Are you looking to install wood flooring in your home, but are overwhelmed by all of the styles, materials, and stains...? Fear not! We created a comprehensive list of our favorites, along with a snippet of information about each. This will allow you to feel comfortable about your choices before moving forward and taking your next big step regarding your home renovation.
1. Solid Wood
Pros: The visual appeal of solid wood is undeniable. This timeless look is relatively easy to clean and maintain. Also, because it is one solid piece of wood from top to bottom, it can be sanded and refinished many times.
Cons: Cost can be a big drawback for people. Although a range of cost exists, the better looking woods come with a higher price tag. In addition, solid hardwoods occasionally require refinishing in high-traffic areas.
Costs: Ranges from $3 to $13 per square foot
2. Engineered Wood
Pros: This flooring is manufactured by using multiple layers of varying wood veneers. The grain of each layer runs in different directions, making it very stable. The plank width is not as limited as solid wood, and you can often find them as wide as 7 ½-inches.
Cons: One drawback is that, compared to solid wood, engineered wood cannot be sanded and finished as often.
Costs: Ranges from $3 to $13 per square foot (very similar to solid wood)
Pros: The best things about laminate include the fact that it does not easily scratch, and it is less expensive than solid or engineered wood. You can also find some that look almost exactly like wood, often fooling even the most seasoned flooring experts! Like real wood, laminate flooring is extremely easy to clean.
Cons: Standing water has the potential to ruin laminate flooring. Also, if a section of the laminate does become damaged, unlike real hardwoods, laminate cannot be refinished.
Costs: Ranges from $0.50 to $3.50 per square foot.
Pros: A very trendy look. Compared to other types of wood, bamboo is slightly more resistant to water damage, stains, and warping. Certain types of bamboo, like strand woven bamboo, can be manufactured to be as durable as red oak.
Cons: Like most woods, Bamboo is subject to becoming discolored, scratched and marred, and must be refinished.
Cost: Ranges from $2 to $8 per square foot.
Pros: Cork is an excellent insulator. It's warm, soft material absorbs sounds better than any other flooring types. Also, it is antimicrobial which means that it is very resistant to mold, and can be safer for the family.
Cons: Cork has been known to have some durability issues, and will fade in direct sunlight. It also has been known to turn yellow over time. Due to the soft nature of cork, it may get damaged underneath furniture pressure points.
Costs: Ranges from $2 to $8 per square foot.