Always set a budget, and remember, if the price sounds to good to be true, it’s most likely of lesser quality.
Choose a wood floor according to the room’s use (see below).
Choose a style/design to match and/or compliment the room’s décor.
Choose a wood floor product with proper finish that can handle the traffic for that specific area/room.
Always use a professional wood floor contractor for installation.
Parquet flooring is a series of wood pieces creating a geometric design, from 5/16″ (glue down) up to 3/4″ (nail & glue down).
Plank hardwood flooring is linear, for a wider look. Common widths of plank flooring are 3″, 4″, 5″, and 6″. Wider products are not uncommon although the wider the plank, the more concerns for effects by moisture.
Strip flooring is also linear flooring that is usually 1 1/2″, 2 1/4″, or 3 1/4″ wide. Creating the effect of long lines, strip hardwood often gives the illusion of a larger and more open space.
Types of Wood
Acrylic Impregnated: Acrylic is injected into the wood itself, creating a super-hard, extremely durable floor.
Engineered: Layers of wood are pressed together and glued. The grains run in different directions for added stability (unlike solids).
Solid: All hardwood flooring that is one piece of wood from top to bottom regardless of width or length is considered to be solid hardwood flooring.
Prefinished vs. Unfinished
Unfinished: This product finished at the site, and is often very dusty. Job site sanding and finishing can take over a week depending on the square footage, stains, and number of coats of top finish. When other construction is involved, hardwood finishing must be done after all the other trades have completed their work. Maintaining these finishes is very important to providing a long life for the floor.
Prefinished: These products are produced in acrylic impregnated, engineered and solids. These new tough factory finishes are becoming one of the main reasons for the resurgence in hardwood installation. They are also much easier to install, with no dusty sanding procedures, and are comparable in price to unfinished products.