Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Hardwood Flooring Types: Taking a Look at Your Options


It's time to shop for new flooring, and you've decided to choose hardwood. You've likely thought about the wood species you'd like to use and have measured how much you'll need to cover your space. However, your choices don't stop there. As you shop, you'll also need to decide what type of hardwood floors you'll use.

Getting to Know Your Hardwood Flooring Choices

Hardwood floors have come a long way in the past few decades. Homeowners can now choose from dozens of different wood species and materials when shopping for hardwood boards. Different installation styles are also offered on today's market. Before you head out to shop, take time to familiarize yourself with these popular floor types so that you know exactly what you should look for.

Solid

This is the traditional choice. Solid floors are constructed from single pieces of milled lumber. They tend to be between 3/4 and 5/16 inches thick. Because they are constructed from single pieces of lumber, they can be sanded down and refinished many times.

Engineered

Unlike traditional, solid hardwood flats are made up of multiple layers, or veneers, of wood. This layered construction adds extra durability to the flooring and can help prevent seasonal shrinking and expanding. Because they are made up of multiple layers of wood, these types cannot be sanded down as many times..

Wide

True to their name, wide hardwood floors feature individual pieces that measure at least 5 inches in width. Also known as wide-plank flooring, this type has become increasingly popular thanks to its aesthetic value. They are available in an array of species and colors.

Scraped

For homeowners who want to choose hardwood floors because of their natural appearance, scraped floors are a great choice. These are carefully contoured by hand to show off the natural imperfections of every plank of wood. They are available in dozens of species and colors and are available in engineered and solid styles.

Distressed

If you want to have that lived-in look, distressed flooring may be the best choice for your home. These have been specially stained and treated to create a distressed appearance without undermining the durability or quality of the floor. They are available in many different species.

Floating

If you're looking for a do-it-yourself, floating floors should be at the top of your list. Each plank is fitted together without the help of nails, glue or expensive tools. The plank is then laid directly over the subfloor. This is a particularly good choice in moisture-prone areas as they can be installed over a moisture barrier.

Glued-Down

As their name suggests, these types are composed of solid planks that are applied over a layer of glue. Glued-down options provide for excellent durability, but they can be difficult for some homeowners to install. Opt for glued-down floors in areas that aren't prone to moisture for the best results.

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