Types of wooden flooring

Solid Wooden Flooring
These consist of a single solid layer of wood, usually between ¾ and 5/16 inches thick. Many generations ago it was the only option for wooden flooring; many of these wooden floors installed generations ago are still in service. These floors can be sanded and refurbished many times as the wood is of consistent quality and appearance.

The woods used for solid flooring have to be properly dried and prepared, otherwise expansion and contraction will cause warping in the floor.

Engineered Wood Floors
Modern techniques use multiple layers of wood, joined as a veneer. The various layers can be of different wood, with some types of woods on the surface for appearance and others used internally for strength. Additional strength is provided by running the various grains of the different layers in different directions, a technique that also improves stability and virtually eliminated warping. These wooden floors are hardly affected by general temperature and humidity variation.

Engineered floors can only be sanded back a few times before the top layer is removed. None the less they can last several decades under normal conditions.

Wooden floors, unless they are to be covered with carpet or some other surface, need to be finished. Flooring was once always installed in an unfinished state, and then sanded and finished once it had been put in place. This allowed the floor to be completely levelled by the sanding process and a choice of finishes to be applied. Installation took some time, and the sanding and finishing processes meant a delay before the floor could be walked upon.

Now it is common to buy factory finished flooring. This type of wooden flooring is quick and easy to install, and can be walked on as soon as it is put in place. Because of the highly uniform thickness of the unfinished wood the floor can be as level as the surface underneath it.

Floating Floor
A modern technique floating floors consist of a layer of laminated timber and insulating foam layer installed directly over a concrete slab. They have excellent sound insulation qualities and have no real issues with acclimatization or stability.

Laminate flooring
This is a very modern innovation. Laminate consists of a strong wooden or fibreboard material with a decorative paper pattern and a very hard resin surface. This allows a stable material, a hard wearing top surface, and because the pattern is printed on paper almost any appearance can be replicated, including non-wooden surfaces like tiles and stone. Laminate is relatively inexpensive, easy to install and ideal for floating floors. As long as it is kept reasonably dry it is quite stable.

Parquetry floors
Use a mosaic style pattern of wooden tiles to create an elaborately decorated floor. This usually requires some careful preplanning, but Parquetry floors can also be bought in preassembled sections.

Bamboo Flooring
This is a more recent alternative to hardwood. Like hardwood it consists of solid planks of a single material. In its natural state some bamboo is moderately soft, though this can be rectified with processing. Unfortunately some processes have the opposite effect, and poorly prepared and lower quality bamboo is prone to scratching. However, higher quality products that are properly prepared are comparable to better hardwood.

There is no standard grading system for Bamboo, so it is hard to separate the high quality from the low. For any concerns ask about bamboo flooring at Hanna timber in Sydney.

For any timber or laminate flooring needs in Sydney talk to Hana timber.