This expert wood flooring guide will help you find the best hardwood floor for your money.
A hardwood floor is a classic feature for any house and remains one of the most popular flooring choices out there. The lasting quality, durability and style of a hardwood floor makes it an excellent option for a wide range of homes and spaces. Choosing a wooden floor is an important decision for any homeowner, and there are many different things for you to consider. There are many options available to you, from hardwood to laminate to engineered wood flooring.
Before you decide on what type of hardwood floor you want for your home, it is essential to do some research into the various options available to you. Every kind of wooden flooring has its strengths and weaknesses, and it is a good idea to look at which benefits are most important to you.
Real wood floors
Real wood floors are a classic choice and have been used for years to create a warm and inviting home. A beautiful real wood floor can also be a great investment in your home, making it more attractive to future buyers. Hardwood floors continue to be popular due to their natural finish and the vast variety of styles and colors available. The warmth of a natural wood floor is perfect for creating a warm and inviting home and it will go with a wide range of furniture and interior design schemes.
Because it is a natural product, real hardwood floors come with unique textures, grains and patterns, giving it a distinctive feel. You also have the option of a reclaimed wood floor which is excellent for the environment and adds a unique and historic appeal to your home.
The cheapest type of hardwood floor available to you is laminate flooring – a multi-layered man-made product that is designed to imitate real wood. The quality of laminate flooring has increased a great deal over the last few years and for a short-term solution can be the best hardwood floor for your money. Despite this, the repeating patterns of a printed laminate floor mean that they don’t have the natural finish and variety of grain that a real wood floor has. It is important to shop around to find the very best quality wood flooring you can afford with your budget. Though the standard of laminate flooring has improved a great deal, it is still obviously not real and doesn’t have the natural appeal of a hardwood floor.
Laminate flooring isn’t as durable as a hardwood floor so it needs to be replaced more often. It also will need to replaced if it gets damaged rather than sanded down like a hardwood floor. Laminate flooring is often much easier to install, with a snap in place installation system. Some options also have a durable top surface and built-in UV protectants. Laminate flooring is also highly resistant to moisture so it is often a popular choice for bath and shower rooms. However, laminate flooring is far more costly to repair than a hardwood floor, especially if it was installed using the glue down method as it cannot be sanded or refinished. Even if individual planks are damaged and replaced they can look out of place compared to the rest of the floor.
Engineered wood floors
Engineered wooden flooring is a newer flooring option consisting of planks made with a thin layer of hardwood bonded to other layers of wood. They are designed to create opposing forces within the board that restrict the movement of wood that happens naturally. If you choose a cheap option, then it can be a lower quality and less durable option.
Engineered wooden floors are often a cheaper alternative to hardwood floors but have a better look than laminate flooring. Like a hardwood floor, the top layer of an engineered wood floor can be sanded down and refinished. However, because it only has a thin layer of real wood you can’t do this as often as on a hardwood floor, so it will have to be replaced sooner. Engineered wood floors can be stylish and durable but it is important you get the best hardwood floor for your money as quality affects longevity.
Upkeep and maintenance
Hardwood floors can last for decades, and this can mean that you don’t need to replace it as often as other floor options, giving you the best hardwood floor for your money. You can also choose a range of finishes and treatments to protect your hardwood floor. When your hardwood floor eventually starts to look worn or old, you only need to sand down a thin layer to restore the original beautiful appearance. Hardwood floors can be high maintenance – they are susceptible to moisture and water leaks can be hugely damaging to them. It’s also important to keep up maintenance on a hardwood floor so that it lasts and keeps its stunning appearance. Solid wood flooring can be sanded up to 6 or 7 times and can last for a lifetime.
To find the best hardwood floor for your money, it may be worth looking closer to home. Domestic species can cost less due to reduced import costs. If you’re in the USA, species like White Oak, Maple and White Ash can be great cost-effective options for a real hardwood floor as they are domestic trees and don’t have to be imported.
Certain types of wood are more durable and hardwearing than others, and if you want to find the best hardwood floor for your money, it’s important to look at the Janka rating of the floor. This rating is a way of categorizing woods by hardness – the higher the number, the harder the surface. If you want a wooden floor that will last for a long time, choosing a really hard and durable type of wood from a hardwood flooring expert like Rhodium Floors can save you money in the long run.
Real wood is long-lasting
If you’re looking for a long-lasting and high-quality hardwood floor, then a real wood floor can be the best hardwood floor for your money. That’s compared to other synthetic options that may be cheaper initially but more costly to replace over time.
Hardwood floors can also be sanded down and refinished, which is far cheaper than replacing the whole floor which is the case with laminate. It is also important to consider what finish you want on your hardwood floor. Choosing a prefinished wooden floor can save you a great deal of time and effort, and you can also select an option that will increase durability, saving you repair costs in the future.