Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Maple Hardwood Flooring - 3 Things You Must Know Before Shopping

Maple hardwood flooring has been a well kept secret in the floorcovering industry. It presents a beauty that is hard to beat if you are looking for a lighter, natural, and bright colored hardwood. Maple may not be one of the hardest wood species used for floors, with a Janka rating around 1450, but if it can hold up on a basketball court, it should do well in your home shouldn't it? There are several things to consider when shopping for Maple hardwood floors.

1. Will you have the Maple wood flooring installed over a concrete or wood sub floor? By knowing this, you can decide whether you need a solid construction or if you can use an engineered designed product. A solid construction Maple floor can only be installed on a wood subfloor. An engineered design can be installed over wood or concrete.

2. Do you want a superior factory finish or are you willing to sacrifice a better finish for the perfect color? A factory finish will provide many more years of wear and luster versus a custom in home finish and stain. Of course if you're looking at Maple, you're probably in love with the light, natural color, so the factory prefinished look should be a perfect fit for your room or home design.

3. Do you want to shop locally or online? A local, independent hardwood flooring dealer can offer a pleasant shopping experience with Maple wood floor samples you can see in their showroom. An online wholesaler or retailer will probably have better prices than the local retailer. Most online dealers offer free samples as well and usually sales tax is avoided by shipping out of state which offsets shipping charges. It's a decision you will have to make and one you will need to be comfortable with.

Monday, August 17, 2009

An Introduction to Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring is made from all natural timber and is offered in two different states: unfinished and pre-finished. Unfinished is when the wood arrives in it's natural state and it is sanded and finished on site when you receive it. However, these days it is much more common for this wood to simply be finished in the factory so it will be shipped to you ready to install. This wood will be either solid or engineered by one of three processes: rotary peel, sliced peel, and dry solid sawed. This article will provide a brief explanation of each of these topics.

When purchasing hardwood flooring, one of your first decisions will be to choose between solid and engineered wood. Solid woods often come in planks that are 3/4 of an inch thick. This type may be installed by nailing it down onto the wood sub floors. One thing to keep in mind however is that it is very susceptible to the effects of moisture and extreme temperatures, which often causes it to expand or contract. Engineered hardwood flooring uses layers of wood veneer instead of the single plank that is used in solid. This veneer will range in thickness. Ultimately this makes it less susceptible to temperature and moisture.

It is quite interesting how engineered hardwood flooring is created which is by three different methods, rotary peel, sliced peel, and dry solid sawed. The rotary peel method is accomplished by boiling the wood in water. Afterward the wood is peeled away with a blade creating a veneer which is then pressed flat. These rotary peeled woods seem to have plywood like appearance when it comes to the grain. One downside to this type is that it is more prone to warp back into its original shape.

The next method by which engineered hardwood flooring is created is the sliced peel method. This process is quite similar to that used in the rotary peel method, but the manner of slicing the wood is different. Here it is sliced from the end of the log instead of the rotary fashion. After this it pretty much follows the same process as in rotary peel. There are a few differences in the finished product however. For one thing, it does not have a plywood appearance and it is not as prone to warp.

Finally, there is the dry solid sawed method of preparing hardwood flooring. Here instead of boiling the logs they are instead kept in an area of low humidity so that the moisture is dried out from the wood cells. This style has the same appearance of solid wood flooring and doesn't feature any problems whatsoever when it comes to warping.

When it comes to choosing the type of hardwood flooring to install in your home, the decision is ultimately up to you. Each of the different types listed above has its own pros and cons, so weigh them carefully before buying.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

5 Types Of Hardwood Floors Popular Today

There are types of hardwood floors that look good in virtually every type of room. Before choosing a type of hardwood floor to install in a room, you need to learn about the advantages and disadvantages of the various types. There are currently five popular hardwood flooring types. When you know the hardwood flooring types that are popular today, you will be able to make a choice you will be happy with for years to come.

- Types of Hardwood floors: Prefinished

Prefinished hardwood floors have quickly become the most popular type of hardwood flooring. They are easy to buy and completely ready for installation. Purchasing is just a matter of finding a wood grain and finish that matches your home. In most cases, for installation, all you have to do is lay the floor panels down and make a few cuts to fit them as you reach the wall with each row of paneling. This is by far the easiest among the types of hardwood floors to install.

- Types of Hardwood Floors: Unfinished

When you put your floor together with unfinished hardwood, it is left to you to manually handle the finishing process. This means you will need to sand, buffer, stain, and coat the hardwood floor after you install it. This is a big time and labor disadvantage from the prefinished floor.

But there are reasons why you may prefer an unfinished hardwood floor installation. One of the best reasons for installing this type of floor is if you are planning on selling the building soon. You can then have the new tenants choose the color that matches their needs or desires before finishing the wood. If you install prefinished wood in such a scenario, you would face a choice of losing a customer or reinstalling the wood floor.

- Types of Hardwood Floors: Solid Wood

This was a popular hardwood floor type until recently. It is very hard to install and to remove. You can find the lumber for solid wood floors in the form of either parquet, plank, or strip. Strip is the easiest to install by far, but those looking for ease would do better with one of the other types of hardwood floors.

- Types of Hardwood Floors: Engineered Wood

Engineered wood is made out of multiple layers of veneer. These layers of wood are glued together with high quality glue. This design makes them very sturdy, as they benefit from the grains and features of each layer of veneer. Also, this allows you to use one wood at the surface to match your house, and higher quality woods make up the lower veneer layers.

For example, if you want a house full of birch furniture, you can have the surface layer of the floor made of birch, with sturdy oak layers supporting the floor. This combination would give you the durability of oak with the beauty of birch.

Engineered wood flooring can also handle a wider variety of climates. They are much more immune than the previously mentioned hardwood floor types to humidity, spills, and temperature extremes. This is why engineered wood floors are often recommended for basements where water is often prevalent.

- Types of Hardwood Floors: Acrylic Impregnated Wood

Acrylic impregnated wood floors are similar to prefinished floors, except that they are built with a special new process. The coloring and acrylic are put into the wood planks' pores under high pressure. The floor planks that result are very durable. These floors do not get as easily scratched as the other hardwood floor. They do really well in busy places and with frequent furniture moves. They are also much more resistant to climate extremes than the other types of hardwood floors.

Tag : hardwood,hardwood floors,cheap hardwood flooring

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

5 Tips for Choosing the Best Hickory Hardwood Floors

When it comes time to purchase and install the best hickory hard floors for your home or office needs, it is time to get some advice on what choices are best for you. The deciding factor is what you will want in the look, feel, and lifespan of your hardwood flooring. Knowing what you are looking for before hand, will save you countless wasted hours, and make for a cherished hardwood floor that will last a lifetime.

1. Finished or unfinished. When you are choosing your initial hardwood flooring, it is best to know if you want finished or unfinished planks. Finished planks are already smoothed, and often time finished planks are already stained. This does save you some time, and it can often save the installer a little money. However, many people choose the unfinished planks for their hickory hardwood floors because they get to choose the stain and finish after the installation.

2. The truth is in the size. When you are choosing hickory hardwood floors, you should consider the width of the planks. Common widths are between 4 inches and 6 inches, and increments in between. The wider planks may give the installer a shorter project time, but many people choose the less wide plank because it gives more stability and a better look to the end product.

3. Dark or light wood. This is forever the conundrum of hickory hardwood floors. Is a dark finish or a light finish preferred? Well, this is actually one of the true personal choices given the installer. The only true benefit of choosing a dark over a light is that dark wood tens to show signs of wear and tear better. However, many people prefer the beauty of the lighter, more natural finish to their hickory hardwood floors.

4. Engineered or natural. There are benefits to both types of flooring. Usually, most people choose engineered because it will not be as susceptible to moisture. This is great for moisture rich and humid areas. Since natural hardwood floors tend to breathe more, engineered flooring does not buckle or warp as easily. However, many people see natural flooring as the best and only option. Natural flooring can be installed carefully to make room for the natural breathing.

5. Finding the right manufacturer. There are quite a few manufacturers that will offer hickory hardwood floors. Finding the right one is a journey best completed before you even step into a store. Doing some quick searches within these informational pages will provide a lot of useful suggestions in finding the right manufacturer for your hardwood flooring needs. Of course, there are many opinions, but finding the truth in those opinions can be difficult. Go by your best judgment and no one else's. This will make you happy with your purchase, and give your hickory hardwood floor the longest lifespan possible.

Choosing hickory hardwood floors for your home or office is a beautiful decision made with knowledge and compassion. You get all the benefits of our experience to make your purchase as smooth as possible. Following these useful tips may not answer all of your questions, but it sure will give you a positive start on your hardwood flooring need

Tag : hardwood,hardwood floors,cheap hardwood flooring