You spend weeks researching the wood floors you will have
installed in your home, but did you know that properly preparing the
job site could have as much to do with the long-term performance of
your floors as the species you choose?
If your home is new construction, wood flooring should not be
delivered before all the wet trades are completed, such as dry wall and
painting, the house is completely enclosed, the final grading has taken
place, and the heating and cooling system is installed and functioning.
Once these conditions are met, wood can be delivered to the job site.
After the wood is delivered, it will need to acclimate. The
time required for this will vary depending on the type of wood flooring
used, as well as the manufacturer's specifications, but generally, this
process will take two to four days. Rushing this step could cause the
wood to fail over time.
It's also important to understand that wood flooring will
reflect the shape of its subfloor, so your contractor should make sure
your subfloor is solid and flat. If there are high peaks, they should
be sanded down. If there are low valleys, they should be filled in.
Your contractor also should make sure that the subfloor is securely
fastened to the flooring joists, which will prevent the floors from
squeaking down the road.
Taking these simple, but important, steps to properly prepare
the job site before your wood is installed will help contribute to the
long-term performance of your floors. To learn more about the many
benefits of wood flooring, visit the NWFA's consumer web site at http://www.woodfloors.org,
and click on the "All About Wood Floors" link. You also can find a wood
flooring professional in your area by visiting the "Find a Professional
or Product" link.