Hardwood floors are suited to both casual and formal environments; they feel at home with modern or traditional and will compliment the decor of both modest and assorted designs. Your hardwood flooring can be classic, rock, jazz, country, or hip-hop. Today’s State-of-the-art technology linked with an almost infinite choice of stains, finishes, styles and designs make wood floors one of the most convenient and versatile choices available. Their beauty is long lasting and like a fine glass of wine they mature with age.
Nature bestows the inspiration when designing with hardwood floors. The abundance of natural species presents a plethora of wood grain structures, each unique and each matching a particular decor. Oak hardwood plank flooring is full of abundant ring patterns and knots, and is best suited to traditional and rustic decors. However, adding a high gloss finish to your hardwood floors can make them graceful enough for any formal dining room. Maple, walnut and birch wood flooring contain very little graining and hence they provide well to contemporary and modern designs.
The artistic and visual appeal of hardwood plank flooring is also influenced to a large extent by mineral streaking, the presence of knots in addition to color and shade variation. These features assist in the classification of wood.
Clear – This grade of flooring is free of defects though it may have minor flaws. This category is most expensive, as it tends to be very consistent with little mineral streaking and knots.
Select – This grade of flooring contains more natural characteristics such as knots and color variations but it is almost clear.
Common grades (No. 1 and No. 2) have more markings than either clear or select and are often chosen because of these natural features and the character. These grades of floors have always been the least expensive. But recently the revival of the antique rustic look has resulted in prices skyrocketing.
Performance is a very important aspect when selecting your hardwood floor. Some hardwood species are less porous than others, making them harder and almost invulnerable to denting and staining. To check the relative hardness of numerous hardwood species used in flooring the Janka hardness test is done. This test should be used as a general guide, as the hardness is also affected by growth region.