Hardwood is a highly popular flooring option known for its durability, versatility, and timeless beauty. Whether manufactured from synthetic or natural lumber, hardwood comes in various species, colors, and styles. It’s a permanent flooring option used for both residential and commercial purposes. Hardwood flooring is of two types: 

  • Solid hardwood floors
  • Engineered hardwood floors 

Solid hardwood is made from natural wooden planks fitted together using the groove or tongue technique. The plank’s thickness ranges from 5/8” to 3/4.” Solid hardwood can be refinished several times throughout its lifespan, restoring its original shine and visual appeal. It can last a lifetime with proper care and maintenance. However, solid hardwood floors are porous and can expand due to temperature or humidity changes. They are highly susceptible to water and moisture damage and require regular sanding services to extend their longevity.   

On the contrary, engineered hardwood is a veneer placed over multiple sub-layers of synthetic materials or wood. Unlike solid hardwood, engineered hardwood is cheaper and can be installed in any area of the house. Engineered hardwood can only be refinished a few times throughout its lifespan, depending on the veneer’s thickness. It’s not completely water-resistant but can hold off humidity and moisture damage better than solid hardwood.

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Species of Hardwood and Their Uses 

Strong and readily available hardwood species are considered the best. Continue reading to learn what hardwood specie would best meet your family’s everyday needs. 

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  1. Oak 
brown and black wooden surface


Oak is the most commonly used hardwood specie in America, renowned for its practicality, durability, and low cost. It improves the indoor aesthetics by camouflaging dents, scratches, and scuffs, thus making your homes suitable for children and pets. It can be stained either light, medium, or dark-colored based on your style and preference.   

  1. Hickory 

Hickory is the strongest wood specie utilized by the flooring industry. It was a popular flooring design until red oak overtook its rank. Due to its great stability, hickory is used to manufacture engineered wood. Its creamy brown color improves the indoor aesthetics, giving your interior a rustic outlook. 

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  1. Maple 

Maple is light-colored and great for confined or cramped-up spaces. It can make your small rooms appear spacious and bright. Therefore, maple is an ideal choice for homeowners who wish to achieve a yellowish or whitish interior. Although maple is stain resistant, its light color does little to hide or cover scratches and dents. Maple is mostly used to build gymnasium floors or basketball courts. 

  1. Bamboo 

Bamboo is an eco-friendly hardwood flooring recommended for people who wish to attain a sustainable lifestyle. Companies that want to go green can also consider installing bamboo hardwood floors in their offices. While bamboo is an inexpensive alternative to oak, its prices may vary depending on its various kinds. Bamboo can be glued over concrete subfloors and is highly recommended for condos. 

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Only consider reputable flooring installers if you opt for bamboo flooring, as improper installations can lead to costly repairs and replacements later. Furthermore, bamboo may reflect stains and dents and can be difficult to clean and maintain. They are susceptible to water damage and cannot be refinished like oak. Therefore, homeowners considering bamboo for their home’s flooring must take preventive measures to minimize the moisture level around their setting. 

  1. Walnut 
brown and beige kitchen interior

Otherwise known as American black walnut, this specie provides homeowners with a classy look indoors. Its natural dark brown color creates a warm, cozy, and eco-friendly interior, making your personal space sophisticated and elegant. However, walnut may lose their original luster and appearance when exposed to direct sunlight throughout the day. Therefore, you must install drapes or blinds in areas that receive more sunlight to protect your flooring from damaging prematurely. You may also use fibrous rugs or mats to preserve your walnut hardwood floors for long. 

Walnut is suitable for areas that receive high foot traffic. This includes classrooms, offices, conference rooms, restaurants, etc. 

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  1. Cherry 

Cherry is an expensive hardwood specie susceptible to dents and scratches. It’s a dark-colored wood that produces a warming effect. Thus, it’s a great flooring choice for homeowners living in colder regions. 

The Bottom Line 

Whether you wish to install solid hardwood flooring or engineered wood floor in your home, you can rely on Five Star Hardwood Floors for the job. They are a reliable flooring company offering services in Redmond, Bellevue, Woodinville, and nearby areas. Click here to learn about their services.          

About the Author 

James P. Gunther has worked as a realtor for many years. The author wishes to inform people how to sell their property for the top dollar. He is currently writing blogs for Five Star Hardwood Floors to increase his reach and help more people learn about property values and returns on investments. 

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