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The Pros and Cons of Hardwood Flooring

Pros of Hardwood Flooring

  • Hardwood flooring has been known to last over 100 years and examples from the early 1900's are quite common in older homes.

  • Hardwood floors can be refinished, unlike other flooring types that need to be replaced

  • Hardwood floors greatly increase the speed in which a home sells, over options like wall to wall carpeting, which is typically a slower sell (usually for less than the home is actually worth).

Cons of Hardwood Flooring

  • Hardwood flooring has a higher upfront flooring cost than other flooring options

  • Hardwood flooring is not an option for areas that may have standing water such as basements that are prone to flooding.

There are many types of hardwood flooring, ranging in length, width, and thickness; as well as wood types. The most common wood type is oak, due to its lower cost compared to more exotic hardwoods and oak trees being very common in the United States. Other great options for hardwood flooring include maple and cherry. Hardwood flooring consists of three different construction types: Solid hardwood flooring, Engineered hardwood flooring, and Laminate hardwood flooring. These three different flooring construction types look quite similar once installed, but are maintained differently and have different price points as a result of their construction.

Solid Hardwood Flooring

  • Made of one solid sheet of hardwood and may have joints milled into the outside of the boards for ease of installation.

  • Comes unfinished and finished, allowing for better installation in many areas and ease of replacement of individual boards if a board becomes damaged.

  • Can be refinished between 5 and 10 times over the life of the floors depending on the depth of damage, and can be rebuffed and coated to further extend the life of the flooring for decades.

  • Usually the most expensive flooring option.


Engineered Hardwood Flooring

  • Consists of plywood boards with a thin layer of hardwood veneer adhered on top of the boards at the factory. 

  • Can be refinished a limited number of times before the veneer layer is removed and plywood is exposed.

  • Can be as expensive as solid hardwood flooring.

  • Limited life compared to solid hardwood flooring.

  • Just as desirable as solid hardwood flooring.


Laminate Hardwood Flooring

  • Not actually hardwood flooring

  • Is a layered plywood, screen printed wood image, and a protective clear wear layer.

  • Prone to swelling if water gets underneath the panels.

  • Looks like real hardwood from a distance, but will not stand up to closer scrutiny.

  • Can drag down the value of high end homes.

  • Has the lowest price point of any hardwood flooring because it is not actually hardwood.

  • Best suited for apartments, and low to middle value homes, or homes that are not to be sold soon.

  • Cannot be refinished.

  • The most durable due to its thick wear layer.

Author: Wyatt
Wyatt writes informative articles for Carpet World Flooring Center and performs IT work.
Catagory: Hardwood


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