Wood flooring is any product made from timber and designed for use as flooring- either structural or aesthetic. According to James Provence, wood is the most common choice when deciding on a flooring material and they come in various styles, colors, cuts, and species.
Trying to choose the best wood type for flooring is not an easy one as there is no best wood for flooring. Choosing a good wood type actually depends on your needs and what you lookout for.
There are generally two types of hardwoods which are:
Solid Hardwoods: These hardwoods are milled from a single piece of wood. Due to its technique of manufacturing- repeated sanding, it can last for decades. Made of natural material, solid hardwood adjusts to temperature and humidity changes and cannot be installed below grade or in damp spaces. To install, it must be nailed or stapled to a wooden subfloor.
Engineered Hardwood: This type of hardwood is manufactured by bonding different layers of plies together in a cross-grain construction which gives greater stability. Since it has the ability to withstand higher levels of humidity, engineered hardwood can be installed in baths and basements, as well as on concrete subfloors and radiant heating layers. To install, it can be glued, stapled or affixed to itself.
So, How do I decide on the best wood for flooring?
When making a choice on the best wood type to use for your flooring, it is very important to consider the following:
Texture: The texture of your wood is very important. Many manufacturers offer premium woods that would last many years. You can decide to go for hardwood floors that look shiny and new, or you can simply buy brand new wood that looks like an antique and gives the floor an appealing character.
Colors: The color you decide on getting actually depends on the type of texture you need. Hardwoods usually comes in various colors ranging from blond to black, and they all depend on species and finish.
Board Widths: Hardwoods comes in different widths- narrow strips which is less than three inches, wider planks which is more than three inches, parquet squares, and a new option- squares and rectangles. The strips give an idea of more space; planks give a rusty look while the parquet floors are best suited for formal spaces.
Hardness: If you have a busy household with pets and kids, it is important to choose the hardest wood specie you can find. This is because hard species like the red oak, will withstand wear and tear, while the soft species, like the pine, tend to show scratches.
Finish: Aside from protecting the surface, hardwood finishes helps to give floors color and luster. Most commercially available hardwood comes prefinished, which makes installation easier and eliminates dust, chemical fumes, and waiting time.
Hardwoods are the best standard of flooring surfaces and they can add value to your home. However, it is important to consider the factors listed above when choosing the best type of wood to use so as to get the best result from your flooring.