Why do so many homeowners insist on having hardwood floors in their homes? They love the rich, warm look of hardwood and they feel the timeless solidity when walking on it. The story of hardwood – how it’s made and the many varieties – is fascinating.
Flooring specialist Marcus Cannon of Acme Brick, Tile & Stone has seen trends come and go, but he remains an ardent “fan” of hardwood flooring. “The elegant look of a hardwood floor can add warmth and character to any room,” he said. “The natural characteristics of this wood add depth and a visual appearance that other types of floors can’t duplicate.
“This type of flooring has also evolved. Today, our customers can choose from hardwood types with options while applications are more diverse than ever. Plus, as the consumer demand for hardwood floors has grown, so has the manufacturer's ability to produce better quality finishes and superior construction and installation of the floors.”
Recently, cultural researchers have seen younger people place a higher priority on “authenticity” in every product and experience. However, this preference for surrounding oneself with things, people, and lifestyle that are real has been around for centuries. This explains the once and future appreciation of a room that has as its foundation a gorgeous hardwood floor.
Hardwood flooring in your home changes everything. Click here and talk with a hardwood specialist.
Types of Hardwood Flooring
Hardwood styles are a function of the wood species available. Some of the more common species are red oak, white oak, maple, cherry, white ash, hickory, and pecan. Each species has its own unique graining and texture. The reveal of grain on the boards is determined by the way it is cut. There are two cutting processes. “Sliced cut” shows a more uniform pattern, whereas “rotary cut” displays a larger and bolder graining pattern.
“You can choose between a prefinished hardwood floor and one that is unfinished,” Cannon said. “Prefinished hardwood comes ready for installation in your home. The hardwood boards have already been sanded, stained, and finished at the manufacturing plant. In many cases this can provide a harder, better- protected surface.
“Prefinished floors offer a wider variety of wood species and save hours of labor and cleanup. However, unfinished wood floors allow you to have a custom job. You choose the wood species, it’s sanded, and the stain is applied on site. With unfinished wood you also have the chance to level the surface of the entire floor after it has been installed.
“At Acme Brick, Tile & Stone, you get finish warranty with prefinished floors that can range from 5 to 50 years depending on quality., but this is not the case with most job-site finishes.”
Popular Flooring Trends
Homeowners can choose from a wide variety of hardwood flooring options from Acme Brick, Tile & Stone. While individual tastes vary, Cannon has noticed a trend among hardwood fans.
“Distressed hardwood seems to be most popular now,” he said. “Hand-scraped with rough character, knotholes, and wood grain with indentions are often being chosen. Our Heritage Grove is the entry-level hardwood. It is six inches wide and comes in six colors, with dark colors more popular. Our customers favor the dull, matte finish as opposed to the glossy look.”
Cannon emphasized this hardwood flooring is not as water-resistant as luxury vinyl planks. For example, mopping is preferable to heavy water use. However, he added, “It is easy to repair scratches to the floor, especially with the distressed wood. Buying a marker pen is really the only ‘tool’ needed. The scratch will have the same look as the rest of the floor!” You can learn how to fix scratches by watching this short video.
The installed price for hardwood flooring can range from $7 per square foot for entry-level products such as Heritage Grove, and up to $15 per square foot for Heritage Trace Natchez.
For all its rich beauty, traditional hardwood flooring has one challenge: water. Solid, tongue-and-groove planks lack moisture resistance, making them inappropriate for basements or other areas where flooding might occur. Acme Brick, Tile & Stone offers two innovative solutions that mate real hardwood surfaces with greater resistance to moisture.
- Engineered wood, which is generally manufactured with 2, 3 or 5 thin sheets or plies of wood that are laminated together to form one plank. This cross-ply construction will stop the plank from expanding or shrinking with water or humidity.
- Longstrip plank floors, which are similar to engineered wood and have several wood plies that are glued together, and the center core is generally a softer wood material and is used to make the tongue and groove. A hardwood finish layer is glued on top of the core, and this can be any hardwood species. These planks are approximately 86" in length and 7 1/2" in width. They generally have between 17 and 35 pieces that make up the top layer of each board. This gives the effect of installing a board that is 3 rows wide and several planks long. Each longstrip plank looks like an entire section that has already been pre-assembled.
For more than 130 years, Acme Brick has manufactured and sold the world’s most eco-friendly and authentic product - brick. In response to a dramatic increase in the number of innovative products for the home and the customer demand for these products, Acme Brick has expanded its product offerings to become one of the country’s most diverse home improvement suppliers.
Everything old - from brick to flooring - is new again! Cutting edge products such as porcelain pavers and antibacterial tile, luxury vinyl plank flooring, and many other flooring options.
Click here to talk to your home improvement experts at Acme Brick, Tile & Stone.