Bamboo versus hardwood flooring

What are the differences? Is bamboo even considered a type of wood? How do you install bamboo floors? We answer all of these questions and more.

How does bamboo compare to conventional hardwood floors?

Bamboo is not a tree; it is a type of grass, and it is harder than most conventional hardwoods.

The Janka hardness rating ( of carbonized bamboo is typically 1300-1400, whereas carbonized bamboo (the process of carbonization makes the bamboo darker) has a rating of about 1000-1100


Carbonisation is the term used when complex carbonaceous substances such as wood or agricultural residues are broken down by heating into elemental carbon and chemical compounds which may also contain some carbon in their chemical structure.

Bamboo is eco-friendly and durable However, this doesn’t mean that bamboo floors are bulletproof––they are susceptible to the same dents, scratches, and general marring that other hardwood floors can fall victim to. The flooring is only as durable as the finish that coats it.

The comparatively low price point of bamboo is another feature that sticks out. Since it is so easy to harvest, bamboo floors are typically cheaper than conventional hardwood floors––you can find bamboo floors at a much smaller price point than traditional wood flooring.

Bamboo stalks have internal integrity. The fact that the stalks don’t contain rays or knots means that bamboo can hold up to more stress than conventional wood. Its unique microscopic makeup also contributes to its overall structural integrity.

Although there are some downsides to its harvesting and the process isn’t perfect, at the end of the day, bamboo is an incredibly renewable resource compared to traditional lumber.

Bamboo grows very quickly in the wild––it is recognized as one of the fastest growing plants in the world. Whereas an oak tree can take about 120 years to grow to maturity, bamboo can be harvested in just three to seven years.

As such, bamboo is recognized as a green material under LEED.

A variety of bamboo floors on the market––about as many options as you’ll find for standard hardwood floors. So you can install floating tongue-and-groove, floating click-lock, nail down, or glue down are all viable installation methods for bamboo floors.