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Different Types of Hardwood Flooring

Posted on: December 20, 2021
By: Mike Abatiell

Hardwood flooring is a beautiful design choice that never goes out of style. If you’re considering adding wood floors to your home or office, it’s important to know about the different varieties, so you can make the best decision possible.

Solid wood and engineered wood floors are both great options, but they each have their own pros and cons. The same goes for finished versus unfinished hardwood floors. You may think that finished wood floors are the only way to go, but unfinished floors can be a better option for certain projects. In addition to those options, there are many types of wood species to choose from. Each species has its own unique features, such as different grain patterns, colors, and textures.

Here at Abatiello Design Center, we know all about different types of flooring, including hardwood floors. Let’s dive into the details and figure out which wood flooring best suits you!

Solid Wood vs. Engineered Wood

This is a very important choice to consider since it affects many aspects of your floor.

  • Appearance – Solid wood floors are made of solid planks of 100% hardwood. Engineered wood floors have a core made of several layers of plywood, plus a hardwood veneer on the top and bottom of each plank. Due to their design, engineered wood floors allow you to enjoy wider plank sizes, various colors, and a larger selection of wood species.
  • Lifespan – With the proper care, solid wood flooring can last between 30-100 years. Engineered wood flooring usually lasts between 20-30 years. 
  • Durability – Solid wood flooring can be sanded down and refinished multiple times. Engineered wood flooring can only be refinished once or twice due to its relatively thin hardwood surface layer.
  • Heat & Water Resistance – Engineered wood flooring is slightly less susceptible to swelling and warping in humid areas.
  • Care & Cleaning – Both types of wood flooring are cleaned in the same way, and they’re quite easy to care for.
  • Cost – Solid wood floors are more expensive than engineered wood floors, but they last longer and can be refinished several times.
  • Resale Value – Since engineered wood flooring has a shorter lifespan than solid wood flooring, it’s worth slightly less when reselling your home. However, it’s very unlikely that engineered wood floors would be a deal breaker for potential buyers.

Unfinished vs. Finished

Hardwood flooring should always be finished so that it lasts longer, but there are two options for this: having it finished at the factory or on-site. Prefinished wood flooring is convenient, quicker to install, and can be walked on right away. However, unfinished wood flooring is a good choice for certain projects. If you want to apply a custom stain to the wood flooring before finishing it, then purchasing unfinished wood flooring is the way to go. If you decide to do that, the stain and finish will need to dry before you can walk on your new wood floors, so make sure to plan accordingly, as this will add time to the installation process. 

Different Wood Species

There is a wide range of wood species that can be made into hardwood flooring. They’re all beautiful in their own ways and lend themselves to different styles of décor. Here are our most popular types of hardwood flooring:

  • Oak – There are two variations of oak wood floors: white oak and red oak. White oak is actually a medium brown color, while red oak is slightly lighter and has a red tint. They both have an uneven texture, medium to heavy grain patterns that are generally straight, and they’re very resistant to scratches.
  • Cherry – Cherry flooring has a reddish-brown color that gets richer as time goes by. It has a smooth, closed grain pattern. 
  • Maple – Maple floors are a lighter, reddish-brown color, have a uniform texture, and a subtle grain pattern. They’re one of the hardest wood species, making this a durable flooring choice.
  • Hickory – The color of hickory flooring ranges from brown to reddish-beige. It features a distinctive open grain pattern with knots and it’s one of the most water-resistant wood flooring options.
  • Walnut – Walnut floors have a rich brown color, heavy grain pattern, and they’re more susceptible to scratches.

Those are the most popular wood flooring choices that we offer, but we have other options as well. If you’re wondering about a different type of wood flooring, reach out to us and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have. 

Our Team Can Install Beautiful Wood Flooring in Your Home

If you’re ready to enjoy the timeless look of hardwood floors in your home, Abatiello Design Center can help you out. Our experienced team will make sure your new flooring looks great, whether you’re buying a new home or upgrading the flooring in your current house. We’re conveniently located in Rutland, VT, but we also serve some areas of New Hampshire and New York. Contact us to schedule a consultation today!

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