It’s easy to see why hardwood flooring is so enticing! As more and more homeowners hastily adopt modern decor and artificial design, natural hardwood floors start to stand out. Gorgeous wood floor colors create a relaxed and inviting atmosphere for friends and family. The only problem: there are so many options to choose from! Discovering the perfect flooring can be a challenge, but here’s a speedy guide to help you get the ball rolling on your search!
Hardwood Flooring Types Pros and Cons
Natural Hardwood Floors
The organic atmosphere created by a natural hardwood floor is simply priceless. Whether your home relies on exterior or interior lighting, a wooden floor produces a beautiful environment that anyone can be at home in. With proper maintenance and care, you can enjoy decades of service from your flooring. The trick is finding which wood material matches your functional needs and style preferences.
Below, we’ll break down seven of the most popular hardwood floors on the residential market, identifying key strengths and weaknesses that will help you make an informed investment.
Oak Hardwood Flooring
- Pro: Comes in a lighter shade that’s good for lighting up a room
- Pro: Excellent for retaining color stains
- Pro: Widely affordable and accessible
Compared with other hardwood flooring options, oak doesn’t have any discernible weaknesses. It’s moderately priced and available in gray, brown, or rosy undertones. You’ll have many other wood floor colors to choose from however, as oak effectively retains staining very well!
Maple Hardwood Floors
- Pro: Offers enhanced durability and simple maintenance
- Pro: Widely available in the States
- Con: More difficult to stain
If you’re looking for affordable flooring that’s also easy to keep clean, maple is wonderful options! You’ll want to source your flooring material from one of the harder maples to ensure maximum durability. Maple works well at harnessing natural lighting, easily brightening any given room. It is however, more difficult to effectively stain than oak.
Hardwood Hickory Floors
- Pro: Provides a tough surface that’s good for high foot traffic
- Pro: Available in almost 20 variations
- Pro: Highly resistant to unwanted growths and carpenter ants
- Con: Considerably more difficult to install
Of all the hardwood flooring materials, hickory is widely considered the most durable. It’s more resilient against common flooring hazards (like termites), but it does require a more strenuous installation process. It’s another ideal option for high traffic rooms and hallways.
Birch Hardwood Flooring
- Pro: Easy to clean and maintain
- Pro: Lowcost wood with several color varieties
- Con: Does not absorb darker stains well
- Con: May feel coarse when compared to maple
Birch wood provides excellent protection against foot traffic and pets because of its impressive hardness. As birch hardwood often comes with higher levels of contrasting light and dark, you’ll want to make sure that its aesthetic fits with your personal tastes. Maintenance is very simple.
Cherry Hardwood Floors
- Pro: Darker hue creates a more visually stunning appearance
- Pro: Comes with a unique red hue
- Con: More costly than some hardwood floors
- Con: Color often darkens over time
Cherry wood stands out with its alluring red hue, which often darkens over time. The wood is highly durable and resilient against water damage. While its premium pricing may place it beyond many homeowners’ budgets, cherry hardwood floors provide impressive value and style.
Walnut Hardwood Flooring
- Pro: Uniquely resilient against ambient humidity and temperature
- Pro: Impressively durable with long-term functionality
- Con: Less accessible and more expensive
Ambient moisture is a common hazard for many a hardwood floor installation. Walnut flooring displays impressive durability against humidity and extreme temperature variance, which would normally cause other wood floors to warp. Walnut is considerably more expensive than other types of wood flooring, but it’s made to last for multiple generations.
Bamboo Hardwood Floors
- Pro: Bamboo is remarkable easy to clean
- Pro: Very affordable, but lasting as long as traditional hardwood
- Pro: Bamboo is plentiful and sourcing it sustainable
- Pro: Very resistant to water damage
- Con: Comes with fewer color options
If you’ve ever suffered water damage in your flooring, you know how expensive the replacement process can be. While common sense care is still essential for maintaining it, bamboo is highly resistant to water damage. That makes the cleaning process very convenient, as you can simple mop the floor.
(Bonus) Engineered Hardwood Floors
Engineered flooring offers greater convenience than natural wood flooring. While the materials are noticeably more, engineered wood is developed using more sustainable growing and manufacturing methods. The installation process is highly involved, so you’ll need to hire an expert. Benefits include:
- Lower Maintenance Requirements
- Higher Resistance to Warping
- Stronger Resistance Against Humidity
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are some of the most frequently asked questions we receive about hardwood flooring. If you’d like to learn more about planning your Pantego and Arlington, TX hardwood floor installation, be sure to talk with one of our experts at 817.345.6321!
- What happens when hardwood floors get wet?
- What kind of hardwood floors are best for dogs?
- Can hardwood flooring be installed over concrete?
The most dangerous hazard for hardwood floors is excessive moisture, but that doesn’t mean one glass of spilled water is going to ruin your floor. Quickly wipe up any spills or leaks with a towel. Call your plumber immediately when you need professional PVC, steel, or copper pipe repair. If you live in a naturally humid area, consider a more moisture-resistant wood, such as bamboo.
Birch, walnut, and hickory are all very resilient woods for pets. You’ll still want to apply a protective seal over the top of your floors though.
Hardwood floors can be installed over concrete, but you’ll want to talk with an expert before you choose your wood material.