Bamboo flooring has recently become more popular with homeowners, mainly because of its close similarities to hardwood flooring. While it has a chic and exotic look, it is relatively inexpensive, which continues to make it attractive to many homeowners. In this article, we break down the pros and cons of bamboo flooring so that when you choose to install it, you know exactly what to expect.
1. Many Color Options and Styles
One good thing about bamboo flooring is that it can be stained any color to match your existing color décor. Mocha and caramel are the most common colors although there are other colors, grains, and textures that you can choose from. Thanks to its stability, tonal appearance, and impact resistance, bamboo is considered one of the best flooring materials available.
2. Resistant to Water Damage
Bamboo is relatively more moisture resistant than most traditional hardwoods. Also, bamboo is more naturally resistant to bacteria, mold, and mildew. In case there is a liquid spill on the floor, make sure to clean and dry it as fast as possible. Use a slightly damp cloth as it is better than a sponge or wet mop.
3. Easy to Maintain
Another advantage to bamboo floors is that they are relatively low maintenance. Cleaning it is easy. All you need is a mop and some mild soap. It doesn’t require any special treatments. This advantage appeals to many people, especially those who are pressed for time.
4. All-Natural Material
Natural materials are highly sought after in home construction these days. For this reason, bamboo flooring is an excellent choice for people who are ecologically conscious. Also, one of the fine differences between hardwood and bamboo flooring is that it provides homes that have used bamboo flooring a feeling of individual personality.
High-quality bamboo flooring is as durable as traditional hardwood floors. But, like any industry, it is important that you only stick to high quality. In particular, bamboo is just as strong, durable and hard as red oak and some strand-woven bamboo tends to be even harder.
6. Low Cost
Despite its exotic and unique flair, bamboo flooring is still less expensive than hardwood flooring. It is cheaper than the majority of traditional hardwood flooring. The average cost of bamboo flooring ranges from $5 to $8 per square foot.
Bamboo matures quickly and will be ready in just a couple of months. This makes it more abundant compared to wood and other floor materials. The abundance of bamboo keeps the cost down. In fact, bamboo can cost half the price of other wood flooring choices, such as pine.
7. Able to Refinish
Bamboo floors, just like any other type of flooring, may become scratched, discolored or marred over time. The advantage is that bamboo’s surface can be refinished, sanded down, and a finishing coat applied, for a brand new look.
1. Difficult to Ascertain Quality
Bamboo quality varies. If you get a lower quality brand, you can be sure that it will scratch and dent fairly easily. Also, it’s not entirely possible to keep any bamboo smooth if it’s regularly used. Pets, furniture, and high-heeled shoes also pose a risk to bamboo floors. This is also true for tiny particles and sand which means it might not be a good choice for a beach house.
2. Premature Harvesting
Bamboo is often harvested prematurely (sometimes as early as three months), which doesn’t allow it to harden properly. The result is the production of soft, non-durable floors.
3. Toxic Chemicals
In some cases, the glue that manufacturers use to create the flooring may include toxic chemicals such as formaldehyde. However, most high-quality bamboo flooring is made with toxin-free adhesives. Therefore, to be on the safe side, you need to ensure that you invest in high-quality bamboo.
4. Lack of Grading System
At the moment, there isn’t an independent system that can rate the quality of bamboo materials. While retailers often sort lots into either grade A or B, the process is rather arbitrary and doesn’t reflect an independent gauge. This makes it difficult to know the exact quality of planks that you are purchasing. The only way to be guaranteed that you are buying top-quality bamboo material is by finding a reputable dealer.
Although bamboo is not without some cons, it remains an excellent option for flooring. It is affordable, durable and quite easy to maintain. Also, it comes in a variety of styles and color options that can match any décor. The advantages far outweigh the disadvantages.