SUSTAINABLE AND RECLAIMED WOOD
Black's Farmwood has been selling the finest wide plank wood flooring for nearly 25 years.
We offer beautiful antique reclaimed wood flooring, FSC Certified wood flooring, engineered and solid wood flooring, and unfinished or prefinished hardwood floors. We receive many questions from our clients regarding our gorgeous wood floors, but the most frequently asked is how to acclimate the wood properly before installation.
Acclimating wood flooring allows it to adjust to your home's humidity and temperature levels before installation.
Wood flooring acclimation is essential because wood expands and contracts with changes in moisture, and failing to acclimate your wood flooring can result in problems such as gaps between the boards or warping.
Reclaimed wood, solid wood, engineered wood, and wide plank flooring are different types of wood flooring that must be appropriately acclimated before installation. Also, you should know about common mistakes and myths regarding wood flooring acclimation.
Reclaimed wood, salvaged from old buildings and antique barns, often with a lot of character and history, must be appropriately acclimated before installation. It doesn't matter how old or dry the reclaimed wood is because it is hygroscopic, which will expand and contract with moisture fluctuations, just like newly cut wood flooring.
It is important to acclimate reclaimed wood before installation to help reduce the potential for shrinkage and expansion.
Solid wood flooring is solid wood through and through and is typically 3/4 inch thick. It is essential to acclimate solid wood flooring to help reduce the potential for shrinkage and expansion. Solid wood flooring can last a lifetime without noticeable gapping, warping, or cupping if properly acclimated before installation.
Engineered wood flooring, made from layers of wood that are bonded together, with a top layer of solid wood, is inherently more stable than solid wood and is less likely to shrink or expand. However, it is still vital to acclimate it before installation.
Wide plank flooring is what it sounds like - wood planks that are wider than the standard 3-1/4 inches.
Wide plank flooring can be made of either solid wood or engineered wood, and the wider it is, the less stable it can be. Therefore, it's exceedingly important to acclimate this type of wood flooring with care.
Here are a few common mistakes and myths regarding wood flooring acclimation:
One common mistake is not allowing enough time for acclimation. The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) recommends acclimating wood flooring for a minimum of 72 hours, with the wood flooring stored in its original packaging in the room where it will be installed. If you do not allow enough time for acclimation, the wood flooring may not have a chance to adjust to your home's humidity and temperature levels, which can result in problems such as gaps between the boards or warping.
Another common mistake is not maintaining the proper humidity and temperature levels during the acclimation period. It is important to keep the room at the same humidity and temperature levels as when the wood flooring is installed.
If the room is exceedingly humid or too dry, it can affect the moisture content of the wood flooring and cause problems.
One commonly perpetuated myth is that you do not need to acclimate engineered wood floors. This is not true - it is important to acclimate engineered wood floors just like any other type of wood flooring. While engineered wood floors are more stable than solid wood and are less likely to shrink or expand, it is still vital to acclimate them before installation to help reduce the potential for problems.
Before installation, a professional wood flooring installer must take moisture readings of the wood flooring and the subfloor. These readings help determine the moisture content of the wood and the subfloor, which can affect how the wood flooring will perform after it is installed. Please refer to The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) guidelines for moisture readings as part of their installation standards.
In summary, it is important to acclimate your wood flooring to help reduce the potential for shrinkage and expansion. Acclimation is especially important for reclaimed wood, solid wood, wide plank flooring, and engineered wood flooring. Different types of wood flooring have different acclimation requirements. This blog post is an overview of acclimating wood flooring and is not intended to be a comprehensive guide. Please be sure to know the facts from the myths, consult your professional flooring installer, and follow the NWFA guidelines for the best results and a successful wood floor installation.