In Arizona, you will come across two choices of hardwood flooring—solid and engineered hardwood flooring. Hardwood is known for the warmth they generate in a room. It is manufactured to mitigate moisture. Failure to consider this factor will lead to deforming and gapping. It has multiple construction styles which can be installed in your subfloor. Manufacturers recommend that after choosing the hardwood flooring style and installation materials, you should also consider installing a moisture barrier.
At ground level subfloors, hardwood can be installed on concrete. It can be installed on concrete or basement – below the ground level subfloor. It can also be installed on Plywood above ground level subfloors. The four constructions of hardwood- 5/16-inch Solid, 3/4-inch Solid, engineered and Locking – can all be applied on the subfloors.
The 3/4-inch solid hardwood
The 3/4-inch solid hardwood is common in flooring. However, it can only be used over a plywood – at or above the ground level subfloor. Since solid hardwood expands when in contact with moisture, use it only if you have a crawl space. This flooring type is available in Arizona as either sanded or refinished.
The 5/16-inch solid hardwood
The 5/16-inch solid hardwood is thin in nature and mostly glued down or installed on concrete and plywood at ground level respectively. At above ground level, it is installed over plywood. To mitigate moisture adhesives and are recommended. It is also available in Arizona as refinished or sanded product.
The engineered hardwood, is waterproof (has crossed layers) and can be installed over concrete. It is environmentally friendly that can be installed in all house floor plans. It is less expensive when compared to the solid hardwood. You can obtain this type of hardwood in Arizona flooring manufacturers as sanded or finished products.
When you add the locking tongue-and-groove system to engineered hardwood, you get the locking hardwood. It is used in DIY installations above moisture barrier underlayment. You can find it in sanded or refinished form.
The style you require depends largely on the species you use, the color of your material as well as the dimensions and the texture. You taste and budget will guide you to the right species-domestic and exotic. Each species has distinct grain patterns and color which makes the exotic species more popular. Staining is applied in domestic species to create an array of colors. The exotic species achieve their desired rich color through sunlight exposure- photosensitive.
The beauty of your floor is determined by the width of your planks. A wider plank brings out a natural look; wider planks produce seamless floors. The material can also determine the texture: distressed, smooth, wire brushed and hand-scraped. The prefinished hardwood floors are strong because of the staining and coating process in its finishing.
Buying Wood Flooring
Hardwood is always tested for hardness to determine its resistance to indentation. It is a relative test that measures the force needed to embed a steel ball to half its diameter into the tested wood sample. The Janka Hardness Rating determines how hard the wood is- the higher the number, the better. Since hardwoods are natural products, prone to abuse, a hardness chart is used to select the right species.
The rule of thumb when buying wood is to check its defect rate- you will buy twice the amount of wood for 50% defect rate than 95% defect rate. The grade of the wood dictates its appearance. For minimal knots and color variations, the Clear and select grades are used. If you need to show knots and color variations, consider Millwood and cabin grades. High defect rate poses a challenge during installation. The installation of hardwood flooring planks includes: nailing, stapling, gluing (use of adhesive systems) and locking.
Therefore, the choice of hardwood for your floor will majorly be determined by your interest, taste, home plan space and the budget. Ocotillo Flooring Services in Arizona offers the above-mentioned species variety that comes at reasonable installation prices. Hardwood is not a recommended material when installing full baths floors due to fluctuating moisture conditions.