Now days, picking up the right hardwood floor can be a challenging task to say the least. When choosing the right type of finish for your wood floors, consider your maintenance and lifestyle preferences. There are as many opinions as there are options, so how can you be sure you’re making the right choice?? Few options to consider are Polyurethane or natural oil? Hand-scraped, distressed or smooth? Solid or Engineered? Pre-finished or site finished?? To help, here is a breakdown on some basics so that you are provided with some knowledge to pick up the floor when you start the process.
Few important things, you must need to know before you get hardwood floors in your home:
- Firstly, I suggest talking to a local flooring dealer with a good reputation in your area. This will help to ensure that you are dealing with a flooring expert and not just an order taker.
- Secondly, you must understand that all woods will gouge, scratch and dent. All wood flooring requires the homeowner to control their humidity levels between 30 and 50 percent. Not doing so, can result in gaping, cupping and even permanent damage to your investment.
If you are picking up the wood floor, below are the 5 things to keep in mind:
Type of Hardwood Flooring:
There are primarily two types of wood flooring:
- Engineered Hardwood
- Solid hardwood
Both options are good, depending on the moisture control and the circumstances you live in, and these types offer the same feel of a real hardwood. Primary difference between engineered floor and solid hardwood is in the floor’s composition.
Solid hardwood: Solid wood flooring will contract and expand relative to a home’s humidity it needs to be installed on the ground floor or above grade.
Engineered Hardwood: Engineered flooring is more stable due to its multiple constructions. It can be installed on all levels of the home, making it perfect for basements and bathrooms where dampness and moisture can be issues.
Finishing is the primary factor in the overall appearance of a wood floor, finishes are very popular because they are durable, water-resistant, and require minimal maintenance. All wood floors will require routine maintenance, such as sweeping or dust mopping, to keep them looking beautiful and new, but different wood flooring finishes will have a big impact on how you care for your floor long-term, as well as how your floor will look in the years to come. Distressed, hand-scraped or wire-brush finishes will also be something to consider when shopping for a wood floor
Installation and cost:
Installation can definitely be an expensive proposition, especially with unfinished flooring, but competent DIY’ers can save money by doing the job themselves and purchasing prefinished flooring.
Appearance, Color, style and design:
Hardwoods are available in so many colors that would probably match the designer’s idea. It’s still important to keep certain guidelines in order to get rid of the costly and embarrassing flooring fashion mistakes. While personal preferences are very important, it should not be a deciding factor. Color, design, style and appearance are absolutely necessary in order to pick the best possible wood floor.
Choice of Wood Species:
Hardwood floors come in many varieties of colors that will fit any home decor. There are more than 50 species in hardwood, both exotic and domestic, considering the spectrum of hardness, color options and range in price. No matter what look you want to attain, there are many varieties of species to match your requirement. For example hardwoods like cherry and oak are still popular choices among home owners.
By now you would have known that installing hardwood floor in your home comes with a price, which is an important factor to consider. But quality flooring is a long term investment because appending value to your properties will often give a justification for the short term expenses. Hardwood flooring, when installed professionally in the right environment, will actually save the cost of replacing your floor. So, you should not let the cost alone determine your flooring choice.