Black Bear Flooring warrants its products, in their original manufactured condition, to be free from defects in milling, drying and grading.

Structural/Manufacturing warranty means that the product will remain free from milling and grading defects for 20 years. Damages due to improper transportation, storage, installation or other cause are not covered under this Warranty. Product quality variation that does not exceed 5% is industry standard and is not considered as a factory defect. Products sold as waste, seconds or “as is” are not covered under this warranty. Black Bears responsibility is limited to the replacement (material only) of defective products in excess of 5% norm.

Black Bear flooring is manufactured to exceed established industry quality standard that permit a defect tolerance and grading variance up to 5%. Each and every piece of flooring is subject to scrupulous mill inspection. However final pre-installation approval has to be done by owner and (or) installer. Installer must inspect every piece before installation. Do not install planks with doubtful or noticeable defects if you cannot cut off imperfections. All flooring planks have a natural variation in color and grains, but if you consider these planks out of the color or tone range you expected just install them at the corner or along the walls. It will make you floor look more even. Once nailed down, the plank is considered accepted. Black Bears responsibility is limited to the replacement (material only) of defective products in excess of the 5% norm.

Wood Flooring, being a natural product, will continue to expand and contract through heating and no heating seasons.

Properly installed wood floors may consequently experience some separation between boards at different times during the year. To limit the amount of acceptable expansion and contraction, it is important to maintain relative humidity in a home as constant as possible (between 40%-50%) Use a humidifier or dehumidifier, as appropriate. Temperature in a home should range between 18 and 22C.

We reserve the right to verify any claims or defects in inspection and have samples removed for technical analysis.

Black Bear Flooring is not responsible for extra or incidental costs that occur in replacement or repair of the defective product. Black Bear Flooring will only cover the cost of the product that is being installed to replace the defective product.

Product Grading

Black Bear endeavors to maintain accurate grading of its flooring products as per description; however, shortages of certain grades do occur; Black Bear therefore has the right to upgrade the product at such times without notice or additional charge to the customer. At no time will Black Bear substitute a higher-grade product ordered with a lower grade product.

Exclusions and Limitations of Warranty

  • The warranty does not cover indentations, scratches or damage caused by negligence, water, wet mopping, erosion, pebbles, sand, other abrasives, spiked heel shoes, insects, pets, misuse, abuse accidents, extreme environmental conditions and lack of preventative measures or improper protections.
  • Natural wood characteristics such as variations, grain, color mineral steaks, and knots, are not considered defects.
  • Finish fading that result from normal wear is not covered by the warranty.
  • Gloss reductions are not considered surface wear.
  • Normal exposure to sunlight will bring changes in the shading to any floor as the floor ages. Area rugs should be moved occasionally as they block sunlight and may give the appearance of discoloring under the rug. This is not a product defect.
  • It is the responsibility of the installer and/or homeowner to inspect boards prior to installation. Black Bear accepts no responsibility for costs of product or labor when boards with visible defects have been installed.
  • Damage due to improper humidification is excluded from the Warranty.

Flooring Installation

The installer is responsible for final inspection of product quality. Any board installed is considered to be accepted by the installer/owner. Such boards cannot be claimed under the warranty in regards to manufacturing defects or grading mistakes.

Before you start installation, make sure the following pre-installation requirements are met:

  1. Flooring should be one of the last items installed during renovation to avoid damage.
  2. Prior to installation heating/ air conditioning and humidification system must have been maintained at 18—22C for at least one week.
  3. Relative humidity on job site should be 40-55% at all times.
  4. To avoid moisture-related damages sub floor must be dry and basement well ventilated. Moisture level of wood sub floor must not exceed 12% and differential between wood planks and sub floor must be less than 4%.
  5. Flooring must be acclimated on the job site under occupancy conditions for a minimum of 5 days prior to installation. For acclimation, flooring must be unwrapped and cartons must be opened.
  6. If our products are being installed over a new plywood sub floor (as is commonly done in new homes and renovations) a vapor barrier must be installed. The two materials are recommended, firstly a waxed brown paper or 15lb saturated building paper. It is very important that one of these materials be installed. It is common for new plywood to have high moisture content (M/C). The M/C of the plywood must be within 4% of the M/C of the new flooring. Our flooring typically reaches you with an M/C of 6-9% giving the maximum figure to be the 13% M/C for the plywood. If the sub floor is built over radiant heating the system must be in operation for a minimum of 10 days before installing your new flooring, this will allow excessive moisture to be drawn out of the sub floor prior to installation, however a vapor barrier must still be used. Please note non-compliance with the above will void your warranty. It is important that the homes humidity be under control and regulated between 40-50%. This can be achieved by attaching a certified humidification system to the furnace with independent controls to maintain the correct levels at all times. Do not mistake this for and air exchanger or HVAC unit which actually does the reverse by taking out moisture from your home thus increasing the risk of shrinkage to the flooring product.

Warning: The importance of keeping a stable humidity level within the home is the single most important factor in maintaining a trouble free floor. If the relative humidity level is allowed to drop below 35% shrinkage of the individual boards will start to take place, as the relative humidity level drops so the shrinkage will increase. In extreme cases (relative humidity levels less than 20%) major gapping can occur. In many cases some gapping will return during the summer months however in some instances it can remain a constant problem particularly when permanent humidity control is not installed.

Black Bear Flooring assumes no liability in such cases, where permanent relative humidity control has not been installed and a constant humidity level of 40% (plus) maintained. More details on the effects of humidity and wood can be seen on our website.

Installation Tips

Black Bear solid flooring is not recommended for installation over radiant heated floors, we recommend our engineered product in this application.

Black Bear solid flooring may be nailed down with cleats or staples over wooden sub floor.

Remember that owner and installer are jointly responsible and must make sure that all pre-installation requirements are met.

Flooring Maintenance

  1. Maintain relative humidity level of 40-55% throughout the year. Humidifier is recommended to prevent excessive shrinkage in wood floors. Dehumidifier or air conditioning is recommended to prevent dampening, and, therefore, cupping of wood floors.
  2. Before putting furniture on wood floors, attach adequate floor protections (felt pads) to the feet of all furniture to reduce scratches and dents.
  3. When moving heavy furniture, place a blanket or a scrap of carpet, face down, under each leg; slide carefully.
  4. Keep shoes in good repair. If they lose their protective cap, they will dent the surface. Avoid high-heel shoes.
  5. Keep pet nails trimmed, paws clean and free of dirt and grease.
  6. Exposure to sunlight can slightly change the shade of your floors. Rearrange your rugs and furniture periodically to avoid discoloring of your floors
  7. Use area rugs in heavily traveled areas, especially if you have a large family. Place rugs at entrances, as well as by kitchen sink and dishwasher.
  8. Avoid using harsh commercial cleaners. This will dull the finish and damage your floor permanently. You can use water and a cleaner made specifically for hardwood flooring, for damp mopping but do make sure your mop has been well rung out. Standing water can lead to cupping and staining. It is highly recommended to use a professional wood cleaner. Speak to your flooring representative for recommended cleaners.

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