Once upon a time, the most common type of flooring to see in a home was carpet, but that tradition is no more. These days you can find everything from painted concrete to patterned tiles to floating floorboards, and a few others. When it comes to deciding on which type of flooring you want in your home, whether a new home or a renovation of an existing one, it pays to know what the current trends of interior flooring are, and that's the type of information you can find here. Whether you need to find new flooring or you just want to keep abreast of current trends, these posts will be updated often.
If you are looking to install timber flooring, you might come across two types of timber flooring namely solid/natural hardwood flooring and engineered hardwood flooring. The reason you might mostly come across engineered oak flooring is that oak trees are easier to come by than other hardwoods.
Why Not Softwood Floors?
If you take into account the traffic that flooring bears, softwoods would wear quicker than hardwood, meaning you would need to change out your flooring planks frequently. It also means that you might run through your hard-earned money over time replacing the floor planks (which is not economical).
Solid/Natural Hardwood Flooring
These are thick planks of hardwood trees, which are treated to make them withstand harsh environmental conditions that could cause damage to them. The harsh conditions may include moisture, hot temperature, cold temperature and insect attack.
These are thin pieces of a hardwood tree (like oak), which are placed between plywood and treated to withstand the harsh conditions mentioned above. The main reason for manufacturing engineered flooring is to eliminate the weaknesses of natural hardwood flooring.
You might hear your timber floor installation contractor inform you that you can't install natural hardwood flooring in particular rooms because of problems with moisture and cold and hot temperatures. You will even see timber floor installers measuring the moisture content and the surrounding temperature of your subfloor before installing your timber floors.
In such rooms, you can use engineered flooring because it has been manufactured to accommodate different temperatures and moisture levels (does not expand and contract as much as natural hardwood). Engineered flooring is cheaper than natural hardwood, which makes it more attractive.
The only downside to installing engineered flooring is that if there is too much traffic or events that lead to floor damage, either through impact or scratches, you might need to carry out sanding frequently. Engineered hardwoods can only accommodate a few sanding times when compared to natural hardwood flooring.
Timber Floor Installation
Regardless of whether you are installing engineered or natural hardwood, try as much as possible to hire a professional timber floor installer. Don't try any DIY skills when it comes to timber floor installation. As you read above, floor installers take temperature and moisture readings. If you do not know how to do this and match the readings to the type of timber floor you want to install, you might make a costly mistake. Also, you do not want to leave gaps between timber planks that may let spilled fluids ingress into your floor; this leads to rotting.
For more information about engineered oak flooring, contact a flooring service.