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How Does Moisture Impact Wood Floors?

Wood Floors

Moisture can have big impacts on hardwood floors, so it’s critical to be aware of its effects.

Hardwood flooring is a major investment in your home, so protecting it from unnecessary damage is a must. If you have hardwood flooring in your home, especially if you live in a humid area, it’s important to know the ways in which moisture impacts it. How exactly does moisture impact wood floors, and what can you do to protect your wood flooring?

Moisture & Wood Floors 101

Wood floors respond to fluctuations in humidity by expanding or contracting. Even though the wood is no longer living and has been finished and installed, it will still react to humidity. During the warm summer months, wood expands as it soaks in extra moisture from the surrounding air. During dry winter months, wood floors contract due to the lack of moisture. This movement in wood is inevitable without any humidity controls in your home.

The Winter Months

During the winter, your home is heated and dry air is blown throughout the space. As a result, wood floors give up some of their moisture and contract. Thin gaps can appear in between wood planks, but most of them will close right back up once the weather warms up again. To avoid these gaps altogether, work on controlling air humidity levels during the dry season. Install a humidifier and maintain the humidity levels in your home between 40-60%.

The Summer Months

Throughout the warm and humid summer months, the humidity inside of your home can rise to a whopping 90%. The wood floors will take in the excess moisture from the air to reach equilibrium with the room and expand as a result. The wood floors in your home will start to cup, or, the edges of each plank will sit higher than the centers. As the boards start to expand, they will press against each other. If the humidity in your home is too high for extended periods of time, the boards in your wood floors can actually crack. Get a dehumidifier and ensure that the humidity in your home stays within the standard 40-60% range.

Ready for a Beautiful Hardwood Floor? You Can Trust John K Eareckson & Co.!

When you work with John K Eareckson & Co. Flooring, we will ensure your hardwood floors undergo a stress-free acclimation process and that they sparkle for years to come. From a seamless and beautiful installation to years of maintenance, John K Eareckson & Co. Flooring has the expertise to care for your home’s hardwood floors. For a consultation and more information visit us online or give us a call at 410-788-4200. You can also follow us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, YouTube, and Flickr.

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