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Humidity and Your Hardwood Floors

While the warm and sticky summer weather can lead to a beautiful afternoon by the pool for you, it is nothing but trouble for your hardwood flooring. Humidity levels over 55-65% cause moisture to seep into it, which in turn brings a whole host of additional problems.

Periods of High Humidity

During periods of high humidity, hardwood flooring absorbs the excess moisture in the air. As your floorboards collect more moisture, they will start to swell and press on the boards surrounding them. This increase in pressure leads to warping and cupping in as little as a few days. Even engineered hardwood flooring can undergo damage during periods of high humidity.

Periods of Low Humidity

During the winter, the hardwood flooring in your home gives up the moisture that it accumulated over the summer. Your floorboards will start to contract and may develop tiny gaps in between planks. While this is normal, more extreme cases of dryness can cause permanent damage to your hardwood flooring. Long periods of low humidity lead to cracking and permanent gaps.

Excess Moisture

While humidity is the primary source of moisture damage to hardwood flooring, problems can also occur as a result of spills or flooding. If your home has a problem with flooding, never install hardwood flooring below grade and make sure that a moisture barrier is used. Without a moisture barrier in place, water will go into the sub-flooring and then into the hardwood flooring itself and lead to cupping.

Maintaining the Humidity in Your Home

Maintaining your hardwood flooring can be difficult in a state known for high humidity like Maryland, but there are several simple ways that you can protect the investment you’ve made in your flooring:

• Use a humidifier during the winter to maintain humidity in the 40-60% range
• Use a dehumidifier during the summer to maintain humidity in the 40-60% range
• Never clean your hardwood flooring with water or water-based products
• Don’t use a damp mop to clean hardwood flooring
• Don’t let water spills dry on hardwood flooring
• Don’t be afraid to ask from help from the professionals at A Plus Carpet and Flooring!

Give A Plus Carpet & Flooring a Call Today

Whether you need your hardwood flooring refinished or installed, you can trust the professionals at A Plus Carpet & Flooring. We offer free service estimates and hardwood flooring installation, cleaning and care. To get your free service estimate and learn about what our current promotions are, give us a call today at 410-418-9888.

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