As an alternative to traditional hardwoods, bamboo wood flooring is a fast growing and trendy idea. It is quickly becoming the flooring choice for many contemporary homeowners. Bamboo flooring is naturally dent resistant and so wears extremely well.
What is interesting about bamboo is that it is not actually a wood, it is a fast-growing grass that has been used for centuries in building. Bamboo reaches maturity in 3 to 5 years and cutting the stalks after 3 does not harm the rest of the plant which makes bamboo a great renewable resource. Most other hardwoods take 50 to 100 years, bamboo never more than 5. Bamboo flooring is similar to oak in dent resistance with much more dimensional stability than other wood flooring types.
Bamboo flooring comes with both horizontal and vertical grain, it has a slightly different appearance than typical hardwood. Usually it is either a light golden color or a darker amber shade depending on the finish. The first is the bamboos natural color, the second is natural looking but achieved using a process called carbonization. Both are very attractive.
The installation of bamboo wood flooring is similar to traditional wood flooring. It can be nailed using a nail gun, glued to sub flooring, or floated, installed over plywood, OSB, particleboard, or over a properly installed radiant floor heating system. Bamboo flooring is manufactured at 6 to 9 percent moisture content so moisture equilibration is typically not required. Some installers report problems using regular floor nailers and instead use pneumatic nail guns.
If you’re looking for something different from your hardwood flooring, give bamboo a shot. The wood is rich and smooth and looks great in every type of home. Let your home start a new tradition with bamboo instead of oak or pine, go for something less common and stand out.