Cheap Bamboo Flooring

I have to admit, when I first heard about bamboo flooring I couldn’t understand how it could possibly be a good alternative to other floors and especially how it could be a cheap hardwood flooring product like it was promoted as. It just didn’t make any sense to me to take all these small round bamboo canes and lay them side by side to make a floor. Of course, the picture I had in my mind had nothing to do with the realities behind this new, cheap green flooring product that is sweeping the world.

Bamboor Flooring

One of the problems with traditional wood flooring is that it takes so long for the trees to grow. Many softwood trees take close to one hundred years to get to a size that offers the tight grain structures needed for a first class floor. And tropical hardwoods can often times be a few hundred years old. Although they may eventually grow back after harvesting, you can’t consider a two hundred or three hundred year crop rotation to be a sustainable product.
Compare this to bamboo which can be harvested in as little as three years but is usually six to eight years old when it is used for flooring. This allows for a very short rotation period which means that more bamboo flooring can be manufactured from a given area.
Bamboo is actually of the grass family which also puts it into a much more “Green” building category. That is because when harvested the plant is not killed. With a tree, once the stalk is cut off at the stump the plant dies generally and it needs to be replanted for the next generation. With a grass, as any homeowner can tell you, when you cut off the top of the plant it just keeps growing from the root up. This is exactly what you see with a bamboo. The stalk is cut off and then a new one sprouts up from the roots and begins to grow. In fact, this works so well that someone who plants bamboo in their yard has a hard time getting rid of it when they change their landscaping again.
Bamboo Flooring Manufacturing
So back to how they produce bamboo flooring. Unlike my original thought, the stalks are not laid down next each other. Instead, the stalks are taken to a mill where they are stripped into small pieces. The bamboo is also boiled at this point in order to remove moisture and natural sugars. The strands are then mixed with a resin and laid out into a mat. This mat is pressed and heated which causes the resin to set up and with the structural strength from the bamboo fibers it creates a strong sheet like a sheet of plywood or oriented strand board.
This sheet is then cut into the desired flooring sizes. Depending on the thickness and make up of the sheet the flooring pieces can either be put together into a floating floor or they can actually be secured to the underlayment. An added advantage to using bamboo as an environmentally friendly flooring product is that event he scraps are used to create flooring panels. Thus you can choose from vertical grain, horizontal or flat grain, or an strand woven grain structure.
The main concern with this type of flooring is the resin material that is used. A big question is the use of formaldehyde and other volatile organic compounds. If you are considering a bamboo floor, or any type of laminate flooring system, then be sure to purchase from a reputable source and compare the VOC ratings. Flooring is now rated for air quality and this is definitely something to be aware of.

If you find this article helpful, check out these other posts:

For more information:

Leave a Reply

Welcome to My Site

Are you looking for up to date information on Garages, Floors, and Coatings? If so, this is the place you need to be.

This site came about one day because I was looking for the Best Floor Coating to install in my garage. I just couldn’t find any good information that would help me to make a decision.

I was complaining about the lack of a good site and so I decided to just do it my self. This is the result. A place where you can get unbiased answers and ask questions. I hope you find it useful.

Recently Commented

  • Andy: Hi Leonard, I would recommend an acrylic latex or latex enamel wood floor paint. Be sure your floor is...
  • Leonard Pomaranski: Andy, What would you used on a wood front porch w.hich is painted and chipping off????? I heard...
  • Matt: There are a variety of natural green cleaning solutions. It is hard to stay eco friendly from the carton to the...
  • evolution-virag.com: Better if you choose a NOT rainy day to install garage floor protector…
  • Andy: Hi Mitzi, thanks for the question. I would say you may be happy with a clear epoxy coating over the top. One of...