Is Bamboo Flooring Really Tough? Bamboo and Durability

Bamboo Flooring Durability

Bamboo is one of the fastest-growing plants on the planet – some of the plants in the bamboo family even grow at a staggering rate of four feet in just a single day! Don’t worry, you wouldn’t be the only one who mistakenly assumes that such speedy growth would make bamboo a weak material. But in fact, it is one of the strongest and most durable flooring materials available.


How strong is Bamboo?

Bamboo has greater compressive strength than brick, concrete, or wood, and it even has a tensile strength that rivals steel. Using the industry-wide Janka hardness scale measurement, bamboo rates significantly higher than other woods like rosewood and cherry, which are high on the list of woods known for their durability. Bamboo measures much higher than traditional wood flooring, and on average, it has a rating of more than 3800. There have even been samples of strand woven bamboo floors that were recorded as measuring over 5000 on the Janka scale. That is hard!

What makes Bamboo flooring so durable?

  • Bamboo as a raw material is incredibly durable and strong, as shown by its lofty rating on the Janka hardness scale.
  • How bamboo flooring is made contributes heavily to its durability; the process of making bamboo flooring begins with the individual stalks of bamboo being pulled apart into strands. These strands are then laid over each other in a cross pattern before being compressed together with extreme pressure and heat to create the flooring planks. Because the fibers lay in both directions, the whole plank is much stronger than if they were laid in a single direction. The addition of the adhesive also adds to the strength of the bamboo.
  • Strand woven bamboo floors measure significantly higher on the Janka scale than traditional “classic” bamboo flooring, which still measures as high as red oak.

Any gardener who has tried to remove a bamboo plant from their garden will tell you just how durable it is. Bamboo flooring is so durable, many people choose to use it in high traffic areas like their kitchens, and some people even use it in their garages.

If you are still unclear about just how durable bamboo is, remember that in China and many other southeast Asian countries, bamboo poles are used as scaffolding in the construction industry instead of the more traditional steel poles, and not just for small buildings!!

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