Wooden flooring may serve you for decades. Because there are cheaper options available (in the form of linoleum or carpet flooring among others), people may not prefer the wooden flooring. But wooden flooring easily lasts for decades. They are easier to clean, hygienic, and do not resist the under-floor heating systems. Some wooden floorings, including hardwood flooring, is naturally resistant to pests and termites.The repairs are easy (through sanding and sealing), while the aesthetics and beauty of wooden flooring maybe unmatchable.
Different kinds of wooden flooring may have its own advantages and disadvantages. A given type of wooden flooring may be better compatible with a given situation or have budget-related benefits, among other advantages. But before you actually choose wooden flooring, it is important to know about the types available. This will help you make a better selection in lieu of your aspirations and the underlying constraints.
Types of wooden flooring
- Laminate Flooring
- Engineered Hardwood
- Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF)Flooring
- Solid Hardwood Flooring
- Bamboo Flooring
- Cork Flooring
The laminate flooring is formed by compressing different/multiple layers of the fiberboards. Subsequently, a photographic image, which may resemble stone or wood grain style is placed over the fiberboard. A protective coating is added as the topmost layer so that the board and the flooring remain safe from scratches and other kinds of damages. The topmost layer may also add gloss,shine, and a suitable aesthetic appeal to the board.
Laminate flooring is very popular because of its cost-effectiveness. It can also be used in areas affected by water, as certain brands do offer the water-resistant laminate fiber boards. The Click-Clock variations can be easily installed as well and may be placed over an existing floor. The flooring may be good for the living room and living areas. If you wish to install them in the bathroom, look for the waterproof guarantee.
One disadvantage of the laminate flooring Is that it might get damaged by moisture. The area where the two boards/planks join undergo even greater wear. Once it is damaged, it is not easy to repair laminate flooring plank. But the flooring is good for decor and comes in a variety of designs and styles. The good quality laminate does possess the natural hardwood resembling properties and may have better resistance to adverse agents.
The engineered hardwood has the greatest stability of all the wooden floorings. It is manufactured by combining three or four different layers of wood, which are glued to each other. The plank thus made is around 14 to 15 mm thick. A real wooden surface is applied on the plank as the last and topmost surface. It is re-finished and also sanded a number of times so that all signs of wear and tear, chips, cracks and/or damages are removed.
The multiple layers bring more stability to the hardwood planks. Therefore, the wood can resist humidity and temperature variations better. Engineered hardwood can be expensive than solid hardwood flooring or laminate flooring. But it also has good attractiveness. Because the flooring is engineered, it has different styles of designs and forms to suit the décor better.
Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF)Flooring
MDF or medium density fiberboard is made by gluing the wood shaving,the small residues of both hardwood and softwood, and even certain organic fibers. It is also a kind of engineered wood and is very popular because of its low cost and design variations. The material is also pressure treated. Because the raw material used is cheaper, MDF fiber boards cost less. MDF can also take the form of veneered board, laminated board, and particle board. The density, strength, and hardness of these different kinds of MDF fibers boards may vary. MDF flooring can be aneco-friendlier option as it uses recycled wood. It is also an economical choice. Suitable veneers are added to the flooring that brings to it a range of styles and designs.
The disadvantage of the flooring material is that it might emit formaldehyde fumes that may be toxic. But in most cases, the fumes are completely dissipated by the end of the construction project. It may also swell in the presence of moisture.
Solid Hardwood Flooring
There are many different varieties of hardwood and therefore the durability and hardness of the wooden flooring may vary. You can check the Janka hardness number to know the hardness of natural hardwood or to compare it with other hardwood varieties. Hardwood flooring maybe around 18 mm to a maximum of 20 mm thick. It lasts long and can also be easily repaired. For instance, the flooring can be refinished and sanded multiple times, which restores its original beauty. The hardwood flooring also resists scratches,chips and cracks better.
The solid hardwood floors may increase the value of your property, whether it is a residential, business, or commercial space. It also improves the aesthetics and creates better visual appeal. Butone of the disadvantages of hardwood flooring is that it may swell in the presence of moisture. After drying it contracts and therefore the change in shape occurs. This may spoil the looks of your flooring and may cause other problems as well. Solid hardwood flooring may also be pricier than other options available like the laminate flooring. The cost may vary greatly within the hardwood varieties. Installation is complex and should be carried out with great care.
Bamboo flooring may be made in China and other regions of Asia, and therefore import costs are included in the base price when it is used in other countries. This makes them pricier. The flooring is prepared by pressure treating the grass stalks of bamboo. Because bamboo is natural grass, the flooring can resist moisture well enough.It is also the best option for those who are looking to go green. Bamboo stalks can grow fast and take much less time for their development when compared to the hardwood trees. Therefore, bamboo flooring does not cause deforestation.The flooring is softer when compared to other kinds of flooring material. It reduces the noise and you also do not feel any pain while standing on it for a long time duration. Bamboo flooring also comes in a variety of styles and designs. But the disadvantage here is that the flooring may be more prone to scratches and dings.
The cork flooring is common in countries including Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Italy, Tunisia, and other such regions where the cork trees are grown in abundance. Cork can absorb shock and therefore provides for a comfortable and soft flooring material. Just like bamboo, you won’t feel any pain while standing on the cork flooring for long time intervals. Lesser noise is created because of the dropping of objects and footfall. Cock is naturally resistant to termites and insects and does not cause allergy. If it is being used in other areas and regions apart from where cork trees are in abundance,it may be expensive. It is softer than other flooring materials and hence is more prone to damages,chips, and cracks as well.
As we can see, it is important to consider the footfall/traffic, natural, manmade and environmental conditions, cost and other aspects while choosing the right kind of flooring material. The leading flooring installers also use the right kinds of paints and waxes to make your flooring resistant to adverse agents (including sunlight and termites)and long-lasting.