When a person walks into a home, store or office, one of the first things they see is the floor. This makes it important to have something that will match the over-all layout of the building and its interior design.
For many years, hardwood has been the choice of those who want the very best. It can be found in homes over 100 years old, still retaining its original beauty.
Fortunately, today this tradition is carried on with a wide variety of choices. This makes it possible to have hardwood floors that will be magnificent, retain their original appeal and reflect an excellent choice of wood and design.
Hardwood is just what it says ‘hard’. This includes wood such as oak, maple and cherry. Other types of wood used for this flooring include ash, mahogany bamboo, tiger wood, hickory and walnut. Exotic species, which are extremely beautiful, include mesquite, jarrah and teak. Today the majority of these woods are grown in a sustained harvest forest.
Hardwood floors are listed in four different classifications. These classifications include:
The most popular and long lasting is the 3/4-inch hardwood. This is a solid piece of wood that can be refinished many times over without causing surface damage or changing its appearance.
The 5/16-inch version is also solid hardwood but not as thick. 5/16-inch flooring cannot be refinished as many times as the 3/4-inch selection.
Engineered hardwood consists of real wood veneer which is glued to several layers of underneath wood, such as plywood. Because of the thin veneer covering, this type of flooring can only be refinished once or twice after installation.
Locking hardwood is another version of engineered hardwood. The difference being it is layered with a tongue-and-groove system, which requires no staples, nails or glue.
Hardwood flooring comes in a number of different widths. Some people prefer the wide plank type which presents more natural beauty of the wood. There are also a number of surface textures available. These include things such as smooth, distressed, wire brushed and hand-scraped.
The selection of the proper hardwood for a particular location depends on a number of things. First to be considered is the budget followed by the overall effect you want to achieve with this type of floor. Also to be considered is if you, personally, will be using the premises involved for a long period of time.
Next on the list is determining what species and type of hardwood will fit your particular requirements. Do you want straight strips of wood or wide planks? Do you want a design, such as a hexagon? This will determine the species you select.
Color is a big item when it comes to choosing the woods for your hardwood floor. As a rule, exotic species have such a distinctive color they do not need to be stained. Domestic woods can retain their original color or can be stained to match the surroundings.
Each type of hardwood requires special care when installing. Naturally, wood will swell when it gets wet so moisture is something that must be considered. Therefore 3/4-inch hardwood can only be installed over a plywood base if it is to be located where there is nearby dampness.
The 5/16-inch hardwood cannot be installed below ground level in locations such as a basement or on low-level concrete. However, it is possible to glue it on concrete at ground level or over plywood. Urethane adhesives are mandatory and moisture barriers recommended when gluing down this type of hardwood.
Engineered hardwood is moisture resistant but must be installed according to the engineered flooring manufacturer’s instructions regarding its moisture capacity.
Locking Hardwood, also called a floating floor, is also engineered. Although it has the added benefit of a tongue and groove system, a moisture barrier underlay is required prior to locking the wood into place.
All hardwoods should have a sealing coat of conversion varnish and wax to properly display a beautiful installation. Conversion varnish finishes are durable and can produce a clear or slightly amber color, depending on the wood. This helps make the floor more durable to everyday traffic.
A wax application penetrates the wood and hardens to produce a protective seal. This seal produces a low luster and amber color. Both conversion varnish and wax help make the floor durable and moisture resistant.
A test regarding the hardness of the wood, used for this kind of flooring, is called the Janka Hardness Rating. This is done by measuring the amount of power required to force a steel ball into the wood being tested. A high number indicates that the wood is very hard and therefore will resist indentations in daily use.
Test results are very important on the wood you choose. Naturally, the softer the wood the more damage you can be expected from daily use. That makes it imperative that you always ask for this information.
At Cesar's Floor Covering in Phoenix, we are happy to provide this rating when our customers are determining which type of wood would best fit their situation. With the many different types of hardwoods available we know that it is sometimes difficult to make a choice and we are prepared to furnish the pros and cons of each type of hardwood.
Proper installation is essential if a beautiful hardwood floor is to result. At Cesar’s Floor Covering Inc., we are proud to offer over 17 years in the business of helping individuals and businesses with installation of hardwood floors that show off the beauty of the surroundings.
In addition to consultation regarding selection and design, we are able to present expert advice regarding the types of woods that would best fit your particular situation. One of our skilled staff will be happy to view the area, listen to your concerns and put forth the best choice to meet your request, at no charge.
As a hardwood installation company, working in Phoenix and Mesa, Arizona, we are able to offer you free consultation and a free estimate, highly skilled hardwood flooring personnel, a wide choice of hardwoods, reasonable prices and scheduled installations that will not disturb your daily routine. Satisfied customers are the goal in all our floor work.
If you are thinking of installing a hardwood floor, give us a call today at (480) 733-1780 or visit our contact page at http://cesarsflooring.com/contact-us/ for more information. When working with Cesar's Flooring, you receive only the best in hardwood floor installation.