get a free quote

Hardwood Flooring Acclimation

To make the most of your new reclaimed wood flooring or wall paneling from Mfine Lumber, here are a few pointers to remember. Specific properties of wood mean that it will absorb moisture from the air it is exposed to. Because of this, the wood may arrive at your site with a moisture content different than the moisture content of its final home. The beauty of your reclaimed wood flooring or wall paneling can be preserved if it is allowed to acclimate. Excessive shrinkage or expansion can cause wood to cup or warp when not properly acclimated, meaning gaps could possibly appear after installation. In terms of both aesthetics and structural integrity, you certainly don’t want movement to happen after installation. Read on to find out everything you need to know about letting wood flooring acclimate properly.

Adaptation suggestions for wood floors were created by the National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA).

  • Make sure you give the wood time to acclimate for a few days before installation.
  • The flooring bundles should be divided into smaller groupings to allow for more airflow.
  • Keep all heating and cooling systems running while the wood acclimates.
  • Ensure the validity of your warranty by adhering to the guidelines provided by the manufacturer.

Here’s a rundown of the essentials:

  • Before installing the flooring or paneling, seek the advice of a licensed specialist in your area.


  • The second step is to use a moisture meter to determine the moisture content (MC) of your Mfine Lumber recycled wood. Visually inspect the boards in each bundle for any flaws.

  • The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) will assist you in determining the seasonal variance in wood moisture content in your area as you are preparing to receive your reclaimed flooring or wall paneling. For example, you may see the (regional charts here). If the installation is taking place in a severe environment, you will need to increase the acclimation time for the wood to attain moisture equilibrium. Again, speak with a local flooring installation specialist.

  • Your Mfine Lumber order must be properly stored in the fourth step of the process. No matter how brief the duration of storage, it is imperative that flooring and wall paneling be kept in a clean, dry environment. All products should be stored on a stable, level surface that provides adequate support. We strongly advise separating the bundles of flooring or paneling so that sufficient air flow can take place. A job site with unmonitored environmental conditions is not the place to store your salvaged wood products. Store the wood in a secure location. Wood flooring and wall paneling cannot be stored in a garage or on a deck because of the porous nature of their surfaces.

  • After getting your wood, use a moisture meter to check its moisture content. Determine how much acclimation you’d like to achieve. You should examine the moisture content of at least 40 boards for every 1,000 square feet of flooring to ensure the most accuracy; 40 boards is a good rule of thumb to follow. Afterwards, you’ll need to figure out the ideal moisture level. To begin, figure out where you are in relation to seasonal changes in wood moisture. Divide the low- and high-season moisture contents by the number of months in the year. If the flooring is supplied and recorded at the baseline moisture content for your geographic region and the correct relative humidity levels are maintained, then you will not need to acclimate the wood under these circumstances. Acclimating wood might be difficult if the moisture content is far outside the recommended moisture content range, though. An increase in cupping, buckling, or shrinking of wood may occur under certain conditions. As a point of reference, take a look at the following chart. You can do this yourself or hire someone to do it for you.

  • Lastly, make sure that the HVAC system is operational prior to the installation. Before installation, make sure that your heating and air conditioning system is working at the right temperature and humidity levels. As a result, your new Mfine Lumber floors or wall panels will be able to adjust to their new environment. There should be a year-round humidity level of 30 to 50 percent and a temperature of 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit for best functioning. Wood, like humans, prefers a temperature and humidity range that is just right. You should postpone the installation and consult with an expert if the humidity or temperature in your area is out of the ordinary. Failing to do so could lead to a malfunctioning floor due to insufficient moisture content. Over the course of the flooring’s or wall paneling’s life, proper conditions must be maintained. This advice may not apply in your area, so make sure to check with a local flooring professional and review the product details.


*It’s important to note that these are merely guidelines and should be supplemented with advice from the NWFA and your local flooring and wall paneling installer. Prior to installation, get advice from a qualified professional or the National Wood Flooring Association.