There are few things that can increase the value of a home and update the interior better than solid hardwood flooring. Hardwood floors have been used for centuries to provide beautiful, high quality, durable, and long lasting flooring options for homes, offices, and retail spaces. There are a wide variety of options when it comes to selecting a type of wood flooring for your space. Solid wood floors can be found in many color variations, finishes, wood species, grain types, and styles, making them a good complement for nearly any interior design.
Wood floors are so popular, in fact, that many people try to get the look by using other materials that may be faster or easier to install, but that can’t give you the same high quality or longevity of wood. In the past, all hardwood floors required expensive and time consuming finishing after installation. With prefinished hardwood flooring, however, you can have your cake and eat it too, because these floors look beautiful from the minute they’re installed.
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The Drawbacks of Unfinished Hardwood
For centuries, hardwood floors were sold in unfinished flooring planks. They could be cut, sawn, and usually sanded, but to get their true color and a durable, long-wearing high gloss top coat, they needed to be finished by the installer or flooring experts once they were installed. Once the plank flooring is finished, it is beautiful and long lasting, but the process has several drawbacks that have led homeowners to look for alternative home improvement materials.
First, if you’re living in the home or working in an office when the unfinished flooring is installed, you might find yourself blocked off from several parts of your home or workspace. The floors need time to dry and cure after being stained and finished, and you can’t walk on them until that’s done. The finish often used as a sealer also gives off very high levels of VOCs, which means that the floors tend to smell strongly for several hours to several days after finishing. Some homeowners or office workers find the smell strong enough that they can’t stay in their home until the floors are done curing and the home has been aired out. This leads to additional expenses, such as alternative lodging or time spent away from work, that many homeowners didn’t foresee ahead of time.
Finally, when you rely on the installer to finish the new floors, you’re also putting that finish into their hands. While an experienced flooring expert can give you a beautiful, flawless finish, a less experienced installer may produce more inconsistent results with color variations. This may mean that your floor needs to be redone sooner, restarting the sanding and refinish life cycle.
Using Prefinished Wood Flooring
Prefinished wood flooring solves these issues, giving you beautiful, instant results in a range of wood species, color variations, and finishes that can complement any home decor. Prefinished hardwood floors are finished at the factory, not once they’re installed. This means that they’re finished in a controlled environment that can produce more consistent results than those done on floors in various settings.
When the new floors are installed in your home or office space, they’re already done drying and curing. There’s no strong odor or smell, and you can walk on the new floors as soon as they are put in, so there’s no lost time.
Prefinished floors often last longer as well. The factory-applied finish can use consistent techniques and materials that installers may not have the option to use. This means you get a better quality solid wood flooring product every time.
Options for Prefinished Floors
Depending on the wood and its source, it’s possible to find prefinished wood floors in a range of different colors and styles, from light wood to very dark wood, and narrow planks to wide planks. There are also a variety of wood species to choose from such as white oak, hickory and walnut. This includes rustic floors, antique floors, new cut wood, and even colorful plank flooring. Previously, you needed to rely on the installer if you wanted a unique floor or finish, but now you can have the prefinished wood floor of your choice (in your preferred color and finish) put in right away.
Prefinished wood flooring can be given a variety of treatments as well, including artisan brushing and chemical treatments that can help give them a better fire rating. By choosing a prefinished wood floor, you lose nothing over an unfinished wood floor, but can gain a lot in durability, longevity, and faster, easier installation with less down time.
Get a Better Floor with Prefinished Hardwood Flooring
Prefinished flooring gives you numerous choices, wood types and species, colors, and styles. It also gives you better, more consistent quality and durability for your floor with less wait and down time after installation. If you want a good quality wood floor with none of the drawbacks of an unfinished floor, check out the wide selection of prefinished hardwood flooring products at Elmwood Reclaimed Timber, and make a better decision for the flooring for your next home improvement project.