Even though installing a wood floor can be a relatively painless task if you have the right tools and expertise, for the discerning home owner it is essential you foresee any additional circumstances that prevent getting the most out of your hardwood floor. Winter is on its way and for wood flooring this causes a slight problem – a lack of warmth underneath your feet. However, with good planning and these great tips, you’ll be on your way to covering all the bases.
Electric under floor heating has probably become the most efficient and cost-effective method of heating your floors and can even act as the primary source of heat in your home. Most people, however, may want to combine radiators and under floor heating as their main sources of heat and doing so can have its benefits.
In this instance, it is much more cost effective to place an under floor heating system in areas where someone is going to stand for some time. The most obvious place is in the bathroom near the basin, although you need make sure whatever type of wood flooring you use is waterproof.
Going one step further, laying larger areas of under floor heating where you may reside more frequently, such as a living room will help to make efficient use of heat where it is most needed.
A large amount of good quality engineered oak flooring should always have the option of electric under floor heating and should ideally be placed when the engineered hardwood planks are being laid themselves.
How Does Foot Traffic Affect Engineered Wood Flooring?
When fitting hardwood floor it’s always a good idea to think about how much use (and abuse) it will get. Kitchens and other high volume areas of a house will need flooring designed to withstand sudden high pressure (e.g. drops, high heels, jumping) and water resistance (spilliages etc.).
Unless you are going to lay high quality Krono laminate flooring, it’s probably a good idea to avoid laying laminates. This flooring type is made of synthetic materials that really won’t hold solid like a real wood floor.
So, in order to prepare yourself for high volumes and tough types of floor traffic, hardwood flooring is the way to go but the type of resistant flooring you go for really depends on your budget. All is not lost, however, thanks to engineered hardwood flooring, a superb choice for ease of laying and attaining a high quality finish.
For those of you who don’t know, engineered boards are made up of multiple layers of wood with the bottom layers usually consisting of poplar wood or birch and the upper layer made of hardwood. Exotic engineered wood flooring is probably one of the thickest engineered planks around with its 21mm hardwood layer. Unlike 6mm (or less) thick boards, you can easily sand and refinish these exotic woods when marked or dented without weaking its structure. In turn, the life survive of the floor will prolong over many years.
Generally, the thicker the engineered hardwood layer the more resistant it will be to damage.