Eco-friendly Hardwood Floors, for a Stylish and Sustainable Home

When it comes to renovating your space, we know that balancing the budget without sacrificing style is essential. Equally as important is the desire to reduce our environmental footprint by choosing sustainable building materials.

Living Room
Photo by Shaw Floors

Nowadays, eco-friendly flooring does not have to come at the expense of style. Increased demand from environmentally concerned homeowners means that healthier, more sustainable products are now available in a wide range of beautiful designer looks.

Living Room
Photo by Shaw Floors

We believe in providing high-quality, sustainable options, and our eco-friendly hardwood flooring is manufactured under these guidelines:

EnviroCore™, the high-density core board found in Shaw’s Epic products, is made from recycled post-industrial wood fiber and harvested from well-managed domestic forests, using 50% less newly harvested wood than conventional engineered flooring.

GREENGUARD Certification ensures that a product has met some of the world’s most rigorous and comprehensive standards for low emissions of volatile organic compounds into indoor air.

If you are committed to making the healthiest choices for your family and the environment, our eco-friendly flooring is ideal for a home that is both sustainable and stylish.

Should You Consider Hardwood Floors For Your Homes Or Offices

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Should You Consider Hardwood Floors For Your Homes Or Offices?

Investing in hardwood flooring implies a significant investment that can turn out beneficial in the long run. Though there are sources suggesting that modern bamboo flooring is as effective as hardwood floors with a hardness rank comparable to oak, nothing beats hardwood floors when it comes to class, elegance and structural strength. Go further through the post in a bid to acquaint yourself with benefits of installing hardwood floor in your homes or offices.

You might as well be browsing a number of sites including Interior Design and in a bid to get a hang of the modern interior designing concepts and ideas. But before going in to details – know for a fact that the flooring would be counted as an integral part of the project and its only advisable that you acquaint yourself with its nitty-gritty.

Convenience of Installation and Easy Maintenance

Superior hardwood floors are engineered to offer a homogenous and steady fit. Those who have due experience in DIY flooring would hardly find it difficult to install it. It turns out to be a more sagacious investment than carpet as its color might start waning with time. Additionally, hardwood is considered to be hypoallergenic as it does not retain debris that can lead to or aggravate your allergies as carpet does. As it doesn’t retain dust you can settle for regular but easy cleaning processes including moping, vacuuming and drying.


No matter how diverse or unique your needs are, hardwood offers you variant choices in terms of appeal- styles, stains, species, colors, finish etc. In fact, it can safely be claimed that no two hardwood floors are the same. Additionally, wood is naturally equipped with versatile patterns.

It’s Healthy!

Hardwood flooring unmistakably makes for a healthy interior choice. It does not have embossing or grout lines that would allow pollen particles, dust, allergens or animal dander settle on it, thereby bolstering overall air quality. There are immediate health benefits associated with this attribute as the debris-free air in the house proves conducive for people with respiratory illnesses.

Problems and Solution

Cupping and buckling is a recurrent problem with hardwood. You need to ensure that you’re familiarizing yourself with these concepts before installing the hardwood in your home or office.

It’s phenomenon which refers to a malformation or warping process that is caused by absorption of humidity. Now, “how would your indoor flooring would be exposed to humidity?” Yes, it’s possible. There are several ways whereby the wood becomes vulnerable to moisture. Both the normal ground water saturation levels at your home or else the outdoor humidity levels in the geographical area you’re residing in, make for the standard sources of humidity. Additionally, if the burst water pipelines remain unattended to, for a considerable period of time, the internal structure of your home might be considerably damaged as well. Therefore, as a homeowner if you have noticed cupping or buckling in the floor, make sure you’re identifying the source of water and attending to it immediately.

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Reasons to select engineered wood flooring

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A number of homeowners prefer using hardwood flooring due to its aesthetic appeal and high durability. However, the main concern with hardwood flooring is that it can be quite difficult to install as a ‘Do-it-yourself’ (DIY) project. It is for this reason that a professional flooring installer needs to be called to install hardwood floor, thereby adding to the total cost. On the other hand, laminate flooring offers a cost effective and ‘easy to install’ alternative to hardwood flooring, but it is not real wood.

For homeowners who want a cost effective and durable alternative to hardwood, engineered hardwood flooring would be the ideal option. Engineered hardwood is a combination of real finished wood on top and non-finish plywood underneath. This additional layer of plywood is laid in a cross-way pattern, thereby providing support to the main wood top and enhancing its durability.

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The choices available in the engineered hardwood category are almost identical to those available in the solid hardwood category. Some of the most popularly engineered hardwood options include Hickory, Oak, Bamboo and Maple. This wide variety ensures that homeowners are able to select an option as per their specific requirements.

Another major advantage of engineered hardwood is that it is pre-finished, i.e. it has already been sanded and sealed. This means that the floor can be used as soon as it has been installed. On the other hand, unfinished solid hardwood requires sealing prior to being used, thereby increasing the installation time.

One area where engineered hardwood scores more than laminate flooring is that it can be sanded at a later stage. Engineered hardwood can be easily sanded a few times in case scratches or stains develop on it. However, since engineered flooring has low tolerance for any mistakes during the sanding process it is recommended to avail professional assistance.

Although, wood flooring is not recommended for high moisture areas like the children’s bathroom; engineered hardwood flooring can be easily installed in low-moderate moisture areas. This feature makes engineered hardwood ideal for areas like the basement and the bathroom. Relative to other wood flooring types, engineered hardwood flooring would offer high durability in such areas of the house.

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Hardwood flooring typically requires to be nailed to the wooden sub floor for maximum effectiveness. However, there are a number of other installation methods available for engineered hardwood flooring. Along with nailing the engineered hardwood floor, it is possible to either glue it or to use it as a floating floor. These installation options make engineered hardwood an ideal option for ‘DIY enthusiasts’.

Finally, engineered flooring is naturally warm and does not result in unwanted noise as is the case with a few other flooring options. It is also possible to install a radiant floor heating system beneath the engineered flooring, thereby providing high value.

Although engineered hardwood flooring can be more expensive than laminate, it provides high value in the long run. Not only can it be sanded a number of times, it is more resistant to moisture than other hardwood flooring options.

Copyright © 2010

Tips for effective floor buffing

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Like other parts of the house, hardwood flooring also requires maintenance. Over the years, with constant wear & tear the floor starts losing its luster. Though, a lot of people resort to changing the flooring when it starts to wear down; this however is not an advisable option.

One of the most effective ways of dealing with worn out flooring is by buffing it. One can easily use buffing for refinishing the floor, so that it looks as good as new.

Instead of replacing the old hardwood flooring with a new one, most homeowners prefer buffing the flooring, which saves them time as well as money. Using harsh chemicals is not advisable as it will actually harm the floor by either staining it or affecting its natural sheen. Buffing on the other hand is safer and can help keep the fresh look of the floor, as if it was new. Moreover, buffing can be easily done on every type of flooring, whether it is marble or hardwood, with the help of a buffing machine. In case of carpet flooring, one can use the brush attachment instead of pads in the buffing machine; which effectively cleans and scrubs the carpet thoroughly.

It is a process, which can easily be accomplished by DIY enthusiasts. Whatever may be the type of floor you wish to buff; it should first be dust mopped and cleaned thoroughly. Next, you need to install the buffing pad and set the speed of the machine at 1-2 ft. per second. Move the machine in a straight line, overlapping each pass by 2-4 inches. You need to buff the floor till the required gloss is achieved. Similarly, repeat the whole process in other areas of the floor as well. Check the pads, and change them in case they have become dirty or worn out. After buffing is complete, dust mop the floor and follow it by wet vacuuming. Make sure to clean all the equipment, before storage.

Although it is easy, there are certain things that one needs to take care of while buffing the hardwood floor. Replace worn out pads as it can cause scratches on the floor. You need to select the appropriate pad and solution for the type of floor to be buffed. It is advisable that you evenly spread the solution over the particular section of the floor, and buff the area two to three times for best results. While buffing the floor, you must ensure to start from the end of the room, moving backwards, so that you do not step on the cleaned floor.

You will need to apply three different solutions, namely stripping, wax and polish solution. Though using a floor buffing machine is not very difficult; it is advisable to exercise caution since the buffing machine is quite big in size.

Flooring is the most essential part of any house and hence, requires utmost care. By just following some of the simple measures mentioned above, you can have a clean, shiny and durable flooring.

Copyright © 2010

Easy solutions for hardwood floor repair problem

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Hardwood floor is increasingly becoming one of the most preferred flooring choices amongst homeowners; as it greatly enhances the appearance of the house. Along with adding to the aesthetic appeal of the house, it also increases the value of the property. Hardwood flooring is durable as well as easy to maintain and install. Moreover, this versatile flooring option easily blends with any kind of décor, whether traditional or modern. However, just like other flooring options, hardwood flooring comes with its own set of assets & setbacks. Some of these problems can easily be rectified by homeowners themselves, while others may require professional assistance.

Many hardwood floor surfaces develop cracks or splits after few years which make it unpleasant to look at. This can easily be repaired with the help of angled nails, which secures the two pieces together. In order to hide the blemishes, you can cover it with some wood putty. The DIY enthusiasts can accomplishes this task easily within no time. Another common damage caused to the hardwood floors is the development of gaps between the wooden planks. This is mainly because of the nature of wood, which tends to expand in case it gets wet and shrinks when it dries. Over a period of time, this expansion and contraction causes gaps. Generally, this process is seasonal, where the change in weather and humidity causes the opening and closing of gaps. However, in case the gap is much and does not close on its own, you can take help of a professional who can tighten up the hardwood floor and solve this problem completely.

Moisture can also lead to another problem, sagging or warped hardwood floor, which needs to be addressed immediately. Another problem which may bother several homeowners is the cupped floors, also known as wash-boarding. The edges of the planks rise up across the width of the wooden strip, while there is a depression at the center. This is also caused due to moisture imbalance and the center of the board sinks down if the humidity is more on the bottom of the wooden strip than on top. All these problems require you to solve the humidity problem and balance its level to help the surface return back to normal.

In addition, many homeowners face the problem of buckling, which happens when the hardwood floorboard warps and lifts up from the subfloor beneath. There are several reasons which may cause this; hence it is advisable that one calls a professional for opinion so that the actual cause can be identified and appropriate measures can be taken to fix the problem.

Hardwood flooring may also experience minor problems such as scratching, staining or loose planks. In case of scratching or staining, you can easily find a solution in several touch-up kits that are readily available in the market. In case of major scratching, which can spoil the appearance of the floor; it would require refinishing. In case of loose planks the problem can be rectified by nailing it to the subfloor, which is quite easy.

Hence, these simple measures along with regular sweeping and cleaning helps in easy maintenance of the hardwood flooring.

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