Discovering what types of hardwood you want to install in your home requires a lot of research. To give you a starting place, here is a beginner’s guide to the different types and what to look for. As a busy professional with not a lot of spare time on your hands, you like to cut to the chase in matters pertaining to home improvements. You’ve calculated the cost, weighed the pros and cons, and finally settled upon new hardwood floors
However, the question remains – which hardwood floor types are best for your home? As you continue with your research on the topic, consider the following pros and cons of the different types of hardwood floors.
The Benefits of Any Hardwood Floor Type
Whether you are replacing your existing carpet or putting in a brand new floor, any type of hardwood floor is a great choice for the following reasons:
- It looks great. There’s no denying that a hardwood floor has that look about it, one that conveys beauty, grace, elegance and a sense of affluence that is so appealing.
- It provides a sense of warmth. No matter what your decor, hardwood floors are an excellent final touch in creating a warm environment conducive to comfort in the home.
- It’s a great retainer of heat. Unlike tile floors, hardwoods are a great insulator, and this means you’ll not likely complain of cold floors when walking barefoot across them.
- It’s easier to match your new decor. Regardless of the finish of your wood floors, there remains a certain neutrality in terms of redecorating rooms with new color schemes and finishes on furniture.
- It is remarkably resilient. If finished properly, wood floors are very resilient when it comes to holding up to stains and spills. Even mild scratches can be easily remedied.
- It’s so easy to clean and maintain. Sweep it, vacuum it, wash it regularly and your hardwood floors will retain that brand-new look of having just been installed. If you add in periodic polishing, you’ll really bring out the shine.
Hardwood Flooring Options
There are three main considerations when choosing the type of hardwood floor you wish installed in your home. These choices pertain to whether or not the wood is solid or engineered, what particular species of wood you are looking for, and whether you want the wood floors installed in a finished or unfinished state. Let’s examine all three choices and the pros and cons of each more closely.
Solid vs. Engineered Types of Hardwood
While there are many species of hardwood, there are only two main types of hardwood flooring, engineered and solid hardwood.
Solid hardwood flooring
is exactly what it sounds like — solid planks of wood cut from a specific type of tree. Solid hardwood flooring is the more traditional type of hardwood and it’s the one that most people envision when the word hardwood comes up. Some of the benefits of solid wood hardwood are that it’s highly durable and has the ability to last decades if maintained properly.
If you decide your preference is for solid wood, there are several things you need to know. While it can be sanded and refinished repeatedly over the course of time, real wood has a susceptibility to potential problems related to exposure to moisture and humidity. This can be remedied by finishing the wood, however, and by not laying it in bathrooms, laundry rooms or basements.
Engineered hardwood flooring
is a more modern, optimized type of hardwood flooring that has been developed to mitigate some of the disadvantages of solid hardwood. For example, engineered flooring types cope better in damp environments. Engineered hardwood flooring
consists of several wood layers with a top layer of hardwood. The layers give engineered hardwood its ability to expand and contract again without sustaining damage.
Engineered hardwood floors are quite different in that they are manufactured as a composite between real wood and a veneer of real wood. The structural integrity of the wood combined with the protection offered by the veneer means you can lay it anywhere—even areas susceptible to moisture and humidity.
Continue reading to learn more about all types of hardwood flooring or give Carpet To Go a call to speak with a flooring specialist.
Best Types Of Hardwood Flooring (By Tree)
Here is a list of some of the most popular types of hardwood flooring species. If you have any questions about how to find the best types of hardwood flooring for your home, give our team of flooring experts a call today.
If you’re in search of warm, traditional hardwood flooring, oak is the way to go. Oak has traditionally been used in homes that emphasize a warm-toned, cozy aesthetic.
If you’re opting for an oak hardwood floor
, you have the choices of red or white oak with each bringing its own unique aesthetic flair to your interior.
A glossy, luxurious hardwood flooring type, cherry wood comes in a variety of different hues including black, red, and softer hues.
One of the benefits of cherry hardwood is that it is naturally gorgeous and has a luxurious, shiny finish. The downside of this beautiful hardwood is that it is pricy and doesn’t fit into many budgets.
Looking for a rich, dark hardwood to bring contrast and moodiness to your interior? Walnut is the perfect hardwood.
Walnut is a soft, lightweight hardwood but is still durable. Walnut hardwood flooring
does well in living or dining rooms as it creates a stunning, bright, and luxurious interior.
Hickory is a mid-toned hardwood floor that’s durability is scarcely rivaled. Interiors that have hickory hardwood tend to have a cozy, rustic ambiance.
is good for any type of home and is an excellent choice for families and homeowners with indoor pets.
Maple hardwood flooring
is one of the lighter-toned hardwoods and is characterized by its unique grain pattern. It is one of the hardest types of hardwood flooring and is extremely durable.
Maple hardwood is also one of the most affordable types of hardwood and is an excellent choice for homeowners with pets and kids.
Finished Hardwood Floors vs. Unfinished Hardwood Floors
This can often be the most difficult decision you have to make. Installing hardwood floors that are already sanded, sealed, and finished at the factory is going to reduce the time spent on installation.
Conversely, if you’re seeking a particularly custom finish that you’re not able to find in finished hardwoods, you may want to have unfinished floors laid. This allows for the application of a custom stain before the final finish is applied. This can be helpful in situations where you are seeking to match the color of certain pieces of furniture or an existing floor in your home. Because this type of flooring is stained and finished after installation, it also aids in aiding in its resistance to moisture.
Types Of Hardwood Flooring Finishes
Here are some of the most common types of hardwood flooring finishes:
- Water-Based Polyurethane
- Oil-Based Polyurethane
- Moisture-Cure Urethane
- Penetrating Oil Sealer
- Acid-Cured Finish
- Aluminum Oxide
Bear in mind that there are pros and cons to each of these types of hardwood flooring finishes. Please give one of our flooring experts a call to discuss the type of hardwood flooring finishes in greater detail.
Types Of Hardwood Flooring: How To Know Which To Choose
Now that you’re more familiar with the types of hardwood flooring, how do you go about actually choosing one?
Hardwood flooring preferences are extremely subjective and personal. Only you truly understand your aesthetic tastes, practical preferences, and budget needs.
You should choose a hardwood flooring that has a tone that you find aesthetically pleasing and one that also matches your interior style.
While choosing hardwood flooring, you should also not neglect the practical needs of your household (make sure that you’re factoring in yours and your family’s practical needs).
Looking for Hardwood Flooring Today?
Here at Carpet To Go, we are proud to offer a huge selection of different types of hardwood flooring. We’d be happy to help you find the right flooring for you and offer our installation services to you as well.
If you have any questions about the different types of hardwood flooring or Carpet To Go’s installation services or flooring selection
, give us a call today