Whether it’s time to bid adieu to your current flooring or you are building the house of your dreams, choosing the right flooring is one of the most important investments you can make in your home. Imagine, for instance, the beauty and warmth of fine oak wood flooring and the value it will add to your home both in terms of resale value and the pleasure it will bring you on a daily basis.
If you’ve ever wandered into your local lumber store, you’ll appreciate how wide the choices in wood flooring are. You can opt for the inexpensive and easy to install laminate wood floors or go for the highest quality and most attractive solid wood flooring. If you’re looking for a high quality but resilient alternative that will stand up to the abuses of a modern family but also provide a beauty that closely matches that of solid wood flooring then engineered wood floors might be a better choice for you.
If you are concerned with the environmental impact of the lumber or wood substitute that you will be using for your flooring, be sure to ask for its environmental profile provided by the distributor. All providers should be able to give you a reasonably detailed report about the greenness of the material they sell. Reclaimed wood floor lumber is an option for those concerned with reducing their environmental footprint. It is made from other recycled wood and can have a smaller environmental impact than other sources of flooring wood.
Care and maintenance is important when dealing with real wood flooring. Care should be exercised in avoiding moisture and accidental scratching. Both solid and engineered wood can be repaired through sanding and refinishing but since engineered wood has only a top layer of real wood, it can only be sanded and refinished a few times. Solid wood has far more leeway in this regard. A properly refinished wood floor is indistinguishable from a new one giving real hardwood floors a lifespan up to 100 years for solid wood and 30-40 for most engineered woods. Nevertheless, engineered wood is superior to solid wood in its strength, resiliency, and resistance to warping due to moisture levels. For floors that will handle significant traffic, children, moisture, or other damaging elements, engineered wood can provide a less expensive and often just as attractive option as solid wood floors.
If the cost of solid and engineered wood flooring and the expense of installing them are beyond your budget, you should consider laminate wood flooring. Although a wood laminate floor will not really fool too many people into believing you have a real wood floor, the benefits of a virtually maintenance free, easily replaceable, water resistant, and wear resistant flooring with a decently attractive wood design often outweigh its artificial wood-like appearance