Solid wood flooring is exactly what the name implies: a solid piece of wood from top to bottom. The thickness of solid wood flooring can vary, but generally ranges from ¾” to 5/16”. Solid wood is a hypoallergenic low maintenance floor, ideal for today’s busy families. Touchwood has an extensive choice of solid hardwood floors, offering many species & stain colors. One of the many benefits of solid wood flooring is that it can be sanded and refinished 6-8 times professionally. Please continue to read below for further information.
When we think of a solid Hardwood flooring we generally think of the standard strip red oak wood flooring that is 3/4″ thick by 2 1/4″ wide, but solid Hardwood flooring is also available in various sizes from 3 to 6 or more inches wide (called plank floors). Custom Milled sizes less than 2-1/4 or wider than 6 inches wide are also available and are available in different thicknesses. The floorboards are generally in random lengths from 12″ – 84″. Custom Milled lengths can exceed 12’ long, but need to be custom ordered. The most common Hardwood flooring species used for solid wood floors are Red Oak and Maple – but many other species are offered.
Even the best solid wood flooring can react to the presence of moisture. In the dry winter heating months, moisture can leave the wood flooring causing the floor to contract slightly in size, which can leave unsightly gaps between each floor board. In the summer months when the humidity is higher, the Hardwood flooring will expand and the gaps will disappear. If there is too much moisture it may cause the wood planks to cup, or buckle, although this is very unlikely in Alberta. This is why it is important when installing solid Hardwood flooring to leave the proper expansion area around the perimeter and to acclimate the wood flooring prior to installation. It is also important to keep the home’s relative humidity at between 35 – 55%. Proper Acclimation and maintaining humidity will help minimize any movement within the wood flooring later.
Solid Hardwood flooring is sensitive to moisture and it is not recommended to install these floors below ground level, or directly over a concrete slab. Solid Hardwood flooring is for nail-down installations only, with the exceptions of a few manufacturers that state you can direct glue down 5/16 inch thick solid Hardwood flooring . It is not recommended to install wide width boards (wider than 3 ¼) in Alberta due to the low humidity ranges that occur in Alberta’s dry, cold winter months. Consumers wanting wider boards should consider a solid sawn or engineered hardwood flooring option. See Engineered floors for more information
You can refinish, or recoat solid hardwood flooring several times, which adds to their appeal and to their long life. There are solid hardwood floors that are well over 100 years old and are still in good condition. As well, solid wood floors are available in both prefinished and unfinished options.