Why did you switch from cork to foam underlayment?

Our IXPE foam underlayment is superior to cork in a variety of ways including water resistance, noise reduction, and thermal insulation.

Our newest upgrade to the Modin Collection, is our high-density, cross-linked, closed-cell foam underlayment. It is made out of time tested polyethylene, the same material used to make milk bottles, medicine containers, and BPA-free baby bottles.

Third-party lab testing on our new underlayment shows VOC detection results of ‘ND’, or “Non-Detected”. In fact, cross-linked foam actually has lower levels of formaldehyde emissions than cork (cork, like all wood products, has some natural amount of formaldehyde in it, and requires the use of urethane to hold the cork granules together).

Like all of our products, our new underlayment passes the strict CARB II air quality standards (the strictest in the USA, and some of the strictest in the world), and is third-party tested by SCS Global to be FloorScore Certified for indoor air quality.

Using a special non-chemical process, the cells of the foam are cross-linked, creating a tight, smooth closed-cell surface that is waterproof and highly insulating.

Key features of our IXPE underlayment

Waterproof

  • Our underlayment is made out of cutting-edge IXPE (Irradiated Cross-Linked PolyEthelene), the newest advance in foam technology
  • IXPE is a closed-cell foam that is 100% waterproof, and impervious to mildew, mold, rot, and bacteria
  • While cork underlayments may resist moisture in daily use conditions, in a flood or broken appliance scenario where significant amounts of water are exposed to the floor for prolonged periods, there is the chance for mold and rot to develop. We feel your underlayment should work just as hard as your floor, and our new underlayment does just that. While our competitors exclude their “waterproof floors” from flooding (read their warranties!), we stand behind our product in even the most extreme conditions

Improved sound control

  • Compared to cork, IXPE provides pound-for-pound superior sound performance
  • While sound performance is a complicated topic, in the most basic testing scenario (6” concrete, no suspended ceiling) our 1.5 mm IXPE has an IIC (Impact Insulation Class) rating of 59-60, compared to 1.5 mm cork at 53-55. IIC specifically relates to impact-related sounds, such as footsteps, the main sound element an underlayment can control (airborne sound, such as loud music, is rated using a different metric called STC, and in almost all cases requires a suspended ceiling to significantly mitigate)

Thermal insulation

  • Due to the closed-cell nature of IXPE, it is an excellent insulator and, in fact, is used primarily for its insulation properties in many other industries

Proven performance

  • IXPE has been used in the automotive, medical, and hospitality industries. It is very likely that your new vehicle relies heavily on IXPE to keep the cabin insulated, both in terms of sound and temperature