New Hardwood Floor Installation
Hardwood flooring is a 100% natural product and is available in many different species with different colors and characteristics. It is important to consider and be aware of the following:
Hardness of wood is determined by the JANKA SCALE. Red Oak has a hardness of 1260/lbs. per square inch, while Exotic/South-American woods are typically significantly harder. The harder the wood, the more durable it is.
Stability of the wood is determined on how it will react to changes in temperature and relative humidity. Shrinkage and Expansion can occur if the wood is exposed to drastic changes or extreme conditions both during and after the installation. NOTE: The ideal environment for the hardwood floor as well as for the people living within this environment is a relative humidity of about 45% and a temperature between 60 and 75 degrees. The installation of a humidifier should be considered in some cases.
3) COLOR CHANGE
Almost all woods have the tendency to darken over time. This depends upon the exposure of ultraviolet light, the type of wood species and the type of coating that is applied. Some exotic species may also become more reddish over time. NOTE: Area rugs should not be placed on a newly finished floor for at least 4-6 weeks.
4) FLOOR FINISHES (Coatings)
There are 2 types of floor finishes:
- Oil-Based Finish (Swedish Finish)Swedish Finish has been around for many years. It is a very strong and durable finish. Swedish Finish is known to outlast any other kinds of finishes, and is the best. NOTE: Homeowners/Occupants should evacuate the home/site for about 3 days while the Swedish Finish is applied. Swedish Finish contains formaldehydes and is very toxic.
- Water Based Finishes:These finishes are H2O based, while they do contain solvents, they are at significantly lower levels. However, they do not tend to last as long as oil based finishes (Swedish Finish).
NOTE: Do not use any liquids, including water to clean the floor during the first 3 weeks. Any and all spills need to be removed immediately. Floor coatings are only resistant to chemicals and water after they are fully cured.
Curing time for all finishes to full hardness is about 2-4 weeks. The curing time depends on the type of finish as well as the temperature and relative humidity.
Even after the finish has fully cured, spills should be removed as soon as possible. The exposure of moisture to the wood, for any length of time, (even if protected by finish) may cause severe problems.
Be particularly careful during curing time to avoid scratches as the finish has not reached its final durability.
Basic cleaning and maintenance should be done regularly. Woodwise cleaning kits and products are available at our office. IMPORTANT: Do not use any cleaning products containing oils or waxes.
*Protect your hardwood floor by placing pads beneath the legs of movable furniture, (chairs, tables, beds, etc.) to avoid scratches. These pads are called EZ-GLIDES and are available at our office.
6) RADIANT HEATING INSTALLATIONS
Solid hardwood flooring can be installed over radiant heat. Special procedures need to be followed. Please consult with you hardwood flooring professional, Blair & Son Floor.