Homeowners are sometimes torn between the choice of wood and carpet flooring. Each option has advantages, though carpeting will initially cost less than wood. In a sense, it depends on your personal preferences, but an objective examination of the facts might persuade you to choose one over the other. Flooring is a big commitment, both financially and in terms of your home’s permanent look, so choose wisely. Carpet tends to cost much more to clean than wood, has some health disadvantages, and does not face wear and tear as well as wood flooring. Knowing the advantages and disadvantages of each choice will prepare you for your final decision.
If you live in a cold climate, perhaps you have noticed that wood floors can get quite chilly. In addition, and especially if you have children, maybe you know how carpeting keeps the decibel level down to a tolerable point by absorbing sound. These are the two big advantages of carpet flooring. However, wood floors can match the noise reduction factor as well as the warmth potential of carpet by the addition of area rugs. This is an old, easy trick that wood flooring fans have used for many decades, perhaps centuries!
One point that often gets overlooked in the comparison is the incredible design potential of small, or large, area rugs. If you have wooden flooring throughout most of your house, you can add area rugs to suit the season, and change them out whenever needed. Wooden flooring allows for more artistic expression on the part of the homeowner.
Cleaning time is never a big chore if you have wood flooring. A simple mopping or quick vacuuming is all it takes to make the wood shine like new. Carpets often need expensive steaming or heavy vacuuming, and even that does not get out all the dirt, soot, and mildew. Staining is another significant problem for carpet owners, but of much less concern for owners of wood flooring
When it comes to your family’s health, wood floors pose no problem, whereas carpets can indeed be quite a challenge. Because carpeted flooring holds various germs, mold, and other undesirable elements, they must be cleaned, sprayed, or chemically treated on a regular basis. What’s more, all the chemicals that are added to carpet fiber for longevity and stain-resistant purposes will eventually get into the air you breathe. From the standpoint of health alone, wood flooring is far superior to carpeting.
Homeowners who are big fans of hardwood flooring know that it can be a challenge to keep wooden floors clean. In addition to the typical grime and dirt that floors see, wooden flooring has a few special challenges that other types of floors don’t. For one thing, wood is sensitive to cold, salt, and sharp objects. Winter is an especially difficult time for owners of wooden flooring, but it does not need to be.
Using quality floor mats will go a long way toward protecting your wood floors from all kinds of winter hazards like melted ice and jagged salt crystals. Excessive moisture can cause wood’s shine to dull and can, if left untreated, cause gaps in the flooring itself. Try to keep your floor mats dry and very clean in order to absorb as much moisture as possible when your guests or family members wipe their feet.
Pets are another challenge for wood floors in winter, as they sometimes sneak indoors unnoticed, tracking in all kinds of watery debris. One solution is to place a towel near the door so you will have a ready way to wipe their moist paws. Think about giving them a treat afterwards so they associate the paw cleaning with something positive. It might sound crazy but it works.
It is a wise idea to keep a wet/dry vacuum near the door so you can get any water spills right away. Towels are also helpful but do not always get all the water. No matter how careful you are, there will be an occasional spill or stain that goes unnoticed until it is too late. If you take regular care of your flooring, this will not be a problem.
Floor care kits can be found in many retail and flooring stores for around $25. Typically, the kits include soy-based cleaner, a mop and several soft pads for furniture legs. Since many companies offer warranties on flooring, be certain to read your warranty papers to see exactly what is and is not covered. Many warranties cover snow and water damage, with certain restrictions. Owners of large retail flooring establishments say the most common customer concern is damage to flooring due to winter ice, snow, water, and salt. Using a floor care kit regularly, having a good warranty, and making sure pets and kids don’t track water inside will take care of most worries. Wood flooring is worth the extra bit of trouble to keep it clean.
For many homeowners, the kitchen is the most important part of the home. Because it sees the most traffic and is prone to the most accidents, it is essential that when planning your home you choose kitchen flooring that will hold up. With the wide array of options available on the market these days, finding flooring is easy, but finding the best flooring for you can be overwhelming. Before you start your own journey to finding the best flooring for your home, jot down some notes on the following areas to help you keep in mind what, exactly, you are looking for.
Try to determine how much activity the kitchen will see. If it is an active room that could see a lot of spills, you may want to consider something that is either water resistant or easy to clean with a quick swipe of a cloth. Laminate is a great choice for water resistant, though know that no flooring is necessarily water proof!
Grease, oil, and dyes are another problem altogether, as they contain powerful chemicals that will stain even the hardiest of flooring. While most people consider vinyl and tile to be completely stain-resistant, they actually are not. Even the meticulous homeowner will occasionally get scratches and tiny cuts in a vinyl or tile floor that are almost invisible to the human eye until they become stained with oil or grease.
Wood and stone floors are stronger than typical tile and vinyl materials, but they need to be completely sealed with a good chemical finish in order to become impervious to water and stains. Many people think that stone will not absorb moisture, when in fact stone can be very porous, take on water, and swell up. Like hardwood, stone floors need to be sealed to maintain their strength and beauty.
Consumers who worry about allergies need to keep their flooring clean. Pick flooring that will allow you to clean it regularly but will not show wear. You need to be able to mop and sweep the floor at least once per week for those who suffer from the sniffles often. Remember that washing your floor on a regular basis will tend to wear down the sealant, so you might want to reapply a sealer every six months or so.
With a bit of research and some shopping around, you will be able to find a flooring type that will not only fits your needs but also adds character to your kitchen.
When it comes to flooring for your home there are a number of reasons to go with laminate flooring. There are several varieties, ranging from stone to wood finishes and regardless of the look, laminate flooring is realistic. Laminate flooring is also scratch and moisture resistant, making it a great choice for high traffic, moisture prone areas such as bathroosm or kitchens. These types of floors are also easy to install for either the amateur do it yourselfer or a flooring professional and because they don’t typically require glue, they tend to be less of a mess during installation. Like any other flooring, however, there are pros and cons and doing some research can help you decide if laminate is right for you.
When it comes to the pros of laminate flooring, the availability of styles and designs make it ideal. Even better – laminate can look like more expensive options! Laminate can look like a stone floor, for example, without the cost and labor of installing actual stone. Laminate is also durable and made to last which is good for anyone who is budget conscious and is looking for a floor that won’t need replacing any time soon. You can choose a laminate floor design to suit any décor type and because of the many styles and colors in which it comes you’re sure to be able to make your home look unique.
Most laminate flooring has an interlocking installation system which eliminates the need for glue and also makes it an easy do it yourself project. Additionally this floor type floats over, instead of needing to be nailed or glued to, the sub floor. If you’re only looking to do one or two rooms of your home at a time with new flooring, laminate is thin enough to join other floor types easily.
Even with that being said, laminate, just as any other kind of flooring has its negative aspects as well. Unlike a hardwood floor, you cannot refinish a laminate floor if it gets dull, stained or scratched. While these floors are durable and made to last, they do have a shorter life span than do natural hardwood floors (though a laminate floor can last anywhere between 15 to 30 years if cared for properly). Some people say the floors sound hollow because they aren’t attached to the sub floor. You can put an underlay between the subfloor and the laminate, however if that is an issue.
In the end, laminate isn’t for everyone. But if you’re looking for a budget friendly alternative to that exotic wood flooring you’ve fallen in love with, consider laminate.
We could share with you all the benefits of bamboo flooring. Or you could watch this brief video and see the beauty for yourself!
Want to add color, texture, and variety to your room? An area rug can help you do all three! Whether you’re wanting to incorporate one color or theme throughout your home or if you’re looking to add splashes interesting color for a unique vibe, area rugs can certainly fit the bill.
Before you go shopping for your area rugs, however, make certain the furniture in the room you’re looking to add a rug to is arranged in the style that you’re happy with. Measure the area then decide if you want a circle or a square rug for the area. After all, you have to device if you want your rug to pull the whole room together or to add interest!
You will also want to decide whether you want the area rug to make the room look smaller and cozier or if you want to open the room up and leave more of the flooring visible to the eye.
Area rugs can fit in a lot of places around the house:
- Living room or family rooms may look better if you have a rug small enough so that none of the furniture legs rest upon it or large enough so that all the legs can rest on it.
- Area rugs in the kitchen can either be used to keep the area of the floor under the kitchen table warm and cozy or act as a runner for the busier areas of the kitchen. Be careful though, that you choose a rug that is able to withstand spilled foods and drinks.
- Another area for a rug is the foyer and again you will want to choose a material and style that can withstand traffic. You may want to consider getting area rugs that won’t slip and slide when you walk on them to prevent anyone from getting hurt if they’re dashing through the house.
Another item you might not have considered is how often will you repaint or repaper your walls? For those that change often, a neutral colored area rug may be your best bet. Those who tend to stay with one decor, though, may benefit form a pop of color! Area rugs can definitely lend intrigue and interest to your rooms if purchased with care to fit in and achieve the look you want.
The most typically chosen type of tile is ceramic tile, as it comes in many types, shapes, and colors. The type of tile you choose will be dependent on the size of the area you are going to tile, your budget and the overall look that you want to achieve.
A 12 × 12 inch tile, in any texture or color, is usually the top choice in the majority of kitchens. In most cases, a tile smaller than 8 × 8 is not recommended for this area. Generally, 13 × 13 is the largest recommended tile for the average kitchen. However, if you have a kitchen with vast floor space, you may want a tile as big as 18 × 18. Overall, the most flattering size for the average room is 12 × 12. This size is typically the least expensive to install, as well. Any tile texture is suitable for a kitchen, though if you are concerned about people slipping and falling in the kitchen, you may want to go with a textured tile for the added traction. Textured tile is a bit less slippery when wet. Slate, brick pavers, quarry tile or limestone would provide non-slip kitchen flooring.
In the bathrooms, think texture. Wet floors become slick floors, therefore, you should steer clear of shiny, smooth tile. Popular size choices for bathroom tiles are 12 × 12 and 8 × 8. The bigger the bathroom, the bigger the tile you will want to choose. A 4 × 4 tile is not recommended for the bathroom floor, even though it may match wall tile. This is because the bathroom is a high traffic area and the smaller tile will have more grout joints. These grout joints are hard to clean and will become quite dirty after a couple of years. A feeling of luxury is always achieved when a stone tile that harmonizes with a shower or Jacuzzi tile is used on the flooring.
The 4 × 4 tile is recommended when tiling a kitchen or bathroom backsplash. The options seem endless in this realm. Hand-painted tiles can add to a theme, color mixing and the many color options allow a homeowner to really put a
custom look together for their rooms. This size tile is also great for bathtubs, showers and bathroom walls. Some choose a larger tile in these areas such as a 4 × 6 or 6 × 8. You and your installer can get creative with the design, or simply choose a tile with a design already in tact.
Tile always makes for a great investment in any room or walkway. This is
because tile flooring will last longer than any other type of flooring material. For this reason, it is not surprising that home values are increased with tile installation. Also not surprising is how many homeowners tile their high traffic areas such as, hallways, foyers and frequently used rooms.
Regardless of your home’s décor, hardwood floors are a classic look that never goes out of style. With any number of colors and styles to choose from, hardwood flooring is a popular choice among homeowners for good reason. Like any flooring, however, hardwood floors have some pros and cons, just as any other flooring choice does. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages you will want to keep in mind when making a decision on flooring for your home.
Not only are they beautiful and versatile, but hardwood flooring also adds a warm atmosphere to any room regardless of the lighting being natural or artificial in a room. Able to complement any décor or furniture style, hardwood flooring can increase your home’s value, making it an attractive investment when it comes time to sell your home.
Maintenance for hardwood is pretty simple. All you’ll need to do is clean the floors with products made specifically for hardwood, and many times you will only need to sweep with a dust mop. On top of easy care, hardwood floors don’t trap or capture dust and pet dander like carpet does, making it a great flooring choice for families that suffer from allergies.
Because hardwood is often made of some type of wood, this flooring type doesn’t do well in rooms that are moisture prone, such as bathrooms. Care will have to be taken to wipe up spills immediately, and often times area rugs will need to be used to keep the floor from being scratched by pet nails unnecessarily.
Maintenance will take a bit longer than other types of flooring, particularly if you want to shine or refinish the flooring for guests or special occasion. And while there are several great, inexpensive hardwood options out there, the price for real wood can be high for those on a tight budget.
Before you decide on what flooring to go with, talk to a flooring expert. They will be able to recommend types and styles, and chances are once you really begin to look you will fall in love with the many advantages that wood floors bring.
If you’re looking to put in hardwood flooring, be sure you explore all of your options before deciding on the first type you see. Hardwood flooring comes in three different, distinct types, each with their own advantages and disadvantages associated with them. Which one is right for you will depend on budget, installation method desired, where the flooring will go, as well as personal preference. So take a look at all three and choose wisely!
With longer plank lengths and that wood look that many prize, solid hardwood intensifies the structural strength of the floor and can last for years. While the tongue and groove mechanism in this type of flooring takes longer to install, solid hardwood is thicker and makes dealing with sub floor disproportions easier affair than with thinner flooring choices.
Another advantage is that solid hardwood can be sanded and refinished as many as seven separate times, making repairs cheaper than other choices. This flooring is moisture sensitive, however, and is not a good choice for areas with high moisture.
Engineered hardwood floors are constructed of many glued layers of thin plywood with soft plywood or hardwood at the core. A thicker hardwood veneer is attached to the outer surface, giving this floor a life expectancy of thirty to one hundred years. More expensive than solid hardwood choices, it holds up better in moist areas.
A staple gun is used to install this floor type and installation is so simple that many people choose to install the floor themselves. Some types of this floor choice can be sanded and repaired after damage, but generally one is looking at replacing damaged sections of flooring.
Plastic laminate floors are made up of a photograph of wood on a fiberboard core. The photograph is sealed with a high strength coating of plastic and put together over a layer of foam. While laminate will have a more patterned, tiled look to it, this flooring is often the best choice for busy rooms due to its durability with foot traffic.
Glued, or simply held down by its own weight, laminate is the least expensive and easiest to install of the wood floor options. Damage, however, cannot be repaired with resanding and refinishing; replacement is the only option.
So as you go out to find the right flooring for you, be sure to take solid hardwood, engineered hardwood, and laminate into account when considering flooring for that new room or new look. With many people hoping to up the resale value of their home by installing hardwood flooring, a choice of hardwood can be both economically as well as aesthetically pleasing.
When it comes to home improvement there has been a big push for more do it yourself products. The floating floor is one of these new products. Available now on the market are the click together floating floor and the glue together floating floor and both are pretty easy to install; you shouldn’t need the help from a professional.
The surface that you want to put the floating floor on needs to be completely dry so that there is no chance of mold forming. It is also advised not to install floating floors in your bathroom or kitchen because those floors have the potential to get wet and develop mold. Having a perfectly flat surface is the most important step that you need to complete before you lay the floor down. It is advised to get a level to ensure the surface is flat.
You must leave an amount of room between the floor and the wall because your floor will expand and contract slightly depending on the time of year. To avoid scraping you should be sure to leave a gap between the floor and the doors. When you have done these measurements you are finally ready to install your floor.
Start laying the boards nearest to the longest wall. The flooring should run perpendicular to the longest wall for the best outcome. You need to remember to keep a 3/8″ gap between the wall and the floor. When laying down the floorboards you want to stagger them three rows at a time. Repeat this pattern until you have covered the designated surface with the floating floor. Click together floating floors work exactly how they sound, you simply click the hooks into the notches as you lay the flooring down. The only difference with a glue together floating floor is glue is applied to the hooks as you lay them down and secure the panels. You don’t want to use any tools on the flooring, just use your hands to secure each board.
Replacing the baseboards and moldings is the final step in the process of installing your floating floor. Be sure to nail the baseboards and molding to the wall and not to the floor. If you did decide to install the glue together flooring give it eight hours for the glue to dry. Follow these steps and your floating floor will be successfully installed.