Bamboo flooring cost – Bamboo floors are available in four different types and there are different styles of installation also. The kind of floor and the type of installation you decide on will also determine the cost of your bamboo floor.
While this only adds up the material cost, there are other questions that you have to take into consideration when you want to install a bamboo floor. There could be some work to do both before and after the installation. Before the process begins, you might have to decide on whether your old floor needs to be removed and whether the baseboards that remain are can be used for the new floor also or if they are not fit enough, whether you have to buy new ones. All these needs also translate into costs. However, if you decide to install the floor yourself without asking for professional help, you will be able to save some money.
This article will give you an insight into these factors and also the price of the different types of floors available. After reading the article, you will have a much clearer idea of the kind of floor that is right for you.
What are Bamboo Floors
It is a fact that all materials used for floors have the capacity to contract when it gets hot and expand when the temperature is not so high. Though bamboo floors also tend to do this, they do not expand and contract as much as the other types of flooring and this works to our advantage.
Because of this quality, it is ideal for use both inside and outside the house. Additionally, it also has a greater ability to repel water than other kinds of wood. If you actually notice a bamboo tree, you will observe that the stalk is surprisingly dry irrespective of the fact that everything around it is soaking wet.
Bamboo needs to be mature for the products to be good. Some companies do not follow this and for the sake of manufacturing products at a greater pace, may use bamboo that is not mature enough to be used.
However, there are tell-tale signs to show this. You can make out that the bamboo is not mature enough simply by looking at the cost and also by feeling the product. To know the difference, try comparing a more expensive bamboo product to another one that is not as expensive and check to see how they differ.
The product made out of bamboo that is mature will be harder than the one made with bamboo that is not mature enough. It is true that bamboo that is not mature is not very expensive but it comes with its own disadvantages.
You may save money this way, but you will not experience the true goodness of bamboo. Soft bamboo is more prone to getting scratched, dented and will even break up into splinters also. Softwood like pine is an ideal example of how this kind of woodwork.
It is an ideal choice for whitling but definitely not for building. The other disadvantage is that as the soft bamboo matures, there will be a change in color. And this change is going to happen in spots which will make it worse.
This will lead to irregular coloring along with the board. This is disappointing when you are expecting to see an even and uniform coloring throughout the board. This will not happen if you choose mature bamboo as this will not change color and will maintain the look for a long time.
Types of Bamboo Flooring
Now that you are aware of the kind of bamboo that you should choose, let us now look at the various types of bamboo that are available. The first option that we are going to discuss is the best and the most expensive one.
Woven strand bamboo
Are bamboo stalks really good for the floor? Well, they are not. So, it is not a good idea to buy bamboo stalks. They may be ideal for walls and are used like this in some places.
However, they will not make good material for the floor as they are rather irregular and are surely not comfortable to walk on. The other things to consider are that it is not at all easy to clean and since they are very supple, they will definitely break under the weight of someone walking over them.
In order to overcome these problems, we have a good manufacturing procedure in place. The woven strand bamboo is of the highest quality of all bamboo floors. In this method, the wood is compressed and made into boards.
The bamboo used for this board is of the best quality and also looks very genuine. It registers the hardest on the Janka scale and also gives us all the benefits of bamboo. The other major benefit that we get out of this type of floor is that you can actually re-sand it and also refinish it as and when you require to. It is highly enduring and can actually remain as it is for centuries.
Strand carbonized bamboo
This type of bamboo is very similar to woven strand bamboo. The quality of the bamboo used in this looks very superior but is not so in reality. This bamboo, which is less in quality is changed to look much better.
The selected bamboo stalks are first boiled. This process eliminates the sugar and the starch in them. These are then compressed and stuck to make slats. The process of carbonizing the bamboo imparts a dark amber color to the bamboo. This process can actually result in the bamboo being softer compared to the woven strand type.
The word ‘solid’ in the name of this type of bamboo gives us the impression that this is easily the best of the lot but this is not at all true. There are some advantages to this kind of bamboo also. They are really hard and they can also be sanded and resealed. The disadvantages are the quality which is not the best in the market and the color which may be irregular.
Laminate bamboo floors
The bamboo used in these floors is very limited in quantity. So, these floors have only a thin bamboo veneer fixed on a click-together board. This board is not fixed directly on the subfloor. There is a gap between the subfloor and the board.
Since the bamboo involved is so little, it is really not possible to refinish it. The only thing that can be done is to attempt to fill in the scratches or gouges that occur on the floor. On the whole, the most important thing to notice here is that on this kind of floor, the bamboo used is very little.
Bamboo Flooring Cost
It is no big secret that floors that lack quality will come at a lower price. Is this really an advantage? If you ask yourself the question if bamboo look-alike is better than genuine bamboo with a lot of advantages, you get the answer.
Low range or Solid bamboo, which is the cheapest, comes at the rate of $4.50 and $9.50 per square foot. Though this looks like an advantage, these floors are made of softer bamboo and also have a large amount of formaldehyde or VOCs (volatile organic compounds). There is a lot of difference in the color too.
At a cost of between $7.50 and $13 per square foot, you get mature bamboo, lesser VOCs, lesser formaldehyde, and also even coloring. It is very possible that this kind of bamboo comes with a warranty that lasts much longer.
If you want the best kind of bamboo floor, then go for the type that costs between $17.50 and $30 per square foot. This price fetches you great quality bamboo that is hand-finished also. The types that fit this quality are woven strand and strand carbonized. This means that your bamboo floor will be very enduring as it has many layers of protective finishes.
Extra Cost Factors for Bamboo Flooring
Bamboo is the type of wood that grows very fast and effortlessly. This leads to the fact that there is always plenty of bamboo in stock. It is easy for people to grow the plant and ensure that supply meets the demand. Because it is easily available and the supply is in surplus, bamboo is cheaper than all other types of flooring made of hardwood.
This does not mean that your total expenses are going to be less. You have to take other things into consideration when you calculate the total cost for the floor. There are other things such as labor and also getting the area that needs a new floor ready.
This is not as simple as it sounds. You may need to undo a few things in the area where you are planning the new floor. You may need to mend a few things and also maybe create a completely new subfloor.
The labor cost may work out to around $15 per square foot apart from all the money that you pay for the material. You are likely to get a concession in the rate if the area that the contractor has to work on is really large enough.
How to Save Money on Bamboo Floors?
#1. DIY Installation: Is there a way to avoid the labor cost and save some money? Yes, there is. If you are thinking about reducing cost by going in for cheaper material, then think again. The best way to do this is actually to install the floor on your own.
However, this is not as easy as it sounds and can actually get very demanding. So, if you feel it is better done by a professional, then you would want to save money through other means.
#2. Compare costs and wait for sales: You could always keep an eye on the online costs of different bamboo floors and choose the one that suits your budget. There could also be a lot of offers and clearance sale prices that you could use to your advantage. You may even get your floor for half the original cost!
#3 Get a complimentary quote: You could get in touch with a professional who can give you completely free price quotes. This will translate into you getting a good installer and also give you the assurance that you are ready to meet the expenses that you will incur to install your new floor.
How Does Bamboo Compare to Laminate or Wood Floors?
Laminate floors are popular because they are not very costly and so fit the pockets of people who do not want to spend much. Bamboo is also a type of wood that falls into this category. It can be used as a substitute for wood floors considering that it is not as expensive.
The advantage of bamboo floors is that they are more durable than laminate floors. Hence, it follows that even if strand woven bamboo is more expensive than laminate, it will give you your money’s worth.
Bamboo Floor Upkeep
There are some things that you must remember if you want to keep your bamboo floor looking as good as new. The first thing is that since bamboo gets scratched easily, the feet of your furniture could do with soft padding.
Bamboo floors need to be cleaned regularly but this cleaning must not be done with abrasive chemicals. Also, waxing these floors is not at all a good idea unless you have a laminate type of floor. Murphy’s Oil soap is a good cleaning agent for these floors.
Are bamboo floors a wise investment or just a fad?
Among a lot of fashion trends that are short-lived, bamboo floors seem to be unique. The benefits that bamboo floors give have ensured that they remain popular as floor material in modern buildings.
The sleek appearance of bamboo is a major attraction and has made it the favorite of many designers. It is very delicate and is not as knotty as the other kinds of wood available. So, it is suitable for the fashion houses and offices of today.
Since bamboo is much thicker than oak in comparison, it is also much better for flooring as it does not buckle or distort so readily. The time taken for bamboo to grow is also relatively very less when compared to many other trees. So, using bamboo is definitely an advantage for our environment.
Do your need to do repairs or change subfloors to install bamboo?
The answer to this question depends entirely on the state of the subfloor. If it is really good, then there is really no need to think of changing it. However, if it is not in such good shape, then you might have to spend around $150 to $800 in order to mend the damaged subfloor. This expense does not take into account the cost of setting up the new floor.
Can bamboo floors be refinished?
Not all bamboo floors can be refinished. However, some types of bamboo floors can be sanded down like wood floors. This process gets rid of ugly scratches on the floor. If you want to refinish your bamboo floor, the minimum cost is $5 per square foot.