Strand Bamboo Flooring, also known as Strand Woven Bamboo Flooring, is becoming mainstream in domestic and commercial flooring applications right now. It’s far more durable and versatile than other standard bamboo flooring types.
If you’re wondering whether Strand Bamboo Flooring is a good flooring choice for your home improvement project, here’s a comprehensive guide for you to help you decide if it is suitable for your needs and personal style. It will cover everything you need to know about Strand Bamboo Flooring—from the pros and cons, its prices, care and maintenance, and installation tips.
Strand Bamboo Flooring Overview
Strand Bamboo Flooring is made of harvested bamboo that has been cut, trimmed, and pruned, and then shredded into strands. The bamboo fiber strands are then boiled, this process removes the starch and sugar, making the remaining material resistant to insects or pests such as termites.
Next, the bamboo strands are woven together. This process is what sets Strand Bamboo Flooring apart and makes them more durable than standard bamboo flooring. The fiber strands are then pressed tightly under extreme pressure and heat with adhesives or resin to form strand-woven bamboo blocks.
The solid bamboo blocks pass through a machine that cuts them into different plank sizes and are then sanded to remove any imperfections. Lastly, the bamboo blocks are milled and then a finish and other protective surface layers are applied to the blocks.
Cali Bamboo, Ambient Bamboo Floors, Teragren, and Plyboo and other companies all sell Strand Bamboo Flooring.
Pros and Cons
Bamboo is a fast-growing natural material that can be harvested every five years due to its self-generating properties, making Strand Bamboo Flooring a sustainable and eco-friendly flooring choice. It’s also much more affordable than hardwood floors because bamboo is a renewable resource and doesn’t need to be replanted after each harvest.
Since Strand Bamboo Flooring is made of compressed, woven bamboo strands, it is also more sturdy and durable and can handle typical wear and tear better than other similar brands. The blocks are also resistant to termites due to the manufacturing process and treatment that removes starch and sugar from the material.
It’s also a good flooring choice for people with allergies due to its antimicrobial properties and mold, pollen, and mildew resistance properties.
Moreover, Strand Bamboo Flooring also features a highly realistic texture and look of wood and provides a myriad of choices for styles, colors, finishes, grain patterns, and plank sizes, which provide flexibility for any customers’ preference and personal style.
Strand Bamboo Flooring is also highly versatile as it offers multiple methods of installation and it’s also easy to care for and maintain.
Strand Bamboo Flooring is made of organic materials that naturally absorb water, this makes the flooring more prone to mold, discoloration, and warping. Thus, it’s not an ideal flooring to install in areas with high exposure to water and moisture, such as bathrooms, kitchens, or basements.
Unlike with hardwood floors, large swings in humidity levels in the area could cause changes in the shape of Strand Bamboo flooring planks. The planks will expand and buckle due to excess moisture and then shrink in dry environments. Thus, damages like cracks in the flooring can occur.
To prevent any of these disadvantages, maintaining relative humidity levels is important before and after installation. This requires specific restrictions in the environment, which can be challenging for people living in places with large and fast humidity swings.
Moreover, toxins such as urea-formaldehyde may also be present in adhesives used during the manufacturing and laminating process (though this will depend on the flooring manufacturer).
Formaldehyde is considered a Volatile Organic Compound (VOC), which can be dangerous to people’s health—causing eye, throat, and nose irritation and breathing problems, especially if they are exposed to the VOC for long periods.
Price and Hidden Costs
Cali Bamboo’s strand bamboo flooring costs around $3.50 – $6.00 per square foot, while Ambient Bamboo Floors costs $4.12 to $6.57 per square foot. For Teragren, the price ranges from $7 to $9 per square foot, while Plyboo begins around the range of $4.50 per square root.
The price is only reflective of the flooring products, it does not include the cost of other materials and installation fees.
Since the strand bamboo planks are made of natural materials, they should be acclimated to allow the planks to adjust to the natural conditions of the house. The acclimation process may vary, depending on the guidelines provided by the manufacturer.
The standard way to acclimate the blocks is by opening the boxes and stacking the flooring flat on the floor. Mixing the planks from different boxes can also be done to provide a more natural pattern or look. After laying them, you can leave the flooring for at least 48 hours to acclimate.
Moreover, careful preparation of subfloors is necessary. Always check if the subfloors are firm, clean, and dry, and check to ensure that moisture levels are within the correct range. Following this process will prevent unnecessary damages to the planks during installation.
Strand Bamboo can either be done by yourself or by a professional. There are three different installation methods: floating click-clock, nail-down or glue-down method. The preferred installation process may vary depending on which bamboo flooring is used and the installation area, but it still provides ease of installation over subfloors, even for DIY homeowners.
Care And Maintenance
Strand Bamboo Flooring is easy to clean and requires less maintenance. Use a soft-bristle broom or regular vacuum without a beater bar to regularly sweep off any dust, dirt, or other debris.
Moreover, never use steam or a wet mop because excess water can cause permanent damage to, expansion and cupping of the flooring. If a drink is spilled, it’s best to wipe it up promptly using a dry towel or dry mop to prevent the liquid from penetrating the flooring.
Cali Bamboo has warranty coverage of 50 years for residential applications and 15 years for commercial use, while Ambient Bamboo Floors offer Lifetime Warranty coverage. Both Teragren and Plyboo offer 25 years of warranty coverage for domestic and commercial applications.
Strand Bamboo Flooring is a great flooring choice for customers who want sustainable and eco-friendly flooring materials because it’s made from natural and renewable materials.
Aside from being cost-effective, its strong points, including durability, strength, anti-microbial properties, and insect resistance, make this type of bamboo flooring a good alternative for hardwood floors.