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How to Choose Hardwood Floors

Choosing-hardwood-floors

Hardwood Flooring to Match your Lifestyle

When it comes to choosing a flooring material, there are literally hundreds of varieties of tiles, natural stones, vinyl and concrete that are being used in commercial and residential flooring. However, there is one material that has stood the test of time – hardwood flooring. Over centuries, this flooring material hasn’t been nudged out of the home décor space and continues to grow in popularity.

Considerations

A designer helping you with your redecoration work will often put forth wood as one of the best options for flooring. Though there are a number of distinct advantages to a wood floor installation, there are features to consider:

  • Functionality should top your list of considerations as you will most likely want flooring that performs well. Wood is a natural material and will accrue dents and dings over time. Moving heavy furniture across a wood floor can leave scratches behind.

    Some woods are denser than others and if you want a hardworking and durable floor, it’s best to settle for solid hardwood flooring. Engineered wood has a thin-but-tough hardwood surface with multiple underlying plywood/ fireboard layers, and simply isn’t as tough as a hardwood floor.

  • Lifestyle factor goes hand-in-hand with functionality. The wood you choose has to meet the demands of your lifestyle. For example, if you have children and/or pets in the house, or if you entertain a lot, you will definitely need a tougher and more scratch-resistant floor.
  • Aesthetics of your flooring is very important, but the finished look has to complement the utility aspect. You can choose from cabin grade wood that has a more rustic look or from more exotic woods such as Ash, Birch, Mahogany, Hard Maple, Oak, Brazilian Cherry and American Walnut etc.

    Regardless of the finish and polish you use on these, over time the flooring will go through phases of oxidation. More exposure to light will make the wood darken over time. If your tight-grain floor has a high gloss finish, it might look very beautiful, but keep in mind that every smudge and scuff may show on it.

  • Gapping between floorboards will occur over time, especially with exposure to cold weather. Even the most carefully installed wide floor plan floors to dry out and shrink, and gaps will appear between the floorboards. It’s not something that can be entirely prevented but certain types of wood such as hickory will shrink more than a red oak floor. Similarly narrower floorboards won’t shrink as much as broader ones.
  • Maintenance is one aspect often overlooked. Wood flooring requires extra care. While vacuuming and sweeping is fine, wet mopping can do irrevocable damage to the flooring. Again, the thing you should consider is the amount of time and effort you are willing to dedicate to the maintenance of the floor.

As you consider installing a hardwood floor in your home, it’s best to keep all these aspects in view to make a well-informed choice. It is always best to find the best hardwood flooring to match your lifestyle.

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