What are the Types of Wood Flooring?

Reed Plank. Suitable for Commercial and Residential Applications.

Solid wood flooring is made of one piece of wood from top to bottom and can be used in any room that is on or above ground. One of the many benefits of solid wood flooring is it can be sanded and refinished many times.

Engineered wood floors are also made of real wood, but include multiple layers, with the top layer made of high-quality wood. Because engineered wood floors expand and contract less than solid wood flooring, they are ideal for basement installations. While this type of flooring can be sanded and refinished, it cannot be done as many times as solid wood flooring.

5/8″ Unfinished Engineered Flooring in 7″ Width.

Composite engineered wood flooring contains real wood on the wearable surface only. The backing and core material may be made up of any type of composite material.

Wood floors are manufactured in almost any width. Some of the most popular styles are strip, plank and parquet. Each style is available in a variety of species, colors and widths, so choosing the right one is a matter of preference.

Strip flooring is less than 3” wide and often makes a room appear larger. Plank flooring is equal to or greater than 3” wide and often creates a more casual look. Parquet flooring varies in size and generates a geometric, non-linear look.

Wood flooring is made from hardwoods, softwoods, domestic lumber and a variety of imported lumber. Each wood species has unique visual characteristics and maintenance needs.

Source: National Wood Flooring Association

An Ounce of Prevention

Photo: Shaw Floors

To avoid scratches, put floor protector pads on the bottoms of the legs of any furniture that comes in direct contact with your floors. Avoid walking on floors with sports cleats or high-heeled shoes. But even if despite your best efforts, the floor becomes a toy car racetrack or dance floor, issues can usually be repaired.

When the floor begins to look a little dull, only use products recommended by your contractor, flooring manufacturer or finish manufacturer. Using the wrong type of cleaning product could damage the finish and possibly the wood.
Wood is a natural product that responds to its environment. During winter months when heating systems are running, wood floors will shrink, resulting in gaps between the boards. When humidity is higher in the summer, wood floors swell. This is a normal reaction that occurs from season to season, but it can be minimized by keeping your home between 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit and 30-50 percent humidity all year.
Maintenance Tip
Ask a professional if your wood floors could use a new coat of finish. Most scratches in wood flooring will occur in the finish, not the wood itself. A professional may be able to lightly abrade the finish and apply a new coat to restore the floor. Give MODA Floors & Interiors a call to learn more.

Tips To Help You Select The Flooring That Works For You

Photo: Shaw Floors

Your new flooring should reflect how you live. One size (or one color, for that matter) doesn’t fit all. Here are four tips to help you navigate the selection process.

1. Budget
Before you begin, you should know how much you want to spend. Also factor in cost for installation as well. Once you have identified your product for the square footage of space, your professional installer can provide you estimated installation fees.
2. Performance
Think about what you really need. What are your non-negotiables? Is this a space that is prone to spills and might benefit from a waterproof flooring option? Do you want this space to be beautiful, or is comfort your main objective? Whether it’s one or all of the above, there are solutions to fit your lifestyle.
3. Options
No matter if you base your decision on practicality or style and design, know there are suitable options available in multiple colors, textures and visuals across all product categories. Truly, there is something for everyone.
4. Color
Color makes the room. Pay attention to furniture and décor in your space and keep wall color and the overall color scheme of your home in mind as you select style and color options for your new flooring. Nothing is better than the feeling of a cohesive space – so pay attention to the details!
Source: MUSE magazine – Shaw Floors

MODA Introduces Virtual Shopping Experience

Life’s simple pleasures begin at home. Find your new floors from the comfort of your home using our new virtual shopping tools. See which type of flooring and color might work best in your room. View the video to learn how simple the tools are to use.

Maintaining and Changing the Look of Wood Floors

wood floor photo

Photo: Bona

How should I maintain my wood floors?

Routine maintenance for wood flooring is really very easy. Simply sweep, dust mop or vacuum with the beater bar turned off to remove dirt and grit from between the floor boards. Wet mops and steam mops should be avoided because excessive water and steam can dull the finish or even damage the wood. When spills occur, clean the area immediately with a dry or slightly damp cloth.

If the floor begins to look a little dull, using a wood flooring cleaner recommended by the installer or manufacturer will help renew luster. Avoid mass-market rejuvenators, polishes or restorers. If you are not sure which cleaner to use, visit a reputable flooring store like MODA Floors & Interiors for a recommendation.

Will I be able to change the look of my wood floors?

One of the advantages of wood floors is that they can be refinished, which makes them a great long-term value. A wood flooring professional will clean the floors to remove all contaminants and then lightly abrade the floor and apply a new coat of finish. If scratches are deep in the wood, or if there are large dents or damaged boards, trained refinishers will be able to repair the damage without affecting the rest of the floor.

The numbers of times a floor can be refinished will depend on the floor itself, the degree of repair needed and the skill of the refinisher. A professional refinisher will remove very little of the wood to make repair – generally 1/32” or less – while those without proper training or equipment might remove much more wood than that, which generally reduces the life of the floor.

Source: National Wood Flooring Association

What are the Benefits of Wood Floors?

Wood floor in bedroomWood floors offer great long-term value, are easy to maintain and add value to your home. When properly installed and maintained, wood floors can last for hundreds of years. Other flooring options that won’t last as long will need to be replaced more often at additional expense both financially and to the environment.
Routine maintenance requires nothing more than a broom or dust mop. Periodically, using a wood flooring cleaner made for the floor will help remove surface dirt.
Wood floors also add value to your home. Real estate agents report that properties with wood floors sell faster and for more money than properties without wood floors.
Wood as a building material has excellent insulation properties. It has 10 times more insulating capacity than steel or aluminum and five times more insulating capacity than concrete or cinder blocks. As a flooring material, wood retains warmth from heating systems, both from HVAC systems and radiant heat systems, increasing the overall physical warmth of the room.

Can I Install Wood Floors Myself?

Photo: Bona

Installing wood floors is a lot more complicated than painting your walls or replacing the hardware on your kitchen cabinets. Wood flooring requires special tools that you will likely have to rent. You will need to make sure the room you are working in is flat, that the subfloor material will work for wood flooring and that no moisture issues are present that will damage the wood long term.

You also will need to know how to center the room, how much space should be left for expansion gaps and how to work around obstructions like closets, fireplaces, bay windows, staircases and cabinets. If you make cutting mistakes, you may end up running short on your material and not have enough to finish the job.

For all these reasons, installing wood floors is not recommended as a do-it-yourself project. In the long run, you will save money and time by using a professional installer.

Source: National Wood Flooring Association 

Hardwood Floors Improve Indoor Air Quality

Hardwood Floor PhotoYou probably think a lot about whether the food you eat is safe. But how safe is the flooring surface in your home?
When it comes to flooring, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finds that hardwood floors improve indoor air quality. They don’t harbor microorganisms, allergens or pesticides that can be tracked in from outdoors. Hardwood floors also minimize the accumulation of dust, mold and animal dander, which makes them a healthy option for your child’s first steps and beyond.
Allergens can exist everywhere. Some are more common outdoors, like pollen and mold spores, while others are more common indoors, like dust mites and animal dander. All allergen sources, however, can be present anywhere at any time. And because the impact of air-borne allergy-related illnesses can be staggering – up to $17.5 billion in health care costs and more than 6 million work and school days lost each year – it makes sense to prevent and minimize allergy triggers whenever possible.
While outdoor allergens can be hard to control, there are ways to minimize the impact of allergens that occur indoors. Frequent dusting, vacuuming, and washing will minimize many indoor allergens, but these activities can stir them up as well. One way to prevent allergens altogether is to eliminate many of the areas where they can gather.
Flooring is one area of the indoor environment where the number of indoor allergens can be controlled. Certain types of flooring, such as carpet, are simply better gathering places for allergens. Small microorganisms, pollen, dust, dust mites, mold, animal dander and other substances tend to accumulate in carpet fibers. Other flooring types, such as wood, tend to minimize the accumulation of allergens because there are no fibers to trap these substances. Taking steps to minimize these kinds of allergens can result in improved indoor air quality.

Step-by-Step Guide to Finding Your New Floor

Wood Flooring Photo

Photo: Lauzon Flooring

Are you ready to update your home this year with new wood flooring? Here are seven steps to help you streamline the process.

  1. Determine where in your house you would like to have wood flooring.
  2. Establish a general budget range and desired timing for the project.
  3. Find a professional to help with selecting/ordering product and installation.
  4. Choose the type of flooring, design requirements and colors that are necessary for your project.
  5. Plan a time to have the work completed.
  6. Discuss maintenance requirements with your flooring professional.
  7. Enjoy your beautiful new wood floors for a lifetime.

Source: National Wood Flooring Association

 

What is the Janka Scale?

Did you know that each species of hardwood has a different level of hardness? Some common domestic species like walnut, cherry and birch are less hard in comparison to other common domestic species like maple, hickory and oak. The hardness of solid wood is measured according to a system called the Janka Scale.

The Janka Scale gives a good indication of how well a wood species can be expected to withstand dents and dings. The scale is determined by the amount of pound-force required to push a .444-inch diameter steel ball halfway into the wood.

Ratings for both domestic and imported species are included in the scale; however, none of these values apply to engineered wood flooring. While Janka values give a general sense of how hard solid wood is, other factors also contribute to the durability of wood as well. This can include things like how the wood is cut and the finish that is applied to the wood.

Durability

Paws and claws? No problem! Wood floors are designed to withstand the traffic of busy families, including man’s best friend. Wood floors are extremely durable. They can withstand the rambunctiousness of a puppy and still look beautiful for decades. Just be sure to pick a species that can endure Fido’s playful spirit, sharp nails and occasional accidents.

Source: National Wood Flooring Association