City J. Hardwood Floors specializes in the installation of quality unfinished hardwood flooring, prefinished hardwood flooring, engineered wood flooring, and wood laminate flooring. We pride ourselves on working with our customers to help select the best style, material and finish for a beautiful floor that meets the customer’s taste and budget.
There are many things to consider when installing a new floor and we are here to help.
Here are some wood flooring facts to consider:
There is a variety of wood flooring options to choose from including:
Hickory is the hardest wood used for hardwood flooring and therefore hickory flooring is considered the most durable and well-suited for high traffic areas. Hickory wood floor planks feature large variations in color from plank to plank, therefore hickory wood floors are best suited for rustic or country styles.
Maple is also a hard wood and therefore maple hardwood flooring is considered durable, although not as durable as hickory. Maple wood floor planks do not have a lot of variation in color or pattern and therefore complement a large variety of styles.
Oak is a hard wood. Oak flooring is durable and suitable for high traffic areas. Oak hardwood flooring comes in two varieties, white oak and red oak. White oak hardwood flooring is harder than red oak and therefore slightly more durable. Red oak hardwood flooring is the most common hardwood flooring choice today. Both varieties complement a wide range of design styles.
Walnut is a semi-hard wood. Walnut hardwood flooring is best in medium to low traffic areas. Walnut hardwood flooring because of its color and pattern complements a sophisticated design style.
Cherry is considered softer than other woods. Cherry hardwood flooring is not as durable, and it has a tendency to darken if exposed to direct sunlight. Cherry wood flooring is best suited for low traffic areas.
All solid hardwood flooring including unfinished hardwood flooring and prefinished hardwood flooring comes in various thicknesses.
Hardwood floor planks are available in thicknesses that range between 5/16” and 3/4”. Generally, the thicker the wood floor plank the more durable it is and the more often it can be sanded and refinished.
Unfinished hardwood flooring comes as the natural wood color. Unfinished wood flooring is stained to match the existing wood floors in your home or to your preference. The installation of unfinished hardwood flooring includes nailing the wood floor planks to the subfloor, sanding the hardwood floors, staining the hardwood floors and applying a wood finish to the hardwood floors to seal them.
Prefinished hardwood flooring is already sanded, stained, and sealed. The installation of prefinished hardwood flooring involves nailing the wood floor planks to the subfloor and applying additional wood finish if necessary.
Engineered hardwood flooring is not solid hardwood. It is made up of multiple layers which can include resin, and polymers. Engineered hardwood is then topped with a thin layer of real hardwood. Unlike solid hardwood flooring, engineered hardwood floors can’t be sanded and refinished multiple times and therefore are not as durable as solid hardwood.
According to most engineered hardwood flooring manufacturers engineered hardwood floors can be refinished up to 3 times. However, practically speaking it is not recommended to refinish engineered hardwood floors more than once.
Engineered hardwood flooring installation is different from solid hardwood flooring installation in that unlike solid hardwood, engineered hardwood floor planks are not nailed to the subfloor. Instead they are fitted and snapped together. An engineered hardwood floor therefore is a “floating floor,” because it is not physically attached to the floor beneath. Engineered hardwood flooring is a good option for basements and other areas where there is moisture because engineered hardwood floors can withstand higher humidity.
Wood laminate flooring truly is fake wood flooring. Unlike engineered hardwood flooring which contains a thin layer of solid hardwood, laminate wood flooring does not contain any hardwood. Wood laminate floor boards are made up of a particle board wood base topped by an image layer. The image is a digitally enhanced photo of a natural material such as solid hardwood.
Wood laminate flooring is versatile because it comes in many colors, lengths and widths. However it is not as durable as hardwood because it can’t be refinished and it is easily damaged by water. It also can’t compare to the beauty of real solid hardwood floors.