Hardwood floor for kitchen – good or bad idea?
Which hardwood flooring is best for kitchens?
The kitchen is a busy, high impact room, which is tough on its surfaces. From spills and splashes to water dangers, to the occasional dropping of a sharpened knife or fork, there are a number of different challenges that your floors will have to face. Choosing the right flooring for your kitchen may seem like a difficult decision. Your choice will depend on your style preferences and practical considerations. Considered by many to be the ultimate flooring option, hardwood never goes out of style. Few flooring surfaces can match the classic style and natural beauty of hardwood. With its unmatched warmth and visual appeal, hardwood flooring gives your home a timeless style. If you have an open floor plan, hardwood flooring will help you achieve a cohesive look. Many hardwood products are also durable and low maintenance. While solid hardwood is made using a single piece of wood, engineered hardwood consists of a hardwood veneer, constructed over several layers of wood in a cross-grain configuration. Engineered hardwood is generally the preferred choice for kitchens because its construction provides increased dimensional stability. It’s important to select a hardwood species that ranks highly on the Janka Hardness Scale. Oak, Maple, and Hickory are some of the most durable domestic hardwood species used in the manufacturing of hardwood floors. Choosing a floor with texture, such as hand scraped or wire brushed will make your floor look beautiful and unique while disguising any small dents or scratches that can happen in a high traffic area like the kitchen. Most of today’s hardwood finishes are suitable for kitchens. In general, the durable finishes on prefinished hardwood products will perform well in a kitchen and will stand up better over time than site-finished floors. It is really important to get in touch with a company that has a lot of experience when it comes to hardwood installation in Glenview IL. Ted’s Flooring, Inc. is a good idea if you are looking for affordable and high quality hardwood flooring services. The finish you choose for a hardwood floor in a kitchen is especially important due to the kitchen’s above-average exposure to daily wear and tear. The finish has to be water-resistant because of the potential for the presence of water on the floor. It also has to be durable enough to hold up to the heavy foot traffic that a kitchen typically withstands. If you’re putting down unfinished wood, a durable, catalyzed water based urethane finish is a great choice because of its ability to resist water damage compared to an oil based finish. Moisture-cured urethane is also particularly moisture resistant and durable, making it a great choice for a kitchen floor. For added durability, UV floor curing is an excellent system to use. The curing process makes the floor particularly resistant to foot traffic. In a kitchen, the species and its hardness rating is not as important as the finish you choose, but you definitely have to consider the design aspect of what you’re installing. Different kitchen design styles require a different species of hardwood. For a sleek, modern look, go with a dark wood like mahogany or stain the floors a dark color. If you want extra durability, go with an especially hard species like hickory, which happens to also have a distinguished look. For a rustic look, go with a classic like wide plank Eastern white pine or heart pine. Its knottiness will lend a traditional, down-home feel to the kitchen. No matter what type of hardwood flooring you choose to have installed in your kitchen, there are few things to keep in mind. While hardwood is an acceptable material for the kitchen, it will require some steady maintenance and may be susceptible to a few dangers that could completely ruin the installation. To avoid such situations, make sure the hardwood flooring contractors you hire for the installation are sufficiently qualified and have enough experience to be handling your kitchen floor.
Solid flooring vs engineered flooring
The engineered vs. solid debate takes place almost every time there’s a hardwood floor installation. And the answer usually depends upon the homeowner’s unique needs and geographical factors. Solid hardwood floors are made from one, solid piece of natural wood. The entire plank is made from wood. It’s the only material used, something laminate or engineered hardwood can’t say. Typically, hardwood is three quarters of an inch thick. It must be nailed down to wood subfloors. This will limit many homeowners who live on a slab or under concrete. There are some property owners who want the real thing. When it comes to the natural look and scent of hardwood, property owners almost always choose solid hardwood floors. Solid hardwood comes with less of a building process, so families have a variety of options to choose from. Since solids are made from one wood slab, they are very easy to sand and refinish. As a result, solid hardwood is much more durable than laminate or engineered, offsetting some of the upfront costs. While solids are more durable and easier to repair, they are more susceptible to dents and dings. In fact, even if you drop a heavy object or a small weight, you could easily damage your floor. Additionally, just like laminate, if the floor remains wet for a period of time, it can swell and expand, causing very ugly gaps. As a result, solid hardwood is not recommended for a bathroom, basement or laundry room. Since the planks are made from 100% wood, solid hardwood is more expensive than the other two options. However, the higher price tag does bring a glossy and beautiful finish. Solid wood floors shrink, usually in the winter when there’s less moisture in the air. Likewise, they expand during the spring and summer when there’s more humidity in your home. A home humidifier can help maintain appropriate moisture levels. However, kitchens with wood floors will likely need buffing and a fresh coat of polyurethane every few years. Engineered hardwood consists of several layers, with only the top and bottom consisting of real wood. The inner layers are made of plywood, high-density fiberboard or sometimes, actual hardwood. The top layer is usually hardwood veneer, but can also be composed of any hardwood you want, such as cherry, maple or oak. Some engineered hardwood floors have up to nine layers and unlike solid hardwood, engineered can go down on wood or concrete subfloors. Many contractors end up gluing it to concrete subfloors. Naturally, it is best to get your engineered hardwood flooring Chicago installed by a company known for the high quality of their services. Engineered hardwood is very common for below-grade installations, like basements, because it can stand up to dampness and the heat above radiant heating systems. Since you don’t have to worry about it buckling, engineered hardwood is very stable and versatile, especially compared to laminate flooring. Overall price, when it comes to installation and upkeep, is another advantage of engineered hardwood. Since engineered hardwood flooring requires only a thin slice of the desired wood as the top layer, the cost is less than solid hardwood. Finally, if you are looking for a green hardwood flooring option, engineered is your winner. The trees for engineered floors grow much faster than those for solid hardwoods. Ultimately — just as with any other area of the home — the choice of engineered or solid floors depends on the location of the kitchen in the house and the humidity fluctuations in the geographical area, as well as the substrate it is being installed over. Engineered wood can be installed in above-grade or below-grade environments and over radiant heat, whereas solid wood is mostly installed in above-grade environments. Compared to solid hardwood, engineered wood floors have superior resistance to slightly lower and higher moisture levels, which makes them more ideal for use in damp basements or regions with higher or lower than standard humidity levels.
How to maintain kitchen flooring in good condition?
Just like in any other area of the home, hardwood floors can last a long time if they’re properly cared for. But the hardwood floors in a kitchen are extra susceptible to damage. Whichever wood flooring you buy, follow the manufacturer's instructions when you clean your floor. They all have recommendations about how to take care of their floors. Find out what products are required and the level of effort by the homeowner that's needed to take care of the product. A reputable dealer will include the information. You can also find it on the manufacturer's website. The same company that has installed your hardwood flooring in Arlington Heights is the best company to contact for information about ways of maintaining the hardwood kitchen floor. You can speed up the cleaning process by first dusting the floor with a mop that has been treated with a dusting agent to pick up dust, dirt, and pet hair that might scratch the floor surface. For weekly or biweekly cleaning, vacuum with a floor-brush attachment on a vacuum cleaner or an electric broom. Do not use a vacuum with a beater bar attachment, which can scratch a wood floor's finish. For quick dusting, use disposable electrostatic cloths, available at grocery and discount stores. Save money by using both sides of the disposable cloths. Dirt, oil, and grime build up over time and aren't completely removed by a weekly dust mopping. For occasional deep cleaning (consider doing the cleaning in the spring or just before the winter holidays), use a wood-cleaning product diluted according to the label instructions. Saturate a sponge or rag mop in the water, and then wring it almost dry so it feels only slightly damp to the touch. Rinse with a clean mop dampened with clear water, but only if the cleaning product requires it. Wipe up excess liquid because standing water can damage wood surfaces. If the weather is humid, operate a ceiling fan or the air-conditioner to speed up drying. The most important thing that you can do to maintain your hardwood kitchen floors is to keep constant vigilance over them. If anything spills, wipe it up immediately, and never allow water to stand upon the surface for any amount of time. It will also be necessary to sweep or vacuum the floors regularly, in order to keep them free of small dirt, and gritty particles, that can scratch the wood and wear away the finish. The kitchen is a fairly volatile area so you will need to re-apply the finishing agent every few months as it starts to wear down. You can test the finish on the floor by pouring a very small amount of water on it in some of the most highly trafficked areas. If it beads up the finish is fine. However, if it sinks in, wipe the liquid up immediately and start looking into some high quality water repelling hardwood finish. When the floor starts to get damaged and worn down you also have the option of refinishing it. This involves sanding the surface down past the finish and any other defects, then re-applying any stain, paint, and protection layers that you wish. Typical hardwood floors can usually be refinished about 10 times before the material’s integrity is compromised. The drawback is that the refinishing process is a big, messy job. It involves taking almost everything out of the kitchen and then bringing in big, loud equipment that sends sawdust flying through the air in every direction. You then have to apply stains and finishes to the wood, allowing each to dry over the course of hours or days before moving on to the next step. Lukasz Hardwood Flooring Company is a company that specializes in installation, restoration and repairs of hardwood flooring. Whether you need to have a hardwood floor installed in your kitchen or have the already existing hardwood floor repaired, this company is a great choice.