22 Sep 7 Things to Know About Hardwood Floor
Did you know that wood is the single most energy-efficient building material? It’s no wonder that even in our highly technological age, local hardwood suppliers are still providing wholesale wood flooring to builders.
If you’ve been searching for “hardwood suppliers near me” or for wholesale hardwood flooring suppliers, you’ve come to the right place. The following are seven things you should know before buying wholesale wood flooring.
Factory-Finished vs. Site-Finished Flooring
Site-finished wood flooring is sanded down to a uniform height after being installed in the building. Conversely, factory-finished flooring can’t be sanded down after installation, which means the pieces won’t end up being completely uniform after installation. That being said, factory-finished flooring certainly has its advantages, including a thicker, harder finish, and sometimes a finish warranty from the wholesale wood flooring distributor. But if you need a wood floor with absolutely no irregularities or changes in height, a site-finished floor is going to be your best option.
Understanding Natural Variance
Even in its most refined, finished state, hardwood is still an organic material. For that reason, no two boards are ever exactly alike, and there are going to be natural variations in grain patterns, mineral streaks, and shading, as well as some knots here and there. However, some kinds of wood have more imperfections than others. The number of imperfections in your hardwood floor will depend on the grade of flooring you’ve chosen — the higher the grade, the more uniform the floor. However, it’s important to recognize that imperfections do not make a floor bad. Rather, this natural change in color and grain is what gives wood its warm, desirable character.
Showroom Samples vs. Reality
Generally, hardwood showroom samples exhibit less than two square feet. Obviously, your project is going to have hundreds of square feet of flooring. Showroom samples have also had time to age, while a brand new floor in your building will not have had that opportunity. For these reasons, you may feel like there’s been a mistake when you get your new floor installed and it doesn’t seem to look exactly like the showroom sample. But that’s just the way hardwood works. Remember, no two boards are alike and that’s a good thing.
Comparing Different Hardwood Floors
Similarly to the above points, you can’t look at some other business’s floor and assume yours will be just like it because you’re buying the same kind of wood. Besides the variables mentioned above, the two floors will not be installed under the same conditions, or by the same crew; the brand, grade, and type of wood are not likely to be completely identical; and your floor will not have had the time to age that the other one had. You should keep in mind that when your building’s floor is inspected it will have to stand on its own merits, based on current industry standards for your area. It won’t be compared to the neighboring building’s floors.
Wood Darkens Over Time
One of the many things that make hardwood flooring beautiful is the way it darkens in color with exposure to light. Certain species are more sensitive to light than others, such as American Cherry and some exotic imports, and while all types of light cause this darkening, sunlight has the most effect. However, if the wood is stained a dark color, this aging effect will be less noticeable.
Gaps Between Floorboards
When a hardwood floor dries out, the boards start to shrink slightly, causing noticeable gaps to form between them. This typically happens during the cold seasons when heating systems are in use. To avoid this as much as possible, your building should be kept at a relative humidity between 35% and 55% year-round.
If cupping occurs, it means the floor has absorbed excess moisture from the air. The moisture could be coming from any number of sources, from a plumbing problem to a wet basement. The best solution is to locate the source of the excess moisture and fix it.
And there you have it — seven things you should know before investing in wholesale wood flooring for your business or facility.