What is the difference between engineered & Solid hardwood Flooring?
The difference between the two is the composition of engineered flooring. While Solid is one whole whole piece of wood milled with a tongue and groove. Depending on the manufacturer engineered is composed of multiple layers of condensed particle board or birch substrate, With a layer of real wood. which makes it more dimensionally stable than solid hardwood.
What is a wear layer?
The thickness of the “Solid layer” or Top layer of wood that can be refinished on an engineered product.
What is Cupping?
Cupping is when the edges of the board are high and center is lower caused by excess moisture that is introduced to the hardwood floors such as:
• Building leaks
• Poor drainage
• Plumbing leaks or overflows
• Leaks from dishwashers or refrigerators
• Wet or damp basements/crawlspaces
• Concrete subfloors that have not cured
• Plywood subfloors with excessive moisture
• Poor or no ventilation
What is crowning?
Crowning, happens when the center of the pieces of flooring appears to be higher than the edges. It is possible, excessive moisture can cause crowning; but it is more likely that at one point the flooring was cupping and was then sanded before the wood could dry on its own.
Why is humidity & temperature vital in understanding how to live with hardwood floor?
All wood products are subject to taking in and shedding moisture as a result of temperature or humidity changes. If wood takes in moisture it will expand, if the moisture evaporates, the wood will contract causing shrinkage. Wood Flooring Manufacturers want the see indoor humidity maintained between 35-55%.
Are gaps between floor boards normal?
Yes, some gaps are normal as seasons changes and humidity levels rise and fall. They appear between individual boards. The wider the board is, wider the gap is. Square-edged floors show gaps more than beveled edge floors, and light colored floors how more gaps than dark colored floors. Gaps that remain with seasonal changes could be due to multiple problems such as hot spots in the subfloor where heating ducts are poorly insulated, radiant heating or refrigerator motors.
Why is acclimation important?
Acclimation is important to minimize shrinkage prior to installation, your new wood flooring must be acclimated in the area to be installed. This means the material can not be sitting in a garage or outside during acclimation period. Temperature must also be at the level of normal living conditions. The plastic covering should be removed and the box ends should be opened. Some products can be removed from boxes and log cabin stacked to speed up the acclimation drying.
Refer to NWFA guidelines for further questions.
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