Are your floorboards rising against you? From uneven and raised surfaces to warped appearances, buckling wood floors creates a couple of causes for concern. Misshapen wood floors generate tripping hazards, squeaky boards, and unappealing appearances, hindering your spaces. In order to discern how to avoid and fix distorted floorboards, you must first uncover the root of the issue. Here are three reasons your engineered floors are buckling.
Like sponges, wood swells and expands as it absorbs water, but not to the same extreme. Although the design of engineered wood creates a higher resistance to water than solid wood floors, consistent, large moisture and water absorption, paired with high humidity levels, still affect engineered wood. The more water your wood floors take in, the more disfigured they become, and the harder it is for you to find a solution. To mitigate the effects and occurrences of buckled floors caused by moisture absorption, immediately clean spills, check and control your indoor humidity, and add a finish to your floor’s surface to further protect your wood.
Poor or Lack of Acclimation
Many people jump straight into installing their new floors the second their boards arrive without understanding the importance of the acclimation process. Acclimating wood to a room’s atmosphere acquaints the wood to its new home. Since different spaces vary in humidity levels, your planks need time to adjust to their new environment and react accordingly. Engineered wood flooring requires at least 48 hours to acclimate and completely settle into its appropriate size according to its reaction (expanding or contracting) to the new atmosphere.
During installation, wood floors require extra room in the floor plan, called expansion gaps, to leave space for potential further expansion. Without expansion gaps or time set aside for acclimation before installation, as the wood expands, the planks overlap and push up against one another, causing uneven and malformed floors. Improper use of adhesives, poor nailing, or insecure locked planks during installation also causes buckling.
After inserting and enjoying your new grey engineered hardwood floors or natural and earthy room aesthetic, buckling would make for a real Debby Downer. Understanding why your engineered floors are buckling prepares you with possible solutions and preventable measures. When you avoid flooring malformation caused by buckled wood, you can relish and reap the full rewards of owning engineered hardwood flooring.