Daves Floor Sanding | Minnesota Hardwood Floors

Hardwood Flooring: Ash (Fraxinus Excelsior)

Deciding which type of hardwood flooring to install can be a challenge and there are many different floorings available on the market.  Ash wood has been used for many years in making baseball bats, such as the Louisville Slugger and mini bats, due to its durability and longevity.  As a flooring option, it is as beautiful as it is durable and long-lasting. 

American Ash has several species and is known for its variety of colors which range from white to medium brown. It also has lovely grain patterns that can add a uniqueness to your home and accent your décor.  Since ash hardwood is so versatile, it makes it the easiest of all the hardwoods to install and holds stain colors very well which only adds to its beauty.  

When deciding which hardwood flooring to purchase there are many factors to take into account, the most important of them being the hardness of the wood itself. Why is wood hardness important? It is because the harder the flooring the more resistant it is to damage and decay thus lasting longer.  American Ash has an above average hardness rating which makes it even more durable than other popular choices such as red oak.  This means that it will be able to last longer with fewer dents and scratches than the average home wood flooring.

Remember, the hardness of your hardwood flooring helps it resist dents, but it’s not the only thing that needs to be considered.  Going through the process of choosing the best hardwood flooring can be tough.  Let the professionals at Dave’s Floor Sanding help guide you through the process of choosing and installing a new hardwood floor that perfectly matches your home’s needs and style.

Hardwood Floor Splits (Cracks)

Photo by Nathanael Hevelone

Hardwood floors can be one of the most beautiful features of a home. However, when your hardwood begins to split, it can become both a hazard and an eyesore.  Thankfully, there are ways to repair any splits that occur and keep your hardwood floors beautiful, as well as ways to minimize the likelihood of more splits in the future.

Anytime your hardwood floors begin to split, moisture is a factor or in rare cases may be a sign of foundation or structural issues. It is important to remember that hardwood floors are made from a natural material that contracts and expands with the weather.  Too much or too little moisture in the room can cause a multitude of problems with your hardwood floors.  Acceptable moisture levels vary based on the wood installed, as well as where the installation occurred, and what time of year it was installed.  There are ways to prevent splits from occurring.  For example, during winter months it may be a good idea to run a humidifier in the rooms with splitting hardwood floors.  This could cause smaller splits to close up as well as keep more from occurring.  However, larger splits will still need to be repaired in order to protect the wood from further damage.

Many times, splits can be repaired without having to replace the entire board of wood.  One thing you will want to take a closer look at is the width of the splits themselves.  Typically, splits are about ⅛ to ¼ of an inch wide and can be filled with various sealers or putties to protect further damage.  This can be difficult to do without announcing the damage for all to see.  Matching the color of the filler to the color of your hardwood floors is tough.  Consult the professionals at Dave’s Floor Sanding to keep major hardwood splits and cracks from becoming eye catching.  We may suggest replacing a few boards to keep the same beautiful look that you had before.  Also, should you encounter any cracks that are much larger than the ¼ inches wide, you may want to seek additional professional assistance; these splits may be caused by something more structural rather than a moisture problem.

Remember, hardwood floors are a natural material that expand and contract with moisture levels; it is important to keep those levels even all year round.  Should you have any problems with your hardwood floors splitting, the professionals at Dave’s Floor Sanding can help you to repair your floors and preserve the beauty of your home.


Should I install hardwood throughout my home?

For the most part, placement of hardwood flooring is a matter of personal preference.  Wood offers an ideal flooring solution for living spaces, bedrooms, dining rooms, playrooms, and even your home office.  High traffic areas like kitchens, hallways and entryways are also commonly laid out using hardwood flooring.  Wood flooring is not recommended in places of high moisture such as a bathroom or basement.  It is important to have a professional like Dave’s Floor Sanding with the right tools and knowledge to install your hardwood floor.  When installing a new hardwood floor, any existing flooring will need to be removed; if necessary, the sub-floor may be replaced; then, the new hardwood floor is nailed directly to the sub-floor.  One of the perks of hardwood is that, when needed, it can be sanded to compensate for an uneven sub-floor.  Be prepared to remove all furniture from the rooms being finished, as there will be dust.  Here at Dave’s Floor Sanding, we are flexible and willing to work around your schedule when allowing for the stain and final coats of finish to dry.


How to maintain hardwood flooring?

Hardwood floors require some maintenance, but with a small amount of effort can remain in good repair.  General maintenance for hardwood flooring includes periodic sweeping or vacuuming, usually 2-3 times per week.  Additionally, hardwood floors need to be cleaned with a specially designed wood floor solution.  Be sure to properly research and consult professional help, if you are unsure, before using any sort of cleaner or solvent.  Cleaning your floor with the wrong solution or tools like a steam mop can permanently damage wood floors and void an existing warranty on your floor.  Households with pets can expect to clean and refinish floors more frequently.  When cared for properly and regularly, hardwood flooring will last for decades, and in some cases, for more than a century.


Carpeting vs Hardwood Flooring

As a homeowner, flooring is one of the biggest decisions you will make.  Since you will have to live with this decision for many years, it is important to be informed and choose wisely.

Whichever flooring you are looking at, the amount of choices are vast.  While carpeting brings many choices with colors and styles, now there are more colors and varieties of woods to choose from.  It has been said that carpeting is less expensive than hardwood flooring, but in the long run, this is not the case.  Carpet, even with proper care and maintenance, needs to be replaced every ten to fifteen years.  By the end of that ten years it is usually worn out, stained, and outdated.  Hardwood flooring on the other hand, when maintained properly, can last for decades and in some cases for generations.  Hardwood flooring can be freshened up with refinishing to maintain its beauty and durability.  While it may be more of an investment up front, hardwood flooring adds a lasting value to your home that carpeting does not.  Even in the warranty category, carpeting usually has a ten year warranty whereas wood flooring carries a finish warranty from 25 to 30 years.  Some finish warranties are even allowed to be transferred to the next homeowner.

Another thing to consider in the carpet vs hardwood flooring debate is comfort.  While carpet may first come to mind, placing an area rug on your hardwood floor easily softens walking areas and adds a little touch of comfort.  Not only do area rugs add comfort, but they also add a sense of style to the room.  And unlike carpeting, area rugs can readily be changed just as often as you want to update a room’s look.

Another factor to consider is maintenance.  No matter how often you vacuum your carpet, you will still need to have it professionally cleaned at least once a year.  Carpets hold on to dirt, allergens, dead skin, hair, animal dander, etc. much more so than hardwood flooring which only requires sweeping to remove dust and dirt.  Carpets also show traffic areas that require a more frequent and thorough cleaning.  Spills, which in both cases need to be cleaned up quickly, are more easily cleaned on the hardwood floor as it does not hold the spill like carpeting which can stain.  It is also easier to spot things that have fallen onto the hardwood floor such as crumbs, spills, etc. so that they can be cleaned up.

Remember, this decision is something you will live with for many years and it is best to be informed about your options.  Let the professionals at Dave’s Floor Sanding answer your questions about hardwood flooring and the benefits that will add value and beauty to your home.