Sander on hardwood floor prior to sanding
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What It Means To Acclimate Wood Floors (And How To Properly Do It)
Wood interacts continuously with its environment, so if you install hardwood floors, it’s essential to acclimate them properly to ensure they remain stable and durable over time.
In humid conditions, wood absorbs moisture and expands; in dry conditions, it releases moisture and contracts. This can compromise both the appearance and structure of your floors.
Acclimation balances the moisture content of your hardwood floors with that of your home's environment, reducing the risk of warping, buckling, or developing gaps.
Always acclimate the wood in the room where it will be installed, even though it may be easier to stash it in the garage or spare room, as those areas may have different climates.
At first, keep the wood in its packaging to adjust to the room conditions for a few days, then spread the planks out evenly, letting air circulate them for at least 48–72 hours.
Monitor the room's temperature and humidity levels and maintain consistent conditions, especially if you live in areas with high humidity or large seasonal changes.
The room must be dry and mimic the conditions the wood will face while in your home. Use a hygrometer to help you ensure humidity levels stay within the optimal range of 45–65%.
Research the characteristics of the wood you’ve selected, as different wood reacts differently, and it must be able to adapt to varying conditions throughout the year.