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ATFA Level 3 Accreditation

Queensland Timber Flooring has been awarded Level 3 Accreditation with the Australasian Timber Flooring Association. This is the highest level of ATFA Accreditation available and confirms that QTF has robust and effective business processes, quality assured installations and provides the highest quality services and support to our customers. ..

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Technical Information   

In Brief

Timber flooring is unlike any other building product in a home; it is a finished feature product that is literally manufactured on a building site. The raw material is delivered to site, it is manufactured by qualified carpenters, it is then sanded and finished on a "building site". Every other finished feature product in a house arrives on site "finished", kitchen cabinets and vanity units are all pre-made and finished in the controlled environment of a factory- even tiles and granite are pre-finished before delivered to site. 

Timber flooring has a high material and labour component and consequently is relatively expensive. Purchasing cheap materials and cheap labour will result in an expensive disappointment. Kitchens vary in price for generally one reason: quality. And timber floors are no different. We are not saying you should pay "over-the-top" rates for your floor, but before deciding compare what you are getting. For example, if you have asked for "select" grade then don't accept "standard and better"; the small samples may look the same but the floor will look quite different. If you are having a 130mm wide board make sure the boards are fully glued and not just beads of glue every 450mm. If your floor is a "direct stick" system make sure it has an approved liquid moisture barrier over the concrete. Queensland Timber Flooring aim to provide you with all the information you need to make the right choice of timber species, style and finish, and ensure you know exactly how your floor is being installed.

More Technical Information  

There are many points to consider when installing a timber floor, we recommend that prior to any installation the following factors be investigated:

Moisture content of concrete 

When installing timber flooring over concrete the moisture content of the concrete is critical. If the moisture is too high, the timber flooring will start to absorb the excess moisture and cause the floor to expand excessively and 'cup' (distort). Before installing any timber floor a moisture test of the concrete should be taken and the result recorded. There is no guarantee that an "old" concrete floor is dry enough for timber flooring. Some concrete floors have a natural above average moisture content and as long as an imperious floor covering is not being used the concrete will not create any problems. The most accurate method of testing moisture in concrete is by using a hygrometer. This method of testing measures the moisture throughout the thickness of the slab and not just at the surface as is the case when using resistant type moisture meters.

Moisture content of timber 

All timber flooring is kiln dried to the Australian Standard (AS2796) and will be dried to a moisture content of between 9 & 14%. If flooring is being produced for Victoria or Adelaide it needs to be nearer 9%; if it is being produced for high humidity areas such as North Queensland, the moisture content needs to be nearer 14%.  

Unlike convential flooring over joists where timber boards can be mechanically cramped into place and faced nailed, timber moisture contents are more critical when floors are secret nailed. Different species of timber will expand and contract at different rates depending on percentage of moisture change. Queensland Timber Flooring ensure all timber is moisture tested before leaving our warehouse using calibrated moisture meters and oven test measurements when required.

Acclimatisation

The word 'acclimatisation' is now widely used in relation to equilibrium of moisture content. This generally means that timber is delivered to site and left for a period of time in the environment in which the floor is installed to 'acclimatise'. This procedure should only take place at certain times of the year and subject to weather and site conditions. As an example, if flooring is delivered to site in January or February with a moisture content of around 10 to 11% and left to acclimatise the flooring will inevitably increase due to the high humidity conditions. This increase in moisture will cause the floor boards to expand in size, then during the dry season the floor boards will release this excess moisture and shrink, causing "gapping" between the boards. Alternatively, if flooring is acclimatised during the dry season the boards will shrink and then in the wet season will expand excessively causing the floor to fail. Queensland Timber Flooring will make the decision to acclimatise or not on a job by job basis.

Expansion Joints 

All timber flooring (new and old) expands and contracts depending on the climate. Tongue & Groove flooring requires a minimum 10mm expansion gap between the edge of the floor and any vertical surface. As a general rule, top nail floors require expansion joints every 6 metres. Secret nailed floors require expansion joints every 4 metres. We use the words "general rule" because expansion joints are site specific and very much rely on local climate and conditions. There are two common types of expansion joint used in flooring, one being a 12mm wide cork joint inserted between boards at designated points within the floor, usually in doorways or under kitchen units. The second type is a 1.5mm gap left between boards every 1.0 to 1.2 lm. across the floor. Queensland Timber Flooring will advise on the position of the expansion joints within your floor.

Site inspection and assessments  

Every site is slightly different, whether it is a concrete floor or an elevated particle board floor. Site assessments can be very extensive and should only be under taken by an experienced flooring person.

Please don't hesitate to contact a member of our team if you have any questions or queries about this information.

 

Downloads

ATFA Guides

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Timber Queensland Guides 

Timber Queensland Tongue and Groove Timber Flooring- General Information Timber Queensland Tongue and Groove Timber Flooring- General Information (583 KB)

Timber Queensland Acceptable Appearance of Timber Floors Timber Queensland Acceptable Appearance of Timber Floors (502 KB)

Janka Hardness Ratings

Download Janka Ratings Download Janka Ratings (133 KB)