Although hardwood flooring has effective UV inhibitors in its pre-finish, it is normal for hardwood floors that are exposed to sunlight to darken over a period of time. To eliminate the obvious tone differences, it is best to rotate rugs and furniture so the flooring recieves an equal amount of sunlight. Any differences in light exposure are faster in the first few months, therefore when furniture and rugs are moved the floor will catch up in color change.
It is important to implement a regular maintenance routine, as well at the use of throw rugs and felt protectors under the legs of furniture. Walk off mats at the entrance of your front door will make a substantial difference in keeping dirt and debris from damaging your floors.
- The Quarter Round molding is used to hide the expansion gap left around walls during installation.
- The T molding is used as a threshold in doorways or as a transition strip where the hardwood flooring meets floor or carpet of similar height. T moldings can also be used to change the direction in which the floor is laid as well as creating expansion gaps in rooms of larger than acceptable space for floating floors.
- Reducer mouldings are used when a small transition is needed from one finished floor surface to another. Overlap reducers are used in floating floors that require room for expansion space.
- The Stairnose molding is used to cover the front edge of a stair tread or step. These are usually available in a flush nosing with the top of the molding flush with the existing floor, and in an overlap for floating floors that require room for expansion space.
- The Baby threshold is generally used for joining hardwood to carpeted areas.
Hardwood flooring is one of the most popular types of residential flooring. Here are a few reasons why;
- Hardwood offers a variety of natural choices in species, color, platforms (Solid and Engineered), widths and installation methods.
- Hardwood floors are easy to clean and maintain.
- Hardwood floors are the healthiest of flooring choices, being hypoallergenic means there is no harboring of dirt, dust or mites. This makes hardwood ideal for those with health concerns or allergies.
- Hardwood flooring is the most economical flooring choice over time, it lasts a lifetime. In time if the floor requires a new coat of finish to bring it back to it’s original state, this can be done by a professional with minimal disruption to the home.
- Hardwood flooring enhances your home, holding it’s value and increases market interest should you decide to sell.
Prefinished hardwood floors are not meant to have any generic cleaners or chemicals applied. Today’s finishes are designed to keep their luster and appearance using only a “Hardwood and Laminate” cleaner. (See your retailer) Waxing or adding any type of other products can dull your finish over time and void your warranty. Although there are many commercials advertising sprays, swiffers etc. you can be assured they will not supersede your existing warranty when your flooring finish has a reaction to their product.
Engineered hardwood floors are constructed with a top layer of natural hardwood supported by a core. This core can range from a softwood filleted core, an HDF core or a multi cross plywood core. The purpose of this is to reduce the amount of raw material (ecologically responsible) in the top layer as well as increase the dimensional stability. This would mean during seasonal changes that may be responsible for humidity changes, you would not see the gaps that may occur in a Solid hardwood floor. Note: Engineered floors should not be confused in any way with laminated floors. Laminated floors are a photo of hardwood.
Solid hardwood floors are constructed out of a single piece of lumber, this going back to the time hardwood floors were first introduced. Hardwood floors were manufactured at 3/4 inch thick in order to be strong enough to nail directly over joists. Of coarse at that time hardwood floors were produced at much longer lengths. Widths at that time were much thinner as well. All of these floors were site finished by hardwood specialists. Currently Solid hardwood floors are produced in many different widths, thicknesses and species.
So is one better than the other? No, both have a fit in the right home. Engineered hardwood lends to many more methods of installation and are more stable. Solid hardwood is more traditional in construction and installation. It is helpful to talk with a professional when selecting your floor to see what is best suited for your home.
Yes, we invite you look at any home decoration magazine. You will see hardwood dominate all main areas of the home, hardwood has made an exceptional comeback in fashion for all the right reasons. Hardwood is the only flooring material that evokes an emotion, every hardwood floor one is individual and shows each homeowners unique personality.
Hardwood flooring can be used in both high traffic areas and kitchens. Kitchens became more popular for hardwood as great rooms became a significant part of home design. There is a continued concern with kitchens due to is closer proximity to water (dishwashers, sinks etc) due to the damage that water can do to hardwood. While this needs to be addressed in not running your dishwasher and leaving your home, or cleaning up spills immediately the main concern is not to have any standing water on your hardwood floor. It is also a good idea to have mats in your kitchen to help reduce dents or scratches caused by day to day accidents.
High traffic areas are generally less of a concern as most homes shoes are removed at the front door. The finish on you floor is designed to take on heavy traffic as long long as debris is left with your footwear.