Sunday, June 20, 2010

Lime Green Shag Carpeting Over Hardwood Flooring?



Back when I was a kid ( many moons ago!) and lived in a home built in the 1950’s, hardwood floors were a standard option that the builder provided in my neighborhood. Of course, back then, everyone covered the floors with wall – to-wall carpet. I remember picking out a lime green and turquoise shag carpet to cover the red oak hardwood floors in my bedroom when I was a teenager – a budding redesigner at heart! I bet lots of you can relate to this, can’t you?

 Ash
                 


Brazilian Cherry

                                                                                                                                  Pecan
  Brazilian Walnut                     
                                       

After I married and started purchasing houses, both my first and second house had beautiful hardwood flooring. When I moved to Florida, the Del Webb community I live in did not feature hardwood flooring as an option at all. We were now in “cookie-cutter” development housing. I somehow convinced my husband to rip up the brand new carpet and have hickory hardwood flooring installed in the entire downstairs. I am so happy we did this before our furniture arrived. It was expensive but we received so many compliments about it that it was well worth the expense. Before making the decision which flooring to purchase, I once again researched my options and learned a lot of interesting information about this topic. Firstly, l discovered that I could not put real hardwood flooring in my home in Florida because of all of the humidity. Not to worry, though. I discovered there was another option.

Red Oak
                                                                              
White Oak
                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                            

                                                        




Hickory

Solid hardwood flooring is a solid plank of hardwood milled into a piece of flooring, usually with a tongue and groove on the edges and ends so that the pieces fit easily together. The ¾ inch thickness is the most commonly used in the U.S. and is usually nailed to a wooden subfloor. Thinner planks such as 5/16th inch can be glued directly to a surface such as concrete. Widths range from 2 ¼ inch strip to 8 inch and wider plank. The JANKA hardness rating scale assigns a number to each type of hardwood based upon its suitability for hardwood flooring. The higher the number, the greater is the resistance to denting. This scale is listed below and is what made me gravitate toward using hickory because it’s on the higher side of the scale. In the US., the most popular woods are red and white oak, hard maple, ash, hickory, pecan, walnut, and cherry which can be purchased prefinished or unfinished which requires sanding and staining. All solid hardwood flooring can be sanded and refinished; however, special care should be taken with the thinner planks.


Flooring Species From Softest to Hardest

North American Cherry 950
North American Walnut 1010
Carbonized/Caramel Bamboo¹ 1120
True Teak 1155
Iroko/Kambala 1260
Yellow Birch 1260
Red Oak 1260
Beech 1300
Ash 1320
Amendoim 1340
White Oak 1360
Australian Cypress 1375
Royal Mahogany 1400
Caribbean Walnut 1400
Natural Bamboo¹ 1410
North American Maple 1450
Brazilian Maple 1500
Timborana 1570
Kempas 1710
Padauk, African 1725
Doussie 1770
Hickory 1820
Pecan 1820
Jarrah 1910
Merbau 1925
Tigerwood(Goncalo Alves) 2160
Santos Mahogany 2200
Caribbean Rosewood 2300
Chestnut, Southern 2670
Tiete Rosewood(Guibourtia) 2800
Brazilian Cherry(Jatoba) 2820
Brazilian Teak(Cumaru) 3540
Tiete Chestnut 3540
Brazilian Walnut(Ipe) 3680

Since I could not use hardwood flooring in my home, I chose to use engineered hardwood flooring. This flooring is typically made from seven to ten layers of thin veneers or sheets glued together to form a type of plywood then finished with a solid hardwood wear layer. It can be installed directly over concrete and most types of other subfloors. The advantage of engineered hardwood flooring is that it will not react to moisture changes and is more stable than solid hardwood flooring. Depending on the thickness of the wear layer, an engineered floor will perform in much the same way as the solid floor. It’s really difficult to differentiate them.


You can also purchase hand scraped hardwood flooring either unfinished or prefinished. For this look, the manufacturer hand scrapes each piece of flooring to mimic the look of an old worn floor. This is usually done on wider planks of hardwood and gives an “old world" charm. However, when refinishing these floors, the finish is removed.

Many people believe that hardwood flooring requires lots of maintenance. On the contrary, all you do is vacuum it regularly and use a special product provided by the manufacturer to spot clean it when necessary. You should shield the flooring from direct sunlight by using sheer or light drapery window treatments so the color will not change. So far I have very little maintenance on my hardwood and cork flooring – this makes me very happy!

(Resources : woodsthebest.com and HardwoodInstaller.com)





2 comments:

Hardwood laminate floors said...

Hardwood flooring has always been a classic choice. One of the most attractive attributes of hardwood flooring is the range of options you can choose from and that's what good about it.

prolix said...

Thank you for posting such a useful, impressive and a wicked article./Wow.. looking good!
Merbau Australia

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