One of the reasons homeowners choose hardwood floors is that they can create a look that’s unique to their home and style. However, it’s not a decision that you should make without understanding that your flooring’s appearance usually requires two elements; stain and finish. We say usually because some homeowners choose a natural look which may mean you only need a finish or sealant. Let’s break down the look you want for your hardwood floors into two sections, stain and finish.
The first thing to understand about stain is that the same stain can look different on various wood species. That means even if you love the dark walnut stain your neighbor has on their flooring, if you have a different wood species, it won’t look the same. And, even if you have the same wood species, if your flooring company uses a different brand stain, the appearance can vary.
Next, you’ll want to consider how different color stains will look with your furnishings and style. Also, remember that the darker the flooring, the smaller the room will look. Lighter flooring will make it feel bigger and brighter. It’s also good to know that the darker the stain, the more easily every bit of pet hair, dust and dirt will show.
The main purpose of your floors finish is for it to protect the floors. Polyurethane is the most scratch resistant and popular finishes. Varnish, although used in some situations, is more suited to outdoor elements like a deck. Wax was once the most popular option, but because it needs to be reapplied regularly, it’s not as common today. You’ll need to chose between an oil and water-based product. Oil-based polyurethane will darken over time whereas a water based one is clear and remains so.
If you choose polyurethane, you’ll need to decide on how you want your floors to look. The options in most product lines are matte, satin, semi-gloss and glossy. Although the semi-gloss and glossy will reflect more light, they’re also more prone to showing dirt. Satin finishes are least likely to show footprints or paw prints.
Authentic Hardwood Flooring Can Help
As a local flooring company, we can help you choose the right wood species, stain and finish for your new hardwood floors. Unlike many less experienced flooring companies, we understand that the wood species really makes a difference in the appearance. Call us today at (727) 786-6330 for your free consultation for your new hardwood flooring.