Light Feature, Rustic, Reclaimed Grades.. What do these grades mean?
Timber grading relates to the visual character of timber flooring; the size and frequency of naturally occurring wood features in each board. Boards with larger and more frequent features will be graded differently to boards with smaller and less occurring features.
Because timber is a natural product, some features are seen across all grades. For example, gum veins, knots (to differing degrees) mild gum pockets and sapwood. The presence of these features don’t necessarily detract from the overall look of the floor but add personality and individual character to your floor
Some Things to Know About Timber 'Grades'
Selection Tip: When looking at individual board planks, it’s hard to translate that to the overall flooring look, so we recommend requesting a couple of planks to give you a better idea of the grade you’re selecting.
How the boards and lengths are laid on the floor is up to your floor installer; so if you have any specific requests, mention this when discussing your project requirements.
Need more help selecting the right timber grade for your project? Speak to one of our flooring specialists.
Being a natural product, timber flooring expands and contracts when it heats, cools and is exposed to moisture. This can cause issues if sufficient space hasn't been allowed for and the timber is constricted from this natural movement.
With timber flooring, it's industry standard to allow an expansion gap during installation. This is usually around 2-4mm around the perimeter of the floor to prevent these issues. Usually expansion gaps are hidden by skirting boards or beading.
While timber flooring products have come a long way in their construction, expansion gaps are still needed to accomodate changes to a home's relative humidity levels. When this is sitting high, moisture from the air is absorbed into the flooring boards and can result in boards swelling.
While these changes may be minor, swelling will occur during prolonged periods of wet weather or humidity. Allowing expansion gaps protects your flooring from greater damage like cupping and peaking between boards.
Depending on the type of flooring product you choose for your home and your home design, expansion gaps can differ in size. For example, while engineered flooring is cross laminated and reduces the width expansion when compared to solid flooring, there may be lengthwise movement that still needs to be allowed for.
Speak to one of our flooring experts to discuss your project, we’re just a call away.
Images: William Zhao, Unsplash
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