Jul 6, 2012

Bamboo Flooring

If you want a hardwood floor, take a look at bamboo. It's renewable, sustainable, modern, durable, with good color options and even grain variety.  Bamboo is an attractive alternative for flooring because of its physical similarities to hardwoods. Manufacturers and sellers promote its strength, durability as well as resistance to insects and moisture while having the added benefit of being eco friendly.

Bamboo floors are similar to other hardwood floor species and can be bought in two versions – solid bamboo as well as engineered.  Engineered bamboo flooring is very similar to engineered hardwood and is comprised of multiple layers, cross-banded for stability, glued on a base. However the difference is in the material – bamboo has a lower expansion rate than hardwoods, so an engineered bamboo floor will contract and expand even less in changing moisture conditions. Whether your climate is dry, humid, or best of all fluctuates between the two, an engineered bamboo floor will do the job best.
Bamboo flooring grains are either vertically cut or horizontally cut. In vertical bamboo floors, a plank will have each of the component pieces stood vertically on their narrowest edge and then press laminated side to side. The effect is a lined, almost uniform look to the surface of the finished floor plank. Horizontal bamboo floors have individual slats that are arranged in a horizontal direction, on their widest edge, and then joined side by side with adjacent pieces using a high pressure laminate system. The look of the finished horizontal surface is one where the characteristic nodes of the bamboo are randomly visible.  The two major colors are natural (similar to beech) and carbonized (similar to oak). The process of steaming bamboo material under a controlled pressure and temperature is called carbonization,and the color of the material changes into brownish. The natural and carbonized bamboo flooring are typically referred to as solid bamboo, although in fact the structures are layered, similar to a plywood. Another alternative is strand woven bamboo floorin, made when strands of bamboo are cut and boiled then left to dry for a period. When dry the strands are flattened under pressure. They are now ready to be cut into whatever size boards and planks are needed, then woven together and treated with an adhesive.
 Whichever flooring type you select, you'll love the options, the easy care, the resistance to scratching and the beautiful aesthetic.