Janka Hardwood Hardness Test
What Is A Janka Test?
The Janka Test measures the force required to embed a 11.28 millimeter (0.444 inch) steel ball into wood to half its diameter. This method was chosen so that the result would leave an indention 100 square millimeters in size. It is one of the best measures of the ability of a wood species to withstand denting and wear. It is also a good indicator of how hard a species is to saw or nail. What does the janka test have to do with your purchase? We've know how to use the janka hardness test to your advantage. Basically, determining the type of lifestyle where the flooring is to be installed is a good place to start. Do you have kids? Toys can be really rough on a hardwood floor. Is being installed in a business? Is it going to be installed in the kitchen where pots and pans will be dropped. The type of finish has nothing to do with how well a hardwood holds up against indentation. You could have the toughest finish, like ceramic, on a pine floor, and still damage the floor just by dropping your keys on it. Scratch resistance is different than Dent resistance. Its important to inquire about both the finish and the hardness. In comes the janka test. A good starting point is an oak product. Its not the hardest species, but holds up well when pots and pans are dropped. The harder the species, the more expensive it can be. Hickory is the hardest wood species that is domestically grown and produced in America. It typically cost 20% more than red or white oak. Its a balancing act, comparing price to quality, but Georgia Carpet has distributed hardwood flooring to thousands of happy customers. We want to help you get the correct product in your home our business. At Georgia Carpet, we carry many name brands of durable, hard coated hardwood floors like Mannington, Bruce Hardwoods, Shaw and Homerwood.
|Wood Flooring Species||Janka Hardness|
|Ipe / Brazilian Walnut / Lapacho||3684|
|Cumaru / Brazilian Teak||3540|
|Brazilian Redwood / Paraju||3190|
|Red Mahogany, Turpentine||2697|
|Brazilian Cherry / Jatoba||2350|
|Santos Mahogany, Bocote, Cabreuva||2200|
|Sydney Blue Gum||2023|
|Goncalo Alves / Tigerwood||1850|
|Hickory / Pecan, Satinwood||1820|
|Afzelia / Doussie||1810|
|Wenge, Red Pine||1630|
|True Pine, Timborana||1570|
|Sapele / Sapelli||1510|
|Hard Maple / Sugar Maple||1450|
|Natural Bamboo (represents one species)||1380|
|Red Oak (Northern)||1290|
|Caribbean Heart Pine||1280|
|Carbonized Bamboo (represents one species)||1180|
|Brazilian Eucalyptus / Rose Gum||1125|
|Black Cherry, Imbuia||950|
|Southern Yellow Pine (Longleaf)||870|
|Southern Yellow Pine (Loblolly and Shortleaf)||690|
|Eastern White Pine||380|
Hardwood has remained the on of the world’s most popular floor coverings for centuries and one of the most challenging parts about deciding on what hardwood to go with is not the look of the wood, but the hardness. The term hardwood is a collective term used to describe a variety of wood species. They come from trees differing in color, moisture resistance, grain and hardness.
The Janka scale actually rates the trees by measuring hardness. This is more complex than what it may seem. The test is designed to measure the resilience of the tree species by applied force. More specifically a number is assigned to the specie of wood based on how well it performs when half of a 0.444 inch steel ball is embedded into the wood’s surface.
There are variants, and depending on the position of the grain and board direction during the test, will be the deciding factor of the “side” or “end” hardness of the wood. When doing a side test score the pound force is applied perpendicularly to the grain, and this is the number that will be given to you as the Janka score. Higher number means harder wood.
Why do we test a wood’s hardness?
The whole point of the test is to measure the species resistance to denting, which is one of the most important factors when choosing the right hardwood surface for your floors. With high traffic, pets, and children being children, you can’t go wrong with being prepared for life’s little mistakes. Even the weight of furniture can dent a floor if it does not score high on the scale after sitting there for awhile.
When it comes to installing the hardwood flooring, this can be a great indicator of the level of installation that will be required. Typically the harder the wood, the more time and energy it will take to install, as softer woods can typically be nailed easily while harder woods will require pre-drilled holes.
Great to know, but it isn’t everything.
Many people tend to depend too much on numbers when it comes to the Janka score. It should be known that this score is not 100% accurate. It is more for a “ball park” value than a set in stone hardness rating. Although the hardness of your future floors are important, factors like finish and construction will directly affect the durability of your floor.