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10 Things to consider when buying hardwood flooring

Buying a hardwood floor is a lifetime investment.  You will want to make sure you get the right one for your home.  Here are our top 10 things to consider when buying hardwood flooring:

 

1. Where is the floor going?

This is really important because you will want to think about the colour scheme and style of the room where the floor is going.  Hardwood flooring is versatile and can be fitted into almost any room in your home. However, if you want a wooden floor for a conservatory or room with large amounts of glazing, then you should choose engineered hardwood flooring. This is because it is more stable and can cope with the constant changes in humidity and temperature.

Cross section of engineered wooden floor

 

2. What type of subfloor do you have?

The type of subfloor can sometimes determine which type of wooden flooring you will need.  Usually you can install any type of floor over most subfloors.  Just be careful if you want to install over joists.  Your flooring must be at least 18mm thick.  Have a look at the following article for further advice: Fitting wood flooring to different subfloors.

 

3. Do you have underfloor heating?

If you have underfloor heating then you must use engineered wood flooring. Since engineered wood flooring planks are made up of multiple layers they are dimensionally stable.  As a result, they can withstand the continual changes in temperature.

 

4. How busy is the area?

This is an especially relevant point to think about.  The amount of footfall there is likely to be in the room should be thoroughly considered.  If it is a busy area, like a hallway or living space, we would recommend a durable floor like Oak or even Strand Woven Bamboo.

Strand Woven Bamboo (Natural in colour)

5. Do you have a budget?

If you have a budget, there are a few things that you may want to consider:

  • The prices of hardwood flooring can greatly vary depending upon the size of the plank, species of wood and whether you choose engineered or solid wood.
  • Generally, wider and longer planks of hardwood flooring are more expensive.
  • The thickness of the floor can also affect the cost, with thicker planks being more expensive.
  • Solid wood flooring is usually far more expensive than engineered wood. This is a result of more hardwood being used to create the planks of flooring.
  • The species of wood should also be considered. Prices depend of the rarity of the species of wood.  For example, Oak flooring is reasonably priced because it is a common wood to use for flooring, whereas Walnut, which is far rarer, is slightly more expensive.

 

6. What colour flooring are you looking for?

The colour of your floor usually depends on personal preference.  You should be mindful of the surrounding area though.  Think about the colour scheme and existing décor.  A light coloured floor can help to brighten up a dark or small areaDark wooden floors look fantastic in traditional style homes with lots of space and high ceilings.  Alternatively, a grey wooden floor will create a fresh and minimalist atmosphere to almost any space.

 

7. What style of flooring do you like?

Wood flooring is available in two main styles: plank flooring and parquet block flooring.  Plank flooring is the traditional planks of wooden floor. You can get varying widths and lengths of plank, depending on what you would prefer.  Alternatively, you could opt for parquet block flooring.  The smaller blocks of wood allow you to create beautiful geometric patterns.

Unfinished Oak Parquet Block Flooring

8. What finish of flooring do you want?

Hardwood flooring is available with different surface finishes.  Again, this is to suit your personal preference.

  • A lacquered finish, which is available in either a matt or semi-matt, gives a smooth surface.
  • An oiled finish, which has a slightly rough feel to the surface offers a more natural appearance to the floor.
  • A brushed and oiled finish has a more textured feel to offer a more authentic appearance.
  • A Hand Scraped finish gives a rustic and textured appearance. The boards have been hand scraped to give extra definition.
  • An unfinished floor is the raw wood. It must be sealed with either a lacquer or oil to protect the surface against dirt and water spills.

 

9. Do you need any flooring accessories?

Most new wooden floors will need some flooring accessories to complete the finishing touches to the room. We stock everything you will need, including pipe covers, door bars and beading.

Solid Oak Door Bar

10. How will you look after your new floor?

One of the most important parts of having a hardwood floor, is looking after it correctly.  You can easily protect it from unwanted scratches by using our felt protector pads.  We would recommend that you sweep your floor everyday to remove any dust or dirt.  Then use a Bona Spray Mop, which is fantastic at removing stubborn stains and refreshing your floor.  Have a look at our Wood Floor Maintenance and Care Guide for more tips and advice about looking after your floor.

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