Everything You Need to Know about Hardwood Floors
Learn about different species of wood and new technologies making hardwood flooring perfect for any room in your home, including that unfinished basement.
Use this guide then contact us to consult with our experts first hand.
Hardwood floors give a room a sense of permanence, stability and warmth. Ninety percent of realtors say that wood floors help a home sell faster and for more money. Even in a small home with minimal square footage, wood floors give a house a well-crafted, “high-end” appearance. Wood floors come in a large number of different species and colors, making design options virtually endless.
Wood flooring is available in several styles:
The flooring comes in strips with widths that range from 1 1/2" through 2 1/2" and thicknesses of 5/16" through 3/4". Strip flooring creates a traditional look, and can produce an illusion that a room is larger than it is.
Plank flooring also comes in strips, but they are wider, usually from 3" through 7. Plank flooring can be used to create a more rustic or earthy look as well as a historical appearance with antique applications.
Parquet flooring is a series of wood pieces that create a geometric design. Parquet offers a variety of design options. It can create an elegant look for formal settings or a more contemporary spin for casual spaces.
Another choice you have to make is whether to want a pre-finished or an unfinished hardwood floor that has to be finished in your home. The pre-finished floors offer a wider variety of wood species and saves hours of labor and cleanup. While the unfinished wood floors allow you to have a really custom, job-site finish and a completely smooth, uniform surface. You also get an extended factory finish warranty with pre-finished floors, but not with most job-site finished flooring.
Light Colored Flooring will brighten any room, and often more importantly, help create the illusion that the room is larger than it actually is. Light colored floors particularly appropriate in beach homes because they show sand scratches less than a dark floor. Light floors work well when creating a contemporary style home.
Medium Colored Flooring adds a sense of warmth and coziness to a room. The shades and looks available in this color family are almost endless. Medium colored floors work well when creating a traditional style home.
Dark Colored Flooring is great for creating a more formal look in a room. Ideally, room sizes should be fairly large or have good lighting to prevent them from looking too dark or small.
Pros of Hardwood Floor
- Appearance Improves
Hardwood improves with age because it acquires a desirable patina over time.
- Long Lasting
Hardwood is among the longest lasting of all flooring types.
- Great Investment
Although hardwood can initially cost more than some other flooring options, it's an investment that pays off, increasing the value of your home.
- Can Be Recoated
All hardwood can be recoated, allowing you to refresh your floor to its original look.
- Easy Care & Maintenance
Hardwood is as easy to care for as most other floors — waxing is not necessary for urethane finishes.
Considerations of Hardwood Floor
- May Scratch
A hardwood floor's finish is susceptible to scratching from traffic or pet nails.
- Limited Below Grade
Solid hardwood cannot be installed below grade level; engineered hardwood can.
- Full Bath Installation Not
Hardwood should not be used in a full bathroom because it is sensitive to humidity and pooling water.
- Transitions to Other Floors
A new hardwood floor may be a different height than the floor it adjoins. Thinner profile wood and transition strips will help to equalize the difference.