Hardwood floors are considered as prized house features as they radiate that feeling of warmth and classic aesthetics. Hardwood floors have been around for many decades and a lot of these floors are installed in historic and ancient homes. That only shows how tough hardwood floors are.
But as with any other part of a house, hardwood floors are susceptible to wear and tear, especially to damaging calamities such as flooding. Such damage is intensified by the reality that hardwood is organic, unlike vinyl or ceramic flooring. Wood comes with a cellular structure that breaks down readily the than the minerals found in ceramic or the polymers found in vinyl. Wood becomes vulnerable when exposed to moisture. But with the right care and regular maintenance, a hardwood floor can retain its beauty and last for dozens of years.
Common Types of Hardwood Flooring
As far as categorizing hardwood floors is concerned, things become a little blurry. With the technological developments in hardwood floor manufacturing during the last decades, things have become even more confusing. Here is some of the most common type of hardwood flooring that are used today.
- Solid Hardwood
Solid hardwood floors are made with 100% natural wood from the inside out, top to bottom. It has no additives and isn’t modified, except for the pre-finished flooring types, which come with a urethane top coating that’s applied in the factory. The coating is just on the surface and the material under is composed of natural wood that is sawn from the most common hardwood types such as maple, oak, plum, and cherry.
- Engineered Wood
In contrast to the deep history of solid hardwood, engineered hardwood is rather new. Flooring manufacturers started laminating thin veneers out of true hardwood and placed them on the top layers of plywood. Plywood is over 95% of this type of flooring. The top, however, which is the visible portion, is 100% real wood.
- Laminate Flooring
The top layer of laminate floors looks like hardwood because it is a photographic image of true hardwood. On top of that image is a transparent layer designed to protect the flooring. The bulk of the floor below that layer is a fiberboard that is made up of resins and wood pulps.
These are the three most common types of hardwood and each has its own advantages and disadvantages. If you would like to know more about that, it is strongly advised that you talk to an expert in hardwood flooring Memphis. They should be able to provide you more information about each of these types of hardwood.
Regardless of which type of hardwood flooring you choose, there’s only one thing that you have to remember about it. You have to learn how to protect and maintain the floor so that it lasts longer than it should. For instance, you have to remember not to expose these floors to water and moisture. If there are spills on the floor, you have to wipe them fast. Use mats in areas that are prone to moisture. Be sure to keep the rain out by closing all doors and windows.