Different Types of Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood is the obvious choice in flooring for many homeowners.  Its versatility allows it to go well with any home décor and its warmth achieves the ‘home feel’ that many people seek.  When choosing a wood flooring, there is much to be considered.  Here, we’ve outlined different types, styles, and species of wood and how they can fit into your home. 

Types

 
Solid

When most people think of wood floors, they automatically imagine solid wood panels.  Solid wood floors are exactly as they sound; they are pure wood from end to end.  Normally, sizes range anywhere from 3/8” to ¾”, but custom sizes might also be available. 

Solid hardwood is nice because it gives the owner the most versatility out of all wood options.  With thicker panels and more wood to work with, the floor can be sanded down and refinished up to five times. 

Acrylic Impregnated

If you have a high traffic area in your home that is prone to damage, then this type of wood flooring is for you.  With this hardwood, acrylics are injected into the planks, which add to its durability.  We often see this hardwood in commercial buildings, as well as restaurants and bathrooms.

Maybe one of acrylic impregnated flooring’s downfalls is that it can never be refinished.  The acrylic and color is throughout the entire plank, making changing the stain impossible.  However, easy maintenance and durability far outweigh any negatives.

Engineered

Engineered wood flooring is real wood, but can withstand changes in temperature and moisture more gracefully than solid.  Engineered wood is constructed by pressing and gluing layers of wood together. Unlike solid, the grains run in different directions, to ensure stability. We often see this type of flooring in areas that are subjected to moisture.  

Engineered floors are also popular because they are neat and often come pre-finished.  You can pick out your “stain” and easily install them over your existing flooring.  No nails, sanding, or stains are required and the entire process can take less than a day. 

Species

The species available for wood floors are endless, and choosing one is up to the personal tastes of the homeowner.  Some species already have a rich, warm coloring and don’t require stain, while some are a blank canvas and lend well to different colors.  Of course, different species will vary in prices, depending on their availability and origination.

All species have their advantages and disadvantages, but some are more pronounced than others.  Darker woods, like Wenge or Purpleheart, are very pigmented and their colors might seep into any surrounding fixtures.  If you’re looking for luxury, Cherry, Walnut, or Mahogany are all pricier, but add a sense of elegance to your home. Species can also greatly vary in their grain and natural designs.  Tigerwood and Zebra both have very unique grain patterns that can add new life to an old room. 

Styles

The style in which the hardwood flooring is installed can greatly impact its overall look in a room. Classic, thin strips help a small room appear bigger, and larger planks will decrease the amount of seams visible.  Additionally, wood strips can be arranged in a multitude of ways. Basket weave, herringbone, and parquet are all designs that add an extra design element to hardwood floors.

Parquet Design

Herringbone Design

When choosing hardwood floors, homeowners or interior designers have plenty of variety and options to choose from.  There’s no doubt that any look desirable can be brought to life through the use of hardwood floors.