How To Choose The Perfect Hardwood Flooring

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Now that you have decided on hardwood floors, there are many considerations to keep in mind before you make the actual purchase, such as which type of hardwood flooring should you choose for each area of your home.

Solid hardwood floors are made from one piece of wood, which give them a rich look making their beauty undeniable.  They are also known for durability – it’s not unusual for a solid hardwood floor to last for 50 years or more, with proper care.

You can install solid hardwood floor in most areas of your home, except for the basement and full bathrooms, or over radiant heat.  Since solid hardwood flooring is susceptible to shrinking and expanding from excessive moisture and extreme temperature changes, it is unsuitable for these spaces.  In recent years the popularity of solid hardwood floors has declined due to concerns regarding the relative humidity and moisture levels present in homes.  Solid hardwood may be installed by using nails, cleats or staples and in some instances can be glued down, but always consult your flooring expert before making a decision.

Solid hardwood floors convey warmth, style and character.  Match your décor to the color of your solid hardwood floor to create a harmonious effect or contrast your décor with your solid hardwood floor to create a dramatic effect.

Engineered hardwood flooring has become the most popular hardwood floor, especially in the West Coast where RH (relative humidity) near the water can be high.  This flooring has been created from several wood layers.  This difference in construction is what determines how engineered wood flooring performs.  Layered construction is more stable than solid wood, and is less susceptible to shrinking and expanding.  Like all hardwood floors, engineered hardwood flooring comes in a wide variety of wood species, stains, sheen levels and surface treatments.

Engineered hardwood may be installed using glue or nails, and it may also be floated using a locking system.  Gluing and floating methods will allow you to install your hardwood over concrete, where nails are not suitable.  Floating installs are the simplest and may be more easily performed by “do it yourselfers”.

If you are looking for a less expensive option, but would like to keep the look and durability of hardwood, you may want to look into laminate floors.  Many laminate floors have a realistic hardwood look and feel; however, their core is made of a fiberboard, while the surface is made up of an embossed picture and is treated with a hard finish to provide durability & a realistic look.

Whatever you final choice, make sure that you are comfortable with your decision and that you have the right product for your needs!