We do not provide installation services but have no fear as there are many high-quality contractors in your state and the majority will be eager to provide a free estimate over the phone or in the comfort of your own home. We recommend that you check out our helpful article titled 7 Tips For Choosing A Floor Installer.
Below are a few questions you will want to consider before placing your order:
1. What type of subfloor (usually plywood or concrete) will the floor be installed over?
2. Do you already have a specific plan to float, nail, or glue down the floor, and if so, why?
3. What other types of flooring will the floor be butting up to? Will you require transition pieces and how many?
4. How much flooring will you need to complete the job? Have you added waste?
5. When do you plan to start, and when do you need to receive the flooring material?
6. What kind of traffic do you expect on the flooring? Do you have kids, dogs, is it a commercial space?
7. Will you be installing the floor yourself, or hiring a professional?
We recommend you read our maintenance guide carefully for your specific finish type. As for cleaning solutions, for regular maintenance and spot cleaning it is hard to beat the Bam-Brite hard surface floor cleaner. Alternatively, you may use most standard floor cleaners approved for your specific flooring finish, such as Swiffer Wet Jet for Hardwood (if you have wood/bamboo), and Bona Hardwood Floor Care Kit. For spot cleaning, you can also use one cup of white vinegar mixed in with a half bucket of warm water, with a lightly damp mop, but do not use vinegar for regular cleaning as it can affect the finish PH balance and dull the luster over time.
Never steam mop or wet mop bamboo/hardwood floors, and never use mineral spirits, turpentine, or paint thinner on our floors. If you have a cleaning solution you are not sure about, make sure to test it on an out of the way area or sacrificial plank prior to using it on your floor, to ensure it does not damage the finish.
** Please note that different flooring finishes require different cleaning solutions and methods - read our maintenance guide carefully for your specific finish type.
If our website lets you add your desired quantity into the shopping cart without showing a "this item is back-ordered" pop up notification, that means the product is in stock and ready to ship!
We highly recommend reading our Shipping Policy for a comprehensive explanation of our shipping processes.
We ship most freight orders (over 125 lbs) out within 4 business days of purchase, the average being 2 business days. For faster shipment of freight orders, we offer an Expedited Shipping option at checkout however please note that this simply means that we will ship the order out the next business day - it does not shorten the transit time once shipped. For small parcel orders we offer express UPS shipping options at checkout as well; please note that for express shipping services the order must be placed by 2pm EST in order to ship out that same day, otherwise we will process the shipment the next business day. We do not ship out orders, nor do the shipping companies deliver them, on weekends.
For residential lift-gate freight order deliveries, once the flooring order arrives at the local freight terminal, they will call you to schedule your delivery appointment, which is usually a 2-6 hour window on the day of your choosing (weekdays only) when possible. All deliveries are curbside as the freight companies do not offer inside delivery.
Nail down. This is the most economical installation method, and it's the fastest after the floating method. The drawback is that over a long period of time nails can come loose due to repeated seasonal cycles (expansion and contraction), resulting in a squeaky floor. For nail down installations you'll want to use a 15 lb felt paper or similar as underlayment. To install strand woven flooring you'll need to use a pneumatic nailer that shoots 18 gauge hardwood flooring cleats; using the wrong cleat thickness may result in dimpling or goosebumps in your strand bamboo floor. We recommend using a Primatech Q550 Nailer or a Powernail 50P Flex for all strand bamboo nail down installations.
Glue down. While this is the most expensive and labor-intensive method, it is also considered the most stable method as the glue provides sound and moisture insulation, and the elasticity in the glue allows the floor to expand and contract naturally with the seasons. Our floors can be glued down to a multitude of surfaces. Be sure to check out the Acceptable Subfloor Types table in our installation instructions. If you're gluing down over plywood you can use a basic bamboo flooring glue, but if you're going over a slab you'll want to choose an all-in-one glue for bamboo flooring over concrete. Remember that it's important to use the correct trowel in tandem with the glue you've chosen. If you use the wrong trowel you may not get the correct spread rate, causing your floor to fail. This can be a very expensive mistake!
Floating. The advantage to a click-lock floating floor is the ease of installation as it is less time consuming to install. It is also easier to repair floating floors should you ever have a leak or other problem. The disadvantage is that, unless your home has stable indoor humidity year-round (meaning it stays within a 20% range indoors the whole year), you are limited in the length of the continuous runs of flooring you can lay. Across the widths of the planks (tangentially), you are limited to 25 feet with engineered floating floors and 15 feet with solid floating floors. Running down the lengths of the planks (longitudinally) you are limited to 45 feet with engineered floating floors and 25 feet with solid floating floors. For this type of installation, we recommend you use a 3 in 1 underlayment.
Our prefinished strand woven bamboo & eucalyptus floors are 3x harder than traditional wood floors. Go ahead – order some free samples and hit them with a hammer, dunk them in water, and ding them as much as you want – this is a floor that won’t look dented and scratched up in 10 years like a traditional wood floor. In fact, you’ll most likely never even have to refinish your floor, saving you a costly repair in the years to come.
Bamboo is one of the fastest-growing plants on earth, which makes it a rapidly renewable and eco-friendly product. The bamboo we use in our floors regenerates in as little as 5-7 years, and the eucalyptus we harvest from well-managed forests regenerates in as little as 3-4 years. Compare this to a hardwood tree that takes 60 years or more to grow.
Our floors are installed and maintained exactly like traditional hardwood floors. All of our floors come prefinished out of the box, so you won't have to do any messy or hazardous on-site finishing. Installation of our flooring is done using the same exact methods as hardwood floors. Since we sell mostly premium widths (wide planks) and premium lengths (3 to 6 footers) our floors also take less time to install.
Our bamboo and eucalyptus floors can be glued down to concrete or plywood, and nailed down to plywood. All of our tongue and groove floors can be directly glued down to concrete, all you have to do is use an adhesive that contains a moisture barrier. We recommend our Ironwood Wood Floor Adhesive, but there are many adhesives on the market that will work. Otherwise, if you want to float the floor, simply use one of our click-lock engineered floors.
All of our floors are safe for you and your family. Our annual test reports show that our floors emit "effectively zero" dangerous chemicals. We take your health as seriously as if it were our own – that is why many of our own employees have our floors installed in their homes. Check out our low emission formaldehyde free (NAUF) bamboo floors.
Our floors hold up great in beach houses, mountain cabins, and any other location inside the U.S. Our floors are moisture-balanced to work in every U.S. environment. We do recommend that you keep the humidity range between 35%-55% as per the National Wood Flooring Association standards.
Due to the density of strand woven flooring, we recommend only using a high PSI, high quality 18 gauge pneumatic nailer, such as a Primatech Q550 ALR or Powernail 50P Flex. These nail guns require an air compressor. You must use an 18 gauge cleat, as larger cleats will cause dimpling. Staple guns will not work on strand woven floors. When nailing down a floor we typically recommend you first lay 15 lb felt paper.
For moldings installation we recommend a Bostich Porter 23 gauge micro nailer or similar gun.
For all nailers, make sure cleats and nails are set properly before continuing to the next row, as failure to do so may result in goosebumps/dimpling. You may need to try several pressure/PSI settings before finding a setting that will work – test on sacrificial planks. Ensure the connector hose, seal, and air compressor are fully functional and have no tears or defects.
If you do not use the correct nail gun or cleat size, you may get dimpling in your floors. Read this important document about goosebumps and dimpling in strand woven bamboo.
NAIL GUN PRESSURE TOO HIGH: ALWAYS practice on a few planks to ensure the correct PSI setting on the nail gun. If the pressure is too high the nail will split the plank. When using the mallet always use small, light taps - as opposed to large, forceful taps – this is the best to get a snug fit.
NAIL GUN PRESSURE TOO LOW: If the PSI is too low you will end up with dimpling (“goosebumps”) on the face of the floor. Always inspect for dimpling from a low angle and with backlighting after installing the first two rows, because it’s difficult to see when standing directly over the area. It is the responsibility of the installer to check each row after it has been nailed down to ensure all cleats are sufficiently embedded in the planks so they don't cause dimpling in the finished floor upon fastening successive rows.
NAIL GUN PRESSURE JUST RIGHT: You will know that the pressure is just right when the cleat is flush or slightly below the surface of the tongue.
Tongues are slightly splitting – that is okay!
When nailing down extremely dense hardwoods like strand bamboo and eucalyptus there is a chance that the tongue on the planks will crack or split when the cleat is driven in. As long as less than 30% of the cleats have splitting around them, and the splitting is minor, this is perfectly normal and is not considered a defect (your floor will still be covered under the warranty if this happens) as the cleat is still firmly driven into the rest of the board keeping it securely in place. When splitting is happening try to use less force when striking the nailer with the mallet. Below is an image showing acceptable splitting, if occurring on less than 30% of the planks.
- You can purchase right on this website: add your desired items into the shopping cart, then click the cart icon at the top right of the website and click the "Proceed To Checkout" button.
- You can send an email with your desired materials list or purchase order to [email protected], and our support team will email you a quote with a payment button.
- You can call our support team directly at (301) 498-0234 and place your order over the phone.
It depends! Luxury Vinyl Plank floors with SPC Core do not require acclimation, and neither do our Rigid Core Bamboo Floors (bamboo flooring with SPC core). Meanwhile, all of our non-SPC core bamboo and eucalyptus floors must be acclimated for a period of 72 hours prior to installation, and we recommend an additional 7 days for geographic areas of high or low humidity.
Do not acclimate the floors on top of concrete, carpet with concrete under it, crawl spaces, or any other sub-floor that may contain moisture, without first laying a 6 mil polyethylene plastic barrier down, or the flooring will soak up the moisture from the concrete and shrink post-installation. Make sure to extend the apron/border of the plastic barrier at least 18 inches beyond the flooring boxes.
Ensure that the flooring is acclimated within the same room (or adjoining room with the same climate) where the floor will be installed in. Remember that you must keep your interior humidity settings between 40%-60% (as for all wood floors) or you may experience increased expansion and contraction.
First, stack the boxes up to 5 high, with each stack located at least 2 feet away from the next. Cross-stacking is preferable if you have space.
Once the boxes are stacked, use a box cutter or sharp knife to cut each box down one entire side lengthwise, and also the end flaps. Make sure to also cut open the interior plastic so that the floors really breathe.
We recommend ordering 10% extra for cutting and waste. If you have one or two large rooms that are square, and you are careful about making cuts, you can probably get away with 7%. If you are installing your floors in a diagonal pattern, we recommend ordering 15% extra for cutting and waste.
Also, keep in mind that bamboo and hardwood floors come in dye lots so it is a good idea to hold on to a few extra boxes in case you ever need to make a repair down the line. The extra boxes can be stored in an attic, basement, or even a garage, just remember to acclimate all floors prior to installation, for at least 72 hours, within the environment in which they’re going to live.
The best way to see the amount of variation between planks is to check the installation pictures we have on all of the product detail pages on our website or check out our bamboo flooring installation gallery. The thing most homeowners like is that all of our floors have some variation, as they are natural products; this is what makes them unique and appealing as compared to laminate or other synthetic materials. The carbonized color will usually have the most color variation within each lot, followed by some of the lighter stained colors. Remember that you can always control the color of your installation – at the beginning of the installation itself, you can simply point out to your installer which planks are too dark or too light, and ask them to leave those planks out of the installation.
Solid bamboo flooring is made solely of bamboo - it is 100 percent bamboo throughout and is available in tongue and groove and click lock floating versions. You can see side cut views of the different types of bamboo floors here.
Engineered bamboo flooring is comprised of a wear layer of bamboo on top, with an engineered, multilayer core below. The benefits of engineered wood floors are ease of installation and higher dimensional stability.
Rigid core bamboo flooring (with SPC core) is a new type of bamboo that is considered engineered flooring but contains a Stone Polymer Composite Core (SPC Core) as opposed to traditional engineered multi-ply or HDF core. These floors have exceptional water-resistant qualities, and high dimensional stability, so they experience very little expansion and contraction. Our Ambient version of these floors also includes an attached IXPE underlayment pad, so they can be installed in basements and even directly on top of concrete.
We highly recommend you review our Shipping Policy, which has a lot of great information and a short video about the shipping process. When your order ships out we’ll send you a notification email with all of your shipping information. Once the shipment arrives at the local freight terminal near your delivery location, the terminal staff will call you to schedule a delivery appointment* (weekdays, usually a 2-6 hour window). Make sure you don’t miss the delivery appointment or the freight company may charge a hefty re-delivery fee. *if you have selected commercial/freight dock delivery, freight may be delivered without needing an appointment
Once the order arrives, ensure you mark any damages you see on the driver’s bill of lading (they’ll then usually give you a copy). You don’t have to open and inspect every item, just look at the outside of the pallet – that is where the shipping damage will be. Ensure you write the number of damaged items and detailed notes, then take photos of the damaged items and email all of this information to your Ambient representative to ensure we can ship out free replacements.
Important note: If your delivery location is located on a road that cannot be accessed by a semi-trailer truck, you may be required to pick the freight up at the local terminal or meet the driver at an intermediary location.
Ambient's floors are 100% safe for you and your family. In fact, we're one of the few companies (if not the only one!?) that test all products annually to ensure they fall within the CARB Phase 2 indoor air standard, which is the most strict in the world, and we've also achieved Floorscore Certification. The CARB Phase 2 indoor air standard requires less than .05ppm off-gassing of formaldehyde, and all of our floors consistently test at under .015ppm which is considered “Below the Limit of Qualification” or “effectively zero”. We highly recommend you check out our safety information and testing page as well as our informative article here. As you might know, formaldehyde is a naturally occurring substance that even our bodies generate, so no substance on earth is truly "formaldehyde-free", but Ambient solid strand woven floors are NAUF (no added urea formaldehyde).
More info about formaldehyde. Formaldehyde exists in a wide array of household products including paint, wood furniture finishes, and cleaning supplies amongst others. Formaldehyde is also a naturally occurring substance found in air.
More info about CARB Phase II. We recommend further reading from the California Air Resources Board
You should follow two basic rules when choosing a wood flooring adhesive:
1) If you're gluing the floor down to plywood or other dry substrate, you'll want to use a zero VOC 100% urethane trowel-down adhesive approved for wood flooring installation. I.e. when installing over plywood or a dry substrate you don’t need the adhesive to contain a vapor barrier unless there is a crawl space, garage or other moist environment underneath. If there is a moisture concern, proceed to Step 2 below.
2) If you're gluing the floor down to concrete or any other sub-floor that may be emitting moisture, this will require an adhesive that contains a moisture/vapor barrier. These adhesives are slightly more expensive than basic adhesives but well-worth the investment. We sell an affordably priced low-VOC adhesive with vapor barrier and sound retarder that works not only for bamboo but for all types of wood floors and even some tile; many of our clients even use it on their upstairs floors to keep noise levels down. Important: always make sure to use the correct trowel style and size for the type of adhesive you select or you may not get enough coverage on the floor and this will cause the installation to fail. For example, our vapor barrier adhesive should only be applied with a 1/4" x 1/4" V Notch Trowel.
About Moisture In Concrete. Most concrete slabs emit moisture for up to 25 years after being poured, and installing a floor over such a slab is easy to do, however as with any other job done right you want to make sure you have the right tools, and adhesive, on hand. Moisture is measured in pounds on concrete slabs. Basic adhesives usually protect up to about 3 pounds of moisture. Meaning, if you test the concrete and it comes back higher than 3, you need an adhesive that contains a moisture barrier.
Keep in mind that moisture tests only test the moisture on any given day. A slab may read 8 lbs per square foot one day but then it rains for a week and the moisture rating jumps to 14. Our vapor barrier adhesive mentioned above protects your floor up to 20 pounds of moisture emitted per square foot which is usually more than enough for most slabs, however, it's still always recommended to test the slab moisture emission prior to installation using a calcium chloride moisture test kit. If you have an 'excessively wet' concrete slab or sub-floor (which emits more moisture than the upper moisture limit specification of the vapor barrier adhesive you choose), you'll need to find an unlimited vapor barrier adhesive such as Bostik Ultra-Set Single Step.
The default delivery method for our residential flooring deliveries is curbside with a liftgate, so the driver will usually lower the pallet(s) of flooring down using a liftgate. However, it also depends on what shipping option you select and also how much of an incline there is on your driveway. We recommend you read more about it on our Shipping Policy page.
This depends on several factors mostly related to the current condition of the sub-floor. If the subfloor is observed to be sagging, it is recommended that you install the planks in a perpendicular direction compared to the joists. This is a call you'll want your installer to make as he/she will need to inspect the sub-floor prior to installation.
Important Note About Crawl Spaces: Many wood floors fail due to the failure of the installer to address moisture in crawl spaces. If you have a crawl space under your home or new flooring, you must properly remedy this moisture.
You must have a high-quality vapor barrier or moisture insulation (with 100% blockage) or the moisture coming up from the crawl space will damage the flooring. A ground layer cover is required - must be 6 mil minimum black polyethylene with joints overlapping at least 6 inches, and sealed with moisture-resistant tape. There must be a minimum of 18′′ from the ground to underside of joists, the polyethylene should also extend at least 6" up the block walls and be sealed there as well, and it should have perimeter venting equal to at least 1.5% of the crawl space total square footage. The vents should be properly placed for cross-ventilation. We recommend you read this document about what happens when crawl spaces are not sealed.
Important Note About Installing Over An Unconditioned Space (such as a garage): Subfloor moisture penetration of improperly sealed sub-floors over unconditioned spaces is a common cause of wood floor failure. If you are gluing the floor down over such a space, you must use a 100% urethane adhesive that contains a moisture barrier. If you are nailing the floor down over such a space, you will need to follow these steps:
In an unfinished space, staple a 6 mil plastic sheet to the ceiling of the unconditioned space with joints overlapping at least 6 inches, and seal with moisture-resistant tape. In a finished space, coat the ceiling with two layers of high-gloss paint.
Lay down two layers of 15 lb asphalt-saturated felt paper at a 90-degree angle to each other over the plywood before beginning the nail-down installation. Thus, lay down the first layer and be careful not to overlap the rolls as this may cause an un-level surface. Once the first layer is down, install the second layer at a 90-degree angle and care not to overlap
Vinyl flooring can usually be laid directly on top of a concrete slab, but you'll want to be careful with excessively wet slabs (emitting more than 20 lbs per sq ft of moisture) or you may have mold issues down the line. With bamboo flooring, you have 3 options over a concrete slab. One is to glue down any of our tongue and groove flooring with an adhesive that contains a moisture barrier (such as our Ironwood All-In-One Adhesive with Vapor/Sound Barrier), and don't forget to use the correct V-Notch ¼ inch trowel. Option two is to float any of our rigid core bamboo floors directly on it (again, extra care must be taken with excessively wet slabs as they may need to be sealed first), and option 3 is to float one of our click-lock engineered floors after first laying down a 3 in 1 underlayment (which contains a vapor barrier).
To see if you can install our floors over specific sub-floors we recommend reading the Acceptable Subfloor Types section in the related installation guide. Links to the product's installation guide can be found on each floor's product detail page.
None of our products are brought inside the delivery location by the driver. All small parcel shipments are at the discretion and policy of the shipping company. All freight shipments are curbside delivery with lift-gate unless you specifically request freight dock delivery. Curbside delivery means they lower the pallet on the street at the end of the driveway. The drivers are not required to enter the property boundaries, although if not hazardous sometimes they’ll back up the driveway (if it’s flat and short) and drop the pallet on the driveway. Someone must be on-site to receive the delivery and inspect it for exterior damage, and then note any damage on the driver’s bill of lading (otherwise we can’t send free replacements). We highly recommend that you do not pay laborers to sit around and wait for the delivery, as the freight companies do sometimes miss appointments and they do not reimburse for such lapses. In some cases at the time of checkout, our website will allow you to add "Garage Delivery" for an additional fee, but this includes rolling the materials pallet into a carport or garage only, and terms and conditions apply.
Yes, in fact, we only use only premium Moso bamboo (Phyllostachys Pubescens aka Phyllostachys Edulis), which is also known as Mao or Hairy bamboo. All of our Moso bamboo is aged to 5-7 years when harvested, and we only use the most stable middle sections of the culms. Do not worry, Moso bamboo is not eaten by pandas!
For nail down installations we recommend that you use either 15 lb felt paper (asphalt-saturated roofing paper, essentially) or red rosin paper. Please note that 3 in 1 underlayment should only be installed under floating floors and should not be used in nail-down installations, as the compressive quality of the pad can result in loose nails, compromised structural stability, and noisy floors.
Absolutely, however, the rule of thumb when installing at a diagonal is to order 15% extra for cutting and waste instead of the usual 10% extra.
While it can be a bummer if your shipment arrives damaged – it is not the end of the world! We can easily send you free replacements for anything that was damaged in transit - all we ask is that you do not refuse the shipment and mark any damages on the receipt provided by the driver. After that, please take a few photos of product while it is still on the pallet and email them to [email protected] so we can make a record on your account. Then, please examine the items further once you've brought them inside to determine the extent of the damage, and take photos of affected areas if you require replacements. Once we receive the details and photos we will send out the replacements right away. Most of the time, installers will be able to work around the damage instead of waiting to get replacements. For more information please see our Shipping Policy page.
Occasionally you will have an item with a visible defect either in the stain, finish, or milling. Like most building materials suppliers our effective defect rate is under the industry-standard 3%. However, if you are finding that more than 3% of the product you have ordered has defects, please let us know as soon as possible so we can resolve the matter quickly.
Maximum load considerations related to your joists and building structure: we strongly suggest that you always consult a structural engineer before placing any single piece that exceeds 1,500 lbs or the maximum load your joists will hold.
Heavy objects on nailed down or glued down floors. There are no restrictions to placing heavy furniture floors that are nailed or glued down (aside from structural max weight restrictions) but we recommend placing sliders or rubber weight dispersion plates under the legs of excessively heavy objects to avoid permanent damage or dents.
Heavy objects on floating floors. If you have a floating floor you can usually sit heavy furniture on top, but there are a few exceptions. For example, a piano is perfectly fine and so is a piece of furniture with legs (with just 3-4 contact points with the floor). For pieces of furniture without legs (flat across the bottom), try to avoid "pinning" a long row of successive floating floor planks across the widths of the planks, and more so if that run of planks takes up a large section of the overall run. This is more applicable across the widths of the planks (tangentially) than down the lengths of the planks (longitudinally). The floor needs to be able to expand and contract during seasonal cycles, and pinning the planks down will inhibit this movement and may cause planks to separate from each other. For this same reason, you shouldn't install floating floors under kitchen cabinets. If the bottom of the heavy object is flat and it stretches across the widths of the planks for more than 50% of that given run, and it's over 200 lbs, we suggest gluing or nailing the floor down, or not placing the object on the floor.
As a general rule of thumb, floors that are nailed down or glued down do go under cabinets and islands, and floors that are floated should not be installed under cabinets or islands. Floating floors aren't installed under cabinets because pinning down a long run of a floating floor may inhibit its ability to expand and contract naturally.
If your existing wood floor is clean and level, you can usually nail down or glue down a wood floor to it without issue but you may need to perform a light sanding first depending on the situation (your installer should be able to advise on the best course of action here). Additionally, you can only nail down to an existing hardwood floor if it is at least 5/8" thick. In case of either the glue down or the nail down option, we highly recommend that you seek the assistance of an experienced flooring professional.
We do not sell random length or random width planks. Almost all of our floors come in single length planks lengths of six, four, and three feet depending on the product. Our Copenhagen XtraWide click bamboo flooring is the exception with both four-foot and two-foot planks included in every box.
One of the benefits of this is that you will have a lot less waste as with random lengths you are usually left with a lot of the smaller pieces that you will not be able to use. You can still achieve the randomized look of the flooring planks by cutting the starting plank in each row at a random length.
Yes, we may be able to accommodate this, but please note that we may still apply a small shipping and handling fee to your order. Please reach out to your sales representative for details.
For a thorough section about Sub-floor Preparation we strongly recommend reading the installation guide for the floor you're considering purchasing - you can easily find a link to this guide in that floor's product detail page's "Specifications" section.
The general advice below is for informational purposes only, as you should always consult each floor's specific/official installation guide before making your determination. Some general sub-floor requirements:
- Must be structurally sound
- Must be clean - thoroughly swept and free of all debris
- Must be level - flat to 3/16" per 10-foot radius
- Must remain dry year-round. The moisture content of a wood subfloor must not exceed 12%. Concrete subfloors, crawl spaces, and floors that emit more than 12% moisture will need to be addressed with a vapor barrier.
Important note about Gypcrete: Gypcrete will sometimes exhibit a layer of debris that floats to the surface while being poured. This is usually obvious and if it occurs will need to be removed with coarse open grit paper on a buffer until a solid surface is reached. You will then use a diluted coat of acrylic primer to seal the surface; however, it must soak in and not leave a film. Once the gypcrete is prepped and primed you can proceed with a normal installation.
A note about Lauan/Luan/Luaun: While most urethane adhesives bond to Luan and thus you could glue our floors down to it, Luan is generally considered an unstable substrate for tile or hardwood flooring. It doesn’t have much strength, so it may contribute to squeaking or bouncing. Our recommendation is always to remove it before installing a new floor.
Wood subfloors must be dry and well secured. For nail-down installations, nail or screw every 6" along joists to avoid squeaking. If the subfloor is not level, sand down high spots and fill low spots with an underlayment patch or self-leveler such as Bostik Duralevel 83P Self-Leveling Underlayment.
Concrete must be fully cured, at least for 60 days. If it is not level, grind down high spots and fill low spots with a leveling compound. The concrete must be flat to 3/16" per 10- foot radius. All concrete must be tested for moisture and the appropriate vapor barrier urethane adhesive must be used to account for the moisture emission level. We recommend reading our full installation guide for details.
Bamboo flooring is similar to mid-range hardwoods when it comes to dimensional stability, so they can be installed in all climates whether very dry or very humid. Our floors have been installed around the world from the jungles of Kenya to the heights of the Rockies.
All wood flooring expands and contracts with the seasons due to changes in humidity - there are no exceptions. The key is to control your interior humidity as to avoid excessive swings in humidity throughout the year, as these will cause expansion and contraction in your wood/bamboo. The recommended humidity setting for our floors is 40%-60% in humid climates and 35%-55% in dry climates but even dryer and more humid settings may suffice as long as your humidity is stable (within a 20% range) throughout the year. We do recommend to try to keep the humidity above 25% in almost all cases. In very humid or very dry climates, just follow these tips and you will be all set:
- Acclimate your flooring for at least 10-14 days prior to installation (instead of the normal 72 hours) in the environment in which they are going to be lived on. Ensure all boxes are opened properly so that the planks can breathe.
- Glue the flooring down. The elasticity in the glue allows the floors to breathe easily through humidity changes.
- Make sure to leave ¼ - ½ inch of expansion gap around your flooring perimeter at the time of installation.
- Try to keep your interior humidity setting consistently in the same 20% range year-round (opening windows for a day won't hurt the floors), even via the use of humidifiers/dehumidifiers if necessary. If you allow big humidity swings, larger gaps may develop between your planks during dry spells and they'll close during wet spells.
We highly recommend reading our post about installing bamboo flooring in humid and dry climates too.
And here's a good article about installation: glue down vs nail down vs floating.
The great thing about strand bamboo floors is that it is highly unlikely you will ever need to refinish them at all because the floor will not be dented up and the finish will not be peeling off after 10 years like many wood floors. That being said, all of our strand woven solid bamboo floors can be refinished 2-4 times and all of our engineered floors can be refinished up to 2 times. The wear layer on our engineered bamboo flooring is not a thin veneer like other brands – it’s a thick wear layer that can be refinished. Please note that our rigid core bamboo flooring (with SPC core) cannot be refinished.
Refinishing bamboo flooring is a bit more time consuming than hardwood flooring, due to its density and the toughness of our finish, however, it can definitely be done. The finish on our flooring can be sanded down/off, and then a clear coat (polyurethane) finish can be applied, on-site. Please note that strand bamboo flooring cannot be stained before the clear coat is applied. So our floors can be refinished with a clear coat, but they cannot be stained a different color. The density of the strand material prevents it from absorbing color stains that are applied onsite - the flooring will only absorb the stain in a controlled finish line environment. Therefore yes, our floors can be refinished and a clear coat of polyurethane can be applied but the final color of the refinished floor will be the color of the base material (natural or carbonized).
Should you ever choose to refinish your bamboo flooring, no problem - we've got step by step instructions for you right on our How To Refinish Bamboo Flooring page.
Almost all of our floors can be installed over radiant heat, however, different floor types have different requirements so we recommend checking each floor's "Specifications" section on its product detail page on this website, find the row labeled "RADIANT HEAT SAFE" that will tell you if it can be installed over radiant heat or not. Additional important note: in the same Specifications section you will see a link to the installation guide for that floor - please note there is a specific and detailed section in each floor's installation guide pertaining to installation over radiant heat, and maintenance of the floors over radiant heat, and we strongly suggest you read that section of the installation guide to avoid voiding your warranty!
Our floors are installed in restaurants, spas, and other high traffic and locations around the world since 2006. Small water droplets that land on the floors will evaporate, however, if you leave a puddle on any wood floor for more than 24 hours it might mark the finish, and depending on the species, some wood may swell and stay that way. Bamboo holds up to water a bit better than traditional hardwoods as it retains its shape better after water absorption, especially rigid core bamboo flooring. Hardwood floor warranties (including ours) do not cover damage from water, so if the planks get wet and become warped, stained, or have their finish marred, you'll need to cut them out and replace them. Due to their hardness, bamboo and eucalyptus floors are great for kitchens as long as you avoid puddles and protect them with a normal level of care. Just remember that hardwood and bamboo floors should never be wet-mopped or steam mopped, they just require a lightly damp mop and an effective hardwood floor cleaning solution to do the job.
Our floors are warranted in half bathrooms/powder rooms, but we don’t warrant our floors for use in full bathrooms because water may spill outside of a bathtub and flow underneath the planks, which could result in a mold issue. That being said, many of our clients that don't use bathtubs for bathing (or are judicious in drying up water spills afterward) use them in full bathrooms anyways, they just ensure to use rugs at the entrance to showers and make sure not to leave puddles.
In general, bamboo hardwood floors are much harder, more sustainable, and affordable than almost all other flooring products. Read below for more differences.
Bamboo vs Eucalyptus. Our strand woven bamboo and eucalyptus floors are exactly alike when it comes to durability, installation, and maintenance, but different in a few other ways. Here are the main differences:
- Most of our bamboo flooring options come in 6 ft and 3 ft lengths, whereas our eucalyptus floors come in 4 ft lengths (as well as eucalyptus moldings). They are both available in wide plank.
- Aesthetically, eucalyptus flooring shows the round knots in the grain, while bamboo shows the nodes from the bamboo culm.
- When submerged in water bamboo reacts slightly better than eucalyptus. I.e. if a spill is left on the floor for more than 20 hours, bamboo often regains it's shape once it dries out, while eucalyptus (and most other hardwoods) do not.
- Durability-wise, both strand bamboo and eucalyptus have Janka hardness ratings that far exceed other hardwoods, so they both stand up very well in heavy traffic.
- Both strand bamboo and eucalyptus will hardly (if ever) need to be refinished in a residential setting, however they can both be refinished if needed.
Bamboo vs Laminate. Bamboo floors are comprised of real bamboo wood, whereas laminates are made from synthetic plastic materials. Laminate is often more affordable and in some cases easier to clean but will often curl at the edges of the planks if affected by moisture or water. Real bamboo floors have natural variation and warmth that is hard to replicate in synthetic materials.
Bamboo vs Tile. Tile is much easier to clean (you can use abrasive cleaners) on a day to day basis, but grout upkeep can add an unwanted maintenance dimension. Tile may also chip when heavy and sharp items are dropped on it. Tile is more economical but does not have the warm feeling underfoot and is often cold to the touch on your feet.
Bamboo vs Cork. Cork is also a great, sustainable flooring option and has a nice soft feel on the feet. It is also very easy to clean and responds well to water. One drawback is that the surface layer on cork can be damaged much easier than bamboo and does not wear as well over time.
Bamboo vs Hardwoods. Bamboo is installed and maintained much like other hardwoods. Bamboo is much more eco-friendly than most hardwoods as it regenerates in just 5 years compared to 40-100 years for some hardwoods. Bamboo flooring costs are also usually much more affordable than hardwood floors since it grows so much faster. Bamboo flooring is head and shoulders above hardwood floors in terms of hardness, sustainability, and affordability, and it rarely if ever needs to be refinished.
Bamboo vs Carpet. Up front costs for carpet can be much lower than bamboo and hardwood flooring, and it is soft underfoot. However due to its tendency to trap allergens, dust mites, smells, and stains, it requires more cleaning and replacement at shorter intervals over time, which actually makes it more expensive in the long run.
Bamboo vs Stone or Concrete. Stone is a very durable floor that can be very beautiful, but it is cold and hard underfoot. Natural varieties have nice natural variation like bamboo hardwood floors.
We do not stock any unfinished or high gloss flooring in our U.S. warehouses, however, we can provide them (and other custom options) via special order with a 90-120 day lead time (minimum order quantities may apply). In the U.S., we only stock prefinished floors coated with our industry-leading Accuseal Ultra® finish system, our hyper-durable matte finish that is backed by a lifetime warranty!
These are all terms related to the color of bamboo flooring. Natural bamboo flooring is blonde, which is the original color of the bamboo raw material culms once the green outer layer has been stripped off. Carbonization is a manufacturing process that darkens the color of bamboo raw materials and gives the Carbonized flooring its color name. Natural bamboo that is heated in kilns becomes "carbonized" or "caramelized" because the sugars inside the bamboo heat up and turn a nice rich brown color.
Natural and carbonized are the two base colors that go all the way through the plank. When a bamboo floor is stained, the stain is applied to the top surface of the wood (both natural and carbonized planks can be stained), just like any other wood floor. For example, oak comes in natural and gunstock - gunstock is a stain. Since strand woven bamboo floors rarely need to be refinished, this usually isn't a big deal, however, if you refinish a stained bamboo floor you will lose the stain color, because bamboo flooring cannot be stained on site (although it can be refinished and clear-coated). The material underneath a stained bamboo floor may be either carbonized or natural depending on what base material was used. To determine the base material of your bamboo floor simply flip a plank over - if it's blonde it is a natural plank, and if it is brown it's a carbonized plank.
Most squeaky floors are the result of the house settling and the lumber drying out and shrinking, or the sub-floor nails having come loose from the joists over years of seasonal expansion and contraction cycles, resulting in the structural wood parts rubbing up against each other and/or the nails. Loose sub-flooring will emit high frequency chirping noises.
There are several ways to remedy this issue, including drilling screws up under the sub-floor to tighten the lumber up against each other. We suggest that you consult with a local flooring installer to review all options, as some are dependent on how your flooring is installed.
You can typically safely walk on the floors around 4-12 hours after the adhesive was first troweled down but this depends on the humidity levels of where you live, because moisture-cured urethanes dry at different intervals depending on humidity levels. We recommend reading the adhesive pail label to determine the correct cure time.
Check out our wonderful summary of the different grains and types of bamboo flooring, and below is a short primer.
Classic bamboo flooring looks is also called horizontal/flat grain or vertical/edge grain bamboo. It is made of whole strips of bamboo bonded together in either a horizontal or vertical pattern. Classic bamboo flooring was first launched in the 90's and is a sustainable alternative to traditional hardwoods, although it has been supplanted by strand woven bamboo floors, which are much harder. Properly installed, it can be used in almost any space except basements and bathrooms.HORIZONTAL "Classic" Bamboo (natural color)
VERTICAL "Classic" Bamboo (natural color)
Installation: Nail Down or Glue Down
Strand woven bamboo flooring looks more like traditional hardwood flooring, but it is extremely hard -- in fact, it's almost 3 times harder than oak flooring. Strand woven floors are made by heating long strips of bamboo, which are pulled apart into strands, woven together, then compressing them under extreme pressure and heat. (Our strand woven flooring is harder than most because the machines we use compress more material, increasing the floor's strength and durability.) Our strand woven bamboo flooring is extremely durable, pet- and family-friendly. So you get the strength and eco-friendly aspects of bamboo with a hardwood look.STRAND WOVEN Bamboo (carbonized color)
Absolutely. We’ve shipped our floors to such far-flung locations as Guam, Kenya, Tanzania, Bahrain, Great Britain, Kuwait, France, Mexico, Canada, Hawaii, and many more. Please note that international shipments may require you to procure the services of a freight forwarder at the port of discharge; most port authorities can provide recommendations for reputable freight forwarders that service your home port. Also, minimum order quantities may apply to some countries. Call your Ambient representative today at (866) 710-7070 for shipping quotes to your country!
Bamboo flooring is installed in the same manner as hardwood flooring and installation costs in the US can range anywhere from $2-$6 per square foot depending on the installation requirements. Small square footage amounts will result in a higher per square foot installation cost.
Installers will modify their pricing based on a variety of factors such as: moving of furniture, removal of existing flooring, leveling of the subfloor, installation moldings required, inside delivery charges, to name a few. Some installers (mainly from flooring stores) will try to convince you to buy their floor brands so that they can make money off the products as well as the installation. Any carpenter, handyman, or homeowner can install our floors, we just recommend they follow our handy-dandy bamboo flooring installation guide.
Not only is stable humidity required for hardwood and bamboo flooring, but it's also healthier for you. If you live in an area that experiences indoor humidity under 35% or over 55% at any time during the year, we suggest buying a hygrometer ($10-$15 at local hardware stores) to keep track of the humidity, and a portable humidifier or dehumidifier to properly control your indoor humidity levels. Even better, whole house humidity modulators are affordable and readily available in the market for $300-$1000 depending on the size of your home, including installation.
Yes! Rolling office chairs tend to collect grime, dirt, and small rocks under the wheels, which eventually damage the finish of every floor including ours. Always use a chair mat under rolling office chairs. It is also advised that you use felt pads under furniture and chairs to avoid damaging the finish.
If you are gluing down or nailing down a floor - there are no run limits. If you are floating a floor - maybe! The only time we suggest run limits is when you’re floating a floor and you don’t have stable interior humidity. Also, rigid SPC core floating floors are highly stable but still have run limits in place. We encourage you to read each floating floor's official installation guide before purchase to determine what run limits it may require; the installation guide is linked to in the "Specifications" section of each floor's product detail page. Additionally, check out our guide to Nail Down vs Glue Down vs Floating flooring installations for more details!
We recommend that you always carefully measure your walls to determine how many moldings you'll need, however a quick ratio used by many installers is to order 30% of the total flooring square footage. For example, if you’re installing 1,000 sq ft of flooring you'll need roughly 300 linear feet of perimeter trim moldings. It also depends on how many cuts need to be made, but that rough estimate will get you started.
Our flooring has been installed around the world and in many different types of structures such as homes, restaurants, libraries, and more, but it is only warranted for indoor use and when installed for its intended use (as flooring). For our bamboo floors specifically, you can read all about the process in our official bamboo flooring installation guide.
Even though all of our floors have several UV protection layers added to our Accuseal Finish System, most floors will get lighter or darker slightly over time - whether they're exposed to direct sunlight often or not. Natural strand woven bamboo flooring will darken slightly darker over time, while carbonized strand woven bamboo flooring will get slightly lighter over time. The same goes for the stained versions of both types of floors. To ensure your floors stay protected, use rugs and mats with a natural rubber backing and periodically move furniture around in rooms that see lots of light.
If you live in the US and you have any flooring (bamboo or other) that is facing in a southerly direction and in direct sunlight, you might also consider installing window films and drapes that filter UV light.
Yes, Ambient is proud to be FloorScore® certified! FloorScore is a voluntary certification program whereby floors must meet the most stringent indoor air quality standards in the world to gain certification. Additionally, Ambient is the only flooring brand that proactively and voluntarily tests its floors annually for off-gassing and safety. You can find Ambient's full test results and other technical information on our product and safety testing information page or learn more about the Floorscore® program here.
If it is an enclosed, climate-controlled room and the sub-floor does not have a moisture concern, you can install bamboo flooring. We do not recommend installing our bamboo or eucalyptus floors in a room that is not climate controlled, and you have to be careful with sub-floor moisture as well. Otherwise, as long as the humidity inside that room is stable, and maintained between 40%-60%, and the sub-floor is dry year-round (emits less than 12% moisture), you can install the floors there.
All of our floors have micro-beveled edges. The reason for this is because, on pre-finished floors like ours, square edges can splinter up or chip off when kicked under normal foot traffic. Square edges typically only exist on unfinished hardwood floors.
Only an 18 gauge cleat nailer should be used to nail down strand woven bamboo and eucalyptus flooring (along with 18 gauge cleats). If you use 16 gauge cleats they are likely to cause dimpling on your floors as described in this article.
Furthermore, using any cleat or staple other than an 18 gauge cleat may cause cracks and splits in the tongue that will cause further issues down the road.
Most rugs can be laid over vinyl floors with no issues, however, for hardwood and bamboo floors you have to be careful when laying rugs or pads as they can damage the finish over time. We recommend reading our complete write-up about acceptable rugs and pads, and below are some general instructions to follow.
It's recommended that you use natural rubber or felt rug pads under all rugs laid on hardwood floors. If you’re looking for a simple, non-slip rug pad we recommend using a breathable, natural rubber-based pad. Natural rubber has excellent gripping power, is a renewable resource, and won't damage your floors over time like a more typical, less expensive PVC (polyvinyl chloride) pad. Natural rubber rug pads have been on the market for over 30+ years and have a proven track record for performance and floor safety.
If you need a larger area covered you can also use a 100% felt rug pad. They offer excellent cushioning and support for larger areas and are less prone to slipping. A felt rug pad is thicker and denser than traditional non-slip rubber rug pads and offers a dense buffer. Whichever rug pad you choose, make sure it's breathable (perforated).
Bamboo, hardwood, and vinyl floors should be kept at least 18-24 inches away from high-heat sources or the heat can dry them out and cause irreparable shrinkage. Here are 2 rules of thumb to follow and you should be okay:
1. Install the flooring at least 2 feet away from the stove by putting in an apron of brick/stone/similar around the stove.
2. Acclimate the flooring that will be installed near the stove in the same area where it will be installed, with the stove turned on (no closer and no farther than where it will be installed).
While bamboo, eucalyptus, and hardwood flooring can be exposed to freezing temperatures for short periods of time (24-30 hours), prolonged exposure is not recommended. Bamboo and eucalyptus floors perform best when the indoor climate is maintained at around 40-60% humidity and 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit, although conditions may vary in different geographic areas. Hardwoods left in cold weather (below 40 degrees Fahrenheit) for extended periods may result in face checking, shrinkage, and even cracking.
No, asphalt-saturated felt paper is NOT a moisture barrier (neither the 15 lb felt nor the 30 lb felt). It may help to slow down moisture and have some wicking qualities but it does not stop it. If you need a moisture barrier for a floating floor you will need to use a 3 in 1 underlayment. For a nail down floor, there is no vapor barrier underlayment available, so you will need to seal the moisture concern somewhere below the subfloor, or you will need to glue the floor down with a vapor barrier adhesive.
The standard requirement for all wood flooring (including bamboo) is that you maintain proper interior humidity levels between 40%-60%. As long as your installer follows our installation instructions, and those interior humidity settings are maintained, you'll have a trouble-free and super durable floor for a long time. Meanwhile, vinyl flooring is generally stable outside of that range, but you still want to avoid extreme temperates (outside of 35 degrees to 85 degrees) and humidity (outside of 10%-80%).
There's a common misconception that thinner floors are less sturdy than thicker floors. This is only true if you buy cheap engineered floors that have a razor-thin veneer layer, because they can't be refinished, and the wear layer is easily perforated when you drop something heavy and sharp on it. All Ambient hardwood and bamboo floors can be refinished a minimum of 2 times including our engineered bamboo flooring (which has a thicker-than-normal wear layer).
In fact, all of our bamboo and hardwood floors come with a lifetime structural and finish warranty regardless of thickness. The driving factor between whether to choose thick over thin is usually a matter of the layout of your home and subfloor. Some people get thinner floors to increase the headroom in their homes, while others choose thicker options so that they can more easily transition to other floors on the same level without using transition pieces. Sometimes door frame heights are also taken into account when choosing thickness. Also, if you want 6-foot long planks those usually require greater thickness to remain stable, while 3-foot and 4-foot long planks can be thinner and still retain their dimensional stability.
Yes, we do provide discounts for large quantity orders. If your order falls into a category below and you do not already have a coupon code please feel free to reach out to our customer support team at (301) 498-0234 to see what discount codes are currently available:
- Flooring orders over 1,000 sq ft
- Plywood orders over 25 sheets
- Magpanel orders over 100 sheets
3 in 1 underlayment should never be used when nailing down a floor. These underlayments are nullified as a vapor barrier once you nail through them, and the compression of the pad results in the loosening of the cleats over time, which can result in noise squeaks and also structurally compromise the floor. Most installers use 15 lb asphalt-saturated felt paper when nailing down a floor, it reduces wood-on-wood squeaking and helps wick moisture away from the bottoms of the flooring planks (please note that 15 lb felt paper is not a vapor barrier!). Remember, if you're nailing down a strand woven bamboo floor it is required you use an 18 gauge cleat nailer.
To check the length or other dimensions of our floor moldings, we recommend you check out our moldings & trim page - here you can click any item to go to its product detail page, which will contain a dimensions diagram with all the information you need.
For our bamboo flooring we use only premium Moso bamboo culms harvested between the ages of 5-7 years, and only cut from the middle (most stable) sections of the stalks.
Yes, you can store flooring boxes in a covered building outside of the home under the following conditions:
- The boxes are protected from the elements (moisture, rain, snow, etc).
- The boxes are not open or cut.
- The temperature does not drop below freezing.
- The boxes are sitting on top of a pallet or other substrate that keeps them at least 5 inches off of the ground, and the ground is not wet.
Remember, storing boxes in a garage or non-climate controlled space is not considered acclimation. In fact, for floors that are stored in a garage/shed first, we recommend acclimating them at least 2-3 extra days on top of the normal acclimation period. The boxes will still need to be brought into the space in which they're going to be installed first (for acclimation) as per our installation instructions.
Large pets and active children are just a few of the reasons why families purchase our strand woven floors. Our floors resist scratching from pet claws extremely well! Strand woven bamboo and eucalyptus floors are the hardest wood floors on the market and are used not only in residential locations but also in commercial locations around the world. Our strand woven bamboo flooring can take a lot more punishment from denting and liquids than most other floors.
Please note however that no floors are impervious to pet urine – even concrete will be stained by pet accidents! That being said we have many past clients with dogs, pets and active lifestyles that rave about the durability of our floors. Order a sample today and hit it with a hammer, dunk it in water, and scratch it up, you'll see just how tough the finish and wood is for yourself.
1. What type of subfloor (usually plywood or concrete) will the floor be installed over? (this may determine the type of flooring you purchase, such as engineered vs solid)
2. Do you already have a specific plan to float, nail, or glue down the floor, and if so, why?
3. What other types of flooring will the floor be butting up to? Will you require transition moldings and if so how many?
4. How much flooring will you need to complete the job? Have you added 10% for cutting and waste? (this may depend on how you're installing, for example for diagonal installations you'll need 15% extra)
5. When do you plan to start, and when do you need to receive the flooring material?
6. Will you be installing the floor yourself, or hiring a professional?
All types of rigid core (SPC core) and engineered bamboo flooring can be installed below grade, but it is not recommended that solid hardwood or bamboo flooring be installed below grade. When installed via the floating method, we recommend the use of a quality 3 in 1 underlayment to serve as a moisture barrier and for footfall noise reduction. Engineered floors can be installed via the glue-down method on any level of the home, but if installing over concrete or crawl space you must use a urethane flooring adhesive that contains a vapor barrier (all-in-one glue).
Remember that you'll want to acclimate the floors in the same room in which they're going to be installed at least 72 hours prior to installation, and be careful not to acclimate them directly on concrete or over crawl spaces as they will absorb moisture, which will cause problems. Instead, ensure to lay down an 8 mil thick plastic sheet or 3 in 1 underlayment for the boxes to sit on during acclimation, and you'll want the apron of the sheet to extend about 1 foot away from the boxes themselves for added protection. The interior humidity settings of the basement must be maintained between 40%-60% just like on any other level in the home.
Some of our floors and plywood contain the densest hardwood material in the world (strand woven bamboo) and will wear down standard saw blades pretty quickly. For this reason, we recommend a minimum 80 tooth tungsten carbide saw blade. Diablo is a brand that sells such a blade (check your local big box store or online). Plywood tip: if you get burn marks on some of your cuts you can sand them off saw using a few stages of different high grit sandpaper.
Dimensionally stable flooring can be installed over well-bonded vinyl asbestos tile using our trowel down adhesives. However, all waxes and sealers which have likely been applied to the VAT, must be stripped prior to installation. It is prudent for this sort of prep to be done by a licensed asbestos abatement professional. Epoxy can be used as a sealer of asbestos tiles as long as there are no loose pieces, and the key is to abrade the epoxy surface so the glue can bond to it. Please note: we cannot guarantee that other adhesives will bond, so you would proceed at your own risk if you are using adhesives other than those sold by Ambient.
At Ambient we value the brave men and women that serve in our nation's armed forces and law enforcement agencies. We offer a 5% discount off all products for active-duty members of our U.S. armed forces and full-time local and state law enforcement. Clearance items and odd lots do not qualify for this discount and it cannot be combined with other promotions.
We do not recommend installers. However, you have several options available to you to locate a good installer:
- Ask friends and family. Someone you know has had wood flooring installed within the last 5 years. Ask neighbors, friends, family and coworkers if they were happy with their wood floor installer and if so get their name. Contractors appreciate word-of-mouth referrals and some may even offer a "neighborhood" discount. Yelp is also a good way to find installers; look for those with a minimum of 3-5 reviews.
- Do your homework. If a contractor disparages a certain product and tries to convince you to buy one of their own floors, be wary. Sometimes this is done because of a bad experience with a low quality brand in the past, and other times they're trying to earn an extra commission from a product distributor.
- Get at least 3 estimates. Most installers will give you a free estimate over the phone or charge a small fee (from $20-$50) to do an in-home estimate. Try to cover all bases and ask as many questions as possible to get a good sense of their experience and knowledge.
- Pay a fair wage. Doing price comparisons is vital for you as a consumer. The vast majority of floor installers are honest, hard-working men and women that charge a fair wage and are working to support their families. If they go above and beyond it doesn't hurt to give them a tip at the end of the project.
- Request a warranty. The best installers are confident in their installation skills and will offer a warranty to back up their workmanship.
- Plan ahead. You'll want to assume that most installers are booked up with jobs for the ensuing 2-3 weeks, so the earlier you start getting estimates the better off you'll be. Also remember that all hardwood and bamboo floors require a few days to be shipped, another 2-8 days in transit, and at least a 3 day acclimation period, so you'll need to factor that into your plans as well.
For flooring and plywood we strongly recommend ordering a sample before placing your final order, so you can ensure that the shading will be to your liking. Our flooring and plywood samples have a dye lot number sticker on the back of them. Our website checkout process will ask you to type in this dye lot number before final payment; alternatively, if ordering via email or over the phone simply mention this lot number to your Ambient representative and we will update the order with it and ship that exact lot number. If we don't have that lot number available (it has sold out) but we have a matching lot, we will ship the matching lot. If we do not have a matching lot, we will not ship your order until you approve samples of the new lot.
Please remember that photographs on our website are taken from a variety of devices and under many different lighting conditions, and are viewed on a wide range of computer monitors and contrast settings, thus we do not guarantee that any floor will match the photographs on the website. If you order your flooring sight unseen (without receiving samples first), Ambient is not responsible for light or shading variation or differences and thus not responsible for return shipping costs (which can be expensive and can vary greatly depending on where you live and the size of your order).
If you receive the order from the exact lot number you requested, or you order sight unseen (you do not provide a dye lot number at checkout), and you decide after it arrives that you want to return the order, you will be responsible for return shipping charges. For flooring orders, please see our 30 Day Money-Back Guarantee for more information.
If you have a humidity modulator in your home that will successfully and constantly keep your indoor humidity at a level of 40%-60%, you do not have any run limits on your floating floor. This humidity range can also be achieved via the use of a portable humidifier or dehumidifier. Also, some geographic areas have relatively stable humidity year around (like Southern California or Florida) so run limits usually aren't an issue in those areas.
However, if you live in an area with distinct seasons and a wide variance in humidity throughout the year, and you don't have a way to control your humidity, you'll need to be careful with your run limits. We strongly recommend reading the specific installation guide for the floor you're considering installing before purchasing - a link to this guide can be found in the "Specifications" section of each floor's product detail page on our website.
Once adhesive cures on a wood flooring surface it is very tough to remove and may leave behind permanent cloudy/dull spots on your finish, however you can try these steps:
1. Pour a small amount of Bostik Urethane Adhesive Remover on the glue spot, or squeeze a small amount of remover from a Bostik Adhesive Remover Towel.
2. Let it sit for about 15 minutes.
3. Wipe the area clean.
4. Apply adhesive remover again to the same spot.
5. Let it sit for about a minute.
6. Use a Mr. Clean® Magic Eraser® to remove cured glue.
7. Clean the area well.
If the steps above fail, you can also attempt to wear the glue spots down using denatured alcohol, but make sure to test on a sacrificial plank first as overdoing it may also rub off some of the finish. Finally, if none of the steps above work, or you are left with cloudy spots as a result of removing the glue, you will most likely need to cut out and replace the flooring plank.
Below is an overview of the types of moldings and trim commonly used for flooring installations.
T-Molding: This is used to transition between two floors of equal height or within 1/8 inch in height of each other.
Threshold: This is used to transition between two floors of unequal heights. The bottom of this molding is commonly cut (ripped) as needed depending on the height of the lower floor. Also commonly used at exterior doorways and sliding glass doors.
Reducer: This is used to transition down to the ground.
Quarter Round: Some installers call this shoe molding and although they serve the same purpose and are usually interchangeable they are slightly different dimensions-wise. This molding goes all the way around the installation and is often paired with baseboard but not always. It's used to cover up the expansion gap left around the perimeter of the installation.
Baseboard: This is used to cover the expansion gap all around the edges of the installation and is sometimes used with quarter round for a finished look.
Stair Nose: Also known as bull nosing, this piece is used to transition down to a lower level such as a landing, and at the top of a staircase.
Stair Tread: This is typically one entire piece to cover the stair step, we sell most of them in 48" lengths and some in 72" lengths. Many of our treads come with two rounded sides and rounded front, so that they can be used on open staircases.
Stair Riser: This is the vertical piece on the staircase in between each tread and they're usually 48 inches in length but we also carry some 72 inch versions. We stock them for our most popular colors, and we also sell the white stained poplar risers which are very popular and usually more affordable than the matching wood risers.
Register Vent/Dampener Covers: We have mostly flush mount register vents with a removable inner grill, but we also carry drop in vents in some colors. We carry the most common vent dimensions of 4x10 and 4x12 but also some 4x20 versions in popular colors.
Cove Molding: These pieces are glue up under stair treads and noses to give a more finished look, where the nosing/tread meets the vertical wall or riser. Most treads and noses aren’t finished underneath, so when you look up at them from below they’ll look nicer if you add a cove molding.
Spline: Bamboo spline helps transition when you change direction in your flooring planks. It allows you to place two planks (tongue sides) together and continue your flooring installation.
Yes you can! However you must use our urethane adhesive with vapor and sound retarder in combination with our Super Silencer underlayment. For maximum effect you can first glue the underlayment down to the sub-floor, then glue the flooring down to the underlayment. You will need a 1/4 in by 1/4 in v-notch trowel and some adhesive remover wipes are always recommended when gluing down any floor.
There are a few concrete sealer products on the market you can find via basic web search and also some glue down flooring adhesives with unlimited upper moisture limits that are suitable for these types of installations such as Bostik Single-Step. You can always test the moisture levels in your concrete using a calcium chloride test kit.
Cork underlayment is usually recommended because of it’s sound muffling qualities, but we sell 3 in 1 underlayments that have higher STC and IIC sound ratings than cork (meaning better sound muffling) so we normally recommend those. If you're gluing the floor down you can also use an adhesive that contains a sound barrier.
No. Our floors are already optimized for moisture content, and ready to be acclimated and installed almost anywhere in the world. Also, please not that due to the structurally dense nature of strand woven bamboo and eucalyptus, it is practically impossible to achieve accurate and consistent moisture readings outside of a controlled moisture chamber, even with a wide variety of moisture meters that exist on the market today, so we don't recommend testing the floor moisture before installation.
We do however require that testing be performed on the subfloor to ensure it's not emitting more than 12% humidity/moisture before, during, and after installation. Also, you will want to make sure the floors have been stored in a dry, covered area and have not been left out in freezing temperatures for more than 24 hours.
The installer/homeowner must also ensure to acclimate the floor** correctly prior to installation and maintain the humidity level between 35%-55% post-installation. Remember - if acclimating on top of concrete, a crawl space, or other moisture emitting surface you must first lay down a (minimum) 8 mil thick polyethylene tarp or vapor barrier under the acclimating boxes, with the apron of the vapor barrier extending out at least 18 inches from the opened boxes. (This is to prevent the flooring from absorbing moisture while acclimating).
**Not all of our floors require acclimation - check each floor's product detail page "Specifications" section where you will see an "Acclimation Period" row with required acclimation data.
We sell only prefinished floors but can special order unfinished flooring with a 3-4 month lead time and minimum order quantity of 5,000 sq ft. If you're interested in such an order feel free to reach out to our support team at (866) 710-7070.
Since we were one of the first few companies to pioneer strand bamboo flooring (in 2005), we have a long track record, and an unparalleled reputation for quality, which means that architects specify our floors on all types of projects around the world, including One&Only Resorts, national park projects such as Dry Tortugas National Park in Florida, and many others. Our products have also been featured in multiple television shows such as Renovation Nation, Rescue Renovation, and other HGTV and Discovery Channel shows.
Our bamboo floors have been installed in residential and commercial locations around the world since 2005. Here are just a few:
• Dry Tortugas National Park in south Florida (installed in 2013)
• University of Maryland's new dorms and their student union (installed in 2010)
• UnderArmour's headquarters in Baltimore, MD
• Every Elevation Burger restaurant location from 2006-2014 (approximately 40 locations) around the world including Bahrain, Kuwait, etc.
• Washington University in St. Louis (2011)
• Radford University's Economics Building (2010)
Countless restaurants, spas, commercial and residential installations around the U.S. feature Ambient's products, including international installations in places like France, Bahrain, Tanzania, Guam, Kuwait, Mexico, and many more.
For legal businesses that qualify as a trade account (must be in the building trades), or you plan to order more than $10,000 cumulatively in building materials in the future on multiple projects, we encourage you to apply for a trade account on our B2B page. Our wholesale discounts vary depending on sales volume and can range from 5% to 35% off our retail prices. We also offer container level pricing for large projects at extremely competitive prices, and can manufacture a large array of products not featured on our website such as custom thicknesses, lengths, widths, colors and surface treatments (minimum order quantities apply).
The fastest method to take up cured adhesive is to use grinding machines. A clean and less toxic one is a dustless diamond grinder. If you need to scrape glue out of a smaller space, the company Sentinel makes some good non-toxic adhesive removers that will soften the adhesive to allow it to be scraped up easier.
Nailing and gluing a floor down won't cause damage or defects but it's usually only required on extra-wide solid hardwoods. On wide plank solid hardwoods that exceed 6 inches in width, it is recommended. On planks that are less than 6 inches wide, doing both is superfluous - you only need to do one or the other. Also, never nail or staple through click-lock floors, they are not intended to be nailed down.
It is possible! Here are the steps we recommend you follow to determine if we might have a matching color and dye lot:
1. Visit our bamboo flooring page to see what colors and styles we offer. If you see that one of our floors might be a suitable match, please check the "Specifications" section on the product's detail page to ensure its dimensions (length x width x thickness) match your floor.
2. If you think we have a color that might match - remember that we may have up to 10 different widely ranging dye lots in each color, thus requesting a sample from our website is useless as you may only see one lot shade (we don't send samples of multiple lot shades). Thus we recommend that you send us a sample of your floor so we can compare it to what we have in stock. We recommend sending at least a 4" sample of the floor you need to match to the address on our Contact Us page and write Attn: Sample Check at the top. Don't forget to include your contact information and how much square footage you need. Someone will check our stock for a match and contact you within 2 business days of receiving the sample.
Our industry-leading Accuseal Ultra® Finish System is so tough, we apply it to all of our floors and moldings, and it is backed up by an unbeatable lifetime warranty. This finish is a UV-cured acrylic urethane with aluminum oxide added in for additional durability; it is a proprietary process that endures scratches and abrasion better than almost any other floor on the market. These floors can last for decades without wearing through and needing to be being refinished (loss of luster may occur as with all floors in very high traffic areas and does not qualify as wear through). Please note that it is always recommended to use Scotch Delicate Surfaces tape on wood floors and moldings, as other types of tape can peel away even the toughest hardwood floor finish!
Making cross-cuts and cuts down the length of floor planks can be tougher with traditional hardwoods, since the grain can prohibit a clean, even cut. However, you won't have this issue with strand woven bamboo floors and can easily cut the planks in any direction since the woven strips of bamboo that make up the floor planks are fused together during manufacture. Because of this, strand woven bamboo floors do not require a particular saw in order to be cut cleanly.
Typically, if the finished basement is climate controlled, you do not need a moisture barrier in between the subfloor and the new floor you are installing. However, some basements can emit excessive humidity – upwards of 70%. To be sure, we recommend testing the humidity with a hygrometer to get an accurate idea of the indoor air humidity, and you can also test the humidity on the main grade sub-floor itself. If excessive moisture is coming up from the basement you have a few options. The first is to glue down the floor using an adhesive with a vapor barrier. The second option is to choose a click-lock floating floor, so you could float the floor on top of a 3 in 1 vapor barrier underlayment. Both of these will seal off your floor and protect it from any sub-floor moisture.
Adhesive remover wipes are designed to clean up wet adhesive before it dries. Wet glue is much more difficult to remove with soap and water, but the wipes have a special compound that helps to break down the glue.
Once flooring adhesive dries it is impossible to remove and will irreparably damage your floor finish as the topcoats will be stripped away when you remove the dried glue. Absolutely never use mineral spirits to remove any glue from our floors as mineral spirits will damage uv cured urethane finishes If adhesive dries on your finish we advise that you dump some of the Adhesive Remover liquid on the spot, let it sit for 10 minutes and then use a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. This can get in the pores of the finish and get most of the glue off, but there is no guarantee that you may still damage the floor finish itself.
It is the responsibility of you or your installer to determine whether the glue brand you are using with our floors will suffice, and we do not require nor reject specific brands. You should be able to place a quick call to the glue manufacturer you are considering to determine whether it can be used in conjunction with hardwood and bamboo flooring.
Using a glue other than those we sell will not void your floor warranty per se as our warranty covers our floors, not the tools or materials used to install them. If the floor fails later and the reason is that it was improperly installed or the glue failed, this should be covered by your installer's warranty or the warranty of the adhesive you purchased.
We strongly suggest only hiring installers that provide a 1-year warranty on their labor as most flooring problems arise within the first 6 months after installation, and the great majority of flooring issues are installation-related.
Most designers and installers will lay the flooring longitudinally so that it is parallel to the longest run or wall in the installation. There are some exceptions, but this is a general rule of thumb.
If you're looking for the safest flooring available to you and your family, you've come to the right place. Ambient is the only flooring brand that voluntarily, randomly, and extensively tests for safety and off-gassing every single year (since 2006!) to ensure that our products are safe for our customers. Since 2006 we have compiled an unbroken run of yearly test results showing "effectively zero" off-gassing, a feat that is unmatched in our industry. Additionally, all of our floors are also Floorscore Certified and meet all standards associated with the Toxic Substances Control Act (Title VI). All of our flooring adhesives used for installation are ultra-low and zero VOC as well.
|PLANK DIMENSIONS||6 ft (1850 mm) length |
5-5/8 in (142 mm) width
9/16 in (14 mm) thick
|FLOORING GROUP||Solid Strand Tongue & Groove|
|SPECIES / TYPE||Moso Bamboo aged 5-7 Years|
|INSTALLATION||Nail Or Glue Down|
|PROFILE (All 4 sides)||Tongue and Groove|
|SQ FT PER BOX||16.97|
|PLANKS DESCRIPTION||Single length planks: all planks are same dimensions|
|WEIGHT PER BOX||52 lbs|
|PLANKS PER BOX||6|
|JANKA RATING||As high as 5342 (Learn more about Janka Hardness Scale)|
|PRODUCT SAFETY TESTING||See test results|
|FINISH TYPE||Accuseal Ultra with aluminun oxide (Finish Details | Print Maintenance Guide)|
|FINISH STYLE||Matte (aka satin/flat)|
|EDGE STYLE||micro bevel|
|ACCLIMATION PERIOD||72 hrs (7 days recommended for extra humid/dry climates)|
|RADIANT HEAT SAFE||Yes|
|INSTALLATION GUIDE||Print Installation Guide|
|MAINTENANCE GUIDE||Print Maintenance Guide|
|NAILING GUIDELINES||18 ga cleat 1 1/2 in to 2 in|
|SUSTAINABILITY||Lacey Act Compliant. FSC-Certified Available By Request.|
|R VALUE||ASTM C518-04: 0.54|
|MOISTURE CONTENT||ASTM D4442, Oven Dry Method: 6%-10% average|
|SLIP RESISTANCE||Coefficient of Friction: ASTM D2394 Average; Static 0.586; Sliding 0.59|
|FLAMMABILITY/FIRE RATING||ASTM E648: Class 1 Interior|
|CA PROP 65 WARNING LABEL||Print Now|
|MSDS LINK||Print MSDS|
|CSI SPECS LINK||Print CSI SPECS|
|ITEM NUMBER (UPC)||300844149720|
This Floor's Features
|LEED MR6: Rapidly Renewable||Contributes|
|LEED IEQ 4.4: Low-Emitting Materials||Contributes|
|LEED MRc7: Certified Wood||Contributes, lead times may apply|
|EPA TSCA Title VI||Meets Standard|
|Floorscore Certified?||YES - see cert|
|CA High Performance Schools EQ2.2.3||Meets standard|
|Carb Phase 2 (<= .05ppm)||Meets Standard|
|European Super E0||Meets Standard|
|Japanese JIS/JAS 5-STAR||Meets Standard|