Now that spring is in full effect, humidity will start to become a huge issue for homes. With its high moisture content, it can cause expansion, cupping, and buckling to hardwood floors in your home. Not only that, but dry air can also be a problem. It can cause separation within boards, shrinkage, and cracks.

The ideal environment for hardwood floors is a Relative Humidity between 35% and 55%. This can be checked using a hygrometer, which measures moisture content. You can also use your air conditioner and humidifier to find the perfect balance that will maintain the stability of your hardwood floors. Here are the problems that dryness and humidity can cause.

Cupping:

Occurs when edges of the board are higher than the center. Excessive moisture can cause wood floors to swell, which in turn crushes the boards together. The boards “cup” because of the excessive moisture in the floor.

Crowning:

Opposite of cupping; center of the board is higher than the edges. This happens when the surface of the floor takes in moisture or is left wet during high humidity conditions.

Buckling: 

This occurs when the flooring pulls away from the subfloor, and lifts several inches. This is the most extreme response to moisture in wood flooring, and does not happen often. Buckling usually occurs after there has been a flood, or it could be due to incorrect subfloor construction.

Any type of moisture imbalance can cause problems for hardwood floors, but if you control the Relative Humidity in your home, these problems can be prevented. If you believe any of these issues are occurring to your hardwood floors, or want more information, contact the flooring experts at Signature Hardwood Floors. You can call us at 410.415.0755 or click here today! You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!