It can be difficult to make a decision about hardwood flooring. There are so many species and styles to choose from in the Spring Branch, Spring Valley, Jersey Village area. You might focus primarily on the color and grain patterns of various woods, and it is important to find a look that will fit your home and décor. But equally important is the hardness and stability of the wood you select. Understanding how a wood will respond to your climate will help ensure you make the right choice for your home.

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If you are ready to install new hardwood flooring, but not sure where to start, let our team at Floor Coverings International Spring Branch help! Learn more about hardwood toughness and stability here, and contact us when you are ready to get started!

The Janka Hardness Scale

Think about high heels striking the surface of a floor and the way the Janka system measures hardness will make sense. The test drives a .444-inch steel ball into a piece of wood and measures how many Newtons (pounds of force, or lbf) are needed to embed the ball to half its diameter. This test gives us a woods Janka rating and and indication of it’s resistance to dents and scratches.

There are pros and cons to woods on both ends of the Janka scale. Super hard woods, such as Brazilian Ebony are very durable, but extremely difficult to cut. This makes installation an expensive challenge. On the other end of the scale are soft woods like Northern White Pine. These woods are much more susceptible to dents and dings, but some homeowners love the character these flaws bring to the wood.

Two of the most popular hardwood flooring choices are Red Oak and White Oak, scoring 1290 and 1360 on the Janka scales, respectively. This rating indicates durability, but the wood is also soft enough to cut and install without too much trouble.

Gaining a Sense of Stability

Stability considers changes in dimensional size of wood due to expansion and contraction from humidity or dry conditions. The average change in Red Oak serves as a baseline to measure changes in other hardwoods. Woods that experience smaller percentages of change than Red Oak are the most stable, and therefore more suitable to areas with dramatic changes in moisture and humidity. Even the most stable woods, however, should not be installed in areas that accumulate a lot of moisture, such as a bathroom or basement.

Let our team at Floor Coverings International Spring Branch help you find the perfect hardwood flooring for your home! We will come to you with our mobile showroom so you can browse samples in the comfort of you own home or office.

Photo by Breadmaker