ColourI want my floor to be the colour of this board?
Unfortunately this is an unrealistic expectation. Board colour varies greatly not only from tree to tree but also within a tree. The colour in a board can also appear different depending on the angle it is viewed. Board colour also changes when coatings are applied and floors often darken with age. The floor you have will be unique to you in its colour and character and therefore when choosing a timber floor, you need to consider that samples provide only a general guide and the colour cannot be specified.
If I don’t want a lot of feature what grade should I get?
If only a small amount of feature is desired then ‘Select Grade’ needs to be specified. The feature that is permitted in a ‘Standard Grade’ floor in some species can be much more dominant than ‘Select Grade’
I don’t think all boards in the floor are to grade?
Yes, this is quite possible as there is some leeway both in the grading rules and as the result of the sanding process. When floors are sanded some features may become larger and other features that were lying just below the surface may appear. Some species are more prone to this than others.
All grades permit some feature and provided the correct grade has been chosen initially, this development of features does not generally detract from the floor's appearance.
Should every floor be acclimatised?
No, the purpose of acclimatisation is to either raise or lower the average moisture content of the flooring prior to laying so that it is closer to that which it will attain in service. Therefore if manufactured close to its expected in-service moisture content there is no need to acclimatise it.
Can it be detrimental to acclimatise a floor?
Yes, if the conditions in which a floor is acclimatised differs significantly from the in-service conditions e.g. a period of very wet weather during acclimatisation then the pre-swelling prior to installation is likely to cause frequent gapping after installation.
When should a floor be acclimatised?
In some moist locations, like coastal rural settings, floors may attain an average in service moisture content that is significantly higher than its average supply moisture content and due to this the expected future expansion needs to be catered for. Acclimatisation, under correct conditions at the time is one method to accommodate this.
How should a floor be acclimatised?
Flooring must be unpacked and restacked where it is to be laid so that the air can pass over each board.
What if I have seepage into the sub-floor?
The sub-floor space must be dry and remain dry to ensure that it will not affect the floor above. It is imperative to attend to any moisture ingress by installing drainage, additional ventilation and impervious membranes over the soil prior to laying the floor.
Won’t the particleboard stop moisture affecting the floor?
No, in time moisture will pass through particleboard or plywood sub-floors and affect the floor above. Also, if there have been any past moisture problems that have been corrected, it is necessary to ensure the sub-floor is at the right moisture content to accept the floor.
Irrespective of the care taken when a floor is manufactured, installed, sanded and finished it can be difficult to forsee potential issues that can affect the floor once completed. Due to this a limited number of problems do occur but in such instances if they are identified and corrected in a timely manner then customers still see their floor in a positive light and will enjoy it for the years ahead. Clear communication between parties and particularly with the owner is essential. Provided the aspects in the customer checklist have been covered, complaints should seldom occur regarding aspects of colour, grade or small movement effects that occur in all floors.