Hardwood flooring installation can last for decades and sometimes even centuries. Yet in South Florida, they’re exposed to their kryptonite: humidity. Now, moderate levels of humidity shouldn’t pose too much of a problem in a living room or bedroom, even over years and years. But South Florida humidity added to rooms like kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms, is a whole other story! As a residential flooring subcontractor, we’ve been called in to replace floors that weren’t taken care of properly. Don’t let this happen to your home.
Tips to beat humidity:
- Ventilate rooms. The most inexpensive and simplest solution for getting air to circulate out of a room is a good, old box fan. Use the fan independent of the air conditioning so that you can keep air circulating all the time. And of course, wipe up any spills on hardwood immediately, as these will only exacerbate the problems humidity can cause.
- Check your home’s humidity. Use a humidistat or hydrometer to determine what that humidity is. Ideally, it should stay below 40-percent. Most hardware stores will have them, but call ahead and ask if you’re unsure.
- Use a dehumidifier. This is a real floor-saver during the summer. Get a good one with a humidistat that you can adjust. This lets you set the level of humidity that you’ll allow in the space where the dehumidifier is running. It will also mean that your dehumidifier can detect humidity levels and shut off automatically. That way it won’t run constantly, thus increasing your energy bill. Make sure you use a dehumidifier that can adequately cover the space you’ve got.
- Check your floor. People often forget that the easiest way to detect hardwood damage is simply to inspect your floor now and again. Look for unexpected spacing between planks, or see if the plank edges have pushed up against each other and created uneven rises (this is called cupping). If you can catch the signs of eventual damage when they’re just starting, you can usually change the environment early enough to save the floor.
More questions? As your trusted residential flooring subcontractor, we have answers.