What Are The Problems With Bamboo Flooring



Have you ever considered installing bamboo flooring in your home but were unsure if it is the right choice? Are you looking for more information about the possible problems with bamboo flooring? If so, then this blog post titled “What Are The Problems With Bamboo Flooring” is just what you need.

Installing bamboo flooring can give your space a unique and timeless look that is sure to impress visitors. Unfortunately, it’s not always a great choice – bamboo flooring has some significant downsides that many people overlook. 

From structural fragility to susceptibility to moisture damage, there are problems with bamboo flooring that could cause real headaches down the line. Before you commit to this trendy look for your floors, ensure you understand what issues you may be dealing with in the future.

The Different Types of Bamboo Flooring

Before diving into the problems associated with bamboo flooring, it is important to understand the available types.

→ Solid Bamboo Flooring

The most common type of bamboo flooring is solid bamboo. This is made from 100% solid sections of bamboo that are kiln-dried, then glued together and pressed into planks or tiles before being stained and sealed with a protective coating for longevity. 

Solid bamboo flooring comes in various styles, such as horizontal bamboo (flat grain) or vertical bamboo flooring (vertical grain). The color range varies from light to dark brown.

→ Engineered Bamboo Flooring

Another form of bamboo flooring available on the market is engineered bamboo. This type consists of multiple layers of wood fused with layers of bamboo veneer on the surface. It’s more stable than solid bamboo and can be installed over concrete subfloors or radiant heating systems due to its increased resistance to moisture levels. 

For a unique look, engineered bamboo also comes in various colors and styles, like hand-scraped, distressed, and wire-brushed finishes.

→ Strand Woven Bamboo Flooring

Strand woven bamboo is another option for those looking for a durable yet elegant choice in their home design projects. This type uses strips of boiled down and compressed grass fibers which are then glued together, forming plank boards nearly twice as hard as traditional hardwoods like oak or maple! 

Strand bamboo flooring comes in various shades, from dark espresso to honey-golden hues, giving you plenty of options depending on your preference for style and color palette in your home design project.

In addition to these three main types, various hybrid versions combine either two or all three types together into one flooring option allowing even further customization possibilities! One example would be strand-woven engineered floors – these combine the durability of strand-woven boards with the stability of laminates creating an incredibly strong yet beautiful product that will last many lifetimes while still being easy on your wallet!

The Main Color Options for Bamboo Flooring

Do you know the color options for bamboo flooring available on the market? Read to find out.

Bamboo flooring is available in many different colors, from light to dark brown, as well as a range of grays, tans, and even black. The most popular colors for bamboo floors are natural, carbonized, and strained.

Natural Bamboo

One of the most popular choices remains natural bamboo colors. These colors range from light brown to deep reddish-brown, providing a natural look that fits any room or decor. That being said, keep in mind that because the colors are natural, they can vary from piece to piece—but overall, you get a consistent look over time for that timeless feel.

Carbonized Bamboo

If you want something darker than natural bamboo colors, then carbonized bamboo could be an option worth exploring. With these shades of bamboo flooring, brightness, and darkness depends on how high the temperature was during manufacturing and how concentrated the processing chemicals were used. 

Generally speaking, carbonized flooring shades will lean too dark brown hues with hints of mahogany red or black streaks throughout.

Stained bamboo

When you think of bamboo, you probably don’t immediately imagine stained colors. But you can transform this versatile plant into much more than its natural green hue! Stained bamboo color is a unique and trendy way to add visual interest to your home decor. From vivid reds, warm browns, and even bold black hues, you can find a stained bamboo color that fits almost any environment and mood.

What Are The Problems With Bamboo Flooring: The Most Common Issues

Flooring is an investment you’ll rely on for a long time. Therefore, it’s important to understand the potential issues associated with different materials. Bamboo flooring is no exception, and while this material has many advantages, there are some common problems that you should be aware of before making a decision regarding bamboo floors.

The most common issues include the following:

❎ Sensitive to Humidity

Bamboo flooring differs from traditional hardwood floors in one key way: construction. Bamboo comprises individual strands of bamboo that are glued together and then pressed with high pressure and heat. This makes it harder than other types of wood floors but also more vulnerable to changes in moisture levels.

This means that if your house is prone to dampness or has too much moisture in the air, then installing bamboo as your flooring could be a mistake, as this will cause it to warp and cup over time. Also, sudden changes in humidity or temperature can lead to the splitting or cracking of the boards. 

In comparison, hardwood floors are not as vulnerable to swelling caused by moisture because the boards have less space between them.

❎ Susceptible to Scratches

One of the main reasons why bamboo is susceptible to scratches is because of its relatively soft surface. Compared to wood flooring, which can be quite hard and solid, bamboo’s fibers are softer and more easily damaged by everyday use. 

Things like pet claws or items being dragged across a surface can cause minor-to-moderate scratching on a bamboo surface. This may not sound ideal if you’re looking for something very durable, but don’t let this prevent you from using the material entirely!

It’s also worth noting that you can often repair small scratches with special products made specifically for repairing marks on wood surfaces—including bamboo! So while scratches may be inevitable, they don’t necessarily have to be forever! 

❎ Cleaning is Required

Wet mopping on a weekly basis is not recommended because bamboo floors should never be submerged in water. It will take a little more effort to do routine maintenance. Keep your floors scratch-free by frequently sweeping and vacuuming to remove the fine dirt particles that can scratch. 

Afterward, as long as any lingering liquids are cleaned up right away, the floor can be Swiffered or occasionally damp mopped.

❎ Prone to VOCs

VOCs are gasses released from certain solid or liquid materials as they evaporate, often associated with a bad odor. They can cause eye and respiratory irritation and other health problems, particularly at high concentrations. 

Bamboo is an especially efficient VOC producer because it contains natural oils containing terpenes. Terpenes are organic compounds that evaporate easily at room temperature. Therefore, when bamboo is exposed to air – for example, in your home or office – it can emit a wide range of volatile organic compounds.

Fortunately, you can take steps to reduce the levels of VOCs in your home or office environment. One of these is to make sure to use only EcoCert-certified building materials in your construction projects. This way, you know for sure the materials have been tested for safety standards! 

❎ Cost to the Environment 

With a development cycle that only takes three to five years to reach full maturity, the grass used to make bamboo flooring is all-natural, organic, and easily renewable. Replanting is not required because the harvesting procedure enables the stalks to be clipped without damaging the root. As a result, bamboo is a particularly eco-friendly resource.

Yet, the production of bamboo may have negative effects on the natural world. Some farmers are overgrowing these plants due to the expanding demand for these resources, which harms the environment’s natural balance of flora and fauna. Because bamboo is mostly produced in Southeast Asia, shipping it worldwide may result in greenhouse gas emissions.

❎ Color Changes With Time 

Bamboo flooring is known to change colors over time. The amount of fading will vary depending on the type of bamboo you’ve chosen and how much light exposure it gets. In general, areas exposed directly to natural lighting will fade faster and more noticeably than those with less sunlight. 

Additionally, if your space has large windows or skylights, these will also contribute significantly to the rate at which your floor changes color over time.

You might notice that some parts near doorways or entryways show more wear because these areas receive more foot traffic and therefore experience higher levels of abrasion against the surface. As a result, they may show signs of fading sooner than other parts of the wood floor.

The Advantages of Bamboo Flooring

Despite its drawbacks, using bamboo for flooring can be a great choice in many cases. Here are some of the main advantages of bamboo flooring:

✅ Environmental Sustainability

Bamboo grows quickly, particularly in tropical environments where it can reach full maturity within just four years. This means that you can take great care of the environment while still having beautiful flooring in your home. When harvested responsibly, bamboo produces minimal waste and has no negative impact on local habitats or ecosystems.

✅ Attractive Appearance

The natural appearance of bamboo makes it a beautifully warm and inviting addition to any home or office space. You can choose from light to dark colorways depending on what suits your decor. Furthermore, you might even opt for a distinctive striped or woven pattern if you want something really eye-catching! Bamboo floors age well with time, taking on a rich golden patina when sanded and oiled regularly.

✅ Cost-Effectiveness

Another great benefit of choosing bamboo over other types of flooring is that it’s extremely cost-effective. Bamboo is significantly cheaper than hardwood yet still offers the same level (or even higher!) of quality and beauty. On top of that, installation costs are also quite low compared to other materials. So, overall, you can save a substantial amount by going with a bamboo option.

✅ Easily Refinished 

When it comes to flooring, many homeowners are looking for an option that’s easily maintained and looks great. Fortunately, bamboo flooring delivers exactly that! Not only is it stunning and one of a kind – no two pieces of bamboo will ever look the same – but you can also refinish it with relative ease. Whether you’re just trying to spruce things up a bit or give your home an entirely new look, bamboo flooring lets you do so quickly and easily.

✅ Hard and Durable 

Bamboo flooring is ruggedly beautiful, and one of its best features is that it’s denser and tougher than hardwoods. Imagine a flooring that looks elegant and luxurious yet can handle 1,000 pounds per square inch(psi) worth of traffic! 

With proper care and maintenance, bamboo flooring will stay strong, long-lasting, stable, and durable over the decades – up to 50 years of use. How’s that for an investment? Plus, they come in various colors and styles to make any house feel like home.

What Are The Problems With Bamboo Flooring: Tips on How To Maintain Bamboo Floors

① First things first – keep your bamboo floors clean! Sweep, dust, mop, or vacuum regularly to remove dirt, grit, and other particles that can scratch and dull the surface of bamboo floors. Be sure to use attachments specifically designed for hardwood floors when vacuuming, as regular attachments can damage the finish.

② Spills should be wiped up immediately with a damp cloth using mild soap or detergent. Never use highly abrasive cleaners — doing so will damage the finish of your bamboo floor permanently.

③ Make sure you protect your bamboo floor from furniture marks by regularly shifting heavy furniture around. This prevents indents and helps to ensure even wear throughout your floor over time. If you must drag furniture across your floor, make sure you use felt protectors on the legs or feet of furniture items.

④ Consider placing area rugs in high-traffic areas of the house or where there are likely to be lots of spilled liquids. This prevents staining and watermarking and helps decrease general wear from foot traffic in those areas.

⑤ Always use manufacturer-approved products when maintaining your bamboo floors. These are specifically designed for such surfaces and best suited to protect them without causing more harm than good.

⑥ To prevent scratches caused by pets’ claws, consider trimming their nails regularly (if possible).

⑦ Lastly, ensure you occasionally check seams between boards for gaps, which could cause tripping hazards if left unchecked. If needed, have a professional re-glue or fill any gaps that may appear with an appropriate sealant or wood filler product made explicitly for wood flooring applications.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How does a bamboo plank compare to a hardwood plank?

Bamboo is a great option if you’re looking to get an elegant wood plank but don’t want to shell out too much money! Comparing a bamboo plank to a hardwood plank, both offer strength and stability to your furniture but in different ways. Bamboo is softer and lighter than hardwood but can last just as long, given proper maintenance and care. On the other hand, hardwoods are denser and heavier than bamboo, adding durability for years to come, even without regular upkeep. So if style AND sustainability are what you’re after in furniture, both options are worth considering when shopping around.

Q: Does an engineered hardwood flooring have a better lifespan than bamboo?

No. In fact, when cared for properly, high-quality bamboo flooring can last up to 50 years whereas engineered hardwood floors typically last between 15 and 25 years depending on the construction and materials used. However, it’s important to note that both types of floorings require regular maintenance in order to keep them looking their best.

Q: What other flooring material is similar to bamboo?

Cork flooring is an eco-friendly, renewable resource that has a similar look and texture to bamboo. It is also known for its incredible cushioning and warmth benefits, which can come in handy on cold winter nights. Perhaps the unique benefit cork has over bamboo is its dimensional stability and resiliency. It bounces back when it’s subject to heavy foot traffic. This means it won’t crack or split under pressure!

Q: Is a bamboo plant hardwood?

Bamboo technically comes from the grass family and is composed of a softer material than other hardwoods. Despite this, many people still consider traditional bamboo to be hardwood because it serves similar purposes in construction and furniture projects.

Q: How can I find a bamboo flooring company that is reliable?

Finding a reliable bamboo flooring company can be easier than you might think. Companies specializing in bamboo flooring can provide the perfect mix of quality, style, and affordability. Look for companies with a history of successful installations, plenty of reviews from happy customers, and a commitment to delivering high-quality products and services. To get started on your search for the perfect flooring partner, ask friends and family or do some online research to see what others are saying about local providers. You’ll soon find yourself connected with an experienced team that can help you create the beautiful, functional interior you’ve been looking for.

Final Words

All things considered, bamboo flooring has some great advantages, like its eco-friendliness and natural look. However, it can also be a costly endeavor, as well as presenting a few practical disadvantages. It may not be the best choice for high-traffic areas or for people with pets or allergies since it absorbs liquid quickly, making it susceptible to warping when exposed to too much moisture. Ultimately, when deciding on the right flooring for your home, only you know what fits your needs and lifestyle best!



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