There was a time when having wooden flooring was considered a matter of prestige. It was a general perception that if you have wooden flooring in your house then you are someone influential or someone who can afford the whims & fancies of an expensive lifestyle.
It was not completely wrong to think in this fashion, if you may ask us. Yes, wooden flooring can give your house that elegant & cozy look at the same time; the wood on your floor giving you a sense of staying amidst nature. But back then, the wood available was less in variety & number as compared to how easily available it is now. Also, the techniques & methods used to cure the wildwood & make it home-friendly were not much advanced either. Plus, along with owning a wooden floor also meant investing a lot of time, effort & money into regular upkeep.
But, thankfully all of this has changed over the years. We can see a sporadic but gradual increase in the number of households opting for various types of wooden flooring in their houses; to give it a classier & a distinctive aura.
In this article, we shall share our insights about types of wooden flooring in India & also talk about the things you should take into account while selecting the correct wooden flooring for your home. So, let us begin…
Firstly, the type of wood that is used generally for wooden flooring is from the Hardwood family- we will talk in detail about the different types of hardwood floors further in this article.
You may want to ask why Hardwood & not just any other kind of wood from any random tree. Well, as the name spells out- Hardwood is hard & hence durable, resistant & long-lasting than the wood from a normal tree. Also, the trees from which this wood is obtained from have beautiful deep & sometimes lightly colored barks, thus giving your floor a more natural looking color & a beautiful texture.
Apart from Hardwood, laminate flooring, bamboo flooring & cork flooring are also used for giving your floor a wooden finish.
- Laminate flooring is when several layers of fibreboard are compressed together & a photographic image or a pattern resembling either wood, stone or tile is placed on top of it before adding a protective coating on top of it. This laminate or protective coating is applied to protect the fibreboard along with the photographic image from any kind of harm & damage. However, the downside is that although laminate flooring being a cost-effective option than actual wooden flooring, it is easily susceptible to damage from moisture, making the repair work expenses.
- Bamboo flooring is quite a popular option in Asian countries. The major reasons for this are the abundance of bamboos from which this flooring is made & since this type of floor is made from bamboo it is resistant to the moisture in the humid climate of the Asian countries. Although bamboo flooring is environmentally friendly, it can be expensive when installing & maintaining it in your house.
- Cork flooring is made from the cork oak tree bark. Comparing it to types of laminate flooring & bamboo flooring, it along with being environmentally friendly, it is also more natural, sound absorbing & insect proof. The main drawback in having cork flooring would be its high maintenance & high price.
Coming back to Hardwood, the wood used for interiors is basically of two kinds- SOLID HARDWOOD & ENGINEERED HARDWOOD.
- Engineered hardwood is made by gluing together three to four layers of wood & then adding a 4 mm thick surface of hardwood on top of it. This type of hardwood is more resistant to any kind of damage caused by a rise in the temperature or other climatic changes. When compared to solid hardwood, engineered hardwood is much less priced.
- As promised, we will now jot down all the popular species of trees from which Solid Hardwood is manufactured
- OAK: Oak wood floors are the most popular types of wooden flooring chosen worldwide. This is mainly because of its durable nature wherein it is highly resistant to dents & scratches. Oak floors blend in with any type of decor & are available in a variety of colors. When it comes down to the cost, oak wood flooring is moderately priced.
- MAPLE: Maple flooring can be distinguished from other types easily, thanks to the subtle grainy pattern they possess. Maple wood is light in color, thus dark stains & marks would be quite evident on it. However, it is quite sturdy & cannot be scratched easily.
- TEAK: Another popular type of wood used popularly in India is the teak wood. You would be aware of at least one furniture item in your house, made from teak that has been in your family for ages. That is the durability of teak for you. Teak wood flooring is extremely durable & is popular because of its natural finish & color. The downside of teak wood is that is extremely expensive. WALNUT: Walnut wood is all shades of brown- you can get it from light brown to a darker shade. This type of hardwood is pretty durable, thought should not be used in places where there are bound to be accidents & can blend into any kind of home decor with great ease. This wood is also light resistant, so it can also be used in places receiving heavy sunlight. It is one of the expensive varieties of hardwood.
- PINE: Technically speaking, Pinewood is not a hardwood; although it can only sustain a limited amount of dents & scratches. The main attraction of this type of wood is the pin holes & knots pattern that makes it eye-catching. Pinewood becomes more attractive as it ages. Pinewood is neither that expensive nor cheaply priced when it comes to cost.
- CHERRY: Cherry wood is one of the softer hardwoods. It can be easily scratched. Also, it will show some kind of sun damage over the years, it is placed in direct sunlight. Different kinds of cherry wood such as American Cherry & Brazilian Cherry are available in the market. Pricing of the cherry wood is based on the type of cherry wood you select.
- ASH: Ashwood is light in color & sometimes it can also have a white hue to it. It is moderately hard in nature. Although being less in price when compared to other types of woods in flooring, it requires high maintenance due to its light color.
- MAHOGANY: Mahogany wood is popular because of its elegance & beauty. This type of wood is generally available in a dark shade. It is one of the most durable hardwoods available & because of this beauty, elegance & durability also one of the most costly ones.
- HICKORY: Hickory wood is generally associated with rustic decor. This is because of the distressed look the wood has. Although, hickory wood floors go well with any kind of decors. It is durable in nature & can last long if it is properly cared for. It is expensive because the wood itself is hard & the cost of cutting such a wood is always high.Some other types of hardwoods used for flooring are Birch, Alder, Poplar & Ebony.
Let us, now do a quick run through of all the things you should consider before you make a decision to install hardwood into your house. You should definitely give these things a thought & then only decide to opt for a particular hardwood because changing the flooring again & again can prove to be a tedious & expensive task.
- The Wood Style: By style, we mean wood for flooring comes in two styles – pre-finished & site finished. Pre-finished wood, as the name suggests is already sanded & finished while the site-finished wood requires sanding & finishing before it can be used.
- Care & Maintenance: Having wooden flooring means you have to give a thought to its care & maintenance. Generally, regular sweeping & mopping would be enough for a majority of hardwoods. Some of them require re-sanding & re-finishing after a couple of years.
- Texture & Colour: From our description of the different types of wood used for flooring, you may have a faint idea of which wood looks like what. It is important to have an accurate idea regarding not only the texture & color of the wood you have chosen for flooring but also a vivid vision of the decor of that particular room & whether the chosen wood is suitable for the room type.
- Durability: When it comes to durability, some species of hardwood are better & more durable than others. Before deciding on the hardwood, take into account the place & the utility of the place where you would be installing the wood. The durability of the wood should match the utility of the place.
- Budget: Different hardwoods cost differently. So when selecting the wood for your floors, you should also consider the area it is going to cover along with the cost of each individual piece, cost or regular upkeep & maintenance, installation charges, if any. All these things will add up to the cost at which you will be able to experience wooden flooring at your home.
We hope you liked our article on types of wooden flooring in India along with wood floor tips.