6 Things You Must Know About Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring is an expensive but worthy investment to your home or office. However, there are important decisions that you must tackle before the upgrade started. Here are six things you must know to create your best hardwood flooring. Let’s find out!

hardwood flooring

1. SOLID OR ENGINEERED HARDWOOD FLOORING

Solid hardwood flooring is a floor installed with solid boards, which are single pieces of wood cut down to the desired width.

On the other hand, engineered hardwood flooring is a floor installed with manufactured boards. A manufactured board consists of three parts: a top and a bottom layer, which come from a variety of natural timber, and a core.

hardwood flooring

The core is made of five to seven slabs of plywood, crisscrossed in different directions, and bounded between the top and bottom layer.

2. PREFINISHED OR SITE-FINISHED

For prefinished option, the boards are factory-finished. We only need to install the boards without further preparations. Once finished, the floor is ready for you to use immediately.

With the site-finished option, the floor everything finished on site. Therefore, we could make further customizations and adjustments on color, width, or other design options, creating a custom floor to match with existing floors from adjoining rooms (if there is.)

hardwood flooring

However, this is a time-consuming option because it takes from a few days to weeks to finish sanding, staining, and cleaning. Also, you cannot enter the working area during installation, and there would be quite unpleasant smells linger afterward.

3. TYPES OF FINISH

Prefinished hardwood flooring is a floor installed with factory-finished boards. The boards are sanded, stained with three to four coats of polyurethane, and then coated with aluminum oxide to create a hard-acrylic finish before brought on-site. Since the boards are prefinished, there would be visible beveled edges or grooves between planks after the installation.

hardwood flooring

On the contrary, an unfinished hardwood flooring is a floor installed with raw boards. The boards are then sanded, stained, and refinished on site. Thus, create a non-beveled edge, perfectly smooth floor.

4. SPECIES OF WOOD

There are plenty of species of wood available for hardwood flooring installation. The timber is picked based on prominent characteristics, such as grain patterns, complementary colors, and most important, durability.

harwood flooring

Below are favored choices of hardwood used for installation.

  • Brazilian Walnut (also called Ipe)
  • Brazilian Cherry (also called Jatoba)
  • Hickory
  • Maple
  • Oak
  • Pine
  • Ash
  • Douglas Fir

5. GRAIN PATTERNS

There are three ways to cut a log, including plain-sawn, rift-sawn, and quarter-sawn; each provides a different grain pattern. Plain-sawn boards are cut along the grain, yielding traditional, undulating grain patterns, called cathedrals. Rift-sawn and quarter-sawn boards are cut against the grain, providing long and consistent grain patterns. Manufacturers usually sell plain-sawn boards, or rift-sawn and quarter-sawn boards mixed.

6. PLANK WIDTH

Planks vary from standard 2 ¼” up to 12″ wide. You can pick planks of one width, or of random widths, depending on manufacturers.

hardwood flooring

The wider the planks are, the fewer grooves there are. It is noteworthy that a wider board may make your place more luxurious, less patch-work-like.

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Our experienced experts would give detailed explanations to any of your questions to make sure that you have picked the right options for your dream hardwood floor for the most reasonable price.