The What Why and How of Hardwood Floors

Any product that utilizes timber, applied to the floor qualifies as such. Strictly speaking there are two types. These are solid hardwood and engineered hardwood. This article will also discuss imitation hardwood i.e. ceramic, vinyl, linoleum, etc.

Solid Hardwood

Each piece is made up of only one (1) portion of timber. In other words the finished product is brought about by cutting and polishing. These are sturdier and can be sanded over, re-polished, re-buffed, etc. numerous times. There is also something to be said about the beauty of solid hardwoods that cannot be fully imitated engineered types. But the added durability and unique aesthetics means a higher price tag, both as to unit cost and application.

Engineered Hardwood

First is the “all wood” construction. This means that at least a couple of layers of different woods are used to make a single unit.  The top layer is composed of a thin sheet of hardwood. The lower layers are made up of various types of wood, usually sawed up or chips that are compressed and/or glued together.

The second type is known as Veneer. The top layer is made up of timber. The bottom layer is made up of composite material, which may or may not include wood.

Third are laminates. There is no wood, much less timber used here. The image or likeness of wood is superimposed on materials like laminates, tiles, pvc, vinyl, etc.

As a general rule, engineered wood is cheaper, especially laminate types. But the construction of the same makes it almost impossible to sand or buff. There is also the inevitable wear or discoloration that shows on the sides of each piece.

Why Hardwood?

Other than its unique look, what other reasons would you have to go for hardwood floors? First, solid hardwood floors add value to the home. The rarer the timber, the better the appreciation (increase in value).

Second, hardwood floors are easy on the feet. They keep a comfortable temperature. Unlike marble or tiles that are uncomfortably cold.

When properly cared for, hardwood floors will last for decades, if you have solid hardwood you can even change the look by re-sanding, applying stains, and polishing the same. Last, wood floors rarely go out of style.

The Cut

Hardwood floors can be categorized by the size of each piece. The smallest would be the parquet types. Next would be planks which come in all sizes i.e. 2 ¼; 3 ¼; 4; 5; 6, etc. The biggest and most expensive would be those made up of chunks of hardwood that are stripped, standardized, and only sliced horizontally to create huge boards.

Type of Wood

The most popular hardwood floors consist of timbers that have unique grains and various colorations. You need to consider that some of these woods are more expensive than others. It has something to do with their toughness and visual appeal. Some have specific applications. For example, teak is specifically used for the outdoors and boats. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Oak
  • Mahogany
  • Birch
  • Taun
  • Teak

In Closing

For more information, refer to a professional. Remember, the best contractors will work with you and with your budget (to a certain extent).  Do not hesitate to go online, visit the contractor’s website and request for a free quote.

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>