An Investment, Not An Upgrade: Hardwood Flooring In Dallas
Hardwood remains one of the most effective ways to make any space more aesthetically pleasing. With multiple varieties in color and type, it’s easily tailored to the design of any room or decor. It’s versatility is what renders it such an appealing aspect in any piece of real estate, as well as the pleasant click it makes under your heels. However, embarking on a project like changing the flooring in your house can be somewhat daunting. There’s so many choices in wood installation services, colors, styles, species of wood, and flooring contractors that it can easily get overwhelming. The guiding principle behind any home upgrade is that, at least subconsciously, you probably already know exactly what you want. The only thing you have to do at this point is find the best way to narrow down and execute your plan.
Rest easy in knowing you’re making the right decision in regard to choosing hardwood. Of all of the upgraded flooring options, including tile and stone, it has the lightest upkeep requirements. You find this type of flooring consistently throughout historical homes for a reason, it’s built for longevity. All your floor requires is the occasional sweeping and wood floor cleaning and it’ll serve you faithfully. In reference to our previous assertion, hardwood flooring holds its value. It lasts a long time, and it looks great for its entire lifespan. When buyers are searching for a home, hardwood stands out. In fact, it’s an estimated return of 1.5 times the initial investment when installing hardwood in Dallas. It’s an upgrade that acts as a major selling point. It’s so effective, in fact, that the popular real estate database sites have wood flooring as a listed filter for searches.
When considering the future of this project, the major obstacle you’ll have to hurdle is a budget. Since it’s hardwood, the materials and installation can be costly. This should not be a thing to deter you, as there are financing options available through Texas Hardwood Flooring. The fact that this is a furnishing that will be in your home for the rest of the time you occupy it, and beyond that, is an important aspect to acknowledge when you’re thinking of price. Whatever investment you put into this, you will definitely see an increase. Thus, if you purchase something you really want, you’ll be happier during your time in the house and when you sell it. Keep your options open, compare oak, cherry, and walnut, and find comfort in getting exactly what you want. On occasion, you may need to refinish your flooring. Throughout the life of the flooring, it will most likely get scuffed and scratched and in the event that these accrue enough to be noticeable, your next step is to get your floors refinished. If you decide that you should furnish high traffic areas with wood flooring, it’s going to show damage faster and it will be more noticeable. However, floor refinishing is often done by square foot and isn’t a huge inconvenience. It’s fairly quick, and flooring contractors aren’t expensive to hire for the job. You’re familiar with the charming click of shoes on hardwood. But hearing it in movies when it’s carefully emphasized, and hearing it on a day to day basis can be a noticeably different experience. If you truly love the look and feel of hardwood, it won’t phase you. The harmonious tick of solwa on your flooring will soon become apart of the familiar sounds of your household. That sound will be a gentle reminder of the flooring upgrade you love, a nod to the work and thought you put into planning out this project even after it’s finished.
Feel that? The gentle tug of a firm resolution? Take advantage of it, and determine now what kind of wood flooring you’re looking to install. There are a myriad of options to weigh in on, so let’s start by narrowing it down. You’re going to see flooring options come in strips, plank and parquet. Strips will be one and a half or two and a fourth inches wide, like the kind of flooring you’d see in a dance studio, or a 70’s era hotel. Planks will appear as wider strips, which are much more standard, you’ll see these in chic office buildings and expensive restaurants. Parquet flooring is the least common type, it’s compilation of separate squares that create a geometric pattern. This style is more commonly seen in places like indie movie theaters and other art venues where they have more liberty with creativity in the aspects of their architecture. Determining which style you’re going to go with is merely a preference, find examples of each and decide what you think looks better—don’t overthink it. There are options in regard to engineered wood flooring and solid hardwood. Engineered wood is a composite of plywood and hardwood. The only way to differentiate between the two is by looking for the word “solid” in the title of the product. Originally, engineered was the lesser counterpart to solid wood flooring. However, as with everything, technology has started to even the playing field.
Shortcomings of Engineered Wood:
- Good durability, but not excellent.
- Can only be sanded twice.
- There’s only a thin piece of hardwood over the top of the plywood.
- Cannot be found in softwoods like pine.
Advantage of Engineered Wood:
- Easier to install, placed on a floating board, unlike solid wood that needs to be nailed or stapled.
- Same resale value as solid wood, since they are both made of real wood materials.
- Due to stable layers, it is much more water resistant and can be installed below grade.
Solid hardwood is still the winner of this race. It’s durability and long-term potential is unparalleled as of yet. However, engineered is the better option for basement renovations. In this case, you’re getting your money’s worth when purchasing solid hardwood due to it’s versatile refinishing, sanding, and species options. The only thing to be wary of is moisture.
Both of your options, whether you choose solid wood or engineered, come in many different species of wood. Choosing the color and kind of wood for your flooring will probably be the most difficult portion of the process. We recommend shopping through pictures of buildings, finding similar styles of decorating, and observing what kinds of hardwoods they used. You don’t have to do exactly what they did, by any means, but it will give you a point of reference as far as color schemes and what sorts of ideas you can play with. The wood species is going to determine, of course, the type of tree it was harvested from, as well as the hardness, provenance and grain.
Hardness will often appear as a rating on the side of the box. There are both soft and hardwoods, and this directly correlates to pricing. Softer woods will dent and scratch, where harder wood will not. The rating system is called the Janka hardness, which is measured by shooting a small steel bullet into the plank of a species of wood and then measuring how deep it drills in.
When we mention provenance, that’s referring to whether or not the wood is considered extoic. It’s going to either be a domestic or exotic type of wood. Domestic can be characterized by its mild, neutral colors and low contrast. Whereas exotic woods will have high-contrast, vibrant colors. To find these, look for the words “Brazilian” and “kempas.” Domestics are going to consist of species like oak, maple, and beech.
It consists of how close the wood fibers are packed in. Close grain offers a harder surface and a different look, while open-grain splinter much easier. In the flooring world, you’ll see an emphasis placed on a few species, such as maple, a close-grained, lighter wood with a distinctive creamy and warm color. It’s becoming in sunnier areas with stark contrast decorating to match. It’s very attractive in lighter, country fresh kitchen designs. Another popular species is the red oak. It’s a highly popular option for its high-contrast colors and lower expense. Its darker color leaves it open to a more Mediterranean style of decor, but anything that takes advantage of the powerful color palette will work. There’s also beech wood, known for its odd swirls of colors and white oak, a wood that’s more beige in color. There’s cypress with distinctive darker spots peppering the surface and bamboo, which isn’t actually a wood. It’s now characterized in the hardwood flooring category, despite it actually being a type of grass. It’s created from the strands of bamboo and is extremely resilient and durable. It’s easily stained, rendering it one of the most versatile types of flooring on the upgraded market currently.
Real, solid hardwood is installed with nails and staples and is not a do-it-yourself kind of project. Hardwood is an expensive material that needs to be handled by flooring contractors in order to produce the best result. Engineered pieces are easier to install, but it remains a precise procedure that is not easily completed. You bought long-lasting when you chose solid wood, so it’s important to ensure you’re flooring is installed correctly.
Cuts Of Solid Wood
In order to avoid confusion, before installation begins, it’s crucial that you understand the way that your newly purchased product is cut. This clarifies the way it’s going to lay on your floor and the overall feeling it’ll produce once it’s been placed. This all comes down to how the pieces have been sawed and will contribute to how long your floor will last before needing refinishing or sanding. Plain saw is the most common cut found in flooring products. Each piece of solid wood is created by taking a log and slicing it vertically. With this technique, you get the most out of every log of wood, which renders this the least expensive and thus the most popular cut of solid wood. This product is only recommended for medium traffic areas due to its mildly lessened durability, a result of this type of cut.
There are two less common types of cuts: quarter sawing and rift sawing. Quarter saw cuts are created by pushing the saw through the middle and then cutting vertically and horizontally. This creates four wedges that are then sawed by following the radius. These are generally more resistant cuts because of how the grain is followed. Rift sawing is quartered and then cut at 45 degrees. This creates super uniform pieces that are of the same exact grain, and therefore, extremely durable. This method, however, creates a lot of wood waste, which renders the product proportionately more expensive. Our specialists will point you in the right direction when trying to choose the type of wood and the cut according to your budget and what rooms you want to furnish. If the area is higher traffic, it might make sense long-term to spend money now and get a higher quality cut, but if it’s in a low traffic area (like a bedroom, for example), this is much less important. Texas Hardwood Flooring’s experts will also assist you in determining the grade of wood you’re interested in installing. There are several grades of wood that factor in with budget and traffic areas when you’re starting out on your home improvement project. The grades include clear grade, select grade, low select, natural, and rustic. Clear is the highest grade with consistent color, and rustic is characteristic for its defects and color variations. The middle variants obviously have mild changes between each other. This is more of an aesthetic choice than it a practical decision.
If it’s not a contest between engineered wood flooring or hardwood flooring, it might be a contest to be the most original. While some folks are prone to looking toward exotic breeds of wood like the dazzling purple heart with its warm beautiful purple hues or the dark black of the African wenge tree to provide stark, stunning contrast. But you don’t have to pay for foreign imported planks of wood flooring to give yourself a truly unparalleled wood flooring option. Lately, more folks are looking to the U.S. to find their original hardwood flooring options and that search has led them toward reclaimed hardwood flooring.
Most of the reclaimed hardwood available to be cut into flooring comes from the U.S. You see, the East Coast and the Deep South like Tennessee and Kentucky all have leagues and leagues of heavily wooded land that hide small cabins and old barns that are ripe for harvesting. The really awesome part of investing in reclaimed wood means you’re supporting a family of entrepreneurs. Almost all of the highly reputable distributors of reclaimed wood are family owned and operated mills that re-mill and create beautiful and totally unique reclaimed hardwood flooring. That means that you’re supporting and bolstering their American dream and putting money into our economy. But it’s patriotic in more than one way, it’s patriotic in the historical sense as well.
The History of The Piece
While wenge and purple heart might have a potentially horrifying background lurking in their past, the past of your reclaimed wood is rich and centered around the development of the U.S. Some reclaimed wood flooring mills will go so far as to send you a description of the woods history that they’ve researched and laid out for you on a sheet of paper that accompanies your bundle of freshly milled planks for your flooring. Let’s say that your new flooring was milled from a barn somewhere deep in the Tennessee woods back in the 1890s. It stood for hundreds of years and probably saw everything from Civil War soldiers taking refuge in its interior, to teens in the 50s telling ghost stories in the loft, to serving a farmer loyally through the 70s and 80s. Reclaimed wood from American soil is a unique way to connect to the history and economy of the United States. Every one of those people contributed to making the country what it is today on some level and the rich history in every knot and line of the grain will do more than complement the interior aesthetic of your Dallas home, it’ll enrich your life and your home.
Shopping For Antique Wood Flooring
Before you go searching for antique hardwood to outfit your home with, you should know a couple of things. For example, for it to be true antique wood and not just reclaimed wood, it’ll need to be at least 100 years old. You can find re-milled or merely repurposed varieties of both salvaged (not a century old) and antique woods. Re-milled wood will generally look sharper and while it will have a vintage appeal, it might not look as weathered. In other cases, you’ll find boards that look their age and are littered with cracks and wormholes that add an undeniable character to the wood. The mills aren’t going to sell you bum boards, and their age won’t diminish their longevity, but if you prefer a more polished look, you won’t favor the aged appearance after it’s installed. What’s fascinating about most of the reclaimed woods on the market right now is they are made of a rather rare species of wood. What was once plentiful enough to build a barn with is scarce on the markets now, so if you favor the two-toned appeal of heart pine, you’ll be able to find it on the reclaimed market but not on the new retail market.
Selecting a Species
We recommend ordering lots of samples. Try to narrow down whether you’re interested in engineered hardwood flooring or hardwood flooring before setting out to track down your reclaimed wood boards. There are plenty of mills that offer it in both varieties, but it’ll keep your budget in check and give you a realistic idea of what designs you’ll be able to achieve with your new hardwood flooring. If you’re looking for the uber cool aesthetic of modern hardwood flooring, you won’t go wrong nearly anywhere you look for reclaimed wood flooring. It’s adaptive enough that as long as you have a firm grasp on the way you’re designing the rest of the room, you’ll easily be able to tackle incorporating the wood. As far as color, you’ll want to narrow down your ideas for the space before you start looking around. Don’t worry, while grey isn’t the most plentiful variety among the reclaimed wood flooring market, if you can get a hue spectrum that you’re comfortable with, you’ll be starting off on the right foot. We recommend whitewash oaks for contemporary styles and blonde woods for any styles leaning toward mid-century modern with clean lines and metallics. If you’re sticking to a rustic or Mediterranean look, we encourage you to choose from a variety of darker stained woods like a nutty brown antique oak or something darker. Rustic design styles of all types tend to feature lighter tans and natural tones that will wash out when paired with blonde or even a slightly lighter-looking wood flooring.
Hardwood Flooring Installation
After you’ve taken the trouble to hunt down the perfect reclaimed wood for your new hardwood flooring project, the work isn’t finished. You’ll need to find the highest quality flooring installation option around. In Dallas that is Texas Hardwood Flooring, without question. Invest in precise installation that will do your new flooring justice. Our promised excellent results will ensure that you’ll get the proper longevity out of your new flooring and will help you avoid repair issues down the road. Reach out to us when you’re ready to get started on renovating your Dallas home.
Being prepared for the coming maintenance for your newly installed wood flooring is a great idea. When your floor starts to look a little scuffed, pause before jumping to refinishing or sanding your flooring. While these are both quality services that will bring back the life and shine of your wood flooring, you can try cleaners first instead.
Murphy Oil Soap:
It’s the number one for most flooring manufacturers. It does a pretty good job of ridding your floor of build-up. It’s not going to be the best option, but if you’re on a budget and just want to buffer your floors a touch, it’s a certainly the best choice. Be aware that it could leave a waxy film, since it’s oil based, it’s going to linger after rinsing. Despite this, it’s cheap and accessible at your local grocery store. If you’re sensitive to smells or oily build up, however, read on.
Bona Wood Floor Cleaner:
This is one of our top choices. It is somewhat difficult to obtain, but a bit of shopping around will prove fruitful. This cleaner is non-toxic, won’t dull your wood, and is worth the higher price point. After all, it’s cheaper than paying for a per square foot refinishing or sanding.
Pledge Wood Floor Cleaner
You’ll find this impressive product on the shelf right next to the previously mentioned Murphys. This may be made of only chemicals, but that also means it’s a much more effective cleaning method. It smells like lemons and it’s cheaper than many of the options. But it will strip off every grain of build up without question. No grease or residue, just clean, fresh hardwood flooring. If you do find yourself in need of refinishing be sure to call Texas Hardwood Flooring, as your wood floor installation company, we’re already familiar with your flooring and we’re happy to adapt to whatever your needs are. Refinishing refreshes your floors and gives you the opportunity to recolor your wood. Don’t limit the market value of your home, invest in high-quality wood flooring that will certainly make your guests drool and your neighbors jealous. The best way to start a home improvement project of this nature is to consult a flooring contractor expert. With 50 years of experience, Texas Hardwood Flooring, proudly represents a large number of the quality hardwood flooring in Dallas. So stop on by for a consultation. We’d be happy to discuss financing, species of wood, and more with you. Let’s get you started on the path to successfully making this idea a reality. Add measurable value to your home by investing in hardwood flooring with us.