Hardwood Flooring

thomas901122November 13, 2008

Do hardwood expand width wise or length wise? My installer did not seem to leave enough space for my hardwood for expansion, he is now saying he will cut into the drywall to give the floor some space, is this a OK solution? How much space do hardwood need for expansion? width wise? Length wise? The wood in question is Brazilian Cherry - Jatoba. Please advice. Thanks.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Jon1270

The length is relatively stable; almost all expansion and contraction happens across the width. The change in dimension is proportional to changes in moisture content. There's no way to accurately anticipate how much the flooring will expand, or even whether it will expand at all, without knowing both the current moisture content and how it will change.

If the flooring was acclimated to the house before installation then you shouldn't have a problem. The Wood Flooring Manufacturers Association installation manual suggests storing flooring in the rooms where it will be installed for "4 to 5 days or more" before installation.

Trimming away a bit of drywall before installing baseboards sounds like a decent way to provide some clearance.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2008 at 1:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bobismyuncle

It also depends upon the species (some woods expand and contract more than others) and how the wood was oriented in the tree. The general rule is that wood expands and contracts more around the circumference about twice as much as it does radially. This is why when you see firewood, it generally has a pie-shaped crack in it -- if it shrunk the same in both circumference and radius there would be no differential contraction.

For jatoba, "Shrinkage green to ovendry: radial 4.5%; tangential 8.5%; volumetric 12.7%-values are low for a wood of this density."

Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.jandclumber.com/JatobaHardwood.html

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 8:10AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Rejuvenating Bedroom Furniture Finish
My DH (he was a custom cabinet maker for many years)...
malna
Need help matching wood stain color
The molding in our kitchen was not completed when we...
candeelyn
Right size tip-out tray for kitchen sink cabinet
My kitchen sink cabinet is 24" wide. I want to...
africanboy
sanding sealer on cherry?
Hi all! I'm having a painter do some new doors along...
Fori is not pleased
southern yellow pine ceilings - how to tone down yellow
Hi, all. We are currently building: natural cherry...
hjs
Sponsored Products
Safavieh Handmade Golden Jaipur Green/ Rust Wool Rug (2'3 x 8')
Overstock.com
Fitzgerald Leather L-Sectional - Brighton Aubergine Purple
Joybird Furniture
Safavieh Lyndhurst Collection Ohsak Ivory/ Tan Rug (6' x 9')
Overstock.com
Accent Rug: Monbijou Light Gray 2' x 3'
Home Depot
Home Decorators Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Home Decorators Collection Rugs Summer
Home Depot
Indoor Area Rug: Timeless Traditional Design in Gold 5' 3" x 7' 9"
Home Depot
Hopson Single Arm Sofa - Key Largo Grass Green
Joybird Furniture
Area Rug: Lavender Pale Blue Polypropylene 8' Round
Home Depot
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™