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What Options Are Available for Installing Hardwood Floors?

Famed for its timeless elegance and superior durability, hardwood is one of the most popular flooring options. It is easy to clean, goes with almost all decor themes, and is resistant to everyday wear and tear. If you want to install a hardwood floor, you have a wide selection of colors and styles to choose from.  However, hardwood only comes in two ways, either solid hardwood or engineered wood.

Read on to learn about the difference between these two options of hardwood flooring.

Solid Hardwood Installation

As the name implies, solid hardwood is a solid piece of wood all the way through. To install solid hardwood, you first need to fit the tongue and grooves together and then nail or staple the floor.

Rugworks, a reputable hardwood floor contractor near Sonoma, will make sure that your flooring is acclimated properly to the local weather conditions. 

Movement in the floor can result in cupping and crowning or gapping if the floor is not properly acclimated and maintained, damaging your hardwood floor. Relative humidity in the rooms your hardwood floor is installed should be kept between 40 to 60 %. Contractors keep a 1/2 to 3/4-inch gap around the edges to prevent swelling from causing any buckling.  Baseboard and molding are used to cover these gaps.

Because the floor must be nailed or stapled, Solid hardwood is not recommended for concrete slab foundations.  Also, due to its relative instability in comparison to engineered hardwood floors, solid hardwood is not recommended for basement or wet areas such as bathrooms.

Engineered Wood Installation

Engineered wood floors, the most common form of wood floors today, are also known as composite wood or manufactured board. This flooring includes different types of wood products, manufactured by binding the particles, strands, or veneers together.  The common denominator is the top veneer is a real piece of hardwood, finished to the same standards as a solid wood floor

Engineered floors are more versatile in that they can be glued down using an adhesive, nail, or stapled down and/or installed as a floating floor where it is glued to itself but not the subfloor.  Rugworks can help determine which installation method will be best for your home and lifestyle.

A few styles have a tongue and groove that click together, removing the need to use glue to hold the boards together. The installation is a little faster but can only be used as a floating floor.

Engineered construction involves creating layers. Each layer runs the opposite of the layer on either side. Because of this cross-ply construction, engineered wood is more stable than many other types of flooring options. Unlike traditional solid hardwood, engineered wood can be installed in any grade level including ground floors and basements, it is still not recommended for bathrooms as humidity levels are harder to control and can still create moisture problems. It is still important to monitor the moisture in the areas engineered hardwood is installed before, during, and after installation since engineered wood is still real wood and can have issues if the area is too dry or humid. Rugworks is a leading hardwood floor contractor near you. We have extensive experience managing flooring projects from start to finish. Our flooring products are tested to meet the highest quality standards. To inquire about our products and services, call (707) 935-0648.

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