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Product Review: Mannington Bamboo Flooring

Posted: Thursday, January 6, 2011

Mannington Bamboo Flooring

"My new bamboo floor." Has an exotic sound, doesn't it? But visions of the jungle shouldn't flash through your mind too quickly. Mannington bamboo flooring has taken this remarkable natural resource and applied it to American sensibilities. They offer four bamboo products, two in vertical and two in horizontal format, with a light and a dark option. Each has a classic hardwood look that will look great in any space.

Bamboo, as we have learned over the last several years, is a tremendous resource for all types of products, including flooring. Actually it's where bamboo really shines, literally. It is a sustainable product whose look is very close to traditional hardwoods, but it is one of the fastest growing plants in the world and is highly prolific. If environmental protection is high on your personal list of priorities, and you need a floor, then bamboo the way you want to go.

In addition, Mannington hardwoods are engineered, which means the core of the planks are composed of a plywood core, and several layers of the bamboo are glued on top of the core, which is then coated with protective, non-VOC emitting finishes, creating a very durable product. So even less natural product is used for Mannington's flooring than for solid wood floors, so that should make you feel even more environmentally stand-up.

The difference between horizontal and vertical bamboo flooring is pretty easy to grasp. Basically in the process of making these flooring planks, the bamboo is harvested, cut into strips, boiled (the longer the boil, the darker the color—the "carbonization" process), and dried. Then the strips are fused together with an adhesive via high temperature and intense pressure.

In horizontal construction, the strips of bamboo are laid side by side, "on their backs," or their wide plane. For vertical planks, the strips are set upon their "sides" to make a tighter, narrower look. Which is a stronger is up for debate, but either way you go, you'll have a very strong, durable product. Mannington also makes sure that all adhesives and coatings they apply to the materials fall well under the acceptable levels of VOCs required for use in the U.S.

So go ahead and envision your floor was once in an exotic locale, soaking up the sun and reaching into the sky, but then look to see how beautifully it fits into your personal style. If you want an exotic look in your own home, bamboo is a natural choice.