Bamboo is a trendy, eco-friendly flooring material that has gained popularity in recent years. It is a renewable resource and helps to relieve pressure on endangered hardwood trees. It is also relatively inexpensive and easy to install compared to other types of wood floors. However, it is not without its drawbacks.
While bamboo flooring is more resistant to water damage than many hardwood floors, it is not completely waterproof. Moisture can cause the floor to warp and even grow mold. Bamboo floors are also susceptible to dents and scratches – not unlike traditional hardwood floors. They can also be easily discolored by direct sunlight.
Depending on the type of bamboo used and the manufacturing process, some bamboo planks may contain traces of toxic chemicals such as urea-formaldehyde. This is caused by the heat and resin-based adhesives that are used during production. These toxins can off-gas into the home, causing health problems for sensitive individuals.
Although bamboo is considered a highly renewable natural resource, it still takes about 5 years to mature to the point where it can be harvested. This is significantly shorter than the 50-ish years required to mature most tree species. Additionally, it can self-regenerate, allowing for the harvesting of fresh new stalks while avoiding deforestation and soil erosion.
In addition, the slicing and dicing of bamboo plants is done with heavy machines that can leave behind a ragged edge on each plank. This can result in an uneven surface that can be difficult to clean and maintain.
Another disadvantage of bamboo is that it can be prone to dents and scratches – not only from the slicing machine but also from furniture and household items like chairs. In time, this can create a dull and unappealing appearance in the rooms of your home.
Like most hardwood floors, bamboo is a very durable and long-lasting flooring material if it is properly maintained. While it can be refinished, most manufacturers recommend that you only do so once every five to seven years. The refinishing procedure can be messy, expensive and time consuming.
While it is not a common flooring material, bamboo can be used in a variety of ways in your home to add warmth and elegance. The most popular application is in the kitchen or bathroom, but it can be installed throughout your home. It is important to keep in mind, though, that bamboo is not as versatile as hardwood and is not suitable for areas of high moisture or humidity.
It is a good idea to consult a professional when choosing a bamboo floor for your home. They will be able to advise you on the best type of bamboo flooring for your needs and help you find a reputable and reliable flooring dealer. Ultimately, you should choose a dealer who will provide a warranty on their work and stand by their products. If you are concerned about the quality of your bamboo floor, ask your flooring retailer to give you references from previous customers who have had their bamboo floors refinished.