More and more homeowners are replacing their wall-to-wall carpets with hardwood flooring. It is easy to see why. Hardwood improves air quality as opposed to carpets. It does not trap dust, animal dander, allergens or pollen so they are perfect for large families with children or ailing seniors. Hardwood looks elegant, is easier to maintain, appears more modern and lasts longer. Hardwood is a big investment no doubt, but there are other benefits too. It adds warmth, make your home look more spacious and inviting.

Hardwood goes well with almost any kind of decor. It is available in a wide range of colours and finishes. Weekly vacuuming is enough to get rid of dust and dirt. Spot cleaning gets rids of scratches or dents easily. In the long run, the investment in hardwood pays off better because there is no steam cleaning or regular maintenance involved. If you are looking for a natural, sustainable, eco-friendly finish, hardwood adds value to your home.

Hardwood is not created equal. It is available in a wide variety of colours, patterns and finishes. It’s often hard to choose the best flooring for your home.

Solid or Engineered Flooring

Earlier, hardwood flooring was available in thick planks of solid timber. Today, engineered flooring planks made of thin top layers of hardwood that are bonded to other layers to prevent the floor from expanding and contracting with weather changes. Wood moves in tangential, radial and longitudinal directions. Engineered hardwood restricts the natural movement of the wood. They are perfect for basements and apartments with concrete subfloors because they can be glued directly or over the soundproofing mat. High-quality hardwood is suitable for installation over radiant heated floors too. Solid hardwood feels more natural and absorbs more sound.

Prefinished or Site Finish

Prefinished hardwood is available raw, with a stain or topcoat. It is finished by a professional after it is installed. It takes less time to install because there is no need to apply colour or sealant. On-site finishing gives you room to customize and allows more control over the level of shine and lustre. It needs to be sanded after it is fixed so the finish is more seamless.

Select the Perfect Finish

You have the liberty to choose from a wide variety of finishes from oil to hybrids to site-finish polyurethanes. Oil finish gives the wood a soft, natural matte look. Spot-touch is easy.

Polyurethane finishes are more resilient to wear and tear which makes it ideal for families with children or pets. Polyurethane boards need replacing, buffing or recoating in the event of damage or scratches. On the bright side, harder polyurethane needs less maintenance.

Types of Wood

Oak is the most common because of its durability, stain resistance and natural grain finish. It is also cost-effective. Walnut is softer than oak, has an attractive caramel colour that lends more warmth. Hickory, ash, maple and cherry are other options.

Plank Width

Planks are narrow or wide in size. Wider planks appear more elegant and luxurious but are more expensive. Narrow planks look more rustic. Seams in wider planks may also look more prominent as the wood contracts and expands. Pick the wood type, grain pattern and plank width suited to your space. If you are unable to decide, just call professionals for an informed choice

Related: Flooring Buyers Guide.

Fairmont Flooring: Visit Our spacious Showroom at Whitby, Ontario

For premier hardwood and vinyl flooring, checkout out Fairmont Flooring at Whitby. We are the leading retail suppliers of high-quality custom cabinets, countertops, hardwood floors and many other products. For hundreds of affordable flooring and kitchen cabinet ideas for your home or office, check out our showroom. Call us to know more.