Is Bamboo Waterproof?


is bamboo waterproof

Bamboo flooring is not waterproof but once it has been treated it does have high levels of water resistance, outperforming hardwood in many cases.

If water is spilled on a bamboo floor you should be quick to wipe it up.

Bamboo is also very sensitive to humidity.

If you live in an area where there are regular humidity swings then bamboo using bamboo is not a good idea as it is likely to crack.

Bamboo, which is typically used as flooring in many homes, is not a tree but a grass.

Bamboo is defined as grass because it lacks the vascular cambium layer and meristem cells at the top of the stem that trees have, this is what makes them grow thicker year by year.

Once the bamboo has reached maturity (after one growing season) they do not increase in diameter or height.

Bamboo And Water

Untreated bamboo is very susceptible to water damage and has fairly minimal levels of water resistance.

This is because it doesn’t naturally have toxic deposits in it that help prevent biodegradation.

Untreated bamboo will not last for more than two years if left exposed to sun and rain.

Bamboo also contains a lot of starch which attracts fungi, mold, and insects which all contribute to its degradation, even more so if the bamboo is softened by rain.

Thankfully if you have a bamboo floor in your home it will have been pre-treated with salt and acidic minerals to make it mold and insect-proof and a sealant to make it water-resistant.

Looking After Bamboo Flooring

bamboo flooring

So while bamboo flooring is not fully waterproof it is extremely water-resistant.

With most treated bamboo flooring you could realistically leave a puddle of water on the floor for up to 25 hours without seeing any water damage.

However, we don’t recommend you do that because if your flooring is old or worn then the sealant is likely to be less effective.

To protect your bamboo from water damage you should:

  • Not fit bamboo flooring in areas that are likely to get wet or humid such as kitchens and bathrooms
  • Clean up water spillages immediately
  • Use doormats to absorb moisture from footwear

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