Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Kitchen Flooring - Hardwood

With its warmth and inviting tone, hardwood flooring creates a traditional feeling in any kitchen. Hardwood floors are known for their beauty and prestige and are sturdy surfaces that are easy to clean. One of the most popular types of hardwood floors is oak which is neutral in color and very durable. Other popular types of wood used for flooring are ash, cherry and walnut.

Hardwood floors come in two types: solid and engineered. Solid flooring is cut from single pieces of wood and worked into desired shapes. Solid hardwood floors come in strip flooring which are nailed to sub-flooring, plank flooring which has wider boards, and parquet flooring which comes in squares or geometric shapes to create different patterns.

Engineered flooring is created by laminating thin sheets of wood together in a crisscross pattern for strength. They are then topped with a veneer of hardwood to add strength. Engineered flooring holds up better than solid flooring when exposed to changes in moisture and humidity. This makes it a good choice for below-ground floors. Engineered hardwood floors come in strips and planks.

When purchasing hardwood floors for your kitchen, you want to make sure that it has already been finished. Pre-finished hardwood is your best bet for several reasons. First of all, pre-finished wood flooring is less prone to damage and easier to maintain than its unfinished counterpart. Secondly, it is more durable and will in most cases come with long-term manufacturer warranties. Lastly, pre-finished hardwood floors are offered in a wide variety of stain colors and can be easily re-stained to match future remodeling projects.