Bamboo is no longer just for pandas, the quintessential plant-eating bear. Now, you can enjoy the same material in the comfort of your own home – no high-maintenance plants required. Instead, you can use this sustainable resource for the flooring in your residence.
One of the longest-running brands of bamboo flooring is Teragren Bamboo, which opened in 1994 and currently sells a multitude of different styles to people throughout the United States.
You might be wondering if bamboo can really make as sturdy and lasting of a floor as traditional hardwood. Let’s find out.
Are you ready to have more in common with the pandas?
- Why bamboo?
- Is the brand reliable?
- How durable is it?
- Is it hard to install?
- How much does it cost?
- What styles are available?
- The Verdict
Although bamboo flooring has been around for almost 5,000 years, it only recently started to spread to Western countries like the United States. It has a lot of benefits, including being an eco-friendly alternative to traditional hardwood.
Bamboo is the fastest growing plant in the world, stretching to three feet in as little as 24 hours. It also only takes five years to mature, while other common woods can take up to twenty. Teragren Bamboo utilizes this material and develops flooring which can be made quickly and sensitively, without causing as much environmental damage as traditional harvesting.
Is the brand reliable?
Teragren takes pride in delivering a high-quality product to each of its customers and is willing to meet with people who are dissatisfied with the result. Customers have found that they get what they pay for with this product and can expect reliability from the flooring.
Important note: the company refuses to refund incorrectly installed flooring, and it will send technicians to examine the personal installation when determining whether or not the customer has a valid claim.
How durable is it?
Overall, Teragren bamboo is a hardy material that can withstand many of the trials resisted by traditional hardwood. Users have found that it resists scratches, scuffs, and other unsightly marks caused by everyday wear and tear, and even some unpredictable (or, who are we kidding – totally predictable) events like toddler tantrums.
The durability rating will differ based on whether or not you choose a style that has a top layer of laminate, and if the bamboo was carbonized. The laminate can help protect bamboo from the majority of potential damage, but it isn’t foolproof. Bamboo, even Teragren bamboo, cannot stand up to high-traffic areas. If you have multiple kids, pets, or rampaging dinosaurs, it’s probably not a good choice.
Carbonization also changes the internal structure of the material. The process changes the color of the material from its natural light hue to darker shades. Unfortunately, this weakens the overall matter and makes it more susceptible to damage. It will look nice, but it might not last long.
Is it hard to install?
Bamboo has more rules than other flooring materials, and Teragren products are no exception. The boards and tiles need to be left to acclimatize for 3-7 days to prevent expansion or shrinking of the material.
The material also requires extra steps for installation and has more considerations. You cannot glue the product using a water or latex-based adhesive because the excessive moisture reacts with the board’s creation process and can cause warping.
Bamboo is hardier than most other wood products, and requires thicker nails and a stronger nail gun. Otherwise, it’s possible to purchase Teragren products that interlock with one another, which requires clearing and creating a clean, smooth subfloor for installation. This floating installation needs a special material underneath to manage the heat.
Finally, moisture and humidity levels are crucial. You should check the room environment prior to installing bamboo flooring. It’s also recommended you research sea level and general climate. For many people, this hassle just isn’t worth it.
However, the floor – as with most bamboo options – is long lasting. You’ll need to decide what you are willing to do/sacrifice for a long-term flooring solution.
How much does it cost?
Teragren charges between $6 and $8 per square foot and can be purchased from a select number of retailers, including sellers of environmentally friendly home products. Although the flooring is a little more expensive than some options, it might be worth it if you’re willing to make an investment in the future appearance and durability of your home.
People can also register for “lifetime structural residential warranties” and a 25-year warranty for their floors. The first protects you in case there is something wrong with the actual structure of your bamboo, while the second is a guarantee that the floor will not wear through in less than 25 years.
There are also 5 and 10-year commercial warranties, but you don’t need to worry about those unless you run a small restaurant, bakery, or grocery store from your back room.
What styles are available?
And now, the question you have been waiting for: What will it look like?
Teragren manufactures bamboo flooring in a variety of styles. Some showcase the natural luster of the original plant, while others mimic the colors of natural hardwoods – like chestnut. Each style comes with a 7-coat finish, designed to increase shine and help prevent damage.
Because the flooring is made from real wood, tiles and boards each have variations that make them unique. Your floor will not be uniform and will look more natural than a wholly synthetic material, like laminate. Most of the products also have micro-beveled edges and ends for a smooth finish.
To be or not be like a panda. It’s a question you probably haven’t asked yourself since you were a child, but it’s important now.
Overall, Tergaren Bamboo is a reliable manufacturer and produces a range of products which can suit the needs of most homeowners. If you want something reliable but affordable for most budgets, then this is a good choice for you. You would also be doing the environment a favor, and could impress your climate change-concerned friends in one fell swoop.
If you have any previous experiences with this flooring, feel free to share your stories and images here or on social media. Every little bit of information can help others make the right floor-buying decision.