Liberty Floor Covering

Types of Hardwood Flooring 

Flooring options Explained in simple words by the professionals that sell the best flooring in Hayward.



By Construction, thickness, Installation Methods etc.


Hardwood Flooring can be broadly classified into two types. Solid and Engineered.


Solid Flooring as the name explains is a solid piece of wood that is sawn and milled to different specifications and widths. 

There are Sliced or Plain Sawn, and then there are Quarter Sawn and Rift Sawn.

Solid Floors typically range from 5/16" thick to 3/4" thick and are generally tongue and groove with Beveled or Micro bevelled Edges that look like grooves upon Installation. Solid Wood Flooring is generally used for on or above grade installations over Wood or plywood

Subfloors using the nail down or staple down method.

Solid Hardwood Flooring is generally very active by nature and it will expand and contract with temperature, and humidity changes.

While the thinner solids may be installed on concrete sub floors using the direct glue down method, our general advice is not to install solid flooring on concrete at all. 

Solid wood is generally available both Unfinished and Prefinished. You can sand and refinish either one multiple times.


Engineered Hardwood Flooring is also real hardwood and is made by glueing together multiple thinner layers of wood with each other in a cross grain pattern with a thicker finish layer called veneer of hardwood on the top. This is done not only to overcome excessive expansion and contraction, but it also gives a greater yield per tree and is more economical and  green. Typically you can install this using the direct glue down, nail staple or floating method.  It is a lot more dimensionally stable vs solid hardwood. It is usually available in different thicknesses from about 5/16" to about 3/4" thick. there are also a lot of the veneer / wear layer thickness options which typically range from paper thin to 1mm, 2mm, 3mm, 4mm and even 5mm or 6mm in some cases. Depending on the thickness of the wear layer , most engineered hardwood can be refinished once or twice. 


By Finish Or Look


Both are available in a wide variety of Finish options ranging from matte or lo gloss to Shiny or very high gloss.

Also there are different width options which typically range from 2" wide to about 8" wide and in some cases even more. 

There are also options in edges like Bevelled, Microbevelled, Eased or kissed and then square edges. 

Most Pre finished floors are finished with a combination of polyurethane and Aluminum Oxide finish in multiple layers or coats. On the other hand when you buy Unfinished Flooring, it is typically sanded once after installation to give it that smooth flat look and then it is sealed with a wood sealer. After Sealing the floors, it is typically Stained to a desired color and followed by a few coats of polyurethane finish which sometimes people refer to as varnish. In either case, all modern finishes are very tough and durable and don't require any waxing, buffing or polishing afterwards. 


BY SPECIES


Different species of hardwood flooring range from Domestic like Oak, Hickory, Maple, Cherry, and Walnut etc and the imported ones are also referred to as exotic species and some of the poplar ones include Brazilian Cherry, Santos Mahogany, Canadian Maple, Teak, Cumaru, Acacia, Birch, Rosewood, Merbau, Amendoim, Brazilian Walnut etc. 


Hardness Ratings ​


You May Click here for some general Information On Hardness ratings of different Hardwoods and how it is determined, but this is one of the most misinterpreted subject and there is a lot of misinformation out there. For this one matter we strongly advise you to Call us or come in to our store and understand it better.


Liberty Floor Covering

510-315-0808