Ash Hardwood Floors Are Stylish & Contemporary

Ash Hardwood Floors Are Stylish & Contemporary

Are you looking for a stylish and contemporary hardwood floor? Ash is the perfect choice. Ash hardwood floors are growing in popularity because of their beautiful grain and rich color. They can be stained to match any decor, and they always look elegant.

If you’re considering installing new flooring in your home, make sure to consider Ash hardwood floors. In this blog post, we’ll talk about the benefits of Ash hardwood floors, how they’re made, and how to care for them.

What Exactly is Ash Hardwood?

When you think of Ash, you probably think of the powdery residue that is left over after burning something. Others might think of the tree that it comes from. Ash trees are tall and have light-colored wood. The wood from these trees is strong and durable, which is why it’s often used to make furniture and flooring.

How Are Ash Hardwood Floors Made?

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

If you’ve ever wondered how those beautiful Ash hardwood floors are made, wonder no more! It all starts with a tree, of course. Once the tree is cut down, the logs are transported to a sawmill where they are cut into planks. The planks are then kiln-dried to remove moisture and make them easier to work with.

Next, the planks are milled into tongue-and-groove boards which are then sanded smooth. Finally, the boards are stained and sealed with a protective finish which gives a glossy appearance. And that’s how those beautiful ash hardwood floors are made. At this point, they are ready to be installed in your home.

Benefits of Ash Hardwood Floors

[Image source: Superior Hardwood Flooring]

There are many reasons to choose Ash hardwood floors for your home. Let’s talk about them.

Ability to Withstand Heavy Foot Traffic

Ash is a strong and durable wood that can withstand heavy foot traffic. For those with busy households, this is the perfect type of flooring for you. Other floors might show wear and tear quickly, but Ash floors will last for many years.

Stain Resistance

Ash hardwood floors are known for their durability and toughness. But did you know that they’re also stain-resistant? That’s right, those pesky spills and drips can be easily wiped away without leaving a mark. But how exactly does this work? Well, it all has to do with the wood’s natural composition.

The pores in Ash hardwood are smaller than those of other woods, which makes it more difficult for liquids and stains to penetrate the surface. In addition, the wood itself is naturally dense and tightly grained, providing an extra barrier against unwanted stains. So next time you’re looking for a hardwood floor that can withstand daily wear and tear, be sure to consider Ash. Stain resistance is just one of the many reasons why it’s such a popular choice.

Resistant to Scratches & Dents

Ash hardwood floors are well known for their resistance to scratches and dents. In fact, they’re so resistant that you could say they’re the ‘bulletproof vest’ of the flooring world. But what makes them so tough?

Well, it all comes down to the structure of the wood. Ash floors have a very dense grain, which makes them more resistant to surface damage. They also have a high lignin content, which gives the wood extra flexibility and strength. In wood, lignin is the substance that gives the cell walls their rigidity. So basically, what we’re saying is that Ash floors are pretty darn tough.

Beautiful Grain Pattern

[Image source: Preverco]

Ash hardwood floors have a beautiful grain pattern that is unique among other types of wood flooring. The grain is caused by the growth rings of the tree, which are visible on the surface of the wood. Ash hardwood floors are also known for their durability, which makes them ideal for high-traffic areas of the home.

The grain pattern adds character and warmth to any room, making it a popular choice for both homes and businesses. For all these reasons, Ash hardwood floors are a popular choice for homeowners who want to add beauty and value to their environment.

Ability to Refinish

Ash hardwood floors are one of the best investments you can make for your home. Not only are they beautiful and timeless, but they also have the ability to be refinished multiple times over the years. This means that you can enjoy your floors for many years to come, and they will still look as good as new.

Increase Property Value

[Image source: Preverco]

For those looking for a flooring option that will increase the value of your home, you can’t go wrong with ash hardwood. Not only is it beautiful and durable, but it’s also one of the most popular choices among homebuyers.

If you’re thinking about selling your home in the future, an ash hardwood floor will give you a leg up on the competition. And even if selling your home isn’t something that you’re planning for, an ash hardwood floor will still add elegance and sophistication to your space. For a flooring option that will make your home more valuable, choose ash hardwood.

Easy to Care For

Nothing says “class” like a hardwood floor. And when it comes to hardwoods, few species can match the beauty and durability of ash. Ash floors are also easy to care for, which is an important consideration for busy families.

Dust and dirt can be easily swept away, and spills can be quickly wiped up. Ash floors also don’t require the use of harsh chemicals or special cleaners. We recommend MacDonald Hardwoods’ special hardwood cleaner which is natural and extremely effective.

Final Thoughts

Ash hardwood floors are a stylish and contemporary choice for any home. They’re resistant to scratches and dents, easy to care for, and they increase the value of your property, among all the other benefits. If you’re looking for a flooring option that will stand the test of time, choose ash hardwood.

Are you interested in installing ash hardwood floors in your home? Be sure to contact MacDonald Hardwoods today. We would love to help!

How Can You Protect Your Hardwood Floors From Pets & Children?

If you have hardwood floors, you know how beautiful they can be – but you also know that the risk of them being scratched or damaged is worth your attention. Pets and children are often the culprits when it comes to floor damage, so what can you do to protect your floors?

In this blog post, we will discuss some tips for protecting your hardwood floors from your children and your four-legged friends!

Wipe Up Messes ASAP

If you’re a parent with pets in the home, you know that messes are inevitable. Whether it’s food crumbs, spills, or muddy paw prints, there’s always something that needs to be cleaned up. And while it may be tempting to leave the cleanup for later, wiping up messes as soon as they happen is actually the best way to protect your hardwood floors.

By quickly dealing with messes, you can prevent stains from setting or dirt from grinding into the surface. In addition, regular cleaning will also help to extend the life of your floors. So next time you’re faced with a mess, don’t delay–wipe it up right away!

Trim Your Pets’ Nails & Keep Paw Pads Smooth

Trimming your pets’ nails on a regular basis is not only good for their health, but it can also protect your hardwood floors from scratches. In addition, keeping the paw pads smooth will help to prevent slipping and sliding on the floor, which can be a hazard for both pets and children.

By taking these simple steps, you can help to preserve the beauty of your hardwood floors for years to come.

Put Rugs Over Heavy Use Areas

[Image source: Unsplash]

To protect your hardwood floors from spills, scratches, and dirt, consider placing rugs in high-traffic areas. Rugs can help to absorb impact, prevent slipping, and trap dirt and debris before it has a chance to damage your floors.

Plus, they add a touch of style to your home. So whether you’re covering up stains or just want to add a pop of color to your space, rugs are a great way to protect your hardwood floors while also adding a bit of personality to your home.

Put Protective Pads on Furniture Legs

Any pet owner knows that fido or fluffy can do some serious damage to your floors. And if you’ve ever had a puppy, you’ve probably also had to replace a few couch cushions. Pets can be hard on furniture, and children aren’t always the gentlest either.

But there is a simple solution that can protect your floors and furniture – put protective pads on the legs! These inexpensive pads create a barrier between your floor and the leg of the furniture, preventing scratches, scuffs, and dents.

And they’re not just for hardwood floors – they work on carpet and tile too. Whether you’re trying to protect your investment or just keep your sanity, put some pads on your furniture legs.

Vacuum & Mop on a Consistent Basis


[Image source: Unsplash]

Between muddy paws and sticky fingers, it can seem like your floors are never really clean. Vacuuming regularly and mopping with a mild soap can help to remove dirt and grime before it has a chance to damage the finish on your floors.

Place Mats at Entryways

Pets and children can be especially hard on floors, tracked in mud and dirt from outside, or spilling food and drinks. Placing mats at entryways can help to protect your floors and keep them looking their best.

Doormats are an easy way to remove dirt and debris before it has a chance to be tracked into your home. In addition, placing mats in high-traffic areas such as the living room or kitchen can help to protect your floors from scratches or spills. With a little care, you can keep your hardwood floors looking beautiful for years to come.

Don’t Overclean

It’s only natural to want to keep your hardwood floors clean and free of messes. However, overcleaning your floors with harsh chemicals can actually do more harm than good. These cleaners can strip away the protective finish on your floors, leaving them susceptible to scratches, stains, and moisture damage.

In addition, these chemicals can be harmful to your family members (the fluffy ones too), triggering allergies and respiratory problems. So the next time your little ones make a mess on the floor, go with a natural solution.

We recommend purchasing the MacWoods Easy Hardwood Floor Cleaner and the MacMop™ as the best natural alternative. You can call to place us to place an order.

Refinish Instead of Replace

[Image source: Unsplash]

If you’re like most people, your hardwood floors have seen better days. They’re scratched, scuffed, and maybe even starting to show their age a bit. But instead of scrapping them altogether and starting from scratch, why not refinish them?

It’s a much cheaper way to save money, and it can be done in just a weekend. Plus, it’s a great way to make your floors look like new again. Just be sure to use a child-friendly finish if you have kids or pets who are susceptible.

Have Your Kids Play in an Area That Doesn’t Have Hardwood Floors

[Image source: Unsplash]

There are many benefits to having your kids play in an area that doesn’t have hardwood floors. For one, it can help protect the floors from wear and tear. Hardwood floors are susceptible to scratches and scuffs, and children can be particularly hard on them.

By confining playtime to a separate area, you can help keep your floors looking new for longer. In addition, playing on soft surfaces helps to cushion falls and prevents injuries.

So if you want to keep your floors in good condition, it’s best to create a designated play space for your children.

Final Thoughts

Hardwood floors are a beautiful addition to any home, but they can be a challenge to keep in good condition. Thankfully, hardwood floors are easy to clean up messes caused by pets and children. With this guide, you can learn how to protect your hardwood floors so that they’ll look like new for years to come.

Are you interested in installing hardwood floors in your home? MacDonald Hardwoods has a wide variety of hardwood flooring options to choose from. Contact us today to learn more!

Balsam fir (aka true fir): Pale white, for building construction

The true firs, called true firs to distinguish the wood from Douglas-fir, consist of more than 40 species in North America, but only seven species produce commercial lumber. In eastern North America, there is one main species, balsam fir (Abies balsamea) ranging from Alberta to Newfoundland, south to Wisconsin and New York. The majority of the timber is in Canada; balsam fir is the official tree of New Brunswick.

In the western side of the continent, the commercial fir lumber species are subalpine fir (A. Lasiocarpa), California red fir (A. Magnifica), grand fir (A. Grandis), noble fir (A. Procera), Pacific silver fir (A. Amabilis) and white fir (A. Concolor). Although the trees can easily be separated into separate species, once cut into lumber, the wood of all the firs looks alike.

Balsam fir is the most symmetrical of northeastern coniferous species, with a narrow pyramidal crown that terminates in a slender spire-like tip. The typical balsam fir tree is about 60 feet tall and 1-1/2 feet in diameter, although much larger trees (90 feet tall and 2-1/2 feet diameter) are seen.

Balsam firs are popular for Christmas trees as the needles stay fresh for a long time.

The wood is used for furniture, construction lumber (2×4, 2×6), particleboard, and pulp. As construction lumber, the grade stamp will indicate the species as SPF (spruce, pine and fir); the fir is balsam fir, also called Canadian fir or eastern fir.

There are some reports of contact dermatitis from the resin from the true firs.

Processing suggestions and characteristics
Density. The true firs are one of the lightest weight softwoods in North America, averaging about 25 pounds per cubic foot at 10 percent MC. This is equivalent to 1.4 pounds per board foot for 8 percent MC, ¾-inch planed lumber.

Drying. The firs have a high risk of developing fungal blue stain (also called sap stain) and becoming infested with ambrosia beetles that leave small holes in the sapwood when the MC is high. Rapid handling from log to the kiln, or other dying systems, is required to avoid and control these risks. This wood dries very easily. Drying defects are few. Shrinkage in drying is under 5 percent. The final MC for spruce should be between 8.0 to 9.5 percent MC.

Gluing and machining. Gluing is excellent. The wood is very forgiving even if gluing parameters are not perfect. Machining is excellent so long as tools are very sharp.

Stability. The wood is quite stable when the MC changes. It takes over 4 percent MC change to develop 1 percent shrinkage in the width of flatsawn lumber (tangentially) and 10 percent MC change to the thickness by 1 percent (radially).

Strength. For balsam fir, the ultimate strength (MOR) is 9,200 psi; the stiffness (MOE) is 1.45 million psi; the hardness is 400 pounds.

Color and grain. Firs are a straight grain, odorless, white or pale white uniformly colored wood. The sapwood and heartwood have the same color and cannot be easily separated. Small, tight, red knots are common and add character to the wood. A premium “knotty pine” look is easily obtained.

This post appeared first on http://www.woodworkingnetwork.com

Why Homeowners Continue to Purchase Oak Floors

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

Despite there being a variety of different flooring options, customers continue to purchase Oak floors for their homes. While some may view this as a traditional flooring choice, there are actually many reasons why homeowners elect to go with Oak. When making such an important purchase for their home, they want to be sure that they are getting a product that will last, and Oak floors fit that bill.

In this blog post, we will discuss some of the reasons why Oak floors continue to be a popular choice among homeowners.

How Did Oak Start Being Used?

Oak has been a popular choice for construction and furniture-making since medieval times, thanks to its strength, durability, and resistance to rot. Oak timber was used in the construction of castles and churches, as well as in the manufacture of wagons, carts, and barrels.

In the 18th century, Oak became increasingly popular as a material for flooring and paneling in upper-class homes. The wide boards were easy to lay down and gave rooms a sense of solidity and grandeur. Today, Oak is still highly prized for its beauty and longevity, making it a popular choice for both old and new homes alike.

Oak is Very Durable

When considering what type of flooring to install in your home, it is important to take into account the level of durability you need. For families with children or pets, Oak floors are a great option. Oak is a very hard wood, and therefore resistant to scratches and wear and tear.

In fact, White Oak scores a 1360 rating on the Janka scale, which is used to measure the hardness of wood. This means that it can withstand more wear and tear than other types of wood floors. If you are looking for a durable floor that will stand up to the rigors of daily life, Oak is an excellent choice.

Learn more about the Janka scale here.

The Grain Patterns Vary

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

When shopping for Oak flooring, you’ll first need to decide which type of Oak you prefer. Red Oak and White Oak are the most common types of Oak used in flooring. Each has its own unique grain pattern.

The grain of Red Oak tends to be a bit busier, with more character than that of White Oak. Red Oak hides scratches from large pets or rambunctious kids better than other types of wood. Rift-sawn planks, cut perpendicular to the rings of the tree, have a more consistent, uniform appearance.

Plain-sawn boards, cut parallel to the circumference of the log, have a busier appearance with a cathedral-style loopier grain. Plain-sawn boards are also cut more efficiently. Once you’ve decided on your preferred type of Oak, you can start shopping for your dream floors!

Oak Is Environmentally Friendly

Among the many different types of flooring on the market, Oak floors are one of the most environmentally friendly and sustainable options. Oak is a hardwood that is native to North America, and it has been used as a construction material for centuries.

In recent years, there has been an increased focus on using sustainable materials for flooring, and Oak is a perfect example of this. Oak floors are durable and long-lasting, meaning that they will not need to be replaced as often as other types of flooring.

Furthermore, Oak is not an endangered species, so there is no need to worry about the impact of harvesting on the environment. When you choose Oak floors, you can be confident that you are making a sustainable choice that will help to protect the environment.

Oak is Resistant to Rot & Decay

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

Oak’s natural resistance to rot and decay makes it an ideal choice for rooms that are prone to moisture, such as kitchens and bathrooms. Oak contains a high level of tannin, which acts as a natural barrier against moisture and rot. As long as the wood is properly dried before use, it should remain dimensionally stable for many years. Polishing can also help to further protect the wood against the elements.

Due to this extra resistance, Oak flooring can last for decades with proper care, making it a wise investment for your home.

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are many reasons why homeowners continue to purchase Oak floors. Oak is a durable, eco-friendly, and affordable option that can last for many years with proper care. If you are looking for a new flooring option, be sure to consider Oak!

We want to help you select the best flooring options for your unique needs and style. Reach out today for help! MacDonald Hardwoods serves the entire state of Colorado.

Why Hickory is Great for Family Homes

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

If you’re looking for a beautiful, durable hardwood that will stand the test of time, Hickory is a great option! This wood is native to North America and has been used for centuries in flooring and other applications.

Hickory is known for its unique grain patterns and natural color variations, making it a popular choice for family homes. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at why Hickory makes such a great choice to have in your home and some of the benefits that come with it!

The Origins of Hickory

Hickory is a hardwood that is known for its strength and durability. It is often used in the construction of furniture, flooring, and cabinets. Hickory is also a popular choice for smoking meats, as it imparts a distinct flavor to the meat.

The wood is native to North America, and it was originally used by Native Americans for a variety of purposes, including arrow shafts and canoe paddles. In the early 1800s, Hickory began to be used in the construction of wagons and carriages. The wood’s strength and flexibility made it ideal for this purpose. Today, Hickory is still prized for its many uses, both practical and aesthetic.

Durability

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

Hickory is an excellent choice for flooring, cabinetry, and furniture because it is so resistant to staining and damage. If you’re familiar with the Janka scale, you would be astounded to discover that Hickory wood scores a total of 1,820, which makes it about 30% more resistant than the average hardwood.

Learn more about the Janka scale here.

The wood is very hard, so it can withstand wear better than softer woods. That hardness also makes Hickory less likely to warp or bend over time.

Hickory is the perfect material for high-traffic areas or areas that are subject to wear and tear. In addition, Hickory is highly resistant to shock, making it an ideal choice for flooring in homes with active children or pets. For all these reasons, Hickory is a timeless choice that will add beauty and value to your home.

Beauty

Hickory is a beautiful hardwood that ranges in color from creamy white to rich brown. It has a fine, straight grain that is occasionally interrupted by darker streaks of color. The unique texture and color of Hickory make it a popular choice for both traditional and contemporary homes.

Hickory floors are especially striking, as the wood’s natural variations in color add depth and interest to the room. Varieties that are seeing an increase in popularity consist of Safari, Kahlua, Rainforest, and Biscotti.

Low Maintenance

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

Hickory is also prized for its low maintenance requirements. Unlike other hardwoods, Hickory is resistant to scratches, dents, and stains.

And because it is so tough, it doesn’t require the same level of care that other wood species do. Maintenance simply consists of sweeping or vacuuming regularly to remove dirt and debris. Our best recommendation is to purchase our MacDonald Easy Hardwood Floor Cleaner™ and the MacMop™. Other cleaning methods often leave residue and frustrating streaks. Our floor cleaner and mop leave nothing behind with your wallet’s best interest in mind. Call 800-639-3006 to place an order for our cleaning products.

Ideal For Flooring

When it comes to flooring, Hickory is one of the most popular choices on the market. There are many reasons why Hickory is such a great choice for flooring. As we discussed, Hickory is incredibly durable, lasting for decades with little maintenance needed. Additionally, we talked about how Hickory is very scratch-resistant, which makes it a great choice for homes with pets or young children.

And the largest appeal is its versatility – it comes in a variety of colors and designs. Whether you’re looking for a rustic or modern look, Hickory can help you achieve it. So if you’re in the market for new flooring, be sure to consider Hickory. It’s an ideal choice for anyone who wants beautiful and long-lasting floors.

Increases Your Home’s Value

[Image source: Superior Flooring]

Considering all the benefits we mentioned, Hickory is not only low-maintenance but also extremely valuable. Hickory floors can increase your home’s value by as much as 20%.

Not only that, but it also makes your home more attractive to potential buyers. Realtors especially like showing off homes that use hardwood for this reason. The homes will sell easier due to the increased attention brought by the hardwood flooring.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are many reasons why Hickory is a great choice for family homes. It’s not only durable and beautiful, but it also requires very little maintenance and uses sustainable materials. Beyond that, it increases the value of your home. Hickory’s resilience and durability are why we love it so much.

If you’re in the market for new flooring, start by reaching out to our team. We’ll help you make an informed decision for affordable flooring based on your unique needs. Thanks for reading.

Is It Important For My Home’s Floors to Match?

When it comes to home design, one of the most important decisions you will make is what flooring to choose. Flooring can really set the tone for a room and it’s important to select a style that will match your other decor. But what if you can’t find the perfect flooring to match?

Is it still possible to have a cohesive look in your home? In this blog post, we will explore the importance of matching flooring and provide some tips on how to achieve a coordinated look in your home even if your floors don’t quite match.

Consider the Cohesiveness

One of the most important things to consider when choosing flooring is how it will work with the other elements in your home. If you have a lot of wood furniture, for example, you might want to choose a wood floor that will complement it.

Alternatively, if you have very modern furniture, you might want to select a more contemporary flooring option. It’s important to think about the overall “look” you are going for in your home and what flooring will help you accomplish that “look”.

Think “blend and contrast”. The last thing you want is for your flooring to clash. The transition between two different types of flooring can be quite jarring if they are too different. If you have a hardwood floor in your living room and carpet in your bedroom, for example, try to find a carpet that has similar colors to the hardwood. This will help create a more cohesive look in your home.

Match the Flooring or Go for Contrast?

Source: Unsplash

Once you have considered the overall cohesiveness of your home, it’s time to decide whether you want to match the flooring or go for contrast. If you want to create a seamless look, matching the flooring is probably the best option.

This can be especially effective in open concept homes where different rooms flow into one another. By having matching flooring throughout the space, you can create a cohesive look that ties the whole home together.

On the other hand, if you want to create a more unique look, you might opt for contrasting flooring. This can be a great way to add interest to your home and make it feel more dynamic. If you choose to go this route, just be sure that the different flooring options complement each other and don’t clash. A good rule of thumb is to choose two different but complementary flooring options that are in the same color family.

Tips for Mixing and Matching Flooring

Source: Unsplash

If you can’t find the perfect flooring to match or you simply want to mix and match different styles, there are a few things you can do to ensure a cohesive look. One option is to choose one flooring style for the main living areas of your home and then use a different but coordinating style in more private spaces like bedrooms and bathrooms.

Another option is to use similar flooring throughout your home but in different colors or finishes. For example, you could use hardwood floors in your living room and kitchen but in different stains or finishes. Or, you could use the same tile throughout your home but in different colors or patterns. There are endless possibilities when it comes to mixing and matching flooring, so get creative!

Mistakes to Avoid When Mixing Flooring

While there are many ways to successfully mix and match flooring, there are also a few mistakes you’ll want to avoid.

Too Many Styles

One mistake is choosing too many different flooring styles. If you have too many different types of flooring, your home will look cluttered and busy. Instead, stick to two or three different flooring styles and use them throughout your home in a cohesive way.

Clashing Colors

Another mistake to avoid is choosing flooring colors that clash. This can happen if you choose two different flooring options that are in the same color family but have very different undertones.

For example, pairing a cool gray floor with a warm brown floor can create a clash that is very noticeable and off-putting. Instead, try to choose two different colors that have similar undertones.

Keep Carpets Away From Kitchens

If you’re going to have both carpets and hardwood floors in your home, it’s important to keep the carpets away from the kitchen. Carpets can be difficult to clean, and if you have spills or other accidents in the kitchen, they can be very hard to clean up.

Instead, stick to hardwood, tile, or laminate in the kitchen and save the carpet for other areas of your home.

Attempting to Create Contrasts That Are Too Extreme
Creating contrasts is a great way to add interest to your home, but you don’t want to go too extreme. For example, pairing a very dark floor with a very light floor can create a contrast that is too extreme and can make your home feel jarring and uncomfortable.

Instead, try to choose two different but complementary flooring options that are in the same color family. This will create a more subtle contrast that is stylish and sophisticated.

Poor Quality Flooring

When mixing and matching flooring, it’s important to make sure all of the flooring options you select are high quality. Choosing one high-quality flooring option and pairing it with a lower quality option will create a noticeable difference that can make your home look cheap.

To avoid this, only choose flooring options that are made from high-quality materials and that will stand the test of time.

Some Floors Just Don’t Match

There are some floors that just don’t go together, no matter what you do. If you’re having trouble finding two flooring options that match, it’s probably best in that situation to choose one flooring style for your entire home. This will create a cohesive look that is much more stylish and sophisticated than two mismatched floors.

Source: Unsplash

The Bottom Line

There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to whether or not your home’s floors need to match. It really comes down to personal preference and the overall look you are trying to achieve.

If you want a cohesive look, matching flooring is probably the best option. But if you’re looking for something more unique, mixing and matching different flooring styles can be a great way to add interest to your home.

Whatever you decide, be sure to consider the overall cohesiveness of your home and choose flooring that will complement your other decor. With these tips in mind, you can achieve a coordinated look in your home that you love!

Learn how to get your own beautiful floors here.

The Best Hardwood Floor Options For Your Kitchen

When it comes to renovating your kitchen, the floor is an often overlooked aspect. Many people simply choose to go with whatever is cheapest or easiest. But when you put in a little extra effort, you can create a beautiful and unique floor that will really stand out.

There are many different hardwood flooring options available on the market today. You can choose from a variety of colors, textures, and finishes. But with so many choices, it can be difficult to know where to start. That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help you choose the best hardwood floors for your kitchen.

Engineered or Solid Hardwood Floors

One of the first decisions you’ll need to make is whether to go with engineered or solid hardwood floors. Engineered hardwood floors are made up of a core of plywood or HDF, topped with a thin layer of hardwood veneer. Solid hardwood floors are exactly what they sound like – they’re made entirely of solid wood.

There are a few things you’ll need to consider when making this decision. First, engineered hardwood floors are more stable than solid hardwood floors. This means that they’re less likely to warp or cup over time. If you live in an area with high humidity, this can be a big advantage.

Second, engineered hardwood floors are often thinner than solid hardwood floors. This can be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on your needs. If you’re looking to install the flooring over an existing floor, thinner floors may be a better option. However, if you want your floors to have a more substantial look and feel, you may prefer solid hardwood floors.

Finally, engineered hardwood floors are typically more expensive than solid hardwood floors. If cost is a major consideration for you, solid hardwood floors may be the better option.

What Type of Finish Should You Choose?

Source: Unsplash

Once you’ve decided on engineered or solid hardwood floors, the next step is to choose a finish.
The type of finish you choose will have a big impact on the overall look and feel of your floors. It’s important to take some time to think about the style you’re going for before making a decision.

Because a kitchen’s hardwood flooring has above-average exposure to frequent use and abuse, the finish you pick is particularly vital. Since there’s a high chance water will get on the floor, your finish has to be waterproof. It also must be strong enough to endure the heavy foot activity that a kitchen receives.

Oil-Based Finish

One popular option is an oil-based finish. Oil-based finishes give hardwood floors a natural, warm appearance. They’re also easy to touch up and repair if they get scratched or damaged. Another advantage of oil-based finishes is that they’re very durable. They can withstand a lot of wear and tear, making them a good choice for high-traffic areas.

Water-Based Finishes

Another popular option is a water-based finish. Water-based finishes provide a harder, more durable surface. However, they can be more difficult to touch up and repair than oil-based finishes. Water-based finishes are also easier to apply than oil-based finishes and are less likely to yellow over time.

Wax Finish

If you’re looking for an old-fashioned look, you might consider a wax finish. Wax finishes are easy to apply and provide a beautiful, natural sheen. However, they require more maintenance than other types of finishes and can be difficult to repair if damaged. Wax finishes are also more susceptible to scratches and scuffs.

Polyurethane Finish

For a high-gloss, durable finish, you might want to choose a polyurethane finish. Polyurethane finishes are more resistant to scratches and stains than other types of finishes. However, they can be more difficult to apply and may yellow over time.

Moisture-Cure Urethane

If you’re looking for a finish that’s extremely durable and resistant to moisture, you might want to choose a moisture-cure urethane. Moisture-cure urethanes are more difficult to apply than other types of finishes. They also have a strong odor and can be dangerous if used improperly.

Shellac

Shellac is a type of finish that’s made from lacquer. It’s easy to apply and dries quickly. However, it’s not as durable as other types of finishes and can be difficult to repair if it’s damaged. Shellac is also more susceptible to scratches and scuffs.

Penetrating Oil Sealer

A penetrating oil sealer is a good choice if you want to protect your floors from water damage. Penetrating oil sealers soak into the wood, creating a barrier that prevents water from damaging the floors. However, penetrating oil sealers don’t provide as much protection from scratches and scuffs as other types of finishes.

Acid-Cured Finish

An acid-cured finish is a good choice if you’re looking for a durable, high-gloss finish. Acid-cured finishes are more difficult to apply than other types of finishes. They also have a strong odor and can be dangerous if used improperly, as well as being more susceptible to scratches and scuffs.

Prefinished Flooring

Prefinished flooring is a great option if you want to avoid the hassle of applying a finish to your floors. Prefinished flooring comes with a factory-applied finish that’s already dried and cured. Prefinished flooring can be a bit pricier, however you save time and money with flooring that is already finished. This option allows you to enjoy your new floors immediately.

Which Type of Flooring is Best for Your Kitchen?

Now that you know a little bit more about the different types of hardwood floors available, it’s time to decide which one is right for your kitchen.

If you’re looking for a durable, easy-to-maintain floor, engineered hardwood or a water-based finish might be the best option for you. If you’re looking for a more traditional look, solid hardwood or a wax finish might be the way to go. And if you’re looking for a high-gloss, durable finish, polyurethane might be the right choice. If you’d like to be able to enjoy your floors immediately without the hassle of applying a finish, prefinished flooring is your best option. It all depends on what you’re looking for in your kitchen’s flooring.

Chances are, you probably don’t know exactly what you want yet. The best thing you can do in this situation is to contact our team for a custom, free consultation. We would love to help you.

Should You DIY or Hire a Professional?

Source: Unsplash

Once you’ve decided on the type of hardwood floors you want, you’ll need to decide whether to install them yourself or hire a professional. If you’re handy and have some experience with home improvement projects, installing hardwood floors yourself can be a great way to save money.

However, hardwood floors can be tricky to install. If you’re not confident in your ability to do it yourself, hiring a professional is your best option. Not only will they be able to get the job done quickly and efficiently, but they’ll also be able to offer advice and guidance if you run into any problems.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to choosing the best hardwood flooring for your kitchen, there are a lot of factors to consider. But with so many great options available, you’re sure to find the perfect floors for your home. Just take your time, do your research, and pick what works best for your unique needs.

Now that you know more about the different types of hardwood floors available, you can start planning your kitchen renovation. With a little bit of research and planning, you can create the perfect space for cooking, entertaining, and spending time with family and friends. So what are you waiting for? Get started today!

Blackgum: Water-loving tree produces honey & wood products

Blackgum, also called black tupelo, tupelo gum, or just tupelo, is a tree that loves to grow in water and water-soaked soils. In fact, the genus Nyssa is the name of a water nymph. The tree grows throughout the eastern states, from Maine to Texas. Tupelo, Miss., (Elvis’ birthplace) was named after this tree. A close relative is water tupelo (Nyssa aquatica) which has nearly the same characteristics. Honey from water tupelo is highly prized. The tree in the forest is often 3 feet in diameter and 80 feet tall. Some of the trees are more than 400 years old. Unlike most trees, the tupelo trees are either male or female, with flowers being abundant on the female trees. It is not unusual for the larger, older tree to be hollow due to decay fungi; yet the tree can live with this condition for hundreds of years.

The wood itself is characterized by interlocked grain (the grain swirls every which way), which leads to warp when drying, warping in use when the MC changes, and difficulty when machining. In the past, blackgum was used for oxen yokes and chopping bowls due to the toughness resulting from the interlocked grain. Today, although this is not an outstanding, beautiful appearing species, it still is widely used for furniture, cabinets, caskets, and railroad ties. Carvers of duck decoys also appreciate this wood.

Processing suggestions and characteristics

Weight: Blackgum has a dry specific gravity (SG) of 0.52. The weight, when dry, is 32 pounds per cubic foot or about 2.6 pounds per board foot.

Strength: For dry wood, the ultimate strength (MOR) is 9,600 psi, stiffness (MOE) is 1.20 million psi, and hardness is 810 pounds. Interlocked grain means that splitting is very difficult. Nailing is also difficult, as the interlocked grain wants to change the nail’s direction. Pre-boring holes for nails and screws can be helpful.

Drying and stability: The wood dries with considerable difficulty due to warp, especially twisting. End coating is suggested, even with 4/4 stock. Shrinkage in drying is moderate. Overall shrinkage from green to 6 percent MC is 6.2 percent tangentially (the width in flatsawn lumber) and 3.5 percent radially (the thickness of flatsawn lumber). Once dried, the wood does move slightly if there are large RH changes or if the MC is not matched to the environment’s EMC conditions. A typical, desired, final moisture range is 6.0 to 7.5 percent MC. Once dry, it takes a 4.5 percent MC change to result in 1 percent size change tangentially and 8 percent MC change radially. 

Machining and gluing: This wood machines moderately well, with some chipped grain due to the interlocked grain. If over-dried, the wood appears to be quite brittle. Sharp tools are essential. This wood glues without much difficulty if surfaces are perfectly flat. However, if the MC changes and the pieces warp a small amount, it is difficult to obtain high-strength joints.

Grain and color: The wood, which is mostly heartwood, is grayish brown to a light brown with hints of yellow at times. The finished surface is smooth, but without natural luster. If the lumber is quartersawn, blackgum exhibits a very attractive figure. The wood is odorless. However, when the tree is bacterially infected, sawn wood will have a putrid odor and is noticeable (and objectionable) in dry wood products especially when the humidity is high.

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Black locust: Decay resistant, tough & durable

Black locust is a member of the legume family; it can “fix nitrogen” in the soil. It is native to the Appalachian Mountains, from Pennsylvania to Alabama. However, in the last century, it has spread to almost every state. With a widespread, shallow root system, it is ideal for thin soils where it will prevent soil erosion; it is often used for strip-mine reclamation projects barren due to mining debris and acid soils.

The tree has long thin bean-like pods. (Do not confuse black locust with honey locust. They are not related.) The flowers are very sweet smelling during the early spring, and the pollen and nectar are used by bees to produce excellent honey.

High natural decay resistance of the wood has resulted in frequent use of black locust for fencing. It also was the popular species for the pins that held glass insulators on the cross-arms of electric and telegraph/telephone poles. It also was the prized species for wheel hubs for wooden wheels, such as used on the western covered wagons. Xylophone keys are another use. Today, this wood has fallen into neglect within our industry (lumber prices are often low, especially for cabinet grades; dry firewood is a common use). It deserves better treatment.

The tree is short-lived, so it does not grow to large sizes; a large tree would be 24 inches in diameter at the base and 50 feet tall. Wide, clear pieces of black locust lumber are not common. A wood boring insect often invades the tree. A leaf miner often turns entire hillsides into brown-leafed, “dead-looking” trees for a week or so in the summer, but this damage is not fatal.

Processing suggestions and characteristics

Weight. This is a fairly heavy wood, more than 10% heavier than red oak. The weight, when dry, is 50 pounds per cubic foot or about 4 pounds per board foot.

Strength. Black locust is one of the strongest, hardest native American species.  For dry wood, the ultimate strength (MOR) is 19,400 psi, stiffness (MOE) is 2.05 million psi and hardness is 1,700 pounds. Mechanical fastening is difficult because of a tendency for splitting. Predrilling for nails and screws is advisable.

Drying. The wood dries slowly with some risk of checking, end splitting, and warping. Slow shed air-drying should be followed by kiln drying. Shrinkage in drying is moderately high. Overall shrinkage in drying from green to 6% MC is 7.2% tangentially (the width in flatsawn lumber) and 4.6% radially (the thickness of flatsawn lumber).

Stability. A typical final MC range is 6.0 to 7.5%, unless used in a humid location. It takes a 4% MC change to result in a 1% size change tangentially and a 6% MC change radially.

Machining and gluing. This wood machines with difficulty due to its hardness. This wood glues with some difficulty.

Grain and color. The heartwood is often quite green when first cut, but ages quickly to a russet brown color. The grain is moderately fine, but the annual rings are obvious and add character to the appearance.

 

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Tips to Save Money on Your Next Flooring Job

With the daily cost of living continuing to rise at a record pace, many households are budgeting more cautiously. Maintaining your home is the best way to protect your investment and add to your equity. With that in mind, your floor is something that has a major impact on your property value. So, what steps can you take to save money on your next flooring job?

Get a Few Different Estimates

Many of us are guilty of not familiarizing ourselves with the median cost of a job before hiring someone to do it. You can benefit from detailing your needs in writing and then articulating these needs over the phone or by email to several different companies to get quotes. In addition, you should attempt to find information online about the average cost for the type of job that you need.

Avoid creating a bidding war between several different companies as the process can become complicated. However, companies often have a little bit of wiggle room on pricing. Getting a few different estimates can help you make an informed decision about what company you want to proceed with.

Don’t Simply Pick The Cheapest Option

source: Unsplash

It’s definitely tempting to get your estimates and then immediately gravitate to the cheapest option. Do some digging on the companies that you’re getting quotes from and make sure that they are all highly rated with a proven track record. The last thing you want is a poorly done job that could cause more harm than good, requiring additional costs.

Another risk associated with selecting the cheapest option is low-quality materials, unskilled and/or underpaid installers and questionable work ethics. It’s important to understand the value of what you are paying for and make wise decisions. When your floors aren’t properly installed with quality materials, they aren’t going to last very long.

Use a More Affordable Wood

While we talked about the importance of quality materials, there are lots of types of wood out there that cost less and still last for years to come. Many types of wood look very similar and are of similar thickness but cost less than the original type of wood that it is imitating. It’s something that more people can benefit from exploring. Options like engineered wood, luxury vinyl plank, and plywood look great and don’t break the bank.

Remove Carpet and Move Furniture Yourself

source: Unsplash

If you currently own a carpet, part of a flooring installation job will involve ripping up your carpet in addition to clearing the room of furniture. Since these are things that you can do yourself, you can save some money here.

No, it doesn’t take any special skills to rip up a carpet. Moving your furniture is easiest done with the help of a few friends. You simply need some determination and strength, and time of course. Staples from your carpet can have a frustrating way of sticking around so try to pick them all up to make the job as easy as possible for contractors who later will install your floors. Carpet on your steps is harder to remove and will take a bit longer.

Remove The Existing Floor Yourself

If you do decide to rip up the carpet and clear furniture out of the way, you might as well get rid of the existing floor. The amount of work that this will require is dependent on the state of your home and the size of it. Make sure you watch a DIY guide or two on this first so that you don’t damage anything. To make things easier, a lot of people in this position will rent equipment to help with the process. It depends on what type of floor you originally had. Doing all of this can seriously help with lowering the cost of your next flooring job.

Set a Budget

source: Unsplash

If you set a budget for yourself and stick to it, you can ensure that you don’t spend any more money than you are comfortable with. Sure, it takes a lot of self-discipline, but that’s always a given when it comes to taking steps to save money with anything.

If you aren’t in a rush, you can start by dividing your home into several different zones. Using your budget, schedule a timeline for when you expect each zone to be finished. Start with one at a time so it’s less of an impact on your savings at any given time. Maybe you can learn a thing or two during the completion of each zone to make the next one more affordable.

Other Alternative Materials

Don’t overlook this one. There are actually a lot of alternative materials that you can use to save money on your next flooring job. For example, you can use reclaimed flooring. Some of the best-looking homes out there use reclaimed wood in their floors.

If you’re ordering materials yourself, it’s best to look at websites where the company has a bulk amount of a certain type of wood in stock. Companies always want to move inventory, and if they have an excess amount of a certain type of wood, a cheaper price can often be negotiated.

In addition, a lot of factories sell their lesser-desired wood for a much lower price. These “manufacturer seconds” are perfectly fine most of the time. Just be sure that you order extra product because it’s possible that you might be given some unusable boards.

Final Thoughts

Your next flooring job doesn’t have to break the bank. If you follow the tips in this blog post, you are sure to make some breathing room for yourself. 50% of our floors are sold to contractors or families who will install their own flooring. We love helping DIYers and can assist you throughout the installation process. If you’re in Colorado and are in need of services relating to hardwood floors, we are here for you. You can talk to us about your budget and our team will help find a solution that works for everyone.

Reach out today.

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