Are your floors real wood?

What’s the difference between solid and engineered and laminate floors?

What is the benefit of pre-finished flooring?

What factors should be considered when choosing a style of hardwood flooring?


Many floors offer a choice of species, stains and grades – what’s the difference?

What’s involved with installation?

Can we do the installation ourselves?

What are the different types of installation?

How durable is the finish?

What happens if the finish becomes badly worn or damaged?

What kind of maintenance is required?

 

Are your floors real wood?
Most of our floors are made from real wood, though we also offer a line of laminate flooring.
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What’s the difference between solid and engineered and laminate floors?
Solid wood flooring, as the name suggests, consists of boards milled from solid pieces of hardwood. This is the most traditional form of hardwood flooring but also the most limited in its usability.
Engineered flooring is manufactured by bonding layers of wood together, with a surface - or “wear” - layer of real hardwood. Engineered floors offer the look of hardwood on the surface but are actually stronger and more stable than most solid floors. They are also much more versatile as they can be installed in practically any kind of living space.
Laminate flooring is made from manufactured materials (like high density fibreboard) with a surface layer that is patterned to look like wood or some other material, similar to kitchen countertops. The big attraction of laminate floors is their durability. A good quality laminate will be impervious to all kinds of abuse.
To further confuse the issue, these terms are sometimes loosely applied – engineered floors may be called laminates and vice-versa – and some styles of flooring combine characteristics of both (e.g., a real wood surface and HDF base).
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What is the benefit of pre-finished flooring?
Factory pre-finishing usually ensures a much more controlled and consistent application of finish than on-site finishing. Not to mention a lot less fuss and mess in your home! Factory pre-finishes are also very durable. Our floors all carry excellent long term residential wear warranties.
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What factors should be considered when choosing a style of hardwood flooring?

The most important consideration is your personal taste. Choose a style that appeals to you and suits your lifestyle and home décor. View a wide variety of species, styles and stains. Look at the different grades available. And think long term!
Also consider the type of traffic the floor will be subjected to. Certain styles of hardwood flooring will show normal wear and tear less than others. For example:
Surface wear will be less evident on;
- species with pronounced grain patterns and rich natural colouring, like oak, cherry or walnut
- a low lustre (“satin”) finish
Surface wear will be more evident on:
- light coloured and finely grained species (maple, ash, beech)
- a high lustre (gloss or semi-gloss) finish
Very dark wood floors, while dramatic, also tend to show dirt and dust more than mid-range or light coloured species.
Ask about colour change. All wood floors naturally change colour after installation as they acclimatise to your home environment. The degree of change varies by species, from mild (maple) to quite dramatic (cherry, jatoba).
Wood hardness is not a factor that needs to be considered when choosing a hardwood floor. A harder wood will not necessarily make for a harder-wearing floor and even the hardest of woods can be marked or dented. It is much more important to choose a species for its appearance, not its hardness rating.
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Many floors offer a choice of species, stains and grades – what’s the difference?
The species refers to the type of hardwood that the floor is made from, such as oak or maple. Note that in a solid wood floor, the floor will be made from solid pieces of the species in question. In engineered floors, often only the surface or wear layer will be made from the specified hardwood species; the base may be a different kind of wood.
Stains are artificial colouring added to the wood to change colour. Some stains are quite subtle, others can be very dramatic. Typically, a flooring labelled “natural” will be unstained, though sometime “natural” styles are selectively stained in order to create a consistent colouring.
Grading refers only to the visual character of the wood used in the floor, not to the quality of the flooring itself. In terms of manufacturing quality, all grades are identical. Generally, higher grades feature clearer, more evenly coloured pieces, while lower grades feature wood with more visible grain patterns, colour variations, knots and other naturally-occurring characteristics.
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What’s involved with installation?
Compared to site-finished floors, prefinished hardwood installation causes only a moderate amount of mess & disturbance. However, a certain amount of disorder is inevitable in even the simplest installation situation. Our professional installers will take precautions to minimize the mess in your home but their ability to do this varies with every job. Please be prepared for some noise and dust!
For the installation itself, you will have to remove all furniture, appliances and window coverings from the installation area. (Ideally they should be stored in a separate, closed room and protected with drop cloths.) If you have so have to arrange to have gas or water lines disconnected before installation begins, and reconnected afterwards. Most other aspects of site preparation can be handled by our installers.
As every installation is unique, it is difficult to make general estimates about the time and cost involved. The best way to get an idea of your installation requirements is to arrange for an in-home estimate. One of our estimators will visit your home and prepare a detailed estimate of your installation needs, including time and cost estimates. The estimator can also advise you of any special requirements or preparation that may be needed.
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Can we do the installation ourselves?
That depends on several variables, including:
- your skills & abilities
- the complexity of your installation
- the style of flooring you have chosen
In most cases, if you are reasonably capable and experienced at home improvement projects, you can probably do the installation yourself. Simply by buying a Boardwalk Woodfloor, you’re giving yourself a good head start (high quality milling and factory-prefinishing both make for easier installation). We can also assist you with specialised tools, instruction booklets and videos and personalised advice from our staff installation experts.
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What are the different types of installation?
There are three basic installation techniques:
Nail down – in which the floor boards are fastened to a plywood subfloor using special nails or staples
Glue down - in which the floor boards are glued to the subfloor. This technique can be used over almost any subfloor surface but is technically challenging.
Floating – The flooring is “floated” on a cushioned underlayment which is laid on the subfloor surface. The boards are fastened to each other, but not to the subfloor itself. The boards may be fastened using glue or, in the case of “glueless” floors, a snap-together joint system. This technique can be used over almost any subfloor surface.
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How durable is the finish?
Our floors boast some of the best finishes in the business, but no finish is truly indestructible. Any finish can be damaged by exposure to things like dog’s nails, sports cleats, sharp furniture legs or heavy objects, necessitating a repair or re-finish of the floor. For more information on finish durability and general floor care, ask for a warranty brochure.
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What happens if the finish becomes badly worn or damaged?
If the factory finish on your Boardwalk Woodfloor becomes damaged or excessively worn, the floor can be re-sanded (to remove the old finish) and re-finished. We recommend this process be done by a qualified hardwood flooring re-finisher. Our floors can be re-sanded three to five times, depending on the style purchased.
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What kind of maintenance is required?
Hardwood floor maintenance is very straightforward - mostly simple sweeping or vacuuming on a regular basis, with occasional mopping with an approved cleaning solution. For more information, ask for a floor care handout at our showroom.
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Boardwalk Woodfloors – 12571 Bridgeport Road, Richmond BC – 604 270 7750 info@boardwalkfloors.ca