Wood Flooring Types
Mar 21, · Before we get into all of the different wood varieties and their common uses, it’s important to understand the three basic types of wood you might encounter. These three types are: softwoods, hardwoods, and engineered wood. Each of these different wood types can be used in a number of different ways. Before installing a wood floor, it is important to know about the available wood flooring types. Learning about the pros, cons, cost, and design options available for: laminate, solid hardwood, engineered hardwood, bamboo, and cork will help ensure the right floor is selected for the project.
Before installing a wood floor, it is important to know about the available wood flooring types. Learning about the pros, cons, cost, and design options available for: laminate, solid hardwood, engineered hardwoodbamboo, and cork will help ensure the right floor is selected for the project. Laminate flooring is made by compressing layers of fiberboard together and placing a photographic image of wood grain, stone, or tile pattern over the fiberboard.
After the image is added to the surface, a protective coating is added to help prevent damage and add a finish to the flooring. It is a cost effective option that will withstand a certain amount of wear. For an easy installation, opt for click-lock. The planks will snap together and can be laid over other flooring. Also, ideal for living areas, and some brands may even construct it with a waterproof core, allowing it to be used in areas where water may be an issue. We suggest taking a close look at the guarantee before installing it in a bathroom.
Top quality laminate will not match the look and feel of real wood floors. The areas where the planks join will wear considerably over time, and when damage sets in, it is not an easy repair. The moisture damages Laminate easily, and when that damage sets in, it cannot be fixed. If the laminate is not laid correctly, it will not be appealing to potential renters or what are the first feelings of pregnancy. There is a variety of styles to match any decor in laminate.
High quality laminate may even feature images of knots and other characteristics of natural wood. Solid hardwood floor planks are made from a piece of wood and made to be anywhere from 18 to 20 mm thick. The boards are made with a tongue and groove to fit together for installation. Depending on the species of wood, certain floors will be harder than others. The harder the floor, the less susceptible it is to dings and scratches.
The floor can be sanded and refinished several times to restore its beauty, with the total number of times being determined by the depth of the tongue from the top of the plank. Solid hardwood is an excellent way to add visual appeal to a home what are the different types of wood flooring business. It will also potentially add value to a home or business in the event it gets put on the market later. Solid hardwood will swell in moist conditions and contract as the area dries.
The change of shape can alter the appearance of the floor and cause problems. Installation is a complex process, and for the best appearance must be done with great care. This is the most expensive option for those shopping for wood floors. Engineered hardwood is made using three to four layers of wood glued together to produce a 14 mm thick plank. A real wood surface about 4 mm in thickness is applied to the top to allow it to be sanded and refinished a certain number of times to remove signs of damage, wear, and tear.
Engineered hardwood construction produces a more stable product. The greater stability means it is less prone to changes from temperature and humidity conditions in the room.
This type of flooring is more attractive than a laminate floorbut it is also less expensive than solid hardwood floors. Engineered hardwood floors come in a variety of styles to match any decor.
Bamboo floors come from bamboo grass stalks prominent in Asia. The floors are produced in China, and come in a variety of styles and finishes to suit various decor options. Since it is a tropical grass as opposed to wood for trees, it is naturally resistant to moisture. The flooring is produced by pressing fibers together under high pressure.
Bamboo flooring is softer than traditional hardwoods, so it will not cause pain if it is stood on for long periods of time. What are the different types of wood flooring softness of the floor will also reduce noise.
The downfalls to bamboo are the cost and its brittle how to make security enabled network. Despite the fact that it is a durable type of flooring, it is more susceptible to dings and scratches than other wood floors.
Due to the cost of importing from China and the care which must be taken during installation, it is a much more expensive option than traditional hardwood. Cork floors come what are the 2012 roth ira contribution limits the harvest of the cork oak tree bark.
One of the best things about cork floors is that they are environmentally friendly because cork is a sustainable and renewable resource. The natural beauty of the material can suite any decor. The structure of the cork allows for a natural comfort and softness to absorb shock. Using cork floors will reduce noise from traffic or dropping items, also because of the structure of the cork material. The natural properties of the material make it healthy because it is not only resistant to insects, but it is hypo-allergenic.
One of the drawbacks of cork flooring is the cost. It is more expensive than other wood flooring options. The cost of import, plus material, plus installation is more than many budgets can handle. Due to the soft nature of the flooring, it is easily damaged by furniture and shoes, but it can and should be protected just like any other type of wood floor.
The price increases when it comes to planks and stains. Knowing more about the characteristics of these types of wood floors will make the choice for any project a much easier one. Make sure to choose the best one for your own budget, location, and decor. Pingback: Understanding Types of Hardwood Flooring.
Pingback: Cultured corners eegbusiness. April 28, at Thanks, dlong. March 15, at The kitchen space I glued all seams to prevent any spill damage, the rest was not glued. I noticed that the free floating non-glued area where the ends of the planks joined got very small, but noticeable, gaps when direct sunlight fell on part of the floor. I did the same thing when I installed this in my dining room and it has worked very well and looks beautiful.
It was a very what is the definition of colonists project and quiet to walk on. January 28, at September 8, at I had a salesman today try to sell me compressed Shaw flooring.
He said it is real wood, not laminate, and is more durable than the other types of wood flooring. Any advice?
March 12, at February 7, at Can you please direct me to a good resource website preferably that will provide adequate, dependable facts about the history of wood flooring?
February 1, at I have a question more than a comment. I live in Southern California where termites abound. I already have oak flooring over a concrete slab floor with no moisture barrier. They apparently built the houses in a walnut grove after cutting the trees down and grinding in the roots. November 2, at Great write up on the different types of flooring. When putting in new flooring it is important to think about how much traffic it is going to receive, the climate that you live in, and your budget.
All three of these variables will help you determine which flooring might be best. Also, installing your own flooring can save a significant amount of money. Your email address will not be published. Notify me of followup comments via e-mail.
You can also subscribe without commenting. Learning Center Find the answers to your home improvement questions. Laminate Flooring. SKU: Hardwood Flooring.
Engineered Flooring. Bamboo Flooring. Cork Flooring. Cork Flooring In the Bathroom? Hardwood vs. Delores Long - Reply April 28, at Ron - Reply How to stop stuffed nose 15, at Sharon Mork - Reply January 28, at Can you help me with choosing a wood flooring for my at home office?
Vickie - Reply September 8, at Marlene Moore - Reply March 12, at
May 29, · Oak is a hardwood that tends to be very grainy. There are two varieties: red oak, which ranges from light brown to pinkish red with a swirling, waterlike pattern, and white oak, which has a tiger-stripe grain with yellow rays and flecks. Find out the different types of poplar wood trees that are popular among gardeners and nature-loving homeowners and get tips on where and how to grow these trees. Known as one of the most popular trees grown in the United States and Canada, the poplar tree has become a favorite for landscaping. Types of flooring - Designing Buildings Wiki - Share your construction industry knowledge. The term ‘flooring’ refers to the lower enclosing surface of spaces within buildings. This may be part of the floor structure, such as the upper surface of a concrete slab or floor boards, but typically it is a permanent covering laid over the floor.
Understanding the many different types of wood and their uses can be very helpful for choosing the best wood for your next project. Whether you are building something out of wood or simply choosing wood furniture for your home, this list of the many wood types will help make sure you choose wood you can be happy with! Wood is available in many different shapes and sizes. Since wood comes from trees and there are many different species of trees it is not surprising we have such a large variety of different woods to use for building.
These three types are: softwoods, hardwoods, and engineered wood. Each of these different wood types can be used in a number of different ways. Softwoods are the wood and lumber which are milled from conifer trees. Scientifically known as Gymnosperms, Conifer trees are any trees which have needles and produce cones. Examples of popular softwood trees used in woodworking, construction, and furniture are Pine, Cedar, Fir, Spruce, and Redwood. While it is true that some varieties of hardwoods are very hard and therefore more challenging to work with, the distinction between hardwood and softwood has little to do with the actual softness or whether one wood is harder to work with.
There are many hardwoods which are softer than softwoods. Most softwoods are strong and commonly used in many different building applications. These woods are often used in framing new construction, as well as building utility style structures. Many of these woods, particularly softwoods from the cypress family are renowned for their ability to resist rot and insects. This makes trees such as cedar and redwood ideal for exterior projects, such as decking and outdoor furniture.
Hardwoods come from any trees which do not produce needles or cones. These trees are most commonly are known as deciduous trees, more scientifically known as angiosperms. Hardwoods are trees which produces leaves and seeds.
Common hardwood species include oak, maple, cherry, mahogany, and walnut. Hardwood species are not always necessarily stronger than softwoods, but many species are well known for their beautiful and distinct wood grain patterns.
There are also some woods which are considered to be hardwoods that are not deciduous trees, such as Bamboo and Palm. These plants are scientifically known as monocotyledons, but have many of the same characteristics of hardwoods and so are often classified as such. Bamboo and Palm can sometimes fall under the next classification of engineered wood.
The third type of wood you may encounter are engineered woods. Engineered wood does not occur naturally in the environment but instead are manufactured. These boards are generally made with wood which is manipulated to have certain qualities or features. Also known as composite wood, these products are often made from the waste wood of sawmills.
Engineered wood is often treated through chemical or a heat process to produce a wood product which can meet certain sizes that would be difficult to achieve from nature. Wood veneers can also sometimes be classified as engineered wood, since it often needs to be manipulated either through specialized cutting techniques or joining pieces together to achieve a specific size or wood grain patterning.
Now that we understand these three main types of wood, we are ready to start exploring all of the different varieties of wood you may encounter and what they are most frequently used for.
While there are three main types of wood, there are thousands of varieties and species of wood. For each variety of wood, we will give an overview of their common characteristics, and what each type of wood is most suitable to be used for. All woods are listed in alphabetical order, so if there is a specific type of wood you want to learn about, you will be able to find it easily on this list. Alder is a hardwood which is slowly gaining a rising popularity due to its natural beauty, workability and versatility.
It is more frequently found in the Northwest regions of California and Southwestern parts of Canada. It is in the same family as the birch tree, so it often shares similar applications. Alder will appear to be almost white when freshly cut, but quickly turns to warm honey brown once exposed to air and sunlight. This medium density wood usually has a straight grain and is easy to use for carving, turning, and machining. The wood also works well with a variety of different finishing treatments.
Alder wood has a very smooth surface when sanded which can easily be stained or painted. The Alder tree does not grow to be very large in diameter or height, so this is something to consider if you need very large solid pieces as they may be more difficult and therefore more expensive to obtain.
Alder is used frequently in furniture making and cabinetry. It is also a popular choice for photo frames and other decorative objects. Perhaps one of the more specialized uses for Alder wood is in the hard body of electric guitars. Alder wood produces a very clean tone that is hard to replicate with other woods. In electric guitars, Alder is often more desirable for its tone than even the exotic hardwoods such as mahogany. Ash wood can be somewhat difficult to find currently, especially due to the recent issues with the Emerald Ash borer, an invasive pest which caused many of these trees to prematurely die.
If you live in the areas where Ash trees are native and grow abundantly, it will be easier to find this wood than if you live somewhere that does not. Ash mimics the same strength and characteristics of white oak but typically comes at a more budget friendly price if you are able to find it at a local lumberyard near you. The wood takes stain easily and can be used for many different types of projects. Aspen is a light colored wood which takes painting and stain well. This wood can sometimes appear or feel to have a fuzzy texture.
Aspen is a hardwood grown in Northeast America but can sometimes be difficult to find. Due to its general limited availability, it is typically only used for very specific projects in which Aspen wood is ideal. One of the most specialized uses for Aspen wood is in the building of saunas. The wood does not conduct heat and can tolerate the moisture well with limited swelling or movement.
Because it does not conduct heat easily, it is also sometimes used in the production of matchsticks. These properties are also what make Aspen desirable for using to build drawer slides in furniture, since this can help reduce sticking. This wood is also odorless and taste free, making it ideal for making chopsticks and kitchen utensils.
Balsa is a very lightweight hardwood that is typically used in hobby and craft types of projects. Many fine woodworkers tend to have a negative viewpoint of balsa wood since it is not very strong, but it often under appreciated and has many practical uses.
Most of us first encounter balsa wood in childhood building projects and model kits. This wood also has a very rich history, especially because it was often used as a substitute during World War I and World War II in airplanes and ships.
Balsa wood grows very quickly but has a relatively short lifespan, with most trees only producing usable lumber before it is 10 years old. The wood is very buoyant, and many people are surprised to learn that balsa wood is often used in building rafts, life preservers, and other types of items that are designed to float. Surfboards are a great example of beautifully crafted projects that can be made of Balsa wood.
Balsa wood is a low density wood which is generally not very strong. For this reason, many people prefer to choose basswood and birch over balsa wood for any type of project that needs to be able to handle weight or stress. On the other hand, if you DO need to build something out of wood that can quickly break or come apart, such in the case of building sets for theatre and film stages, balsa is a great choice.
The grain of the wood can easily be painted or stained to use as a veneer in order to achieve a number of looks on the cheap. When assembling projects that use balsa wood, it is often necessary to use glue, since the wood does not play too nicely with nails or screws.
Very thin pieces of balsa wood can often be cut with nothing more than a good utility or craft knife.
Although Bamboo is technically a grass and not a wood, it can be used for building many things due to the hardness and density of the plant stems.
Bamboo grows in abundance in tropical climates and there are a number of different species available, which vary greatly between regions. The Bamboo plant has a tall, hollow stem. These stems can be used as-is, or they can be cut into very thin, narrow strips to create a veneer. The veneer product from the stems is made into an engineered wood such as plywood. While people might think that Bamboo would be lightweight, soft, and easy to bend or cut this is not the case.
It is better to compare Bamboo to the hardwood Red oak or Maple, since it has a similar hardness and strength. The high density grass can sometimes be tough on tools. Bamboo stems are especially popular for garden furniture, garden decorations, fences, and privacy screens.
You can also see bamboo in cabinets, fine furniture and even as hardwood flooring. Part of what makes Bamboo able to resist decay outdoors is its natural waxlike coating.
If you wish to stain, paint, or glue bamboo, you will need to sand the wood first to ensure the paint or glue grips to the wood. Most bamboo should be sealed and protected for longevity if it is used outdoors. Moisture can cause Bamboo to swell or shrink, so it is best to let it acclimate to the environment before cutting, especially if you are in a drier and colder climate than where the plant is natively grown.
Basswood is a very light cream-colored wood, and has a very straight and tight grain. The wood is not prone to warping or movement once properly acclimated and dried. Basswood is a hardwood favorite for woodcarvers and woodturners. It is also a very popular choice for those who enjoy miniature woodworking and building models.
Woodturners often enjoy working with basswood due to its ease of use and availability. The wood also has no odor, taste, or known allergens so it makes it a popular choice for food storage crates or even possible use in kitchen utensils. Basswood is easy to find and typically budget friendly. Basswood can be challenging to stain evenly. In most cases it is best to appreciate simply the natural finish with a protective clear coat of oil or to paint the wood. Many decorative painters enjoy working with basswood projects because once it is primed will allow for a very smooth finish.
Beech is a hardwood that is often used for wood veneers, furniture, and woodturner objects. This cream toned wood has a consistent grain pattern which is usually straight and tight, and occasionally will have gray flecking. The wood is very light in color, but usually has a yellow-reddish cream tone to it.