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Bamboo Flooring – Learn about the Sustainable Material

Bamboo flooring is unique, beautiful and eco-friendly. Bamboo is a type of grass from the Bamboo plant and is one of the hardest natural material. An excellent alternative to real timber flooring.

Bamboo Flooring

Bamboo flooring is made of cut and laminated bamboo glued together to form individual planks.

  • Highly Renewable resource and sustainable resource.
  • Has a higher specific compressive strength.
  • Available in a variety of styles, colors and finishes.
  • Naturally light in color
  • Sleek contemporary look.
  • Typically, uncarbonized and strand woven bamboo is harder and more durable, while darker bamboo represents a weakened structure.
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Pros of Bamboo Flooring:

  • Beautiful and aesthetic: various materials and mixes add interest
  • Unique flooring: available in various colours, textures
  • Ecofriendly: sustainable, renewable resource
  • Resistance to insects and moisture
  • Durable, strong and hard-wearing
  • Easy to install and maintain
  • Cost-effective and inexpensive

Cons of Bamboo Flooring:

  • Lower quality bamboo dents and scratches easily
  • Possible emission of VOC’s depending on the type of manufacture
  • Water damage: excessive moisture likely to warp or mold growth
  • Sensitive to humidity

Types of Bamboo Flooring

1.Traditional Bamboo Flooring:

Made of Natural Bamboo strips that are laminated under pressure with micro beveled edges and factory finished.

  • Horizontal grain : grain with wide faces of bamboo strips.
  • Vertical grain : grain with narrow edges of bamboo strips.

2.Strand/Woven Bamboo Flooring:

  • a) Natural: Natural bamboo strips are soaked in binder glue, woven together, compressed under pressure into a log, sliced into flooring planks, and milled into plank flooring with micro beveled edges and factory finished.
  • b) Carbonized: Carbonized bamboo strips are soaked in binder glue, woven together, compressed under pressure into a log, sliced into flooring planks, and milled into plank flooring with micro beveled edges and factory finished.
  • c) Carbonized and braided: Same as Carbonized, but in this type, Carbonized bamboo strips are twisted and braided.
  • d) Carbonized/Natural mix: Factory finished with Natural, carbonized, and variegated bamboo stripes are used.
  • e) Stained. Distressed and stained: Natural or Carbonized bamboo strips are soaked in binder glue, woven together, compressed under pressure into a log, sliced into flooring planks, and milled into plank flooring with micro beveled edges and factory finished.

Strandwoven Bamboo Flooring

Bamboo flooring
Natural/honey
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Bamboo flooring
Light carbonized/caramel
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Bamboo flooring
Carbonized
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Aesthetics

Surface Finishes

  • Distressed – Surface has a texture feel, creates a rustic appearance.
  • Hand Scraped – Made to look old and worn, hand-scraped texture.
  • Smooth – Smooth Finish
  • Wire Brushed – Scraping the surface with a wire brush, gently weathered and rustic look.
  • Matt Lacquered – Matt finish protects from wear and tear, natural appearance.

Color

  • Natural/Un-Carbonized Bamboo : More durable than carbonized.
  • Carbonized Bamboo : Carbonization is used to darken bamboo and thus it weakens the flooring by 30%.
  • Available in light, medium, and dark colors.
Bamboo flooring

Sizes

Varies from 12mm-20mm depending upon the type of construction, installation usage, etc.

  • Plank sizes :
  • Narrow plank – 5 inches or less
  • Medium plank – 5 to 7inches wide
  • Wide planks – above 7 inches
Bamboo flooring
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Flooring Style

  • Minimal: Flooring with light colors and neutral finishes blending with the colors of furniture or space brings in harmony and cozy for minimalistic spaces.
  • Rustic: darker colors, wide planks with ties and knots with distressed finishes combine with the Rustic style of homes.
  • Traditional: Medium/wide planks with a little darker to darker colors with matt finishes tone with Traditional styles.
  • Modern/contemporary : Medium to wider planks ,absence of ties and knots with superior quality in lighter shades complement with the contemporary style.

Installation Types for Bamboo Flooring

  • Prepare the subfloor to be clean and dry, free from any moisture, solvents and debris.
  • Sub-floor can be
  • -Concrete Sub-floor
  • -Nailable Wood Sub-floor.

A)Nail Down to a Wooden Subfloor

  • 1. Prepare the wooden subfloor surface to be clean and dry.
  • 2. Leave about 10mm expansion joint all-round the perimeter of the floor.
  • 3.Install using nails or staples concealed within tongue-and-groove joint, with planks tightly butted and fasteners spaced as recommended by manufacturer.
  • 4. Review plank placement for pattern, secure the first row of bamboo by nailing into the groove. Provide fastener to within at least 3 inches from each end of row.
  • 5. Continue for other planks in a similar way as per desired pattern.
  • 6.Seal the floor using glue as per supplier’s instructions.
  • Refer supplier’s instructions for nailing methods and tools used

B)Glue Down

  • 1. Install using adhesive,with planks tightly butted.
  • 2. Leave about 10mm expansion joint all-round the perimeter of the floor.
  • 3.Spread adhesive as per manufacturer’s instructions.
  • 4. Review plank placement for pattern, secure the first row of bamboo by gluing the planks directly to subfloor.
  • 5.Fit tongue side into the groove side until they are flush against each other.Tape the rows together and weigh down the boards.
  • 6. Once the first row is straight and secure, similarly complete the next rows in a defined pattern directly to the subfloor.
  • 7.Wipe off any excessive adhesive from flooring.
  • Refer supplier’s instructions for gluing methods and tools used.

C)Floating The Floor-Tongue and Groove

  • This type of floating is done by using an underlayment. Also with or without glue.
  • 1. Prepare the surface to be clean and dry and lay the underlay.
  • 2. Leave about 10mm expansion joint all-round the perimeter of the floor.
  • 3.Install by click and lock method, with planks tightly fit together using manufacturer’s instructions.
  • 4.Review plank placement and start to lay your flooring by gluing the tongue and groove joints together.
  • 5.Continue for other planks in a similar way as per desired pattern.
  • Refer supplier’s instructions for gluing methods and tools used.

Sustainable Considerations

  • Bamboo is considered to be sustainable, a rapidly renewable material, however a few considerations have to be taken care of.
  • The glues used may contain formaldehyde.
  • The manufacturing process may involve the use of resins.
  • Bamboo requires long distance transportation which may requires a large amounts of fuels.
  • Bamboo is considered an invasive grass species.

Other types of flooring can be accessed here:https://thearchspace.com/category/guides/flooring/

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