WHAT IS A FLOATING FLOOR?
A “floating floor” refers to a type of installation. A floating floor is most often an engineered or laminate floor. It is laid in panels usually 4.5-8” wide and 4-8 ft. long. These panels are attached together by either gluing the tongue and groove along the sides or by attaching the panels using a ‘clic’ or ‘locking’ joint system. These panels become one unit, and are not attached to the subfloor. The floor is now held down by its own weight and also by trim moldings such as reducers and quarter round. Often floating floors are installed over an underlay material. These underlayments may include foam padding or cork, and they may have sound inhibiting qualities.
WHICH IS BETTER - PREFINISHED OR UNFINISHED? CAN I RESAND A PREFINISHED FLOOR?
The difference between a solid prefinished floor and an unfinished floor is the point at which the finish is applied. Prefinished floors have their finishes applied at the factory whereas unfinished floors have their finishes applied in the customer’s home. The controlled conditions and the type of finish used make a prefinished floor more durable than a floor finished on site. This is why many manufacturers of prefinished floors warranty their finish for 25 to 35 years. A solid prefinished floor can be resanded and refinished the same as a floor which initially was sanded and finished on site provided that they have a sufficient wear layer. However, things like wire- brushing, hand scraping or large bevels can make refinishing prefinished floors difficult.
CAN I INSTALL A WOOD FLOOR MYSELF?
In most cases if a person has basic carpentry skills they can install a hardwood floor themselves. Often the only equipment needed is a hammer, nail set, and a table-saw. Some installation methods require use of other equipment (such as a pneumatic nailer), check with one of our sales associates.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I BUDGET FOR A HARDWOOD FLOOR?
For ¾” thick strip flooring the average budget is $8-10 CDN + HST per sq./ft. This includes installation but excludes removal and preparation.
HOW SHOULD I MAINTAIN MY HARDWOOD FLOORING?
Always follow the manufacturer’s directions. Routine cleaning should include vacuuming or sweeping to remove dirt and grit. Using steam, excessive water and/or vinegar may damage your floor. Use a hardwood floor cleaner available from hardwood flooring professionals. Many are inexpensive and environmentally friendly. Try our Revue Hardwood & Laminate Cleaner. It’s safe for children and pets, made right here in Ontario and is only $14.99. You can use floor protector pads under the legs of the furniture to prevent dents and scratches. Place rugs at entrances to trap grit and absorb moisture. Wipe up spills immediately.
DON’T THE GROOVES IN PREFINISHED FLOORS COLLECT DIRT?
The grooves or beveled edges on a hardwood floor are there primarily for an aesthetic reason. They hide unevenness in the sub floor and also hide expansion and contraction. Dirt may collect in these beveled edges and is easily swept or vacuumed out.
WHEN INSTALLING A WOOD FLOOR HOW LONG WILL I HAVE TO BE AWAY FROM MY HOME?
Installation of floor
– 1-2 days is usually sufficient for every 300 sq./ft. of prefinished floor being installed.
Resanding of existing floor to a natural tone
– 3 days for 300-500 sq./ft. plus 1 additional day for every additional 300 sq./ft.
Resanding of existing floors to a brown tone
– 4 days for 300-500 sq./ft. plus 1 additional day for every additional 300 sq./ft.
Resanding of existing floor to a pastel tone
– 5 days for 300-500 sq./ft. plus 1 additional day for every additional 300 sq./ft.
Installation and finishing of floor
– Add the time for installing prefinished flooring and the time for resanding existing hardwood flooring.
SHOULD I BUY A HIGH PRESSURE LAMINATED FLOOR?
Laminate floors referred to as high pressure laminates are actually more like a vinyl floor than they are a hardwood. They are essentially a digitally created photograph of a wood floor reproduced as a foil on top of a super high density fiberboard (HDF) which is coated with a durable finish.
They have good short term wear characteristics and stand up well to scratches and dents. They are disposable type floors – if you wear them out you throw them out. This is unlike hardwood, which in most cases can be resanded numerous times.
MY FLOOR HAS LARGE GAPS BETWEEN THE BOARDS. IS IT DEFECTIVE?
Gaps between the boards of a wood floor are caused by lack of moisture. Wood expands and contracts depending on moisture. Water can be directly introduced by a spill or flood, by improper maintenance or by excessive relative humidity in the home. Some expansion and contraction is a normal seasonal occurrence, especially in North America where there may be a large swing in the relative humidity of a home during the transition between the heating and air conditioning season. The relative humidity of a home should be kept between 35% to 45%.
MY FLOOR HAS RAISED EDGES WHERE THE BOARDS MEET. IS IT DEFECTIVE?
The appearance of raised edges on the sides of each board is called cupping. Cupping is the result of expansion of each board perpendicular to the grain caused by excessive moisture. To prevent or sometimes even correct this problem the relative humidity must be controlled or the use of water as a maintenance product must be eliminated. The relative humidity of a home should be between 35% to 45%
MY FLOOR HAS SCRATCHES AND DENTS AND IT IS STILL WITHIN THE WARRANTY PERIOD, CAN I SUBMIT A CLAIM?
Most manufacturers of prefinished wood flooring have warranty periods between 5 to 25 years. These warranties cover manufacturing defects and a wear warranty on the finish. They do not cover scratches and dents. The manufacturer has no control over the home environment and therefore only warranty that the finish will “not wear through” under normal residential traffic for the specified period.
I AM GOING TO INSTALL A FLOOR MYSELF, HOW MUCH WASTE SHOULD I ADD TO MY MEASUREMENTS FOR CUTTING?
The waste factor for installing hardwood can vary depending on the layout of the rooms as well as the installer. The general rule of thumb is to add 5% for regular installation and 12% for installations on a 45% angle. These figures should then be rounded up to the nearest box or bundle.
CAN I PUT HARDWOOD IN MY KITCHEN?
Yes! With the proper daily maintenance and a few preventive measures, hardwood in the kitchen is a suitable application. However a homeowner must have realistic expectations and be diligent with their maintenance.
WHERE IN MY HOUSE CAN I PUT HARDWOOD FLOORING?
Hardwood comes in different forms. Solid wood flooring is a solid piece of one species of wood. This type of wood flooring can be nailed down only and is suitable for above the soil line only.
Engineered flooring is made with a real wood wear layer which is laminated to a plywood, HDF or other type of core and is suitable for all levels of your home.
Woodchuck Flooring does not recommend hardwood in full bathrooms, laundry rooms or at the main entryway to a home.
CAN I INSTALL A HARDWOOD FLOOR OVER RADIANT HEAT?
Yes! Most engineered hardwood floors or laminate floors can be installed over radiant heated floors. However, always make such to check with each manufacturer for suitability and always follow each manufacturer’s installation guidelines carefully.
HOW MUCH WOOD CAN A WOODCHUCK CHUCK?
That depends, is it a North American Woodchuck or a European one?
Copyright Woodchuck Flooring Inc
161 Nugget Ave, Scarborough, ON M1S 3B1