Monday, January 28, 2019

Marble Flooring Pros and Cons


There is no doubt about it, marble flooring has become one of the hottest new materials on the market for those wanting a sleek, elegant surface on their home floors. But before you make the financial commitment to this beautiful and pricey flooring material, take a look first to see exactly what you are getting into. Along with the benefits, a few disadvantages also appear immediately and with the long-term use of that gorgeously stylish marble floor.
Hard, Cold, Beautiful
The first thing to consider when going over marble flooring pros and cons is its hardness. Of course, that's one of it's attractions: With this type of floor, you won't worry about the dog's paw nails scratching the surface like you would if you selected a wood flooring surface. But then again, if you're thinking about using marble as the material in a kitchen, don't ever plan on dropping a glass dish. That good, hard marble surface will most likely cause even the toughest types of glass to shatter if dropped from any distance at all.
Another thing to keep in mind when evaluating marble flooring pros and cons is their warmth, or rather, the lack thereof. If you habitually run around the house in bare feet, better buy some house shoes if you're seriously considering marble floors. Especially in winter, those tootsie toes will absolutely freeze when you walk across the floor in the morning for that first cup of java. Conversely, however, cool is downright, well, cool, if you are thinking hot summer days/evenings when a nice, cool floor would be welcomed.
Cost
Marble flooring runs on the expensive side. Marble flooring pros and cons must include pricing, which at anywhere from $4 to $8 per square foot, makes this type of material one of the most expensive. You can purchase vinyl tile that looks remarkably like marble for a fraction of the cost of real marble.
You also get some of the benefits marble doesn't offer like a softer feel, ease of maintenance, and simplicity of installation. The fact that marble flooring does cost so much puts in the getting ahead of the Joneses category, however. It costs a lot, so not too many people, at least those sans a silver spoon in their mouths at birth, are going to be using it, which makes it that much more sought after to people for whom that matters.
Maintaining Its Beauty
Probably one of the biggest reasons marble flooring pros and cons should be considered is when it comes to keeping it shiny and clean. Marble does not hold up well in heavily trafficked areas. You will need to regularly polish it to maintain its beautiful sheen.
Also, marble cannot tolerate cleaning products with chlorine, which is guaranteed to ruin its gorgeously shiny finish. The rebuttal to this con is that if someone can afford to have marble flooring installed, they can afford to have it cleaned and maintained properly, a good, logical argument for those who heed it.
Marble flooring pros and cons make it one of those flooring materials each homeowner must decide for him- or herself whether or not it's right for their particular home. It's beautiful, hard to keep that way, hard, cold and inimitable in its league as far as imparting elegance and class. But only you can decide if it's the flooring for you.
The following article was taken directly from Online Tips (http://www.onlinetips.org/marble-pros-cons). Also, please visit my websites at www.americarpetfloors.com and www.stylishrugs.com for all your flooring needs.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Hardwood Floors – Frequently Asked Questions

What type of hardwood is best for my home?

A number of factors such as what sort of subfloor you may have and how much foot traffic your new flooring will experience will play a key role in your flooring choice. Different species of wood (oak, hickory, maple, etc.) have different design and performance characteristics, and choosing the right flooring for your home can mean all the difference in the lifespan of your hardwood. An experienced dealer or installer should be able to assist you in choosing the correct flooring type for your home.

How is it made?

Real-wood flooring materials are either solid or engineered wood products. Solid flooring is simply that—each piece is solid lumber all the way through. Engineered wood is more like plywood, with a top beauty layer sitting on a foundation of several plys. Generally, two pieces of oak flooring—one solid, one engineered—will perform about the same until it is time for a refinishing. Then, the solid wood can be sanded as needed, but the top layer of an engineered wood is so thin, it may only allow one or two sandings.

If you are thinking about engineered wood flooring, be forewarned about one thing. Purchase only name brands that you trust. This is not a product to buy on price alone because some low-cost import products are poorly assembled, which means you could be facing costly repairs or replacement when the material can’t stand up to household traffic.

Is there a cost difference?
There won’t be much difference in purchase price between a solid wood and an engineered wood floor, if both are the same common species. But the engineered floor may cost substantially less if it is a less-common species. Engineered may also cost less for installation. If you are investing for the long haul, however, look seriously at solid. Remember, it can be refinished many times through the years.

Will it last?

Your new floor may look wonderful on the day it is installed, but if it won’t hold up to foot traffic, you’re probably not going to be a satisfied customer. Durability is a key factor. There are two chief considerations: hardness of the wood and hardness of the finish.

The Janka Hardness Test (JHT) was invented to determine wood hardness. JHT is a scale that puts hardness into number form. The higher the number, the harder the wood. Generally, any woods in the 1000 to 2000 range will give you many years of good performance. But make sure you know the specifics of the species you consider. For instance, Black Cherry has a hardness of 950 and Brazilian Cherry has a hardness of 2350. The former may get damaged by constant heavy traffic, while the latter should stand up well.

The other factor is the hardness of the finish. For an active household, shop for a baked-on clear topcoat. Purchase from a brand name and get products with warranties of 25 years or longer.


Are you insured and certified to install my flooring?

As professionals in the business for 33 years, we are both certified and insured. It’s important to ensure you installer is certified in order to be confident that the proper guidelines are followed. Work performed by uncertified installers could potentially void your warranty and lead to issues down the road.

What can you tell me about moisture values in my home/area and how will this affect my hardwood?

This is an extremely important question as moisture can cause your wood to warp, curve or cup. Based on common guidelines or recommendations, the acceptable moisture level for wood objects used indoors is generally 6% to 8% for wood flooring.\