FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ’s)
We have tried to answer some of the questions our customers ask us. We hope this would be useful for you as well to get some insights:
What is the difference between engineered wood flooring and solid wood flooring?
Each has their specific uses and the answer depends on your lifestyle and specific needs. Solid wood should be in a moisture-controlled environment. Solid wood strip or plank is usually nailed down, when it will require a timber sub floor, but narrow planks can be glued. Engineered wood flooring consists of a multi-plied, cross-stacked backing with a top layer of your selected species. Engineered wood flooring can be installed in areas where solid wood is not compatible due to moisture.
Can an engineered wood floor be refinished?
Some of the better quality engineered wood floors have a 1/8" thick finish layer and can be sanded and refinished 1 or maybe 2 times. The sanding and refinishing of an engineered wood floor is best done by an experienced hardwood flooring refinisher. If you have heat vents in your floor you can remove a heat cover to get a side view of your wood floor. This will help you check to see how thick you finish layer is. Always consult with the manufacturer to see if they recommend sanding and refinishing of the engineered wood floors.
Can I install a solid wood floor over a concrete slab?
It is not recommended to install solid wood flooring over a concrete slab. Although this is the general rule, there have been successful installations of solid wood flooring installed over dry, concrete slabs. This entails several additional steps. A plastic barrier is set over the slab and taped at all seams. Then some sort of moisture-resistant wood subfloor (marine plywood) is built on top of the plastic film. Then the flooring is nailed to the wood subfloor. If you decide to take the chance, be sure to consult with the manufacturer as to their recommendations. Be aware, you may be voiding your warranty.
There is a new synthetic underlayment product on the market that may allow for installing solid wood flooring over a dry slab. Check with the manufacturer of the wood floor to see if they will warranty this type of installation and what their recommended installation procedures are for this type of installation.
What wood floor can I install over a concrete slab?
With the improvements in hardwood floors most engineered and longstrip engineered plank floors can be used over a concrete slab. Manufacturers do not recommend using solid wood floors over a slab. Engineered planks and strip wood floors can be glued directly to a clean, dry, well-cured concrete slab. Some engineered wood floors can be glued at the tongue and grooves and then allowed to be floated over a special padding that is laid over the concrete slab. Longstrip engineered planks can be floated over the slab with padding underneath. There are some new "hybrid" engineered floors that can be floated over a concrete slab and come with a click (glueless) tongue and groove locking system.
Note: New concrete slabs need to be fully cured for at least 60 days. All wood planks should be acclimated for 24-48 hours prior to installation. Be sure to read and follow the manufacturer's recommended installation procedures.
Can we install a hardwood floor over an existing vinyl floor?
Yes and no. Is the vinyl flooring is tightly secured to the subfloor? Does the vinyl flooring have a thick cushion attached? If the vinyl floor is thin and well secured to the subfloor you may be able to float a wood floor over it. In some situations you may be able nail/staple a wood floor over it also. If the wood subfloor is sound you may be able to nail a solid wood floor over the top. Be sure to get the manufacturer's installation procedures for going over an existing vinyl floor and be sure to check if this type installation is warranted by the manufacturer.
What do I do to remove scratches in my wood floor?
This really depends on the type of wood floor you have, the finish you have and how deep the scratches are in the top layer. For small minor scratches in a urethane finish you should be able to order a touch-up kit from the store you purchased the flooring from. Be sure to use the manufacturer's recommended finish products and test first by applying a small amount in an out of the way area. For deep scratches you will probably have to have a professional do a screen and recoat. This is where they use special sanding screens to lightly abrade the floor's finish to help the new urethane bond better to the existing finish. With some wood floors you may be able to just replace the damaged boards. It is best to leave the sand and recoat, or board replacement to a professional flooring installer, or refinisher.
Can I install a hardwood floor if I have pets?
Although many homeowners have pets, hardwood flooring is not designed for the abuse a dog or cat can cause on a floor. Urine may permanently discolor the finish of the wood floor and large dogs' claws will probably leave scratches in the finish. The type of wood floor you buy, the color and the finish will also be factor in how much punishment the floor's finish can withstand before showing scratches and excessive wear.
Can I use throw rugs on my hardwood floor?
Before using any throw rugs on your wood floor you should know the type of finish you have on the floor. All rugs should be non-staining, meaning the colored dyes will not bleed. Generally in the presence of moisture, some dyes used in rugs may bleed through onto your floor and discolor the wood floors surface. Also, be sure the rug does not have a rough backing material that may scratch the surface of the floor. Clean dirt and debris from under the rug regularly. To prevent possible shading of the wood underneath the rug, move the rug occasionally.
How do we stop a wood floor from gapping?
Gapping in solid wood floors cannot be stopped completely. Wood expands and contracts with changes in humidity. Using a humidifier during the heating months may help reduce the amount of gapping in solid wood floors. Also, some wood species may gap expand and contract less than others. Engineered wood floors are much more dimensionally stable than solid wood floors and will show little or no gaps between planks.
What should I use under furniture legs?
Most flooring stores carry the recommended felt pads for using under chair legs and other furniture. The felt pads come in various sizes. Some pads just stick on the bottom of the legs and others need to be nailed on. Never hit the pads directly with a hammer. Follow the directions provided with the pads. Check and clean the pads often to prevent debris, dirt and small particles from being trapped in the pad, which may cause scratches in the wood floor's finish.
How long does it take to fit a wood floor?
Approximately 20 square meters can be fitted per day on average. However there are many variables and this is a ball park figure only.
Can solid wood floors be glued down?
Solid wood flooring can expand and contract more than engineered boards; however recent successes have shown that narrow solid boards can be glued successfully.
Can I install my own hardwood flooring?
You can install your own hardwood floor. However, unless you have some experience of fitting floors we strongly urge you to have your floor fitted professionally.
What guarantee do I get when I purchase a floor?
All floors we sell come with 25 years manufacturer warranty.
Will the color of the floor change over time?
Most floors will change in color over a period of time, but to what extent depends largely on the species of wood and where it is situated. Some woods lighten slightly when exposed to light and others darken. If your floor is in a room where there is a lot of sunlight i.e. a conservatory, then the color change may be more noticeable.
Are hardwood floors a good choice for asthma sufferers? Yes. Allergists often recommend bare floors, which reduce the chance for animal hair, dust, pollen or molds to collect. As much as one-fifth of the population suffers breathing difficulties caused by allergies and asthma, often triggered by microscopic dust mites that colonize bedding, curtains and carpets. Bedding and curtains can be laundered, but because frequent vacuuming is ineffective against dust mites in floor coverings, many immunologists and allergists suggest hardwood floors as a way of helping to keep these ailments under control.
Can old hardwood floors be repaired?
Yes, we are able to repair your existing hardwood floor.
My floor has a crack in it - is that normal?
Because wood is a natural product it will react to changes in its environment. The most common causes of separations are Mother Nature and dryness. The loss of moisture is the most frequent reason for shrinkage of individual pieces and cracks. Most cracks are seasonal – they appear in dry months, or the cold season when heating is required, and close during humid periods. This type of separation and close is considered normal.
Is wood suitable in toilets, kitchens and bathrooms?
Most engineered wood species are suitable to be put in areas that may be subject to excess moisture as the lacquer finish will protect the boards but it is not recommended to use solid wood flooring in areas where there is high humidity or excessive moisture. It is not advisable to leave wet bath mats and towels etc sat on the floor, and spillages should be, mopped up immediately. We advise against putting Beech in these areas as this species of wood is very sensitive to moisture.
Do I have to move out of my house while you are working on my floors?
Because of our dust-free sanding systems and environmentally safe fast-curing finishing, you are able to stay in your home during our visit as long as the project rooms are not disturbed to ensure maximal results.
What kind of finishing products do you use?
With years of experience behind us we have learned to be very discerning when it comes to finishing products. We only use the safest and most environmentally friendly products in the market. You will find other contractors who will quote a cheaper price per square foot, but be careful of their products. Ask them what kind of finishing they are using and if it is acid or alcohol based, you may be putting your health at risk.
Can you repair my floors before you refinish them?
It is essential that floors are repaired before they are refinished. We can repair any damage including replacing planks to ensure a seamless refinishing. No one would ever have guessed the floor had been damaged in the first place.
Can you remove paint stains from my floors?
The sanding process removes all paint, pet or water stains from the first top layers of the wood. As long as the stain is not too deep, it can be removed.
Can you repair water damage?
If the water damage has penetrated the core of the wood, the affected planks would have to be replaced. If the stain is not too deep, however, the sanding process will take care of it.
Do I have to sand my floors? Can’t I just refinish them?
In certain instances we can refurbish existing hardwood floors assuming the scratches involved are superficial and have not penetrated too deeply into the existing finish.
How much do you charge?
Our prices vary depending on the service, type of flooring and the finishing we use on your projects. For a more specific price, please e-mail us at -----@----, call us at -------- or complete the form in the Contact section of the website and we will be more than happy to visit you and give you the best advice (and price) we can on your project.