Type of wood: Maple, Cherry and Oak are common wood types for hardwood floor because they are very hard durable woods. You can get these woods in many different colors and shines. The type of wood you choose also determines the grain in the wood. Exotic wood like Brazilian Cherry or Mahogany aren’t as hard, but are valued for their unique color and grain patterns. Softer wood such as pine is not a good choice for high traffic areas where children’s toys or pet claws can cause unwanted scrapes and scratches. Wood can be sanded and smooth with a very glassy finish. This can be a beautiful look for a home but may not be right for high traffic areas. For those more used areas of the home, a distressed look can add an antique character. Distressing the floor gives it a timeworn appeal right away, and keeps the noticeability of scratches and scrapes to a minimum. Wood used in flooring can have colors ranging from light to very dark depending on the type of wood chosen as well as the stain or finish.
Shape of planks: Board width and shape are an important decision when choosing your hardwood floor. Narrow strips of 3” or less are the traditional choice and they make the room appear spacious. Wider planks are used for a rustic, country or antique look. Matching the plank size with the unique color and finish you choose can be an important part of the design of the room. Parquet floors or floors with more intricate designs are wonderful for formal rooms or showplace areas like a foyer, or formal living room.
Type of floor: The choice between solid hardwoods, engineered, or acrylic impregnated floors will be made by the subfloor, use of the space and design choice. All hardwood floors are generally durable, but solid hardwood can more easily show scratches and dings. This is minimized by choosing a distressed finish. Solid hardwood does have advantages in look and feel. Solid Hardwood can be sanded and refinished as often as desired. On the other hand, engineered or acrylic impregnated floors are very durable, are less likely to show scratches and scrapes and are less sensitive to moisture and temperature. These floors are made by gluing several layers of wood ply together in opposite directions and adding a real hardwood veneer on top. Engineered floors or Acrylic Impregnated floors work best with concrete subfloors or places where there is a radiant heater in the floor. Your flooring professional will be able to help you decide which type of flooring works best in your particular area. No matter what your choice, remember preventive care and maintenance can keep your floors looking new for years to come.
Finish: The stain and protective coating on a floor not only protect the surface but also add color and shine. Most commercial hardwood is finished at the factory, and allows for easier, quicker installation with no fumes and a manufacturer’s warranty on the finish. Site-finished floors offer a better seal, more uniform finish and a wider selection of colors, but will not be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty. Solid hardwood can be refinished over and over but engineered floors only allow a limited number of refinishing opportunities due to the thickness of the top veneer. However, engineered floors are generally more durable limiting the need for refinishing.
Where to go: If you are choosing flooring in Billings, Montana or the surrounding areas, make sure you go to Murray Floor & Window Coverings. Our professional sales staff will be happy to assist you in selecting your flooring and we will guide you through the entire process from selection to installation. With over 17 years’ experience, customer service is our pride and promise.