A Brief History About Hardwood Floors
The importance of understanding hardwood flooring and its natural qualities before making a choice on which species and finish will fit your lifestyle.
People began installing hardwood floors into their homes about 400 years ago. The thick planks were cut from the heart of the trees. The trees were very hard and difficult to cut.
Once cut, the hardwood flooring was installed. Because it was usually white in color and rough in texture, the wealthy paid to have the wood floors stained and refinished. The whole process was done completely by hand and could take weeks. The wood finished product was beautiful but way too costly for the average homeowner. Thankfully, we have improved the process so that everyone can enjoy the beauty of hardwood flooring. We can now cut the wood with huge machines. We’ve improved the floor installation process and have electric machines to sand and polish, creating beautiful finishes.
The appearance of the wood determines its “grade.” All grades are equally strong and serviceable, but each affords you a different look.
- Clear wood is free of defects, though it may have minor imperfections.
- Select wood is almost clear but contains some natural characteristics such as knots and color variations.
- Common wood (No. 1 and No. 2) has more natural characteristics such as knots and color variations than either clear or select grades and often is chosen because of these natural features and the character they bring to a room.
- No. 1 Common has a variegated appearance, light and dark colors, knots, flags, and wormholes.
- No 2 Common is rustic in appearance and emphasize all wood characteristics of the species.
- First-grade wood has the best appearance, natural color variations, and limited character marks.
- Second-grade wood is variegated in appearance with varying sound wood characteristics of species.
- Third-grade wood is rustic in appearance allowing all wood characteristics of the species.
The angle at which a board is cut determines how the finished product looks. Wood flooring is either, plainsawn, quartersawn or riftsawn.
- Plainsawn is the most common cut. The board contains more variation than the other two cuts because grain patterns resulting from the growth rings are more obvious.
- Quartersawn wood twists and cups less and wears more evenly. Quartersawing produces fewer board feet per log than plain sawing and is, therefore, more expensive.
- Riftsawn is similar to quartersawing, but the cut is made at a slightly different angle. It accentuates the vertical grain and minimizes the flake effect.
Ordering Your Hardwood Floor
We have established an excellent reputation as a major supplier of hardwood floors with our customers and we are committed to exceeding our customers’ expectations by continuously improving our products and service.
SunShine Hardwood Flooring makes it simple to order your floor selection with our:
- Local Warehouse Inventory
- All our products are certified by NWFA
- Regular delivery service
- Premium quality
- Wide variety of product selection
- Exceptional customer service
- Free Estimates
- Various types of handcrafted engineered hardwood flooring
Installing Your Hardwood Floor
What good is a beautiful floor if it’s not installed properly? We can recommend a team of experienced floor layers is able to create the most beautiful results with the floor of your choice.
Don’t use any old carpenter. Find a local, reliable, hardwood floor contractor to install your new hardwood floor using our Find a Contractor page.
Hardwood Floor Staining
Choosing a custom color stain can make all the difference when it comes to designing a room. With hundreds of stains to choose from, we can help you match stains to different types of wood, with varying levels of character. Choosing between dark and light color stains can also make a big difference in the visual size of the room, creating that perfect atmosphere around the entire house.
Hardwood Floor Finishing
A Job-Site Finish is one that is applied in the home. With a job-site finished wood floor, you can choose the stain, sheen, and type of finish to be applied to your floor, which will impact maintenance. This finishing method offers unlimited possibilities for customizing the final appearance of your floor. However, expect some noise and dust, since the floors will be sanded and finished in your home.
A Factory Finish is applied in the factory. A major benefit is a minimal dust and noise during installation. The level of customization is not the same as with a job-site finish.
- Gloss / Semi-Gloss finishes offer the most shine and will reflect the most light
- Satin finishes offer some shine and will reflect some light.
- Matte / Flat finishes offer the least shine and will reflect the least light.
Care and Maintenance
Here are some tips to retain the beauty of your wood floors:
- Use hardwood floor cleaners to clean your floor.
- Do not use wax, oil, soap, wood polish, wet mops, or other household cleaners on wood floors.
- Clean up spills right away
- Vacuum, dust mop, and sweep your floor.
- Protect floor from high heels. Trim pet claws.
- Use floor protectors for furniture.
- Place doormats at exterior entrances.
- Sunshine recommends humidity levels of 45%-55% and temperatures of 64-75 degrees F to minimize expansion/contraction.
Sunshine Floor Supplies Retail Stores, Showrooms & Warehouses Locations
147 Selleck Street
Stamford, CT 06902
Call: (203) 496-5941
Fax: (203) 496-5948
M-F: 7:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Saturday: 7:00 AM to 12:00 PM
1957 Main Street
Bridgeport, CT 06604
Call: (203) 324-4430
M-F: 6:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Saturday: 6:00 AM to 1:00 PM
6 Cheryl Drive
Canton, CT 06019
CALL: (860) 325-5119
M-F: 7:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Saturday: CLOSED by appointment only