What Are the Best Types of Wood for Families

best wood for families

In addition to the wear and tear from the rough and tumble video games, you likewise have to manage chairs with plastic wheels, push toys as well as foot races. Naturally, many of our consumers ask me which kinds of wood floors will hold up the best to families and children’s wear and tear?

Before we go into the best types of wood flooring that will hold up the best to kids, I do want to mention a couple of points. First, all wood flooring scratches and dents gradually. There is no way around this, whatever wood you pick and how cautious you are. It’s a fact of life. This article will supply suggestions on what woods will certainly last much longer (and look better longer) and also it will provide pointers to lessen damages. Bear in mind that you need to enjoy your house and also your wood floors, so you still need to live a little.

What kinds of hardwood are best for kids?

Second, due to the fact that hardwood floors are prone to scrapes and damage, it’s preferable to pick a wood that can be sanded as well as refinished. You always want to have a back-up plan. Third, it’s possible that you may have specific woods you love, but may not be as resilient. Only you can make the choices on these compromises as well as what is best for you and your household. Fourth, the recommendations on choosing wood floorings for children also applies to timbers that stand up better for canines, active households and also heavy trafficked areas (such as cooking areas, family rooms, entranceways).

Finest types of hardwood floors if you have children.

1. Select Hardwood varieties with stronger graining (such as oak as well as hickory).

Hardwood that’s best if you have youngsters – red oak solid graining. Hardwoods that have more powerful graining often tend to conceal damages and scratches more. They camouflage them. Red oak, white oak and hickory are wonderful examples of these. Oak often tends to be on the cheaper side, so that is an added bonus. All 3 of these species are grown in the United States.

Hickory has a number of advantages as it’s harder, has strong graining and color variation across and within boards. On the other hand, hickory has an extra rustic (and busy) appearance when it is available in light colors, so it can be a bit polarizing.

Red oak has more graining and also looks extra traditional; white oak has smoother graining and more mineral streaks for an extra contemporary look.

2. Light wood floors.

Yes, light floors show scratches much less (as well as reveal dirt less, too). When wood scrapes, you see the underlying base wood underneath. When you have a light floor, it is more comparable to the raw wood color, so it shows much less. So, you may intend to think about going natural or selecting a very light color.

3. Hardwood with high grades of polyurethane (as well as an added coat of poly)

You are better off making use of either a high quality of oil based polyurethane or a high quality water based poly.

On top of that, ensure you are obtaining enough coats of poly. You really should be obtaining 3 layers of polyurethane. If you have an extremely active household and also you have dark wood floorings, you might also think about including a 4th layer of poly.

Alternatively, you might think about getting a layer of poly 3-4 years after you’ve redone the floorings before the floors get terribly scraped. This is a preventative maintenance steps that can extend the life of your floors, and also it’s called a screen and recoat.

4. Satin and also matte surfaces.

The shinier you go, the more it shows scrapes, damage and dirt. Choosing a satin (or even a matte finish) will end up look better longer and be simpler to clean up as well as keep. As it ends up, satin and matte are extra trendy, so you’re not making a trade-off.

5. More challenging hardwood varieties.

All points being equal, harder hardwood varieties hold up much better. The unique woods, such as Brazilian Cherry, Brazilian Walnut or Brazilian Teak Wood are on the more durable side.

Of course, all things are never quite the same. The unique hardwoods tend to be darker and also have smoother graining, so they reveal scrapes much more. Maple, on the other hand is a little bit harder than oak and it’s light, so it’s a far better choice. Maple is more costly and it’s more challenging and extra pricey to refinish (as you consider your long term prices).

Usually oak as well as hickory are more sensible choices.

The trick, to us, when it involves firmness, is to avoid the really soft woods such as many pines, bamboo (see listed below), Douglas Fir, American Cherry as well as American Walnut.

6. Solid wood floorings (instead of engineered).

Solid hardwood is typically a far better wood option, especially if you have youngsters and also active houses. Your floors will get scraped; it’s just a matter of time. So, you want the capacity to be able to refinish the floorings in the future.

When you sand as well as refinish the floors you additionally have the capacity to change the shade. So, if you favor darker floors, yet select light floors for when your youngsters are younger, you do have the alternative to sand and also refinish them later on to make them look very different.

For those that are worried regarding chemicals as well as VOCs for their youngsters, solid hardwood is a far better choice, as engineered wood uses adhesives that can off gas (and certainly some affordable imported engineered wood might have traces of formaldehyde).

Keep in mind: If your home is on a concrete slab (which takes place more often in warmer atmospheres), solid wood might not be the most sensible option (as a result of elevation, cost and also structure), so engineered hardwood might be a better choice. If you go with engineered wood, purchase an excellent quality wood with a thick wear layer that can be refinished a minimum of 3 times (as well as ensure it is glued down to ensure that it can be sanded.

All things being equal, solid wood will certainly be a much better option. It will last much longer and also it will certainly provide you an insurance plan as well as assurance.

7. Pre-finished vs Site finished floors

You will see conflicting point of views concerning this on the internet. In my opinion, it’s a toss up regarding which choice is better if you have children. The advantages of pre-finished wood is that a lot of have a harder feel because of aluminum oxide. This offers the wood additional scratch defense.

Pre-finished wood often tend to reveal scrapes more. So, when you get a scrape, it’s a lot more noticeable. In addition, several pre-finished hardwoods tend to have shinier surfaces, which tend to reveal scratches and dirt more.

8. Distressed, hand-scraped, or character grade floorings.

Hardwood floors with even more character camouflage scrapes and also damages much more. This can be attains by choosing distressed or hand-scraped floors, floors with lots of knots as well as hardwood with lots of shade variants. We refer to this as wood with personality or rustic qualities. When you get dents or scrapes in these floorings, they blend in and look somewhat natural.

Wood Floors To Avoid If You Have Children

1. Stay clear of Bamboos.

Bamboo does not hold up well to scrapes or water, so they are not a great choice if you have children (or dogs or cats). They also have a tendency to reveal scratches much more. Yes, there are some more powerful ones (e.g. strand woven bamboo) that do hold up better, but they still have a lot of issues with scrapes and also these are poor choices for heavily trafficked locations (e.g. cooking areas).

It is often the cheaper big box stores that are really pushing bamboo since they are less expensive and also it’s an easy sale for them. But, if you go to most respectable floor covering shops and also contractors, you will certainly see that they will agree that bamboo is a poor choice for families.

Bear in mind, you often get what you pay for. Bamboo is often manufactured and also shipped from China. The less expensive ones offered in Big Box stores tend to have much more glue and other unwanted chemicals. They are also harvested before the bamboo is truly ready, so they are weak. Another point to mention is that bamboo cannot be refinished.

2. Stay Away From Shiny Floors

Shinier surfaces reveal scratches, dust and also damage more (as even more light mirrors off of them). Shinier surfaces are also dated. Rather, I’d advise satin or matte finishes as they will look better longer and they are extra fashionable.

3. Avoid soft woods such as Douglas Fir, the majority of pines, American Cherry as well as American Walnut

Softer hardwood often tend to damage a lot more quickly. And, darker timbers such as American Cherry as well as Walnut reveal scratches much more. So, these are not the most effective alternatives if you have children. If you are moving right into a new home with these sorts of woods (you discover them more frequently in older residences from the 1930s and also before), I would certainly suggest including an extra coat of poly as well as go much less glossy in your finish.

4. Stay clear of Oiled floorings (unless you want a lot of maintenance).

Oiled floorings have been rising in appeal as they have a matte and also really natural look. Some people additionally like that they can do small repairs in sections when they have scrapes or minor damages, and this is certainly an advantage. Nonetheless, oiled floors entail a great deal of upkeep (and also the oil and cleansing items are much more costly) as well as importantly, they do not provide the same sort of protection to your floors. If you have spills, animal accidents, etc, the wood floors will certainly soak up the water (or pee).

Hectic homes can wear down these floorings quickly and also you may invest a LOT of time spot cleansing and obsessing over your floorings. Go for a typical polyurethane floor if you want much less maintenance.

Tips To Prevent Scrapes And Also Protect Your Floors

Take your shoes off-– Yes, this is most likely the very best thing for your hardwood floors and will prolong their life. It’s an easy step to take and doesn’t cost a cent. This will likewise keep your floors cleaner, which is a lot more important if you have children or anyone has allergies.

Purchase felt pads for chairs— These can make a substantial impact, specifically for chairs that are relocated frequently (e.g. kitchen chairs).

In heavily trafficked play areas for kids, add some rubber or soft foam tiles for little kids. Nowadays there are some beautiful foam tile pieces that can even add to your décor!

Add Area Rugs or Carpets

These will contribute to your style along with improve security as well as eliminate noise.

Clean on a regular basis to get the dirt/grit up. Swiffers or comparable items are excellent. Bona is one of the most advised wood cleaner.

If you have a canine, consider pet socks. We suggest these to my customers who are refinishing their hardwood flooring as pets have to remain off the flooring for at the very least 2 weeks. Dog socks enable them to walk on the floors faster. These can also lower scrapes on the flooring at any time.

Final Thoughts For Family Friendly Wood Floorings

We wish this helps to assists you to select the best hardwood floors or refinishing ideas for your residence. As well as, ideally the ideas to lengthen the life of your flooring, no matter which hardwood you select.