Visit our Solid Wood Photo Gallery or Engineered & Laminate Photo Gallery See our answers to the most Frequent Questions
The first step in selecting a hardwood floor is to determine the type of hardwood floor product that is appropriate based on:
- -use (residential or commercial)
*When considering specie, factor the grade and relative hardness of the specie and whether you desire plain sawn or vertical sawn flooring. Please see www.NWFA.org for technical & industry information. Also see our list of manufacturer websites to help you choose the best product for your home or business.
There are several key points to successful installation of a hardwood floor:
1. Find a professional floor contractor with a C-15 license, membership to the National Wood Flooring Association, insurance, bond and most important, a showroom. We recommend that you browse the internet for manufacturer product offerings. Please use hyperlinks in our web site to see individual manufacturer’s websites. A good website to see many manufacturers on one site is www.galleher.com.
2. Check your sub-floor. Under the carpet, tile, vinyl or wood, is it plywood or concrete? The sub-floor must be clean, level and dry to proceed. If your sub-floor is not exposed, you can hire a C-15 contractor to clean, level and check the moisture of your sub-floor, joists and to look at your crawl space for ventilation and potential pitfalls. Your sub-floor needs to meet NWFA standards for level and moisture content. Moisture content variance between kiln dried hardwood and sub-floor must not exceed 4%. Your contractor can check for acceptable moisture readings.
3. At your contractor’s showroom, select the specie, color, style and the appropriate floor (see diagram at top of page). You can select solid, engineered or floating floor, either unfinished or factory finished. Please note pre-finished floors will have 7-10 coats of polyurethane with suspended aluminum chloride or polymerized titanium for additional hardness, a UV cure coat (to prevent sun fade) and a 10 to 25 year finish warranty. Sand in place floors have 3 to 4 coats of polyurethane, no UV protection, no suspended polymer and no factory finish warranty. Depending on you sub floor and the product you choose you can nail, staple, glue or float hardwood flooring. Today most finishes are polyurethane but oil, wax, varnish and shellac finishes are still in use.
4. After selecting a C-15 contractor, have that company visit your jobsite to assess the conditions of your sub-floor and collect information to give you a firm estimate based on the scope of work required to give you the floor you desire based on your budget. The right floor for your home or business can be determined by a visit from Flooronline.com to discuss your options.
Manufacturers and Trade names include: