The extensive amount of choices amidst the array of hardwood flooring options can be intimidating at the onset. However, a simple rundown of the categories and styling choices makes a seemingly complicated decision far easier to tackle.
Pre-finished hardwood flooring is ready for installation. The boards are already sanded, stained, and finished, having a hard protected surface. Purchasing these types of hardwood floors saves hours of labor that otherwise would be required to sand, stain, and finish the floor. Furthermore, Carpet To Go offers 5 year warranty packages for our premium hardwood flooring installations.
Unfinished hardwood flooring allows the purchaser to do a custom job on their own. The homeowner chooses their particular wood grain, and the wood is sanded, stained, and finished on site. Sanding levels the panels, staining infuses a rich color, and finishing provides a layer of protection. While it is more labor intensive, purchasing an unfinished hardwood floor gives you, the designer, customizable freedom to sand, stain, and finish your flooring however you would prefer.
As a general note, lighter toned wood floors tend to reflect a more casual style. Darker, richer toned floors are most often set within more formal interior design themes.
Red oak is a very popular choice for hardwood flooring. With moderate to heavy graining textures and a moderate amount of color texturing, it has set itself apart as the top choice for a good, traditional hardwood floor. The coloring ranges from light pinkish reds to moderate brown tones. Janka Hardness Rating – 1290.
Quite similar to red oak in all respects except color, white oak is also a popular selection among the many species of wood flooring. However, white oak tends to take on more greyish tones. Void of the red tints that accompany a red oak floor, white oak is a fantastic way to have the traditional wood grain while keeping the floor’s color tone to more neutral browns and greys. Janka Hardness Rating – 1360.
Maple flooring is quite light in coloring with creamy, pinkish shading. Depending on the grade of wood that is chosen, maple can also contain darker mineral streaks, providing more texture and differential color. Janka Hardness Rating – 1450.
The two most popular types of birch flooring are red birch and yellow birch. Red birch is golden brown with red undertones while yellow birch is creamy white in color with yellow undertones. While both are beautiful wood specimens, the choice really comes down to the desired color tone with which you wish to design your home. Birch has a neat and tidy wood grain pattern with small, uniform swirls. Janka Hardness Rating – 1260.
Walnut wood flooring is well-loved for it’s lovely, deep chocolate brown color. With a wood grain that is fine and straight, this type of wood adds a very warm and formal tone to a room. Because it tends to have a lower hardness rating on the Janka Hardness scale (a scale that compares the hardness of all woods used for hardwood flooring), many homeowners opt for an exotic form of walnut wood known as Brazilian Walnut, a harder species of walnut wood. Walnut Janka Hardness Rating – 1010. Brazilian Walnut Janka Hardness Rating – 3684.
This wood species is perfect for the homeowner that loves texture and color variation. Hickory is actually one of the hardest woods on the Janka Hardness scale and range from yellow-tinged white to medium brown tones. Like walnut, hickory tends to be preferred in large planks. Janka Hardness Rating – 1820.
A softer wood species, American Cherry is full of natural color variations, giving the floor a unique texture through the grain. Hence, homeowners prefer this type of wood cut into larger planks, minimizing an overwhelming degree of variation from board to board and allowing the wood to show off it’s natural beauty. Janka Hardness Rating – 950.
Yellow pine is most known for it’s medium to large knots in it’s wood grain texture. It’s important for homeowners to be prudent when considering installing a yellow pine wood floor because this type of wood is quite soft and can warp under the influence of drastic climates. Janka Hardness Rating – 870.
Ash wood floors are known for their light, causal coloring. Varying in shade from white to light brown, and the wood grain texture is quite unique, appearing straight in some cases but is also intermixed consistently with unique curves and swirls. Janka Hardness Rating – 1320.
Beech is a warm-toned floor with straight and narrow wood grain texture. Medium brown with only moderate color variations, beech is well-loved for it’s red undertones. Janka Hardness Rating – 1300.