Laminate Flooring in Eugene, OR from Dreyco Flooring & Design

What Causes Laminate Flooring to Expand and Contract?

Laminate flooring is made of multiple layers, including a core layer composed of wood fibers. Despite its durability, laminate is still susceptible to changes in its environment. The primary factors that influence expansion and contraction are temperature and humidity fluctuations.

The Role of Temperature:

When temperatures rise, laminate flooring can expand. Conversely, in cooler temperatures, it may contract. This expansion and contraction are particularly noticeable in rooms that experience significant temperature variations, such as those with direct sunlight exposure or rooms with poor insulation.

The Impact of Humidity:

Humidity levels also play a crucial role in laminate flooring's behavior. High humidity causes the planks to swell, while low humidity can lead to contraction. In regions like Eugene, OR, where humidity levels can vary throughout the year, it's essential to monitor indoor humidity levels to prevent damage to your laminate flooring.

What to Be Aware of When Laminate Flooring Expands and Contracts

  • Gaps and Buckling:
    One of the most common issues associated with laminate flooring expansion is the formation of gaps between the planks. As the planks expand, they may push against each other, creating unsightly gaps along the edges. Conversely, contraction can cause the planks to buckle or lift, resulting in an uneven surface.
  • Damage to Subfloor:
    Extreme expansion or contraction can also put stress on the subfloor beneath the laminate flooring. Over time, this pressure can lead to structural damage, compromising the stability of your flooring system.
  • Moisture Damage:
    Excessive moisture from spills or leaks can exacerbate laminate flooring expansion, leading to warping or swelling of the planks. It's crucial to clean up spills promptly and ensure proper moisture barriers are in place, especially in areas prone to moisture exposure like kitchens and bathrooms.

How to Minimize the Effects of Expansion and Contraction

  • Maintain Consistent Indoor Conditions:
    Keep indoor humidity levels stable by using a humidifier or dehumidifier as needed. Additionally, maintain a moderate temperature range to minimize the fluctuations that can trigger expansion and contraction.
  • Acclimate Flooring Before Installation:
    Allow the laminate flooring to acclimate to the room's temperature and humidity for at least 48 hours before installation. This step helps the planks adjust to their environment, reducing the risk of significant expansion or contraction post-installation.
  • Use Expansion Gaps:
    Leave expansion gaps around the perimeter of the room during installation to accommodate any potential expansion. These gaps can be covered with baseboards or molding for a finished look.

Trust Dreyco Flooring & Design for Expert Laminate Flooring Solutions

At Dreyco Flooring & Design, we understand the intricacies of laminate flooring and are dedicated to providing our customers with expert guidance and quality products. Whether you're renovating your home or embarking on a new construction project, you can count on us to help you choose the perfect flooring solution that suits your style and budget.

For more information about laminate flooring or to explore our extensive selection of flooring options, visit our showroom in Eugene, OR, or contact us today. Let us help you transform your space with beautiful, durable laminate flooring that will stand the test of time.

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