When you are doing your research you will find a number of companies in Perth selling a solid style of bamboo, it’s usually called compressed grain or strand-woven bamboo.
In fact, we were one of the companies that first introduced this product to Perth quite a number of years ago. To our surprise at the time, we had a number of our customers calling us very distressed that their beautiful floor had unfortunately started to cup on the surface (where the edges of the boards raise up), and this was happening just a few short months after installation. These past experiences have shown us that this product is not suitable for Australian conditions.
The reason why is because the structure of the compressed grain board is fundamentally flawed. The grain only runs the length of the board – there is nothing to stop it distorting across the face of the board with fluctuations in temperature and humidity. There are some local importers of this style of board that are mistaken that this problem is only due to moisture in your slab – and they usually insist you put a moisture barrier down first in an attempt to solve the problem. It is our experience that this does not work. Although some slabs do require a moisture barrier, this was not why the floors were cupping. It comes back to the structure of the board. A classic case was our original showroom floor – which cupped only months after being installed, even though there was no measurable moisture in the slab. The factories that produce compressed grain products are aware of this problem.
In most cases, the floors required sanding and polishing to flatten them again – not a nice process, quite dusty and smelly – and require you to move out of the house for a week or so – which is obviously a little distressing. In a couple of instances, the floors cupped so severely that they had to be ripped out and replaced – which was even worse for everyone living there. Of course, all these floors are covered by our lifetime warranty and were rectified at the time.
Obviously, relying on warranty repairs is something we all want to avoid.
The great thing for Bamboozle® customers is that you don’t have to worry about this problem anymore.
Bamboozle®, in conjunction with our partner factory, have developed a stronger product that has given our customers total peace of mind. Bamwood® flooring is something we developed specifically to solve these problems. There are a number of steps that are essential to making Bamwood® suitable for Australian conditions. One of the visual differences was the addition of a cross-engineered bamboo centre layer – this essentially helps stabilise the surface of the board and prevents the cupping from occurring. There are also another 5 critical steps in the manufacturing of the Bamwood® board that improves the stability compared to solid compressed grain boards.
These extra steps include controlled moisture content, improved seasoning, a superior European glue formulation and system, improved pressure control, hot pressing and scientifically tested balancing times.
Even though the Bamwood® board costs considerably more to produce, this is a much smarter choice and becomes a better value investment in the medium-to-long term, considering the flooring has to perform in your home for many years to come.
It is worth mentioning that having the centre layer does not reduce the amount of times you can sand the floor and in many cases it allows you to have more board life (ie. if a floor cups you will always get a reduced sanding life). On any wooden or compressed bamboo floor you can only sand the surface down until you reach the tongue and groove. A Bamwood® floor can be sanded at least 4 times in its lifetime.
Since we started implementing this product several years ago, we have installed over 320,000 square metres without a repeat of the significant problems associated with compressed grain flooring.