I'm about to replace the carpet with wood floor.
The price of pre-finished (15yrs) is the same with the common 1 (???)
red oak is $8/sf. The red oak floor needs to be sanded and stained.
At first I wanted to go with the pre-finished until my co-worker told
me about her 2 years old floor (pre-finished wood). It already shows
sign of wearing.
Would you please give me your opinion?
The durability of the real hardwood will depend on what coating you put
on it. I had a 4 year old house with pre-finished hardwood. It was
very durable but was fading badly in areas with high sunlight. Once
that happens, there's not much can be done about it.
Now I have 40 year old real hardwood floors that look better than the
day they were new.
For the money, I'll take the real hardwood. The extra work is worth
I have pre-finished in my family room and the adjoining hall. After 4
years, it is about perfect. No sights of wear, just a couple of small
scratches that any floor can get. Quality pre-finished flooring has very
hard aluminum oxide finishes that are very durable.
As for the oak, it does not have to be stained. You may want it stained,
but that is an option. There are also many other types of wood available if
you are willing to spends for them. Cherry, maple, ipe, hickory, are all
If you like the pre-finished, get a good quality and you will be happy with
it. IMO, I like the regular types of flooring, but I'd probably opt for a
different wood if it was in the budget. It can be re-finished many times if
If you can afford it, go with with the unfinished wood. The
pre-finished has seams that show, giving a sort of ripple effect.
The sand and finish floors once done look like a single floor. Much
warmer and appealing in my opinion.
Your co-worker musta bought a cheap brand of prefinished. As a kid, my
father's company laid acres of Bruce prefinish in the houses he built. I
visit some of those houses on a regular basis. 30-40 years later, most of
them look fine, as long as they were kept swept and dry. Hard factory finish
beats anything you can apply in the field, IMHO. 2 things will kill a wood
floor finish- water, and grit, like trapped under area rugs or w/w carpet.
(w/w over hardware is a sin, but that is another discussion.)
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