Custom Wood Flooring
Custom Wood Flooring
Dollar for dollar, there aren't many home improvement projects that enhance the look of your home and increase it's value like adding wood flooring. Wood improves the appearance of any room, and a top-quality, well maintained floor will provide benefits for generations to come. In fact, the cost of wood floors can be amortized over decades.
Wood flooring is easy to care for, and as a rule, it doesn't show dirt or stains. Another added benefit is that it's better for people with allergies than carpeting. If you have children or pets, wood floors are probably a better choice than wall-to-wall carpeting.
These days, the choices are almost endless. But basically, there are three kinds of wood floors. To determine which type is best for your home, you'll need to ask yourself a few simple questions about traffic and usage.
Solid wood floors.
Made from pieces of wood that are between 1/4" and 1" in thickness, solid wood flooring is the longest lasting, best-wearing floor. The boards fit together using a tongue and groove system, and are then nailed down to 3/4" plywood sub floor. Since you can't nail into concrete, solid wood flooring can't be installed over concrete floors without installing a wood sub floor, which doubles the price and raises the floor.
If you have a concrete sub floor, you're better off using engineered flooring.
As a natural product, solid wood expands and contracts along with temperature and moisture levels in the room where it's installed. So it's not a good choice in areas with dramatic swings in humidity or temperature.
Solid wood flooring is available in a wide variety of lengths, widths, stains, and finishes. If you're trying to match a pre-finished floor, choose unfinished flooring and finish it after it's installed. For most other circumstances, pre-finished solid flooring is a better choice.
One of the advantages of solid wood flooring is that if it gets scratched, stained, or worn, it can be sanded down and refinished. Depending on the flooring, you may be able to refinish it more than once. For families with large dogs and lots of traffic, solid wood floors are worth the investment.
Engineered wood floors.
To make engineered wood flooring, several plys or layers of wood are glued together. There's a base, a core, and a veneer or wear layer, which shouldn't be less than 3/16th of an inch.
Veneers thicker than 1/8" are usually sawed and look more like solid wood than thinner veneers which are often rotary peeled. Engineered wood flooring with a veneer of 5/16th of an inch or greater can usually be sanded and refinished once.
The grains of the wood used in the core are set perpendicular to each other, so engineered wood flooring is more stable than solid flooring. It won't warp and since it can be glued, stapled, or floated, it can be installed virtually anywhere.
Engineered wood floors are usually prefinished with several layers of urethane. And there's a huge selection of available finishes. When installed properly, engineered floors are virtually impossible to tell from solid wood floors.
Acrylic-impregnated wood floors.
Also known as Pergo floors, acrylic-impregnated wood flooring is even more durable than solid wood flooring. In fact, because acrylic resin is baked into the material, it's 300% harder. Because the stain is added before curing, impregnated wood floors are also pretty color fast.
The water resistance makes it a good choice for kitchens, bathrooms and other settings with a lot of moisture. And because it hardly shows scratches, it's also ideal for high traffic areas that get a lot of wear.
Impregnated floors lack the sophistication and elegance of real wood floors. But they are a less expensive, durable alternative that may be preferable to carpeting.
Custom Hardwood Floors Are the Answer For Truly Stunning Wood Flooring
Wood flooring is a classic choice to add elegance and style to any home. With their long-lasting beauty, durability, and sophistication, hardwood floors are an attractive option for just about every room in your house. But if you want a floor that really makes a statement, why not opt for custom hardwood flooring. You get all the durability of traditional wood floors with the addition of the unique splendor and dramatic good-looks of patterning, inlays, and custom finishes!
The most straightforward custom wood floors simply alter the way the flooring is laid. Rather than laying the planks parallel and perpendicular to the four walls of a room, your hardwood floor installer arranges the planks to form a pattern. Some standard options include diagonal and herringbone. Choosing a patterned wood flooring installation is a gorgeous way to create rich texture, and it's also a great option for attractively flooring an irregularly shaped room.
Another popular option for customizing your hardwood flooring is inlay. This process combines different types/colors of wood to create two-tone accents in your floor. Custom wood inlays are available as borders, motifs, and medallions. These designs are particularly striking when there is a strong contrast between the inlay and the rest of the floor; for that reason, rich purple heartwood, cherry, and other exotic woods are industry favorites. Depending on the type of wood inlay you choose, custom hardwoods can be used to accent the shape of a room, draw the eye to the center of the room, or just create interest in a large space.
An alternative to having a custom hardwood floor installed is simply to personalize your existing wood floor with unusual stains or finishes. Your flooring can be stained, dyed, or antiqued to create just the look you want. Some options include:
- Aniline dye coloration
- Oil stains
In fact, you can even get the look of inlaid flooring without the commitment through stencils; your hardwood floor can be colored to mimic the permanent look of inlays, with the color later being removed when the floor is refinished!
If you've been dreaming of an exquisite hardwood floor that stands out from the crowd, it's time for a custom wood floor. You'll love the beautiful designs, colors, and shapes of custom hardwood flooring. Contact your local wood floor installer to learn more about available options. Why settle for a plain floor when your custom hardwood floor can be a work of art!