Bamboo flooring is the perfect choice for people who are looking for a sustainable and eco-friendly alternative to hardwood flooring. It is made from a renewable resource that has been harvested from the earth for thousands of years and is naturally pest-free.

This article will give you some sound advice on how to get the best bamboo flooring for your home.

How is bamboo flooring made?

bamboo plank flooring size

The bamboo is processed in a way that preserves its natural state as much as possible. All the moisture within the wood is removed through drying, making it more durable for the homeowner. After this has been done they use a texture (sanding) to add interest and feeling to the flooring

When it is time to install the bamboo flooring, it is loaded onto a pallet. From this pallet, they will be able to move the floor from one place to another in the home. This helps with its sustainability and will give them more time to enjoy the benefits of having floors in their house. Some wood floors require glue that can harm your health, which is why some of these companies will allow you to use glue that has natural ingredients or no harmful chemicals.

Bamboo floors can be installed through either traditional methods that use nails and studs or they can be installed through the use of a floating floor. Some people prefer to go with the floating flooring because it will not require them to remove baseboards or clearances for the studs.

Learn more about about this hardwood flooring including the pros and cons of bamboo flooring.

Benefits of bamboo flooring

Comparing to other natural materials there are several advantages of the use of bamboo for flooring:

1) Bamboo is a renewable, sustainable, and rapidly growing resource. It is an environmentally friendly choice for the home. 

2) Bamboo also offers great style and design that will make any room feel more inviting.

3) It is also a very durable material and bamboo floors can last for generations. 

4) Bamboo comes in multiple varieties such as solid bamboo,  laminate bamboo flooring, pre-finished strips of bamboo, and unfinished planks. 

5) There are also different colors to choose from with a variety of looks from rustic to modern, industrial to classic. It is important to understand the differences between these varieties before you make any purchase.

6) It is resistant to stains and fire. Like the surface is treated with an anti-reflection layer which will help you in better maintenance of bamboo flooring because cleaning the floor is not so frequent as it was with other types of flooring.

7) How much is bamboo flooring? The price of bamboo products varies according to the quality of the product itself. Bamboo flooring comes in three qualities: the lowest grade is called the standard grade which is used mostly for floors and it is not as pretty as the higher quality floors. 

The second one is flooring with a better appearance, a good example is bamboo tiles or panels, which you can buy at a higher price than the standard grade. The highest quality flooring made of bamboo is called the decorative type and it has beautiful colors and patterns.

8) Bamboo flooring is also made from other materials, such as recycled cotton (in white, black, or brown colors, and shapes), natural cork, peat wood, or wooden planks.

9) Bamboo products are used in all kinds of areas to make the best interior design. Examples are kitchens, dining rooms, living rooms, and bedrooms.

10) Bamboo can be installed in any kind of room where you want to add a beautiful look to space.

Common problems with bamboo flooring

Here are some common problems associated with bamboo flooring:

Bringing the Bamboo Board home

The material is not very durable and you may need to replace it sooner rather than later. When you buy the board, there is a small bag attached to each board with some adhesives that you can use for installation. Don’t use any other kind of glue or adhesive as it might damage the natural material of the board.

Discoloration

Bamboo floorboards may develop a yellowish or brownish color on them, this is normal. However, if you notice that there is some discoloration on the bamboo material itself, it will be hard for you to restore the color of the bamboo because it takes a lot of time and energy. It can also lead to cracks and damages in the material as well.

What to look for in bamboo flooring?

Thickness

Solid boards come from ½ to ⅝ inch thick; engineered planks are ⅜ to ½ inch. They are made with a bamboo veneer atop a plywood or bamboo substrate for added stability, making them good for floating floors in damp or very dry environments. Expect to find unfinished boards at ¾ inch thick, which will need sanding on-site.

Width

There are three common widths available for bamboo as traditional hardwood floors. First is the typical board width which is strip flooring. Strip flooring is less than 3 inches and is used in newer homes with the aim of creating a contemporary and linear effect. 

On the other hand, plank flooring typically ranges between 3 – 8 inches and is gaining more ground in the market for homes with traditional, rustic, or country decorating styles. 

Last is the custom-designed parquet bamboo flooring which are flooring blocks created in 1 to 2 square foot using various bamboo strips of different widths. The parquet flooring offers the home geometric designs such as herringbone and baroque patterns.

Hardness

Vertical and horizontal bamboo floors score around 1,825 on the Janka scale, which is harder than hickory. Stranded bamboo flooring or commonly known as Strand-woven bamboo can score nearly double that, around 3,270, comparable to Brazilian redwood. Some types of bamboo even rank higher than Brazilian redwood which has a hardness rating between 2,260 and 3270 on the Janka scale.

hardwood flooring blog hardness janka scale
Image by Lauzon Flooring

Air Quality

An ingredient of bamboo flooring is adhesive resin with off-gas formaldehyde which is a known cancer-causing chemical. Look for high-quality bamboo flooring with formaldehyde levels that are super low they are virtually undetectable with less than .02 parts per million. But don’t take it to chance, make sure to look for independent certification, such as one from GREENGUARD or FloorScore to avoid VOCs and formaldehyde emission in your home.

Different types of bamboo flooring

Bamboo flooring construction types

Horizontal Bamboo

A horizontal bamboo flooring is a type of bamboo flooring that has the stalk laying flat in parallel with other pieces. This can be found in a variety of colors and patterns.

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Vertical Bamboo

A vertical bamboo flooring is the opposite of horizontal, which is the type of flooring that has the stalk laying down on a perpendicular plane. This can also be found in a variety of colors and patterns.

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Strand Woven Bamboo

A strand woven bamboo floor is a type of flooring that has the original stalk of the bamboo woven with other pieces of bamboo fibers. The stalk is separated from the top and bottom pieces of bamboo. This can be found in a variety of colors and patterns.

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Bamboo Stripe

A bamboo stripe flooring is a type of flooring that has different colored strips of bamboo in each piece which also has stalks as another part of its design. The stripes can either be white, brown, black, or dark green.

Bamboo flooring installations

Tongue & Groove 

The tongue and groove flooring is finished with a satin-matt lacquer. To install, glue it together over an underlay or glue it directly down to the subfloor. The groove is usually larger (usually over 4 inches) than the tongue. The tongue and groove flooring can be installed directly over a hard surface such as concrete.

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The solid tongue and groove profile is one that has many benefits. For one, it’s a type of joint that holds up well in high traffic areas. The solid interlocking profile is one that’s excellent for fitting seamlessly together. This is a particularly good choice for commercial settings where coverage and evenness are important factors in how this floor will look once laid down.

Click Lock Bamboo Flooring

People who like things to be simple enjoy our line of click lock bamboo floors. They snap together so quickly that you can install your floor on a Saturday afternoon and host a party on Saturday night if you want. Plus, they’re durable enough to withstand the wear-and-tear of daily use. However, it is not meant for homes with concrete subfloors because it has issues with dimensional stability. 

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The click lock bamboo flooring locking system is extremely stable and won’t expand and contract with humidity changes. This is ideal for people who don’t want to have to deal with making sure their flooring is even. Another feature of this type of flooring is that it can be installed without the use of glue, which makes it great for people who don’t like to clean up messes.

Bamboo flooring profiles

The following are some of the types of bamboo flooring available today in the market:

Solid Bamboo Flooring

Solid bamboo flooring has the same appearance as traditional hardwood or laminate floorboards. It is also very easy and can be installed by anyone without any professional help such as click locking or gluing. When it comes to maintenance, you can simply sweep the floor or vacuum it with a high-end vacuum cleaner. Applying a cleaning solution twice a month should also keep your floorboard clean at all times.

Engineered Bamboo Flooring

Bamboo engineered flooring is similar to a solid bamboo floor, but engineered bamboo boards provide a beautiful sheen and are very durable. It is also suitable for people with allergies. However, the teak oil used to apply on engineered bamboo flooring must be treated properly as it might leave a greasy or stinky odor on your floor depending on where you purchase this product from.

Bamboo flooring colors

Bamboo comes in different colors either by stripping its natural color or darkening the wood following a carbonization process. Here are a few bamboo color options for your home.

Natural Color

Natural is typically light, almost blonde/yellow tones wood color. This shade is considered to be the natural bamboo color, without necessary further coloring.

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Carbonized Color

Carbonized is unfinished strand-woven planks that range in color from honey or caramel to light coffee. This is achieved by adding carbon to the steam chamber which dyes the bamboo a darker color throughout the strips.

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Stained Color

With stained colors, the color possibilities for bamboo are endless. Bamboo planks can be stained into a wide spectrum of colors after the wood has been produced, and distributors can dye it virtually any color of the rainbow to match any interior design style. Stain can be painted on or rubbed on by hand.

Handscraped Honey Color

Handscraped honey color is typically honey brown or tan, though some varieties may range from dark chocolate to dark mahogany. The spotted chipped and scratched strand-woven bamboo is reminiscent of aged wooden floorboards.

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Stormy Night Color

Stormy Night is a chestnut-colored stain-engineered plank of strand-woven bamboo with distressed features which is achieved by using a dye from pure plant-based pigments with zero waste.

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Janka hardness scale 

Here’s the Janka Hardness scale of bamboo in comparison to other hardwood flooring types:

Strand Woven Bamboo – 15.8

Jatoba – 10.5

Merbau – 8.6

Jarrah – 8.5

Maple – 6.4

Solid Bamboo – 6.2 (Horizontal & Vertical)

White Oak – 6.0

Beech – 5.8

Types of bamboo installation 

How about the type of installation? The installation process of bamboo is pretty simple because it is done by some special adhesive paste that helps to avoid cracks. However, there are different types of bamboo flooring depending on the shape and size of the material that is used to manufacture it. There are six most-used shapes of bamboo in flooring:

1) Tongue and groove, this is a type of board installation where you have to put together two pieces with grooves in them. The grooves then fit together like teeth in a saw. You can also cut this kind of flooring to smaller sizes if needed.

2) Shaped, this kind of flooring is making its place more decorative and it is stain resistant. This kind of installation is not just for flooring but also for other bamboo products. There are two types of shaped flooring: tumbled (small rounded edge) and machine-planed (some parts have rounded edges and other parts are straight cut).

3) Stamped, this is the most expensive type because it has a very nice look, like wood planks. It is also very easy to install.

4) Bamboo tiles, these are used for tiling the floors and walls and it comes in rectangular shapes. This type of bamboo flooring can also be used for outdoor projects.

5) Mosaic is made of small square tiles which will help your home becomes elegant and luxurious because bamboo mosaic will make your home look like an art gallery.

Bamboo flooring maintenance

Bamboo flooring is a perfect natural alternative to carpet and carpet alternatives because of its low maintenance. 

You can clean bamboo with a vacuum cleaner without damaging the material. With a vacuum or broom, you can remove dust and old dirt from your home. 

Bamboo is an ideal option for keeping your floors clean and protecting them from damages, especially in places where you have children sometimes. You should consider all the good things about bamboo flooring before choosing it.

Bamboo flooring installation

When installing bamboo in your house, you’ll need some simple tools and an understanding of how to prep the surface. 

As with any other type of flooring, bamboo can be installed directly over plywood subfloors and OSB subflooring.

You’ll have to choose which type of bamboo you’re installing on your floor, based on the quality, prices, and aesthetic value. You can choose your best option according to the room that you want to install it in.

It is good to know that bamboo floors come in different finishes: there are sanded, clear coated and prefinished versions available. All of these finishes are eco-friendly, so the only thing that you need to do is to find out which type of finish you’re going to choose. It is better to choose the clear-coated option as it will require less maintenance over time.

As a rule of thumb, all bamboo floors come with a tongue-and-groove installation, although there are some high-end flooring options available that come in solid wood plank or tile installations. 

For those of you who are looking for the best option, make sure that you choose a high-quality flooring option, so that it will last for many years.

How to find the bamboo flooring supply

In order to get the best bamboo floors, you will need to find a company that takes pride in its work. They should be able to show you pictures of previous installations so that you can get an idea of what the finished product will look like.

Some good companies will be willing and able to have a sales representative come out to your house so that they can measure for plumbing and other issues that may prevent a smooth installation. Many of these companies will bring samples of bamboo flooring with them when they come out.

Make sure that any company you use is willing to stand behind their work. You want to make sure that the manufacturer is willing to either replace or repair the floors if they are damaged. They must also be willing to replace or repair any installation issues caused by the way that they did the installation.

As with any purchase, make sure you understand what your warranty covers and make sure it covers everything that you expect it to. If a company will not give you a warranty, then they should not be trusted.

It is also important for you to make sure that the company provides detailed information on the installation processes that you will need to follow. This will ensure that everything is done properly and can save you some headaches later on.

You want to ask any questions that you may have about the product or installation process to make sure it is done correctly before committing to any of it. Make sure that the company has good customer service and if they do not, then they should not be trusted.

You can also find some home decorators collection bamboo flooring reviews online to guide you. 

Tips when selecting bamboo flooring

Today, bamboo flooring is the most popular option for a home. However, when you plan on installing a new floor, do your research. Here are some tips to help you with your selection process.

  • Purchase Bamboo from a reputable company. Look for companies that are members of the Better Business Bureau or have an A+ rating and are very experienced in bamboo flooring installation.
  • Shop around for the best price and selection in your area before purchasing the bamboo flooring. You can go to Home Depot bamboo flooring or Lowes bamboo flooring
  • Sample the bamboo flooring at your local home improvement store. Check the quality of the actual bamboo flooring before buying.

Final thoughts

In conclusion, bamboo flooring is a versatile material for any home. It’s durable, easy to install, and you can find the perfect type of bamboo board for your needs. Your new floor will provide years of beauty and low maintenance to your home. You can choose from a wide range of bamboo flooring products that are available on the market today.

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