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What is Solid Wood Flooring?

Posted: 01 JUL 2002

 

When you think of solid wood flooring, you probably think of floors with beauty, warmth, and longevity.

Hardwood floors make an elegant and timeless addition to your home.

What is Solid Wood?

“Solid Wood” is a term used to distinguish between engineered wood and regular lumber. Solid wood is regular lumber. Most people consider solid wood more attractive than engineered wood, such as fiberboard, although the appearance of fiberboard is sometimes enhanced with a solid wood veneer.

Eco-friendly Solid Wood

Solid wood is usually significantly more expensive than engineered wood and solid wood is not considered an “eco-friendly” flooring solution. When selecting a solid wood floor, you can choose solid wood flooring that has the been harvested from a sustainable forest. “Sustainability” is the notion that society should develop while taking the environment into account, which means re-seeding foresting and limiting yearly deforestation. Look for Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified woods. Dozens of types of wood are produced in FSC-certified forests in which the trees are regenerated, biodiversity is conserved, and air and water quality are preserved. FSC- certified wood flooring comes in hundreds of different shades and styles.

Location, Location, Location

Solid wood floors

make lovely additions to a home, but there are several things to take into consideration before buying and installing one. Take the location into account. Location can make a big difference when investing in wood floors. Solid wood floors must be nailed to the sub-floor, adding to the cost of installation and making them unsuitable for use directly over concrete. So, you cannot use solid wood flooring if your room is on a slab or in a basement.

Moisture causes wood to expand and can lead to squeaking and buckling, which is a consideration for anyone living near water.

Solid wood floors are ideal in locations with relatively stable temperatures that vary only slightly.

Finishes

When purchasing a solid wood floor, look for those with a factory-applied finish. This ensures no fumes from finishing, no dust from sanding, and no waiting to walk on the floor. Another advantage to buying a pre-finished solid wood floor is that the aluminum-oxide finish applied at the factory is much tougher than the standard polyurethane. 

Finally, enjoy the beauty and warmth of a traditional solid wood floor in your home. Buy wisely, do the research, and you can create a beautiful floor and unique feature that will last you for years to come.