Wood flooring has a beautiful look that can hardly be matched by any other type of material. When you add real hardwood to your kitchen floor, you have a look that is elegant and aesthetically pleasing. If you have hardwood flooring throughout your home, chances are you will want it in your kitchen area as well. There are many different types of designer wood floors available that are sure to look beautiful on your kitchen floor. However, is it always a good idea to go with hardwood flooring in one of the most frequently used rooms in the home?
The Pros and Cons of Hardwood Flooring for the Kitchen
Most all homeowners can agree that hardwood floors can make a beautiful addition to any room, but they are not always an ideal choice for the kitchen area. Hardwood floors can add more value to a home, however keeping the floors looking beautiful in an area where drops and spills are most likely to occur can be a challenge.
Some of the pros associated with installing hardwood floors in your kitchen include:
It adds more aesthetic value to your home. There are many styles to choose from. Floating or “click” style boards are easy to install and replace if needed. Hardwood floors will make your kitchen or dining room area more inviting to dinner guests. Dark wood surfaces can make accidental spills or crumbs less noticeable. Easy to choose flooring styles that will go with your kitchen decor
While it may seem like the best option for your kitchen, hardwood flooring does have its disadvantages when it comes to adding it to your kitchen floor. The most common cons associated with adding hardwood flooring to your kitchen include:
The kitchen is a highly trafficked area which can cause a lot of damage to hardwood floors. Food spills, drops, and cooking mistakes are unavoidable in the kitchen and could do severe damage to your flooring. Hardwood flooring requires a lot of extra care, more so than your typical laminate flooring, in order to look its best.
You can not scrub the floors or use harsh chemicals to remove stubborn stains that are likely to occur while cooking. Water can also cause serious damage to your floor and you will need to take precaution around sinks, dishwashers and refrigerators
Which Type of Hardwood Flooring Should I Choose?
If you have your heart set on replacing your laminate tile in your kitchen with hardwood flooring, you will need to take the time to find out which type of flooring is best for your kitchen in order to avoid as many problems as possible. You will need to choose a type that is sturdy and durable enough to stand up to the high traffic and possible accidents that may occur in the kitchen.
It is best to go with the hardiest wood species that is available in order to keep your floors looking their best throughout the years to come. Oak and ash wood are some of the strongest wood types that are used to manufacture hardwood floors. The rich grain and the smooth texture of these two species can help your kitchen look luxurious, and it is hardy enough to help disguise tiny dents and scratches that are bound to occur over years of use.
Choosing Exotic Wood Types for your Kitchen
Other strong wood species to consider include Santos Mahogany and Jatoba. These are exotic woods that will change color and become darker over time. They are also sensitive to differences in humidity Exposure to excessive heat can cause the wood to contact and expand continuously which may lead to surface cracks.
However, these wood species are also extremely durable and less likely to show wear as quickly. If you decide to go with one of these exotic wood types, you will want to use an oil finish instead of a polyurethane finish since oil will allow the wood to breath easier, and minimize the risk of developing surface cracks.
Finding the Right Hardwood Floor Texture
As far as textures go, a light texture wood floor with polished finish may look beautiful in your living room or bedroom, but it will easily show cracks, dents and wear in the kitchen. Therefore you should go with highly textured wood or wire-brushed finishes in this high-traffic area. Doing so will allow the surface damages to blend into the existing textures in the wood, and allow it to look even better over years of use.
Choosing to add hardwood flooring to your kitchen can have many benefits, however homeowners need to be aware of the types of wood that are best to use in these high traffic areas and the damage that could easily occur to this expensive type of flooring. The more you know about the different types of hardwood flooring, the better your home redesigning efforts will turn out.