Not too many people probably do, but if you’re about to have wood flooring installed in your house, you should probably know the answer to this question.
Every region has an equilibrium moisture content (EMC) value or range of values. That’s the point at which wood no longer absorbs or loses moisture because it’s reached equilibrium with its surroundings. The EMC is usually a range – for example 6% – 9%. The average of the high and low value is the optimal moisture content value.
People usually think that when they bring wood flooring or laminate home all they have to do is put it in the room that it will be installed in for a few days to allow it to acclimatize before installing it. While this is an important step, it’s also critical to know the starting moisture content of the wood. If the moisture content is 12% and the optimal moisture content in the building it will be installed in is 6%, there’s a very good chance that excessive warping, shrinkage, and other deformations of the wood will occur. That could make it impossible to install the flooring properly. Once installed, wood with too much moisture in it will shrink, causing gaps to open up between the boards as the wood dries.
Because Calgary has such a dry climate, it’s important that the wood flooring you buy has a moisture content of between 6% and 8%. TimberTown ensures that all of the hardwood flooring that they sell, including wood from China, meets their stringent standards for moisture content.
When you’re shopping for hardwood flooring in Calgary, be sure to have the moisture content tested before you buy. Reputable sellers will have testers on hand that can produce an immediate moisture content reading. If the moisture content of the wood is far from the optimal value, it’s best to keep shopping.