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Go Green with Bamboo Flooring

Bamboo

Recently bamboo flooring has become one of the most popular new flooring styles, and it's easy to see why. Here are the top ten benefits of bamboo flooring:

1. Renewable resource. Unlike most hardwood floors, bamboo cultivates plentifully, and it replenishes quickly. The leftover leaves and shoots are used as a food source for cattle.
2. Easy upkeep. Bamboo has a better resiliency than softer floors like pine or vinyl. A bamboo floor, despite its rapid growth, proves to be extremely strong and can handle the elements and high traffic areas.
3. Easy to install. There are several ways to install bamboo flooring, but adhesive is not necessary making a perfect project for Do-It-Yourselfers!
4. Cost. The cost of bamboo flooring can vary greatly, depending on grade, finish, material percentage, veneer, etc. A way to save money is by installing the floor yourself.
5. Design points. Style counts, and when it comes to bamboo floors, style is what it's about. From its mellow light hues and colors, to its widely varying grains, bamboo can match almost any décor. Bamboo is typically very light, almost white in finish, but can be found tinted and finished in a dark color.
6. Adaptability. Bamboo can be installed almost anywhere. While some materials require lots of prep work to the sub floor, bamboo can be laid over a much wider variety of surfaces. Where a laminate may be needed for a vinyl or tile material, much less expensive plywood is a more than adequate surface for bamboo to be affixed to.
7. Material Handling. General hand tools, cross cut saws, compound miter saws and dovetail saws are perfect for finishing a home project with bamboo. There is no need to use hardwood saws - despite its strength, bamboo is relatively easy to cut, and available in shorter sections so you can maneuver it easily around your work site.
8. Strength. Its natural make-up has proven it able to carry countless times its own weight, and that converts into a flooring surface which is virtually unbreakable. If you are looking for a reasonably strong, lightweight floor, bamboo might be a viable option.
9. Durability. People instantly think of tile or marble when they are looking for a durable flooring surface, but bamboo can certainly be considered a top contender for longest lasting.
10. Material Availability. Bamboo flooring can be found virtually everywhere, and being used in such high volume that your choices of manufacturer and vendor are virtually unlimited.

With these points brought to light, it's easy to see how bamboo flooring is becoming one of the leading flooring surfaces available today. From its wide adaptability and durability to its cost effectiveness, bamboo has something to offer everyone.

Christina Asad Edwards, REALTOR
2006 & 2007 Sales Masters Top Agent
Christina.AsadEdwards@RealLiving.com
www.teamedwards.info
mobile or text 937-205-4741 office 937-573-0082  fax 937-433-3561
Real Living Realty - #1 in OHIO!
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Blog article provided by Christina Cavins, a Nationally recognized Realtor with Irongate Inc. Realtors. Christina can be reached via email at ChristinaCavins@aol.com or by cell phone or text message at 1-937-205-4741. For Ohio real estate and homes see Ohio Real Estate.

 

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Comment balloon 10 commentsChristina Cavins • May 28 2008 07:10PM

Comments

We have bamboo flooring in our living room, dining room, kitchen and hallways and absolutely love it.  We installed it ourselves when we purchased the homes.  My husband had had experience, but myself and the other guy helping had not and it turned out wonderful.  I especially love the fact that the bamboo grows so much faster than traditional hardwoods.

Posted by Kim Peasley-Parker (AgentOwned Realty, Heritage Group, Inc.) over 11 years ago

It sounds like bamboo is the answer to several problems. Let's hope its use increases.

Posted by Rosario Lewis, GRI, SRES - DDR Realty - Orange County, NY (DDR Realty) over 11 years ago

Bamboo is awesome is so easy to work with. I love the whole "Green" idea.

Posted by Greg Hampton, North Georgia Mountain Property,Blue Rid (Re/Max Around The Mountains) over 11 years ago

I love my Bamboo floors.  And the fact that they are renewable sources makes it even better.

Posted by Dana Couch-Davis, CRS, GRI, ABR, SRES (Kendall Haney Realty Group) over 11 years ago

Not only is it Earth friendly, but it is absolutely beautiful!

Posted by Kristina Leone (Lionheart Home Staging, LLC) over 11 years ago

Bamboo is gorgeous flooring and it is very earth friendly. I'm working an a blog dedicated solely to green renovations I'd love to have you contribute sometime once I get it up and running.

Posted by Reno Loan Guy (FHA 203K & Homestyle Renovation Expert) about 11 years ago

We too have Bamboo. It grows so quickly, our 2000 square foor house is now almost 4000!

Posted by Jim Hirschhorn, GRI, Real Living - Orlando (Real Living Real Estate Solutions) about 11 years ago

Christina,

I applaud your effort to support eco-friendly materials, but this is a perfect example of green-washing.  I'll respond to your points one by one:

1) All wood is renewable, bamboo just happens to grow faster.  However, a mature oak tree will yield 100 times more "product" than a mature bamboo plant.

2) Bamboo flooring is no easier to take care of than any other wood flooring.  Bamboo almost always will dent much faster than oak or maple.

3) Bamboo installs similar to ANY wood flooring.  Adhesive is only used for applications over concrete.  This is the same for wood and bamboo.

4) Anyone who can install wood can install bamboo.  This is not a "green" feature.

5) At this time, there is a grand total of 12 color/pattern combinations for bamboo flooring.  Unfinished bamboo is almost impossible to find, so custom staining is not an option.  Compare this to FSC certified harwood flooring, which comes in dozens of species and stained in hundreds of colors. 

6) Solid bamboo flooring installs identically to hardwood flooring.  Floating bamboo flooring is already being pulled from production because of constant problems.  However, floating wood flooring like Kahrs and EcoTimber continue to perform wonderfully. 

7) Hand saws???  There is no way on Earth that any wood flooring installer would bid a job in which they had to use hand saws.  Not to mention, bamboo is a grass, not wood.  Therefore, it has a tendency to splinter and shred far easier than wood.  In order to get smooth cuts, you absolutely MUST use a sharp, fine kerf blade. 

8) Do not confuse bamboo poles with engineered bamboo flooring.  We have had to replace many bamboo floors already because they dent far easier than traditional wood.  

9) See #8.  Your assesment of the indestructability of bamboo is way overboard.

10) Same with wood, cork, natural linoleum, tile, etc.

 

When consumers ask me for my top 10 "green" flooring choices, bamboo barely makes the list.  Here's why:

1) All bamboo is produced in China.  All containers of material from China have to be sprayed with toxic pesticides.  The Chinese government will not allow us to investigate the working conditions of the factories.  

2) Farmers in China have been clear-cutting millions of acres of trees in order to plant bamboo, simply because the US is in love with bamboo.

3) For all of the hype, bamboo has not proven to be any more durable than domestic wood products.  Contrarily, bamboo cups and warps easier, so it requires maintenance far more frequently. 

 

Yes, bamboo is beautiful.  If you like it simply because of the look, then buy it.  As far as it's eco-attributes...consider something else.

Andrew Pace  http://www.degreeofgreen.com

Posted by Andrew Pace (Degree of Green) about 11 years ago

I have bamboo on my main floor and love the look.  However, I have found it is not as durable as I was lead to believe as I have several scratches and dents in the flooring from use - or maybe I am expecting to much??

Posted by Sandra Hughes, Redesigned Spaces - Fairfax County, Virginia (Redesigned Spaces - Northern Virginia) about 11 years ago

Very informative post Christina!  Bamboo is becoming more popular in homes here in Colorado Springs, it is very pretty.  It will easily dent or scratch depending on what type of bamboo flooring is installed; some types of bamboo are stronger than others (i.e. strand vs. carbonized).  

Posted by Patricia Beck, Colorado Springs Realty (RE/MAX Properties, Inc., GRI, CDPE) about 11 years ago

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