Most environmentally conscious buyers hesitate when thinking about adding wooden flooring to their homes. We have all seen pictures of vastly devastated forests, but there are many wood choices that are sustainable and don’t add to the despoiling of the environment. One of these environmentally-friendly sources comes from bamboo.
Bamboo flooring has been around for quite some time, it initially faced slower market penetration due to underdeveloped manufacturing processes but has come a long way since and is now a viable, aesthetically appealing and extremely durable flooring solution. Due to these employed modern technologies bamboo is fast becoming a favoured flooring option for the eco-conscious.
The eco-friendly properties of bamboo are mainly due to the fact that it is a grass rather than a tree and is extremely fast-growing compared to hardwoods. On average, bamboo is capable of reaching maturity and is ready to harvest in five years. Additionally it can be harvested again and again from the same plant since it is a grass. Compare that to an individual hardwood tree, which takes anywhere from three decades to more than a hundred years to mature.
Bamboo is exceedingly resilient and can take a greater impact than most hardwoods without denting. Other outstanding properties include its dimensional stability from both heat and moisture. Due to being a reconstituted product, the manufacturing processes limit the likelihood of gapping, cupping, or warping. It is also less expensive than many hardwoods and can be purchased for nailed- down, stapled-down, glued-down, or floated installations.
With so many positive attributes, it’s no wonder that bamboo is becoming the hottest trend in flooring. Not only for its excellent eco-friendliness, but also due to the declining availability of natural hardwood.
Strand woven bamboo floors offer a strong, sustainable alternative to traditional hardwood and are ideal for home and commercial environments. This type of flooring is primarily made from Mosa bamboo, using a process that fuses long strands of bamboo, which are then woven together and compressed to make planks. The result is a floor that has a classic grained appearance and a number of unique style characteristics.
Whether you are aiming to renovate your living area for a more modern, practical option, or you are in the process of building, choosing the right floor type can make all the difference. Traditionally, in order to enjoy the beauty of gleaming hardwood underfoot, planks needed to be placed on support beams below the surface, to provide air for the wood to settle.
Today, luckily for those who still love the look and feel of classic floors, planks can be fitted onto a cement or uncovered base with planks that click into place in most cases. Aside from aesthetic appeal, floors need to be durable enough to withstand typical wear and tear, while being hard enough to last many years without having to replace planks or sections.
Why choose bamboo floors?
Bamboo floors offer a few distinct features that have made them a popular choice for a wide range of buildings, from residential houses all the way to factory show rooms and retail outlets. Key benefits of these floors include the following:
Hard and durable. Bamboo floors rank highly on the Janka hardness scale, which measures weight and force placed on wood. Simply put, the harder the flooring, the longer it will last and the better it will withstand pressure and foot traffic.
Practical. Due to its durability, bamboo is a practical flooring solution that is pet-friendly, child-friendly, mess-resistance and ideal for a fuss-free option that is better protected against scuffs, marks and scratches.
Attractive. Bamboo floors look good too, with various colour and finish options that allow you to customise your floors to suit the style and décor of your premises. The final result looks very much like classic hardwood, with a natural grain and smooth surface.
Renewable. As it is a grass rather than wood, bamboo grows at a far faster pace than trees. It can also be harvested more easily as roots stay intact during the process, meaning that replanting is not required for new shoots to regrow, making this an environmentally friendly alternative.
Simple installation. Thanks to Uniclic® technology, planks can be fitted quickly and simply without the need for glue. Install it yourself, or have it installed in no time at all by one of our professional Floors Direct installation teams.
Choosing the ideal flooring type may seem like a challenge when faced with so many options. If you are looking for something practical, long-lasting and with a similar aesthetic to hardwood, strand woven bamboo floors may just be the perfect choice.
BAMBOO FLOOR INSTALLATION, MAINTENANCE AND OTHER FAQ'S
Q: How do you install bamboo flooring?
A: Our premium grade bamboo flooring can be installed by various methods depending on site conditions and the bamboo floor you choose. The boards can be glued directly onto the sub floor, fixed direct to batons or plywood, or free floating on foam underlay. We recommend the floating floor system.
Q: Do you organise the installation?
A: Yes, we have fully trained and equipped teams who are ideally positioned to handle your installation from preparation through to sign-off. All sites are closely monitored by our team leaders who are in turn accountable to our head office. This makes the process cost-effective and ensures a one-stop-shop; because you are only having to deal with one supplier you don't have to be concerned with looking for the installer should there be any issues down the line.
Q: How long will it take to install my bamboo floor?
A: This is entirely dependent on the size of the job and the difficulty of the layout. Installations are typically quick, clean and easy and usually take about one third the time of laying a solid timber floor. Some homes can be done in as quick as a day; while others can take up to a week. The only exception to this would be if the untreated flooring option is chosen, then with treatment/finishing, the floor may take at least double the time it would take to install a prefinished floor.
Q: Will there be any dust or bad fumes? Will we have to leave the home during installation?
A: Pre-finished: There is no need for you to move out. All the boards are pre-finished which means there is no sanding and polishing in the home. If glued down, or together, then there may be a faint smell on the first day or two, but since we only supply Bamboo using the Uniclic technology, you will not have this to consider.
A: Sanded/polished/treated/finished in house: The laying of the boards is quick and clean. The glue used to bond the boards to the sub floor, or together in case of T&G, can give off a faint smell on the first day or two. Once the glue dries the smell will dissipate. The sanding and polishing process will be a little dusty, but no more than any other untreated floors.
Q: Can I install bamboo flooring over existing tiles?
A: Yes. It is not uncommon to install bamboo flooring over tiles. The tiling surface should be thoroughly checked by the installer prior to installation.
Q: Can I install bamboo floor over existing timber floors?
A: Yes. Existing timber floors are no different to other types of sub floor and as long as they are level and moisture free. Again, careful inspection must be carried out by the installer.
Q: How do I care for my flooring?
A: Quick guide to maintain your floor’s beauty:
Install protector felt on furniture
Use area rugs on high traffic pathways
Place mats at exterior doors to trap sand and grit from incoming traffic
Remove spills promptly
Vacuum or sweep floor regularly with a soft broom to remove sand and grit
We recommend using Micro fibre cleaning mops
Q: What happens if I damage my bamboo floor?
A: It is inevitable that your floor will sustain some damage at some point. This is no different to solid timber, laminate or any other wooden flooring. The type of damage will dictate the best course of action. One of the great advantages of pre-finished Bamboo flooring is that damaged boards can be easily rectified. In most cases a great result is achieved by simply removing and replacing the damaged boards returning your floor to it to original condition. The process is a little more complicated for sanded and polished floors as you may require an additional coat of polish or a re-sand over the entire floor once a board has been replaced.
Q: What happens if my floor gets flooded?
A: It really depends on the severity of the flooding, and is dependent on the volume of water spilt on the floor and how long it remains on the floor before it dries or is drained away. In minor flooding scenarios often there is no change to the floors appearance, however instances of major flooding can result in the floor having to be repaired by replacing boards in the damaged area or by sanding and polishing. Bamboo boards are engineered in such a way that help them to be more resistant to moisture than a solid timber floor and are therefore can often withstand these situation with more resilience. It is also understood that the bamboo fibre is regarded to be more water resistant than most timber fibres.
Floors Direct - Head Office
Shop 6, New Century Avenue,
Tel : +27 11 475 8000 / Fax : +27 11 475 7311