequent refinishing. Ceramic tile – in stunning wood looks – is impervious to moisture and never needs refinishing and the look of stone can be achieved with tile, but requires no sealing.

Additionally, damaged tiles can be individually replaced, versus replacing an entire installation. Ceramic tile doesn’t fade or discolor when exposed to UV rays. It even withstands fire and flood, where most other surface materials fail.

Ceramic tile performs as an energy saver, retaining heat and emitting it slowly, for efficient building climate control. Partnerships with Spain’s pioneers in solar energy have resulted in a patented system of photovoltaic facades that produce energy year round. Ventilated facades create a thermal barrier between building surface and tile, conserving energy, and reducing heating and cooling costs and noise pollution.

Indoor air quality benefits because tile is neither a primary nor a secondary source of air pollution, as it emits no fibers, gases or other harmful byproducts. It reduces allergens, and doesn’t absorb smoke, paint fumes or other contaminants. And tile inhibits the growth of mold, mildew, fungus and other organisms.

Even tile cleaning and maintenance is high-performance. It cleans with neutral cleansers and hot water, thereby not contributing to the level of toxic cleaning products in the ecosystem.

Learn more about high performance ceramic tile products. Contact Tile of Spain, 2655 Le Jeune, Suite 1114, Coral Gables, FL 33134. Call (305) 446-4387 or email miami@mcx.es.