People often ask questions like: Can hardwood flooring acclimate in the box? There is a lot of misinformation and confusion regarding how long to acclimate hardwood flooring. Our guide will help you understand the best ways to acclimate and install your flooring. Hardwood flooring acclimation involves having its moisture content reach equilibrium with its surrounding environment. When there is too much or too little moisture, the flooring can expand or shrink, and it will not fit accurately. That creates problems down the road as you may have to purchase new flooring to reinstall. Learning how to acclimate wood flooring will help ensure you are installing your floor correctly. Many ask, “How long should wood floors acclimate?” The average recommendation is a minimum of three days. It is always good to consult the flooring manufacturer and the contractors working on your job site.
Problems With Leaving the Hardwood Flooring On-Site to AcclimateIt is not advisable to leave wood floors on a job site before installation because it can cause many problems. You cannot acclimate wood flooring correctly with this because it will absorb the surrounding moisture. New homes, especially, hold so much that they will damage the new flooring. Potential problems associated with letting hardwood flooring acclimate on-site include:
- Dimensional distortion
- Excessive expansion
- Structural damage
Best Practices for Acclimating Hardwood Flooring
Keep Optimal Temperatures Year Round
Take Extra Care with Tropical Wood Species
Listen to the Manufacturer’s Guidance
Break Flooring Materials into Smaller Lots
Engineered and Site-Finished Floors Require More Time
Meet All Conditions Before Installation
- The site has AC and heating installed. It should be working well for five days.
- The building is completely enclosed, with all doors and windows installed.
- No wet elements are left to dry, and all are finished. These are things like concrete, drywall, plaster, and paint.
- All drainage carries water away from the building, and contractors finish all final grading.
- The best possible temperature and humidity levels are reached at the job site, ensuring hardwood flooring can install and acclimate correctly.