Atlanta Hardwood and Hard-Surface Flooring | Best Pick Reports

Updating your flooring is a great way to change the look of a room, several rooms, or the entire house. There is a large and growing number of flooring materials available, so homeowners will want to educate themselves about the various types before deciding which options will work best for their project.

Traditional Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors are a beautiful addition to any home. According to some real estate agents, the cost of installing hardwood floors is usually recovered when the house is sold, making it an excellent investment. Technological advances have also made hardwood floors relatively low maintenance and resistant to wear.

The highest-quality hardwood flooring companies tend to attract many of the best installers. These companies are committed to quality in materials and workmanship and guarantee all work completed by their installers.

Installing Hardwood

Preparation. Before hardwood floors can be installed, all furniture must be removed from the area of the project. Sub-floors may also need to be leveled to prevent waves and squeaks in the new hardwood floor.  

Installation. Solid strip flooring is factory pre-cut with tongues and grooves so that when it is installed, each strip interlocks with its immediate neighbors. This design hides all surface nails, except for the ones in the first line of strips and in the last two or three lines of strips in the run. Wood floors should be securely nailed in place to prevent squeaking.

Sanding. This important step ensures an even floor free of splinters and bumps. Before sanding, plastic should be taped around doorways, ceiling fans, and heating vents to prevent the migration of dust and debris.

After installation and sanding, traditional hardwood floors are finished in the home. Dust should be thoroughly cleaned from the area, because it can stick to and mar finishes. Depending on the type of finish, the number of coats will vary.

Resurfacing Hardwood

Resurfacing brings worn and unsightly floors back to their original beauty. The techniques are ideal for hardwood floors that are dull and scratched but still in solid condition. First, machine sanding removes the old finish and exposes new wood. The floor can then be stained if the homeowner desires a specific color or appearance. Finally, to protect the floor, either a surface finish or a penetrating seal and wax are applied.   

Other Hard-surface Floors

Tile. Ceramic and natural stone are common types of tile. In addition to its durability, tile is frequently chosen for flooring due to the wide array of colors, patterns, and finishes available. Installation difficulty and maintenance requirements will vary.

Resilient. This type of flooring describes a large variety of materials, including laminate, vinyl, and linoleum. Laminate floors offer a look similar to hardwood but with a lower cost and a concomitant lower return on investment and lesser durability. Vinyl flooring is highly cost effective and offers a vast range of colors and patterns, many of which mimic tile. Linoleum is often confused with vinyl in terms of its finished appearance, but it is generally more durable than vinyl and comes from a much “greener” manufacturing process.