WHY HARDWOOD?

Hardwood is one of the longest running choices and still one of the fastest growing floor covering options. The natural characteristics of wood add depth and a visual appearance to any area of your home.. Hardwood flooring styles, species  and applications are more diverse than ever. Manufacturer's are now producing better quality finishes and superior constructions to make hardwood a great choice in any area. The result of those advancements is that wood floors can now be installed throughout the home and over a wide variety of sub-floors. Rich, inviting hardwood floors can add value to your home at resale time

  • Historically popular flooring option
  • Adds warmth and character to any room
  • Adds value to your home at resale time
  • More styles, species and textures to choose from than ever before
  • Factory finished make hardwood flooring more durable and reduce maintenance

 

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HOW IT'S MADE

Knowing how hardwood floors are constructed can be very advantageous. It enables you to understand the product’s materials right from the beginning. Remember that these are materials you will be living with, and on, should you choose to have our hardwood flooring installed in your home. There are 2 basic types of hardwood floors on the market today

Type 1: Engineered Hardwood:

  • Engineered wood flooring is built up of layers of wood.
  • It can consist of anywhere between three to ten layers, called plies, that are glued together.
  • This multi-ply structure gives engineered wood superior stability than solid wood,
  • This engineered construction also reduces concerns associated with shrinking and expanding when temperature and humidity change.
  • Engineered wood can be installed below ground level making it a great choice for finished basements.
  • Factory finished and ready for the installation right out of the carton
  • Finishes are more durable and consistent than on site finishes
  • Typical installation of engineered hardwood flooring is either glue down or "floating"

Type 2: Solid Hardwood:

  • Solid wood flooring is 100% hardwood milled from lumber.
  • As a natural material, hardwood reacts to changes in its setting, like moisture and extreme temperatures, which cause solid wood to shrink or expand.
  • All solid hardwood can be sanded and refinished numerous times if needed over the years.
  • Solid hardwood is not recommended for installation below ground level or in bathrooms.
  • Can be factory finished or on-site finished
  • On site finish can create a more custom look and feel
  • Installation methods for solid hardwood can include, nail down, glue down or staple down

 

 

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HARDWOOD STYLES

Color

  • Color options today are greater than ever before
  • Color is dependent on species, stain and finishes
  • Hardwood floors age gracefully, so mild color changes will occur over time

Species

  • The differences in wood species are as fascinating as the locations they originate
  • You can choose from many species, all of which create that unique look you desire
  • Pronounced grain like oak
  • Fine, straight grain of maple
  • Dark elegance of walnut to the bright, warm tones of ash.

Hardness

  • The industry uses a Janka test to measure the relative "hardness" of different species. This test measures the force needed to embed a .444 inch steel ball to half its diameter in a piece of wood
  • The higher the number the harder the wood
  • This test is a general guide when comparing various species
  • Construction and finish are also important factors in the durability and ease of maintenance of each product

WOOD SPECIES HARDNESS RATING

This list represents just some of the many options available. Visit or contact any NFA dealer to find out more.

  • Douglas Fir 660
  • Southern Yellow Pine (shortleaf) 690
  • Southern Yellow Pine (longleaf) 870
  • Black Cherry 950
  • Teak 1000
  • Black Walnut 1010
  • Heart Pine 1225
  • Yellow Birch 1260
  • Red Oak(Northern) 1290
  • American Beech 1300
  • Ash 1320
  • White Oak 1360
  • Australian Cypress 1375
  • Hard maple1450
  • Wenge 1620
  • African Pedauk 1725
  • Hickory 1820
  • Pecan 1820
  • Purpleheart 1860
  • Jarrah 1910
  • Merbau 1925
  • Santos Mahogany 2200
  • Mesquite 2345
  • Brazilian Cherry 2350

Widths

  • Hardwood flooring can come in either strips or planks
  • Strips refers to boards that are less than 3" in width
  • Planks refer to boards that are 3" in width or greater
  • Wide planks are great for large rooms, but may be too overpowering for small areas

Edge Detail

  • Square edge: edges all meet squarely for a uniform, smooth surface (contemporary and formal)
  • Eased edge: boards slightly beveled to length and/or the end joints, hides irregularities, plank heights, also called micro-beveled edge
  • Beveled edge: distinctive groove highlighting each individual plank

Gloss

  • Whether you choose high-gloss or low-gloss, neither will affect the durability or performance of hardwood flooring.
  • Low-gloss and light-colored floors can hide the minor scratches that can accumulate over time.
  • Higher gloss floors don’t hide scratches as well.

Style

  • From hand-sculpted, traditional or exotic, you’ll find a look you’ll love in today's hardwood flooring options.
  • Smooth finishes that enhance any sleek, sophisticated, contemporary décor
  • Hand-scraped and sculpted floors surface that create more casual, rustic look.

 

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MAINTENANCE

One of the main benefits of hardwood flooring is that they are low maintenance floors that require only a little more maintenance than sweeping on a regular basis to remove dirt. Cleaners are only needed when cleaning spills, removing scuff marks or major cleanings like spring cleaning.

  1. Place walk off mats at every door that are regularly maintained.
  2. You can and should vacuum your floors daily.
  3. Use the correct floor cleaner.
  4. Don’t assume that any household cleaner should be safe for your hardwood floors.
  5. Cleaners should be applied with a terry cloth head mop.
  6. Less is more. Use only a small amount of cleaner.
  7. Only use wax on floors with a wax finish.
  8. Wipe up spills immediately.
  9. For stubborn stains like chewing gum or candle wax try using a credit card.
  10. Use Technical Support.

For more information about hardwood flooring, or to schedule an appointment with an NFA member expert, click here.

 

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