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Timber Floors For All Types Of Homes

Posted by Paul Ackling 15th Sep 2016

Timber flooring has always been a great flooring choice, offering not only stunning visual appeal, it’s extremely durable and super easy to keep clean. The look and feel of a timber floor also sits comfortably with our wonderful northern beaches lifestyle. It used to be the case that if you wanted a good timber floor, solid hardwood was the only real choice. Engineered timber and laminate timber flooring were seen to sit well behind solid timber in terms of product quality. However, the timber flooring landscape has changed greatly over recent years and the market has seen an influx of products that, in the correct areas of the home and with professional installation, work very well indeed! Below is my take on the three main types of timber floors that we have used with fantastic results.

Solid Hardwood

This is most often Australian hardwood with the common species being Blackbutt, Spotted Gum and Iron Bark. It is plantation grown and is a good renewable source product. Although there are a dizzying array of sizes and grades, we install mainly the standard sizes of 80mm or 130mm wide and either feature or select grade (note that ‘grade’ names can vary). When installing these floors, we use specialised flexible glues, along with secret nailing, to finish with a clean and tidy look that stays put and ensures no squeaks. This install is completed during the construction phase (after gyprock) and is then sanded and finished just prior to completion of the home. The main advantage of solid flooring is their natural and individual nature. These timbers will expand and contract with the seasons and change/age over a period of time. They have a way of really settling in with the home and providing that warm lived-in feeling. Being a heavy/solid material that is time consuming to install and finish on site, solid timber flooring can be one of the most costly options.

Engineered Oak

Engineered flooring comes in a variety of hardwood species. We have used primarily the Oak varieties from Quick-Step. These boards comprise of a plywood substrate with a solid oak layer on top. This solid layer is usually 5-8mm mm thick and is factory finished, meaning they come ready to lay (no onsite sanding). Much like solid floor, we glue and nail these timbers to a plywood base, which results in a solid feel under foot. The install is completed later in the construction phase, usually once the painting is complete. The beauty of engineered timber flooring is that they can be sanded and re-polished once in their lifetime.

Timber Laminate

Timber-look-alike laminate flooring has soared in popularity over recent years. Easy to install, durable and cost effective are just some of the reasons people have jumped on board with this product. It is a synthetic product with the vinyl layer resembling a timber in both colour and in grain. Usually installed on an underlay, this helps with not only insulation but also sound reduction. The positives about laminate flooring is they are cost effective. Due to the production process and not being a natural product, they will generally hold true to the original colour, something that many customers find important. From an installation perspective, they are very easy to install, which also keeps costs down. The one consideration worth keeping in mind is that laminate flooring can’t be sanded back and re-coated like hardwood, so if used in high traffic areas, they could easily become scratched.

Have used any of these types of flooring before? What would be your pick in your home? Let us know if the comments! Or if you’re interested in using some of these flooring options in your build, contact us for a free quote.

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