Bamboo flooring expands because it absorbs moisture, fluctuates with the room’s temperature, and it settles over the course of a couple of years. You can prevent expansion by placing bracing blocks or spacers around the edges of the floor. When bamboo expands, it’ll warp, crack, and shift.
Because of its hygroscopic properties, all wood and bamboo expands and contracts in response to humidity levels, even after its cut and turned into flooring. In glue and nail down applications (tongue and groove) each individual plank expands and contracts while secured to the subfloor.
Another query we ran across in our research was “Does bamboo flooring need an expansion gap?”.
Yes, bamboo flooring requires an expansion gap to allow for the planks of flooring to naturally expand and contract without causing any damage or distortion. What is an expansion gap? An expansion gap is a space that is left around the perimeter of a room when laying wooden or bamboo flooring.
Why does bamboo flooring expand and contract?
This is a natural process for bamboo and wooden flooring and occurs seasonally with temperature and humidity changes. The expansion space allows the flooring to expand and contract into the gap so that the flooring can move without causing any damage or distortion to the bamboo flooring itself.
Why do my bamboo floors have expansion and contraction problems?
Below are some common reasons why homeowners have expansion and contraction problems with their bamboo floors (and all wood floors) in general. All wood and bamboo floors must acclimate before installation.
Does bamboo flooring shrink?
Solid Strand Bamboo flooring will shrink just like a hardwood floor when the indoor relative humidity drops below 35 percent during the heating season. Bamboo flooring manufacturers recommend maintaining humidity over 35% through the heating season.
The floors that are most likely to experience shrinkage problems are solid FLOATING bamboo floors. These floors have often been either A) improperly moisture-balanced and/or B) sold to customers without informing them upfront about humidity requirements.
Does bamboo shrink?
Yes, bamboo can shrink. While it is a good strong fabric to use in clothing and bedding, it has about a 6% shrink factor when washed incorrectly. In comparison, cotton has about a 4% shrink factor. Different bamboo styles may have different shrink rates.
What are the drawbacks of bamboo flooring?
A flood can severely damage a bamboo flooring installation. Humidity : If the floor is installed in a very humid area, the moisture in the air can cause the floor planks to plump. In a dry environment, the planks can shrink. In both cases, cracks in the bamboo will be the result.
Humidity affects bamboo somewhat more severely than it does hardwood flooring. If the flooring is installed in a very humid climate, the moisture in the air can cause the floor planks to swell and buckle, while in a dry environment, the planks can shrink.
What causes bamboo flooring to crack?
Humidity: If the floor is installed in a very humid area, the moisture in the air can cause the floor planks to plump. In a dry environment, the planks can shrink. In both cases, cracks in the bamboo will be the result.
Can You refinish engineered bamboo flooring?
Engineered bamboo flooring, however, usually cannot be refinished. Humidity affects bamboo somewhat more severely than it does hardwood flooring. If the flooring is installed in a very humid climate, the moisture in the air can cause the floor planks to swell and buckle, while in a dry environment, the planks can shrink.
While reading we ran into the inquiry “How much does bamboo flooring cost?”.
Several high-quality bamboo flooring options are also affordable (think $3-$5/square foot ) if you find a company specializing in bamboo; these prices stack up very favorably against traditional wood floors. Some brands are known for shrinkage, so be on the lookout.
What color engineered bamboo flooring should you choose?
This brindle engineered bamboo floor features a rich brown hue with honey-colored grains. For something lighter, this blonde engineered bamboo floor brightens your room and offers a more contemporary look. And for something a little different, you can find non-traditional colors like this charcoal engineered bamboo floor.