Hard Maple Flooring

HARD MAPLE (Acer saccharum)
Other Names: Sugar Maple, Black Maple

Hard Maple is recognized as one of the best hardwoods found in North America, with a light colour, fine texture, straight grain, and a subdued attractive grain figure. With natural strength and stability, combined with good availability, Hard Maple has widespread applications, including furniture, flooring, and veneers.

Main Uses

The excellent working properties of Hard Maple make it suitable to a wide range of uses. Very popular in flooring applications such as athletic floors, bowling alleys and ballrooms. Also used for furniture, paneling, kitchen cabinets, worktops, table tops, butchers blocks, toys, kitchenware and millwork, such as stairs, handrails, mouldings, and doors.

It is the standard for cutting boards because it is odorless & tasteless.

General Description

The sapwood is creamy white to off-white with a slight reddish brown tinge and the heartwood varies from light to dark reddish brown, with occasional slight green-gray mineral streaks.

The amount of darker brown heartwood can vary significantly according to growing region. Both sapwood and heartwood can contain pith fleck. The wood has a close fine, uniform texture and is generally straight-grained, but it can also occur as “curly,” “fiddleback,” and “birds-eye” figure.

Working Properties
Hard Maple dries slowly with high shrinkage, so it can be susceptible to movement in performance and tends to be “worse” regarding expansion / contraction through the seasons. Some small, seasonal gaps tend to be inherent with maple. For this reason, it is crucial to maintain optimum humidity within your home, and avoid extremes. Listed below is a chart indicating measures you can take to control the humidity within your home.

Hard Maple is typically straight grained, with a uniform texture but some trees will produce a very unique figure such as birds-eye, fiddle back and curly grain patterns that are highly sought after for special applications.

Finishing
Good in natural finish, DOES NOT stain uniformly

HOMEOWNER TIP
Wood is a hygroscopic material. Always containing water, it constantly exchanges water vapor with the air, picking it up when humidity is high, and giving it off then humidity is low. Since wood swells as it absorbs water, and shrinks as it releases water, both its moisture content and its dimensions are controlled by the humidity of the surrounding air. Natural expansion and contraction resulting in separation between boards is not considered to be a defect, yet an inherent quality of wood as a product of nature. It is therefore not covered under your warranty. Seasonally, your floor will expand and contract in response to its inherent qualities.

CONTROLLING HUMIDITY WITHIN YOUR HOME

  • Make it a habit to use your bathroom fan when showering and your kitchen exhaust fan when cooking. This procedure will help remove the moist air from your home.
  • Refrain from the use of humidifiers unless the relative humidity levels are below the levels suggested in the above chart.
  • Refrain from over watering household plants.
  • Leave the fan running on the vertical fan coil unit during extremely cold weather to help the air circulation throughout the home.
  • Avoid hanging wet clothes inside the home. Ensure the clothes dryer is vented to the exterior and the exhaust fan is operating during the use of the dryer.
  • When smoking in the unit we ask that all residents ensure that their exhaust fans are running to avoid air filtration into the common area hallways.
  • Free circulation of air is important. Keep drapes open as much as possible so the air can circulate freely over the windows. If necessary you may open your windows to reduce localized condensation.

If you are interested in learning more about the natural beauty and characteristics of wood flooring please ask about our “Wood You Mind” brochure.