Your Floors vs. The Charleston Climate

If you have lived in Charleston or the surrounding low country for some time, then you are definitely aware that we experience hot, humid weather.  These conditions, when extreme, can cause cupping and crowing in your floors.

Both of these conditions or problems will adversely affect the condition of your floor boards, and are caused by increases in moisture or humidity which stimulate expansion in your wood flooring.  When you decrease the amount of moisture, you will notice a slight contraction or shrinking in the wood.  You will want to monitor your exposure to moisture, humidity and keep your wood floors as dry as possible.

Cupping is typically seen when the edges of your floorboards are slightly raised or higher than the center of the board, creating a cup or inversed bell shape.  You may first notice this by appearance, but you will also usually notice cupping when you walk over the floor and feel the inconsistent level of your boards.

If you have experienced crowning in your floors, you will know that it is the opposite of cupping.  Instead of the center of the board being slightly depressed in relation to the sides, you will see that the center becomes slightly more raised.  A consistent imbalance in moisture and humidity can be a cause of crowning.

With these two common moisture problems in mind, what actions can you take to protect your floors, considering we live in a fairly humid environment, Charleston, SC?   Other than making sure your floors remain as dry as possible, you will also want to make sure when you are considering new construction, make sure you understand or your contractor understands that all “wet work” associated with constructing your home or office should be done prior to installing your floors.   You should also make sure your wood floors are properly acclimated to the humid conditions before installing.  We are glad to help you sort through these details to ensure your newly installed floor lasts as long as possible!


We at Carolina Flooring Services sincerely want to help the Charleston community make the most informed decisions when it comes to selecting the floors for your home or office.  Call us today for a free consultation or more information.

Comments are closed.