Will My Cupped Wood Floors Flatten Out Over Time?

Flooring can add not only beauty and comfort to a home but also value. When making a decision about what type of flooring to install in your home, it is important to consider the many factors that will affect your choice.

Among these factors are your budget, the style of your home, and the climate where you live. In this post, we will discuss one specific type of flooring- wood floors and specifically whether or not they will flatten if they are cupped. Keep reading to learn more!

Hardwood Floor Cupping?

Cupped wood floors are the bane of many a homeowner’s existences. But what exactly is cupping?

Simply put, cupping occurs when the boards of a hardwood floor start to curl up at the edges, creating a cup-like shape.

This can happen for a number of reasons, including moisture imbalances, overly dry conditions, or even poorly manufactured boards. The cupping can also be caused by spills or leaks that aren’t cleaned up quickly enough.

Regardless of the cause, cupped floors are unsightly and can be difficult to fix. In some cases, the cupping may be mild and barely noticeable. However, in other instances, the boards may be so severely cupped that they start to buckle and warp.

Can you Fix Hardwood Floor Cupping?

Luckily, cupped floors can often be fixed. If the cupping is severe, you may need to replace some of the boards. But in many cases, simply sanding down the floor and refinishing it will take care of the issue. So if you have a cupped hardwood floor, don’t despair – there’s hope!

But your best way is to call in a professional flooring contractor (NWFA certified) who can assess the extent of the damage and recommend the best course of action. With their help, you can get your floors looking like new again in no time.

How to Fix a Cupped Hardwood Floor?

There is no need to panic if you find yourself with a cupped hardwood floor. In most cases, the problem can be easily fixed with a little elbow grease and the right know-how.

The first step is to determine the cause of the problem. If your wood floor is cupping due to high humidity, you will need to take measures to reduce the moisture in your home. This may involve investing in a dehumidifier or using fans and air conditioners to keep the air circulating.

If your wood floor is cupping due to improper cleaning, you will need to be more careful in the future. Avoid using excessive water or harsh cleaning chemicals, and make sure to dry the floor thoroughly after washing it.

Once you have addressed the underlying issue, you can begin fixing the cupped hardwood floor itself. The most important thing to remember is to work slowly and carefully so as not to damage the wood.

Start by sanding down the raised edges of the boards until they are level with the rest of the floor.

If necessary, you may also need to sand down some of the boards in the middle of the floor so that they are flush with the rest of the surface.

Once you have finished sanding, vacuum up any dust and then apply a new coat of finish. With a little time and effort, you should be able to fix a cupped hardwood floor and restore it to its previous condition.

Causes of Hardwood Floor Cupping?


Water makes wood floors swell, and when wood floors swell, they do this thing called “cupping.”

And once your wood floor starts cupping, there’s pretty much no turning back. The only way to fix a cupped wood floor is to replace the boards.

So if you’ve got a wood floor, it’s best to keep it away from water as much as possible. If you spill something, mop it up right away. And if you’re mopping your wood floor, be sure to use a dry mop or a damp mop.

With a little care, you can keep your wood floor looking like new for years to come.

Of course, once the wood has dried out, it will return to its normal state. But in the meantime, you’ll have a wood floor that’s swollen and cupped.


Moisture is the sworn enemy of wood floors. When wood floors get too wet, they start to swell and warp. Cupping occurs when the wood fibers on the bottom of the boards absorb more moisture than the wood fibers on the top.

This causes the boards to bow upwards in the middle, creating a cup-like shape. Cupping is often caused by leaks or spills that go unnoticed for a period of time, allowing the water to seep deep into the wood.

In extreme cases, cupping can cause distortions that are visible to the naked eye. While wood floors can be sanded and refinished to repair minor cupping damage, severe cupping may require replacement boards.

Will Cupped Wood Floors Flatten out Over Time?

A wood floor is like a landlocked ship. The planks are rigid, but they’re also essentially floating on top of the subflooring. Over time, changes in humidity can cause the wood to expand or contract.

If the wood expands, it pushes out against the nails holding it in place and can lift the boards up at the seams. If the wood contracts, it creates gaps between the boards.

While cupping is unsightly, it’s not usually a serious problem. The floor will eventually flatten out on its own as the wood adjusts to the changing conditions.

In the meantime, you can minimize cupping by keeping the relative humidity in your home stable. That means using a humidifier in dry weather and an air conditioner or opening windows when it’s humid outside.

How to Avoid Wood Floor Cupping

Use a Moisture Meter

Spotting the moisture problems before they damage can help you to avoid wood floor cupping. So, a moisture meter helps you to detect the moisture in your home and you can do safety measures to protect your wood floor.

Keep Drying the Wood Floor

As we mentioned above regularly drying your wood floor can also save from cupping. To dry the area you can use a ceiling fan or open the windows and let the air come into the room area.

If the condition of the floor is severe then you may need to remove all the furniture and equipment from the area and let it dry for at least a few hours.

Regular Floor Cleaning

Regular cleaning is also a tip to prevent your wood floor from the cupping issue. However, wet mopping is not much more recommended on any type of wood flooring. So, instead, you can a steam mop or other dry cleaning devices to maintain your wood floor cleaning.

Using non-breathable carpets or rugs on a wood floor can also lead to an increase in the moisture level and cause cupping.


Cupping is a common problem with wood floors, but it can be fixed. There are several causes of cupping, and the best way to fix it depends on the cause. If you have cupped wood floors, don’t despair – there is hope.

We’ve provided some tips on how to fix them, and we’d love to hear from you if you have any additional advice. So, tell us, what’s your experience with cupped hardwood floors?

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How long does it take for hardwood floors to Cup?

Ever wonder how long it takes for those pesky wood floors to start cupping? Well, the answer may surprise you! Cupping occurs when the wood fibers on the surface of the floor absorb more moisture than the fibers on the bottom. So, it takes one or two days for noticeable cupping.

How long for cupped floors to dry?

It depends on the condition of the flooring. If the moisture level is too high and the wood is fully wet then it takes weeks to fully dries out. However, if you find the moisture earlier then it will take two to three days to fully dries out.

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