When timber suppliers are storing timber flooring for your projects in Brisbane, the timber is supposed to be within certain tolerances for moisture. Unfortunately, research has proven that the moisture content of your timber will vary by as much as 2% when it is installed compared to when it is at the timber supplier’s warehouse.
There are many factors that come into play in your home. The heating and cooling system, including its ability to dehumidify the home, the design of the house and various environmental conditions around your house can all affect the amount of moisture in timber. In addition, it changes with the seasons.
In the case of timber flooring, this must all be taken into consideration to ensure that your floor is usable for the entire year. When everything is taken into consideration, the equilibrium moisture content (EMC) of timber that is being used indoors will be from 1%-3% less than timber used outdoors. The solution is to acclimatise your timber before you install it.
When hardwood for flooring is being stored, it is required to have an EMC of 9%-14% with an average of 11%. Softwoods such as pine are also required to be stored at 9%-14% with an average of 11%.
Moisture, Acclimatisation and Installation
Before installing timber, you must make sure that its moisture content is appropriate for what is known as its “in-service environment.” You can test the moisture content of the in-service environment in accordance with AS/NZS 1080.1-1997 Timber—methods of test—moisture content.
Here is the most important thing to remember about moisture. If you install the timber in an in-service environment with less moisture than recommended, the timber will shrink. If you install it in an in-service environment with more moisture than recommended, the timber will swell.
If your timber will expand after being installed, you will need to leave spaces between boards to allow for expansion.
To learn more, call Narangba Timbers today: (07) 3888 1293.