Hardwood has long been recognized as a timeless and long-lasting flooring material. It brings a warm and stylish look to your house. While it is durable enough to stand the test of time, hardwood flooring is typically not considered a suitable option for kitchen remodeling. It is well known among homeowners that solid hardwood is very susceptible to water damage and has high maintenance requirements. But keep in mind that there is also a gray area when we talk about the kitchen. This space in your house can either be sporadically moist or semi-moist, depending on the nature and lifestyle of the family. So, before you even exclude hardwood flooring for your kitchen, let’s start to weigh the pros and cons of this material. We, as a Maryland hardwood floor company, have enumerated some factors why hardwood can be a good or bad choice for your kitchen floor.
Types of Hardwood Flooring
Solid hardwood used in any room, including the kitchen, falls into any of the following categories or types.
Prefinished Hardwood. This type of hardwood is already finished in the factory before you even buy them from any Maryland hardwood floor company. It is gaining popularity because it lessens the hassle of extra work during installation. With prefinished hardwood, you don’t need to stain, sand, or seal once they are installed. The average cost of this hardwood flooring installation ranges from $6 to $12 per square foot. Keep in mind that some prefinished hardwood products are milled, so the edges of the planks are slightly beveled which can be a little bit burdensome for kitchen flooring.
Unfinished Hardwood. This comes from the factory without any type of finish. Unfinished woods are raw floorboards that can be sanded down and refinished after installation. The product itself is less expensive and usually the best possible wood option for your kitchen flooring. This is because you can install them tightly together and seal the entire surface for added protection from stains or moisture. However, the installation might be costly.
Engineered Wood. This type of wood flooring is made by joining multiple layers of plywood or MDF (inner core layer) and a thin veneer layer (top layer) of hardwood. It is typically prefinished and installed as a floating floor using its click-lock system. However, you can also install an engineered wood using the nail- or glue-down method.
Reclaimed Wood. Reclaimed wood is a repurposed hardwood that uses recycled materials from demolished office buildings, bowling alleys, and the likes. An eco-friendly option, it is a good choice for kitchen flooring as you can install the boards tightly and apply a good quality sealer for extra protection.
Advantages of Hardwood Flooring in Kitchen
Versatile and Timeless
If you’re searching for a premium-looking, timeless, and natural beauty of wood grain on your kitchen floor, then hardwood is the best choice. Hardwood flooring adds visual warmth and elegance to any space in your house. It is so easy to customize your kitchen using solid hardwood as there are a lot of wood species, patterns, and design ideas to choose from. Since it is a versatile flooring material, it can blend well with any home interior, from rustic to contemporary and modern kitchen design. Plus, hardwood is a great option if you are planning for an open-concept home where you want the same flooring material to uniformly and beautifully transition throughout the house. For the best design options, don’t hesitate to contact a Maryland hardwood floor company.
Hardwood may not be as soft as carpet flooring, but it isn’t as hard as ceramic or concrete flooring. When we are talking about the level of hardness, solid hardwood may fall between tile and linoleum flooring. However, it is still a good choice for kitchen flooring because it is warm underfoot, and comfortable to walk on. This is beneficial if you are trying to prevent any foot or leg fatigue due to a long period of standing on your kitchen floor. Also, hardwood flooring is not as cold as tile flooring, although you may place a rug on your kitchen floor to mitigate this issue.
If there’s one great reason to pick hardwood flooring for your kitchen, that is its strength and durability. When maintained and cared for properly, your hardwood flooring can last for decades. As a naturally hard-wearing material, genuine hardwood is produced to certain standards, so you can expect a longer lifespan. It is a good choice for high foot traffic areas and very unlikely to easily get scratches or absorb stains due to daily use. If your family handles hectic household activities and loves to entertain guests, especially in your kitchen, then a good quality hardwood flooring can hold up so well in these circumstances.
To make sure that your hardwood flooring can last for a lifetime, it is important to look for wood species with higher Janka hardness ratings. Not all wood species are created the same, so it is better to consult a Maryland hardwood floor company for more options and recommendations.
Safe and Eco-Friendly
Hardwood flooring comes from a natural source, so it is an eco-friendly choice for your kitchen. It also promotes healthier living because solid hardwood flooring does not absorb dust or dander. This makes it a perfect choice for a family with any member suffering from asthma or allergy. Using hardwood flooring in your kitchen, you can expect that there isn’t any place for debris or dirt to hide. Since it won’t trap any dust or debris, healthy indoor air quality is possible.
Solid hardwood reduces the risk of slips and falls because it provides good traction. It can also insulate your home during the winter season, which helps in lowering the cost of your energy bills.
What’s great about hardwood flooring is that it gives you an option to sand it down and refinish several times. In the case of solid hardwood, you can sand and refinish it at least 4 to 5 times. Engineered wood, on the other hand, can also be refinished once or twice depending on the quality and thickness of the veneer layer. This is beneficial if you’re looking to restore the look of your flooring without the need to entirely replace it. With solid hardwood, you can add or change the wood finish for protection against stains or moisture. As a result, you can prolong the lifespan of your hardwood flooring. To make sure that you are using the right wood finish, you can always ask a Maryland hardwood floor company or contractor near you.
According to statistics, getting new wood flooring is ranked #4 among the most popular projects to attract potential home buyers. Simply put, your hardwood flooring can increase the resale value of your property. Unlike other flooring options, installing hardwood flooring in your kitchen is a good long-term investment. It’s a great selling point for prospective homebuyers in case that you’re ready to market your house for sale.
Disadvantages of Hardwood Flooring in Kitchen
To keep your hardwood flooring in great shape, you must regularly clean and maintain it. Regular maintenance will protect your flooring from wear and tear over time. To some homeowners, regular upkeep can be burdensome. However, keep in mind that to maintain your hardwood, it always starts with prevention. Any spills or splashes should be wiped up immediately to prevent water or moisture from seeping through the wood. Water is the greatest enemy of wood flooring. So, you must not let sitting water or spills on your floor for a long time. Another simple hack is to place a mat near the sink. And since your kitchen is one of the most used spaces in your house, you may need to sand and refinish it every after 10 years or as necessary.
When it comes to solid hardwood, you will need to hire a Maryland hardwood floor company or installer to do the job. This is because the installation of a solid hardwood floor requires expertise and skills. It needs special tools; hence, it is not a good choice for DIYers. However, if you are still looking for a wood grain appeal in your kitchen but is less labor-intensive and DIY-friendly, you can choose engineered wood instead. With its click-lock system, the process of installation is pretty much easier.
Hardwood flooring is expensive as compared to other kitchen flooring materials such as ceramic tile or vinyl. The installation of a hardwood floor is ranging between $6 and $12 per square foot. The wood floor itself is around $3 to $7 per square foot, while the labor cost is about $3 to $5 per square foot. If you’re on a tight budget, getting a solid hardwood floor for your kitchen may not be a good choice. However, if you really want the look and feel of wood, you can opt for engineered wood. It is more affordable option than solid hardwood. Labor cost for an engineered wood might also be less expensive, especially with a click-lock system that is less labor-intensive. In looking for cost-effective hardwood floorboards and options, you may want to talk to a Maryland hardwood floor company to provide you a better solution.
While it is true that a well-maintained hardwood flooring can last for decades, it is still prone to scratches and dents over time. The wood floor is extremely sensitive to water. Exposure to water or moisture for a long period of time can cause swelling, warping, and mold formation. If left unattended, it can expand and contract, leading to a more extensive damage. This is even more destructive if you have a softer wood species such as pine wood. To prevent this from happening, it is crucial to wipe up any spills or splashes quickly. Do not let sitting water on your hardwood flooring as it can cause serious problems in the long run. And when we say serious problems, it may lead to repair or replacement of your wood flooring—causing additional expenses.
To mitigate this problem, you can start by asking a Maryland hardwood floor company or contractor for wood species with higher Janka hardness ratings. It is important to look for wood flooring that is not only durable but has additional protection against scratches or stains. You can also opt for engineered wood with a thicker veneer layer, so moisture won’t seep through the wood much quicker.
Tips For Installing Hardwood Floor In Your Kitchen
Install hardwood that has a high Janka Hardness rating. Wood species such as hard maple, hickory, white oak, Brazilian walnut, and mahogany are great options for hardwood flooring. Wood species with a higher Janka rating can protect your kitchen flooring from dents or scratches.
Always wipe up spills immediately. Wood and water are not a great combination. Make sure to not allow sitting water on your kitchen floor, including wet umbrellas or shoes. Do not wet mop your wood flooring or use a steam cleaner because moisture can seep into the joints between wood planks.
Choose a highly textured wood species. Hardwood floors with rich and varied texture work so well in your kitchen because scratches and other surface damages won’t stand out from the existing texture.
Place pads at the bottom of heavy furniture and the legs of your chairs and tables. With furniture pads, it prevents any scratches or dents on your kitchen floor. When moving furniture or heavy items, make sure to pick the items up and move instead of dragging them.
Seal your hardwood floor after installation. A layer or two of coating adds extra protection against stains and moisture. Thus, it reduces surface damages in the long run.
Consider installing engineered wood for your kitchen if you are really a fan of wood floors. The engineered wood floor has a top veneer layer that can resist moisture for a certain period of time. The construction of this flooring material makes it dimensionally stable, so it can be less susceptible to warping, contraction, and expansion when exposed to water for a long period. You can ask a Maryland hardwood floor company for design options and cost-effective solutions.
Contact a Maryland Hardwood Floor Company Today!
There is no reason to count hardwood out as a great option for your kitchen flooring. While some homeowners may feel that it’s probably an unusual choice amongst other flooring options, we believe that hardwood is an attractive and durable choice. There are just a couple of ways to guarantee that you are selecting the right type of hardwood flooring. We can’t stress enough the importance of choosing wood species that have higher hardness ratings, so it won’t easily warp or contract due to exposure to moisture for a long time. It also pays to be diligent in maintaining your hardwood flooring to not only restore its look but to ensure that it will last for a lifetime. Not to mention that a good wood finish is necessary to give your wood flooring extra protection against scratches and stains.
With all these things being considered, there is really no reason to disregard hardwood flooring in one of the most used rooms in your house. Now that you are ready to start your flooring makeover, don’t hesitate to partner with someone who can transform your design ideas into reality. Carpet Ready is a Maryland hardwood floor company that offers a great inventory of wood products and other flooring options that will suit your needs. Contact us today to get a free in-home consultation.