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Facts & Questions

  • What are the benefits of hardwood flooring?
    There are many benefits of hardwood flooring including: an increased home value, variety of options and styles to customize the appearance, several installation methods, easy to clean and maintain, hypo-allergenic, warmth and durability.
  • What is the most durable hardwood floor available?
    Hardwood floors finished with multiple coats of aluminum oxide finish. While this will certainly help the durability of the floor, it is the hardness of the floor that will give the best indication of durability. Hardness rating for a true indication of hardness for a selected species: American (Black) Cherry 950 American Black Walnut 1010 Yellow Birch 1260 Red Oak 1290 White Ash 1320 White Oak 1360 Hard Maple 1450 Santos Mahogany 2200 Brazilian Cherry 2345 Brazilian Teak 3540 Brazilian Walnut 3680 Ebony 3692
  • What is the difference between prefinished and unfinished flooring?
    The prefinished hardwood floor is sealed with multiple coats of finish at the factory. The finish coats typically contain aluminum oxide, the second hardest substance next to diamond, to provide a hard-wearing protective finish. Unfinished flooring must be finished on site after installation takes place. Aluminum oxide cannot be used in the finish on site because the longer drying time causing the aluminum oxide particles to sink to the bottom of the finish. Site-finished floors usually are better at protecting against above floor moisture.
  • When ordering hardwood flooring how much extra should I order to allow for waste?
    It is best to order about 5 to 10% more than you think you need to make sure there is enough. Take a good look at the room layout and consider your skill level in hardwood floor installation before making a final decision. You will want extra in case of boards that arrive damaged or are damaged during installation. It is also a good idea to have some extra boards for future repairs.
  • What wood floor can I install over a concrete slab?
    It is not recommended to use a solid hardwood over a concrete slab because of the swelling and contracting caused by excessive moisture. Using an engineered hardwood is the best way to install over a concrete slab because it is much less likely to swell and contract. Thin profile solid hardwood (5/16” thick) can also be installed over concrete.
  • Is hardwood a good choice for homes with pets?
    While it is true many home owners who have hardwood in their homes also have pets, this type of flooring can be scratched or dinged by pet claws. A lot also depends on the type of the pets. Obviously, two Great Danes will have a bigger impact on a hardwood floor than a Toy Poodle. If pets will be inside, it is best to ensure that pet claws are kept trimmed. And, it is extremely important to clean up any “spills” immediately as these can permanently stain the wood. Consideration should be given to the species of the wood, as some species are harder and more durable than others.
  • Can we install a hardwood floor over a vinyl floor?
    This depends on the individual situation. If the vinyl is securely attached to the subflooring or has a strong cushion beneath it, it may be possible to float an engineered hardwood floor on top of it. Be sure to check with the manufacturer or seller.
  • Can a hardwood floor be floated?
    Engineered hardwood floors can be floated, but not solid hardwood floors.
  • How do I acclimate my hardwood floor?
    To acclimate the hardwood flooring, leave it inside the room it will be installed in, with the boxes open, for at least 5 to 7 days. This way it gets used to the conditions in the room before being used. In rooms where there are extreme humidity issues, it may be necessary to install a system such as a humidifier or dehumidifier to control the environment in the room.
  • How does moisture affect my hardwood flooring?
    Moisture can cause many different problems for a hardwood floor, such as cracking, cupping, and crowning. Over time, excessive moisture will destroy a wood floor, so it is suggested not to use excessive water to clean the hardwood floors and to mop up spills immediately.
  • What is an acceptable moisture content for hardwood floors?
    An acceptable moisture content runs anywhere from 4 to 18% depending on a variety of factors including the species of wood, where the wood floor is installed geographically, and the time of year. As a result, most wood used for flooring is kiln dried to 6 to 9% moisture content to assist in keeping it from getting so wet it contracts and so dry it shrinks.
  • Can we install hardwood flooring in the basement?
    Yes, but only if the flooring is engineered hardwood. Solid hardwood floors should not be installed below grade due to excessive moisture that will cause them to contract and expand.
  • Do I need a moisture barrier if it is above grade?
    Yes, as the barrier will help prevent water from getting to the floor and causing damage. Install the barrier between the subfloor and hardwood flooring.
  • What is the best way to clean my floors?
    The best approach depends upon how the floor is finished: surface-sealed versus penetration-sealed.
  • How do I handle stubborn stains?
    To handle stains, follow the manufacturer’s recommended cleaning guidelines. Use a damp cloth to blot stains and spills to avoid forcing any material into the wood. Avoid scrubbing a surface-sealed floor, as this could scratch the flooring surface.
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