Monthly Archives: January 2017

Walnut Hardwood Flooring

There are various benefits to choosing walnut hardwood flooring for your home. Walnut hardwood flooring is a popular choice primarily because it’s:

  • Available in both solid and engineered forms
  • Distinctive and unique
  • Durable
  • Scratch-resistant
  • Easy to maintain
  • And more

But the main reason people choose walnut hardwood floors revolves around its beautiful, rich color and the natural designs in the grain of the material. However, it’s important to note that walnut is considered a softer hardwood than many other varieties—if you’re looking for a harder wood, you may want to consider oak hardwood flooring.

Walnut Hardwood Floor Installation

When you choose Elegant Floor Service for walnut hardwood floor installation, you receive dedicated support throughout the entire process. Our flooring experts will include you throughout the hardwood floor installation, helping you select the best grades, finishes, and colors for your walnut hardwood floors.

Popular varieties of walnut hardwood flooring include:

  • American Walnut. This species of walnut hardwood flooring is known for having white sapwood and dark chocolate heartwood. The right finish can create a smooth look.
  • Brazilian Walnut. This species, also known as Ipe, can be recognized for its dark tones and straight grain. This is considered a harder species of walnut hardwood flooring. What’s more, it’s resistant to insects and mold.
  • Black Walnut. This species is especially popular due to its rich, dark colors and open grain. It’s durable, dense, and can be repeatedly sanded for continued use. Ask one of our flooring experts for more information so you can make the best walnut hardwood flooring choice for your space.

Call us at 925.272.0810 to schedule your free estimate!

At Home Select, we provide hardwood floor maintenance to residential and commercial customers throughout the Danville area.

Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring benefits your wallet better than any other flooring option on the market. It is less than half the price of hardwood and cheaper than carpet. It will also save you money in the long run because you won’t need to replace it for years. Unlike hardwood, marble or carpet, laminate flooring does not fade in the sunlight and is resistant to stains, impacts and scratches. This is due to the incredibly durable melamine plastic wear layer laminate flooring manufacturers use for the top surface of laminate floors. Laminate flooring is a snap in place product, with the tongue and groove click systems you literally snap it together. It also doesn’t matter what your subfloor is because laminate floors do not need to be glued or nailed down. It simply floats, meaning it can be laid on top of wood, plywood, concrete or even existing vinyl flooring. Most laminate floors can also be laid over radiant heated concrete slabs.

Furthermore, with the wide variety of high-resolution tree species patterns and laminate flooring textures to choose from that perfectly mimic real wood, you may find yourself asking the question: “why would I even consider paying double the price for a real hardwood floor?” The sheer abundance of choice that is not restricted by price is truly one of the strongest advantages of laminate flooring.

Once you’ve had your laminate flooring installed, in a dining room, bedroom, office, restaurant, or bustling high street store, soon enough you’ll need to clean it. Well guess what? Cleaning laminate flooring is as easy as pie! You won’t need any wax or polish. It will just require a dust or vacuum, followed by a wipe over with a damp cloth or mop.

Laminate flooring benefits people with allergies because it’s quick to clean and doesn’t absorb dust like carpet. It is also a very sanitary product due to its airtight locking system and plastic exterior, creating a shield against moisture that wants to get in. It does not contract or expand like real hardwood does and if moisture does get in, or permanent damage is caused to the surface or core-board, laminate flooring is easily replaced.

The HDF core of a laminate floor plank is made of either ecologically sustainable pine trees or post-industrial wood waste that would otherwise have been burned or dumped in a landfill. Laminate flooring, in a nutshell, gives you the look and feel of exotic hardwood without impacting upon exotic or endangered species.

Hmm… Satin or Semi Gloss?

The sheen measures how shiny or glossy your floor’s finish is. Different people have different preferences. The luster level is determined by how much light is reflected off the floor from a 60 degree angle (consistent with how the floors are viewed while someone is standing on them).

 

The glossier you go, the more light reflects off the floors. This in turn, shows more dirt/dust as well as imperfections in the floor.

 

It’s important to realize that different hardwood species will produce different sheen levels. Natural wood color or patina, as well as differences caused by open vs closed pore woods will produce subtle variances in the sheen level. The sheen level chosen is more of an aesthetic choice and does not impact the durability of the finish.

Currently the most popular and stylish sheen is a satin finish

hardwood floor finish sheen - satin - westchesterSatin finish has some sheen, but doesn’t look too glossy. It give the room both a classic and contemporary feel. Most decorators recommend this sheen level, and my higher end customers tend to strongly prefer satin finish. Importantly, satin shows the scratches, imperfections and the dirt less. So, it’s easier to clean and maintain, and, it tends to look newer longer. Also, when you go glossier, it tends to show foot prints more, if you walk around with bare feet and/or if you have dogs or cats in the house.

The trend over the last few years has been towards lower gloss finishes as they are more practical, especially for households with kids and pets. They help hide the normal wear and tear from walking, chair movements, toys and high heels. In addition, satin finish shows footprints less due to the lower luster.

 

Hardwood sheen finishes

 

Matte finish has 25% luster

A matte finish has very little sheen and many feel that the floors look dull with this type of finish. Others strongly prefer this flat finish as it gives them a clean look.

 

Satin has around 40% luster

Satin is by far the preferred choice for Westchester County. Most of my customers specifically ask for this finish and virtually all decorators strongly recommend it. Satin sheen level is preferred on all shades of hardwood from dark to light and everything in between. I would venture to guess that 80-90% of my customers choose a satin finish.

 

Semi gloss has around 55% luster

For those that prefer shinier finishes, this is a good option. It’s shinier but not as impractical as a glossy finish.

 

Glossy has about 70% luster

You typically see glossy used on gym floors and bowling alleys, and some of the exotic hardwood use this finish as well. A glossy finish tends to show every spec of dust, every dent and lots of footprints. Think of black shiny absolute black granite countertops and how those show everything. These types of floors tend to need to be cleaned more often and often require more frequent sandings.

 

What if you don’t like the current finish on your hardwood floor?

The good news is that you can usually do a screen and recoat to change the sheen level of your floor. This is easiest to do if you have a solid hardwood floor that was finished on site (rather than prefinished in a factory). It’s the top level of poly that will give the wood it’s shine and luster. So, if you want to go from semi gloss to satin, or vice versa, this is usually a fairly easy process.