One type of residential flooring that’s gaining in popularity, but perhaps you haven’t even considered, is cork flooring. It measures the force required to embed an 11.28 mm (0.444 in) steel ball into wood to half the ball’s diameter. It is a good measurement technique to determine the ability of a type of wood withstand denting and wear. The hardest woods on the Janka hardness test have ratings of 100 for Balsa wood and 3692 for Brazilian Ebony. The following flooring tends to wear well, but whatever style flooring you choose, commercial grade flooring is always the most durable. Laminate flooring is less expensive than wood flooring, more stain resistant and durable.
There is a company called FLOR that has interesting, fun, durable carpet tiles that can create a multitude of looks. When people think of laminate flooring they normally think of wood laminate but laminate can be made to look like tile as well. Smooth flooring is often cold and uninviting so rugs are used to soften up the room and to add warmth. However, a lot of research turned up some interesting facts and also turned us into bamboo flooring believers. If you’re concerned about minimizing your impact on the environment, bamboo flooring is a choice you can feel good about.
Glue down is just what it says – the flooring planks are glued down to a concrete subfloor or nailed down to a plywood subfloor. Floating means that the flooring planks are manufactured with tongues and grooves that click together and hold them in place over a concrete or plywood subfloor. Flooring manufacturers will indicate which type of installation is recommended for a particular product.
If you’re a Do-It-Yourselfer, you may find that a floating floor is much easier to install – glue down could be quite messy for the new flooring installer! For example, on one of our quotes for a glue down strand bamboo, the glue cost almost 40% as much as the flooring itself! Also, engineered flooring has traditionally been considered a better choice for high moisture environments, such as kitchens, below-grade or basement installations. Solid bamboo has the advantage over engineered flooring when it comes to refinishing, simply because there is a greater thickness of the bamboo to work with. I wish we had done some bamboo flooring because it really is so pretty and it is green too.
This is the edge of a flooring sample of solid horizontal bamboo mounted on a piece of plywood. When making a choice between horizontal, vertical or strand, be sure to consider the traffic that the flooring will get in your house. If you have kids, big pets, or host frequent gatherings where guests may be wearing heels like stilettos, strand bamboo flooring will be the most durable, but it will be more expensive. Gently lift the vinyl back up to reveal the template stuck to the vinyl backing.