Understanding The Difference of Hardwood Floor Types

Understanding The Difference of Hardwood Floor Types

homecoming-947-cherry-shaw-hardwood-flooring.jpgWhen talking about the types of hardwood flooring available, we tend to think of that basic 2 1/4" wide flooring that we have seen in our homes growing up. But to be honest there are so many species, classes, grades, and manufacturing processes that it just isn't the case anymore. Most of the hardwood used in flooring today is made from common American hardwoods.

Hardwood Floor Types:

There are different types of hardwood floors available to use in different areas of your home. Depending on the room and the aesthetic you're trying to achieve, you may find that one type of hardwood flooring is better suited for your project than another. Here are some common types of hardwood floor you might come across:

  • Solid Hardwood Flooring - Traditional hardwood flooring is comprised of a singular piece of wood with tongue and groove sides. Most com unfinished, but they are also pre-finished when buying retail.
  • Engineered Hardwood Flooring - Engineered hardwood flooring looks like solid hardwood flooring, but is made via a layering process where several plies of wood are glued together with a thin, decorative top piece. Engineered hardwood flooring is durable, easy to install and affordable.
  • Hardwood-Look Flooring - While technically not a category of hardwood flooring, wood-look floors are increasing popular. Wood-look laminate and luxury vinyl planks are not only durable, they're also affordable and ideal for DIY installations.

Installation Considerations

Different types of hardwood flooring are suited for different installations. Solid hardwood flooring, for example, is usually very sensitive to moisture. Solid planks of wood are usually nailed down over a wood type subfloor and are not recommended for use over a concrete slab or below ground level. If exposed to moisture or excessive humidity, solid hardwood floors have a tendency to ripple or bow.

The great thing about solid hardwood is the fact that it can be refinished and restored as many times as you want throughout its life. Engineered hardwood can only be refinished about once and wood-look flooring can't be refinished at all. Solid hardwood floors last the longest, with lifespans that are usually in the decades! In fact most people in their travels have probably walked on a hardwood floor that is a century old without even knowing it. This is the power of choosing solid hardwood over the others.

Kid and Pet-Friendly Flooring

if you have kids or pets, you probably want flooring that's durable and affordable. Engineered hardwood and wood-look flooring are both considered kid and pet-friendly as these materials are designed to stand up well to spills, scratches and regular cleaning. Wood-look flooring is also resistant to moisture, so it's better for use in humid climates. One mistake that a lot of homeowners make is installing solid hardwood flooring in a home that is located in an area of the country (such as Florida) that has high humidity summers. Too much moisture can cause your floors to buckle and cup, which is never a good thing.

Versatility is another Advantage!

If you're looking for a real wood floor that's incredibly versatile, look no farther than to engineered hardwood floors. These types of floors can be installed practically anywhere, including over wood sub-floors, concrete slabs and in your basement. They can be nailed down, stapled down, glued down or even floated over some types of existing flooring. Like engineered hardwood, wood-look floors can also be installed in a variety of places, though installation methods are more limited.

Understanding the different types of hardwood floors and wood-look floors available will help you find the right type of flooring for your needs. At Georgia Carpet, we're the experts when it comes to all types of flooring and we do our best to make sure our customers really understand what they're buying and why it's the right choice for their needs. Check out our selection of hard surface flooring today to find the right wood or wood-look flooring for your home.

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