Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

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CedarWaxWing
Posts: 538
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 12:24 pm

Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by CedarWaxWing » Tue Apr 24, 2018 5:05 pm

Would appreciate hearing of anyone's experience with flooring from Cali Bamboo.

https://www.calibamboo.com

Thank you in advance for filling me in on your experiences or recommendations for any other very good products for flooring.



Background: I am remodeling a house that used to be a rental for resale.
I will knowingly spend a few extra bucks to do things properly, so as to give the next owner a home worth living in. I know this will reduce my profit somewhat, but am intending to sell to a home owner not a landlord. Great neighborhood of lower end but well kept houses.

House is one story, 1000 ft and has an encased basement due to a crawl space that had chronic moisture but no wood damage or mold. This was spendy but necessary to keep the house sound and able to sell. (Encasement is likely relevant due to floor expansion issues with natural products.)

Main issue: Looking for objective reports from consumers of these products in their homes over any sig length of time.

Floors: Cali bamboo has 3 products that I am investigating: Solid, engineered, and "high value vinyl" boards.

I researched "engineered" floor boards at Lowes and Home Depot and they look like a product that will not hold up well. Both places are giving me the feeling that they have had a lot of complaints.

Cali bamboo has the following products that I am getting interested in:

**Solid bamboo: Click installation.. "floating floor" end result. Requires 1/2 inch spacing from walls, etc.
Needs to be acclimated to the humidity of the house for about 2 weeks.
50 yr warranty


Engineered bamboo boards : (tongue and groove ... more work to install) Contractor does not wish to do tongue and groove.
actually slightly more expensive than solid
No acclimation to humidity needed I think.
50 yr warranty.

They claim this is their most durable and long lasting product and is bamboo onto plywood.
No click installation... needs nailing due to tongue and groove installation.

**"high value vinyl" A board product with a limestone base. 20 yr warranty.
This is the product I have reluctance to use... Any reports would be very helpful.

Contractor is a one man show and does not wish to intall tongue and groove. Due to labor costs and his physical wear and tear (He is a one man show and is doing a very good job for now. I expect to use him on future projects.)

ANY feed back would be very much appreciated, since a bad product would be a huge waste of time and effort.

JBTX
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by JBTX » Tue Apr 24, 2018 5:34 pm

No idea about Cali bamboo, but years ago a family member put in bamboo in lower floor because it is harder, more durable, more resistant dog scratching etc. They even put in the bathroom with an open shower. They’ve had no issues except a little bit of discoloration right next to shower due to moisture. I think he floated it.

sasquatch12
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by sasquatch12 » Tue Apr 24, 2018 5:40 pm

It depends on where you live, here in humid Houston bamboo does not do well. I have had three different friends have to replace it due the all of the contraction and expansion that causes buckling and huge gaps. They went with engineered hardwood the second time and it held up great. Several stores in Houston have stopped selling bamboo due to all of the problems.

mrb09
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by mrb09 » Tue Apr 24, 2018 6:11 pm

We put in a Cali Bamboo floor last year. Ordered direct from manufacturer.

- Shipping was good, arrived on time. They drop-shipped with a driver with no forklift, ended up using our tractor and clamp-on forks to unload :)

- Had one color mismatch and they accepted return no problem. They sent replacement before we sent return.

- Quality was good, everything was uniform. We get the natural surface which I think helped with (expected) minor color variations

- We stacked and left it per instructions to acclimate to local humidity. That was a *lot* of work :)

- We had a contractor install floor for us. First time he installed Cali, said it was above par for an engineered floor

- No problem with cracking between boards, I think the time spent acclimating humidity really helped

Overall, reasonably happy. Wife is happier than I am, it looks very nice, but I'm not as happy with a floating floor as I thought I would be. That's the type of floor though, nothing to do with Cali the manufacturer.

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fortfun
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by fortfun » Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:15 pm

I installed this solid click in my basement.
https://www.calibamboo.com/product-soli ... 03001.html

I did NOT do the 2 week acclimation and had no problems. It looks great and was easy to install. I would recommend it! I wish it was in the rest of my house.

EDITED:
I installed it myself. I was pretty meticulous about everything (besides the 2 week wait). I'm in Colorado. Generally very dry here. In the winter, I have the whole house humidifier set to 30%. I did use the tongue and groove glue when I installed it. I poured floor leveler and used the cork underlayment. I put plastic between the concrete and cork underlayment. The floor creaked a bit at first but now that everything has settled, there in no creaking. Some pieces were a bit tricky to snap together but with a mallet and patience, I got everything to fit perfectly. I'm not sure a contractor would have been as patient.
Last edited by fortfun on Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

gavinman
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by gavinman » Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:33 pm

We have it and are not happy with it.
Installer acclimated it in house for 2 weeks.
They had a hard time installing it. The planks shrunk and would not click together in some places. They ended up nailing it in spots and filling the holes with wax, it looks horrible. Now this winter we’ve had more shrinkage. This is our second winter with it.
We live in the Northeast and do not have a whole house humidifier. The humidity in our house gets down to below 20% when it’s really cold outside. Which causes the bamboo to shrink. We have gaps between planks in some new spots this year.
If you can not maintain a constant humidity level in your house stay away from it. We also have a gas fireplace that we use in the winter and I think that makes the humidity levels worse.
I have a friend that owns a flooring store and asked him about it, he hates Bamboo. He said it causes him tons of problems and people always complain.
We will end up replacing ours in the next few years. It was money wasted for us.

ClaycordJCA
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Location: SF Bay Area

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by ClaycordJCA » Wed Apr 25, 2018 12:20 am

We are very pleased with our Cali Bamboo Antique Java flooring. No concerns. Still looks great after 5 years. We previously had a maple hardwood that was scratched and gouged by the dog; not an issue with the Cali Bamboo. My father and a friend have had it installed in their homes after seeing ours.

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alpenglow
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by alpenglow » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:04 am

gavinman wrote:
Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:33 pm
We have it and are not happy with it.
Installer acclimated it in house for 2 weeks.
They had a hard time installing it. The planks shrunk and would not click together in some places. They ended up nailing it in spots and filling the holes with wax, it looks horrible. Now this winter we’ve had more shrinkage. This is our second winter with it.
We live in the Northeast and do not have a whole house humidifier. The humidity in our house gets down to below 20% when it’s really cold outside. Which causes the bamboo to shrink. We have gaps between planks in some new spots this year.
If you can not maintain a constant humidity level in your house stay away from it. We also have a gas fireplace that we use in the winter and I think that makes the humidity levels worse.
I have a friend that owns a flooring store and asked him about it, he hates Bamboo. He said it causes him tons of problems and people always complain.
We will end up replacing ours in the next few years. It was money wasted for us.
Thanks for the info. I've considered bamboo but now I know it wouldn't be happy in our house given the wide fluctuations in humidity. I'll stick with engineered hardwood.

CedarWaxWing
Posts: 538
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 12:24 pm

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by CedarWaxWing » Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:59 pm

ClaycordJCA wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 12:20 am
We are very pleased with our Cali Bamboo Antique Java flooring. No concerns. Still looks great after 5 years. We previously had a maple hardwood that was scratched and gouged by the dog; not an issue with the Cali Bamboo. My father and a friend have had it installed in their homes after seeing ours.
Solid bamboo or engineered product?

thanks

CedarWaxWing
Posts: 538
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 12:24 pm

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by CedarWaxWing » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:02 pm

fortfun wrote:
Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:15 pm
I installed this solid click in my basement.
https://www.calibamboo.com/product-soli ... 03001.html

I did NOT do the 2 week acclimation and had no problems. It looks great and was easy to install. I would recommend it! I wish it was in the rest of my house.

EDITED:
I installed it myself. I was pretty meticulous about everything (besides the 2 week wait). I'm in Colorado. Generally very dry here. In the winter, I have the whole house humidifier set to 30%. I did use the tongue and groove glue when I installed it. I poured floor leveler and used the cork underlayment. I put plastic between the concrete and cork underlayment. The floor creaked a bit at first but now that everything has settled, there in no creaking. Some pieces were a bit tricky to snap together but with a mallet and patience, I got everything to fit perfectly. I'm not sure a contractor would have been as patient.
My impression is that the click install product is not supposed to be glued, correct?

CedarWaxWing
Posts: 538
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 12:24 pm

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by CedarWaxWing » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:04 pm

mrb09 wrote:
Tue Apr 24, 2018 6:11 pm
We put in a Cali Bamboo floor last year. Ordered direct from manufacturer.

- Shipping was good, arrived on time. They drop-shipped with a driver with no forklift, ended up using our tractor and clamp-on forks to unload :)

- Had one color mismatch and they accepted return no problem. They sent replacement before we sent return.

- Quality was good, everything was uniform. We get the natural surface which I think helped with (expected) minor color variations

- We stacked and left it per instructions to acclimate to local humidity. That was a *lot* of work :)

- We had a contractor install floor for us. First time he installed Cali, said it was above par for an engineered floor

- No problem with cracking between boards, I think the time spent acclimating humidity really helped

Overall, reasonably happy. Wife is happier than I am, it looks very nice, but I'm not as happy with a floating floor as I thought I would be. That's the type of floor though, nothing to do with Cali the manufacturer.
Why are you not so happy about the floating floor?

thanks

Blondemommer
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Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:59 pm

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by Blondemommer » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:29 pm

alpenglow wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:04 am
gavinman wrote:
Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:33 pm
We have it and are not happy with it.
Installer acclimated it in house for 2 weeks.
They had a hard time installing it. The planks shrunk and would not click together in some places. They ended up nailing it in spots and filling the holes with wax, it looks horrible. Now this winter we’ve had more shrinkage. This is our second winter with it.
We live in the Northeast and do not have a whole house humidifier. The humidity in our house gets down to below 20% when it’s really cold outside. Which causes the bamboo to shrink. We have gaps between planks in some new spots this year.
If you can not maintain a constant humidity level in your house stay away from it. We also have a gas fireplace that we use in the winter and I think that makes the humidity levels worse.
I have a friend that owns a flooring store and asked him about it, he hates Bamboo. He said it causes him tons of problems and people always complain.
We will end up replacing ours in the next few years. It was money wasted for us.
Thanks for the info. I've considered bamboo but now I know it wouldn't be happy in our house given the wide fluctuations in humidity. I'll stick with engineered hardwood.
Be advised that engineered hardwood also has contraction issues when humidity is not maintained in 30-35% range. I had it installed in my condo last summer with adequate acclimation time. I now have gaps from shrinkage. A very costly mistake not covered under manufacturer nor installer warranty.

Hoosier CPA
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Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:43 pm

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by Hoosier CPA » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:40 pm

We purchased Cali bamboo (solid not engineered) about a month ago in most of our main level. House is in Indiana. Bought it from Lowes and bought the installation from them too. We're happy with how it turned out although it's too early to tell how it will hold up. We're new at home improvement. Contractor was great. The one hiccup was that when Lowes came out and measured, they didn't notice or tell us that there would be a gap in height between the ceramic tile in our kitchen the wood flooring elsewhere. We ended up having to add additional subflooring, which wasn't cheap. They delivered it and stacked it for a week as noted by others. Installation was nail down (not glued). I did all the tearout of the existing floor (carpet and some wood floor).

This is the product: https://www.lowes.com/pd/Cali-Bamboo-Fo ... 1000218149

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fortfun
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by fortfun » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:44 pm

CedarWaxWing wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:02 pm
fortfun wrote:
Tue Apr 24, 2018 8:15 pm
I installed this solid click in my basement.
https://www.calibamboo.com/product-soli ... 03001.html

I did NOT do the 2 week acclimation and had no problems. It looks great and was easy to install. I would recommend it! I wish it was in the rest of my house.

EDITED:
I installed it myself. I was pretty meticulous about everything (besides the 2 week wait). I'm in Colorado. Generally very dry here. In the winter, I have the whole house humidifier set to 30%. I did use the tongue and groove glue when I installed it. I poured floor leveler and used the cork underlayment. I put plastic between the concrete and cork underlayment. The floor creaked a bit at first but now that everything has settled, there in no creaking. Some pieces were a bit tricky to snap together but with a mallet and patience, I got everything to fit perfectly. I'm not sure a contractor would have been as patient.
My impression is that the click install product is not supposed to be glued, correct?
If the floor could get wet, Lumber Liquidator recommends it. Mine is adjacent to kitchen sink. As abundance of caution, I glued it (i.e. keeps standing water from soaking into the seams).

CedarWaxWing
Posts: 538
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 12:24 pm

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by CedarWaxWing » Wed Apr 25, 2018 10:04 pm

I do appreciate all these feedback posts... thank you !

gavinman
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by gavinman » Thu Apr 26, 2018 6:39 pm

Blondemommer wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:29 pm
Be advised that engineered hardwood also has contraction issues when humidity is not maintained in 30-35% range. I had it installed in my condo last summer with adequate acclimation time. I now have gaps from shrinkage. A very costly mistake not covered under manufacturer nor installer warranty.
I read an article that said in states with cold winters it’s really hard to keep a house’s humidity level at recommended levels for some hardwood floors. When the high is in the teens or single digits for a week it’s almost impossible.

clipson
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Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by clipson » Thu Apr 26, 2018 6:55 pm

Installed Cali Bamboo in the nursery a few months ago. Acclimated for almost a month due to delays in getting started.

We had the tongue and groove style. Instructions did not recommend using glue but I did anyway becuase the pieces seemed like they weren't holding together well. At a minimum, I suggest gluing the first 3 rows and the last 3.

We've gone through a pretty cold winter and the pieces have not seemed to change size much, but we have a whole-house humidifer which was running at full strength.

ClaycordJCA
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Location: SF Bay Area

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by ClaycordJCA » Sat Apr 28, 2018 1:29 am

CedarWaxWing wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:59 pm
ClaycordJCA wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 12:20 am
We are very pleased with our Cali Bamboo Antique Java flooring. No concerns. Still looks great after 5 years. We previously had a maple hardwood that was scratched and gouged by the dog; not an issue with the Cali Bamboo. My father and a friend have had it installed in their homes after seeing ours.
Solid bamboo or engineered product?

thanks
Solid bamboo.

mrb09
Posts: 114
Joined: Wed Aug 03, 2016 9:02 am

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by mrb09 » Sat Apr 28, 2018 3:19 am

CedarWaxWing wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:04 pm
mrb09 wrote:
Tue Apr 24, 2018 6:11 pm
We put in a Cali Bamboo floor last year. Ordered direct from manufacturer.

- Shipping was good, arrived on time. They drop-shipped with a driver with no forklift, ended up using our tractor and clamp-on forks to unload :)

- Had one color mismatch and they accepted return no problem. They sent replacement before we sent return.

- Quality was good, everything was uniform. We get the natural surface which I think helped with (expected) minor color variations

- We stacked and left it per instructions to acclimate to local humidity. That was a *lot* of work :)

- We had a contractor install floor for us. First time he installed Cali, said it was above par for an engineered floor

- No problem with cracking between boards, I think the time spent acclimating humidity really helped

Overall, reasonably happy. Wife is happier than I am, it looks very nice, but I'm not as happy with a floating floor as I thought I would be. That's the type of floor though, nothing to do with Cali the manufacturer.
Why are you not so happy about the floating floor?

thanks
Just some "give" to the floor that bothers me a bit. It is actually more conformable to walk on, but it just feels odd. Very personal thing,

CedarWaxWing
Posts: 538
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2014 12:24 pm

Re: Does anyone have Cali Bamboo flooring? Your experience?

Post by CedarWaxWing » Tue May 15, 2018 3:50 pm

Thanks for all the reports. I have decided to go with a so called "luxury vinyl" click install flooring to simulate Acacia wood flooring. The more I look at bamboo, the more I get the feeling that the reviews are mixed.

I replaced the particle board subflooring with plywood. I think the product looks very nice and if someone later decides to put in hardwood they can get the click install product out easily and have a good subfloor for the hard wood. This will be a starter home and I believe the vinyl will be very durable, water resistant, and look nice for a long time. (Also 50 yr warranty.) It is in the entry, living/family room, kitchen/breakfast room and the hallway.

I am using a marble pattern of a similar product in the baths.

This is a total remodel of a Portland house that I bought in 1981 and lived in for 9 years, then rented until now after I moved to Vancouver. My query was because I am redoing most everything and am doing so with the intent on passing this house to the next person to live in as a very sound, durable, and attractive house.

Thanks again for the very helpful input!

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