How Hardwood Differs From Softwood or Manufactured Wood

There are three types of wood flooring: hardwood, softwood and processed or manufactured wood. These three types have their own distinct characteristics and that's what we will be talking about in this article.

Let's discuss hardwood flooring first. Hardwood floors are made from timber and is specially made to be used as flooring. Hardwood trees include pine, spruce trees and many others. These types come in different widths and thickness.

Hardwood flooring comes in different designs, colors, textures, grains and profiles so homeowners will have a variety of choices. The great thing about this type of flooring is that its natural beauty and charm can last for a long period of time.

Softwood, however, is similar to hardwood but it is softer. Despite the fact that softwood is less durable than hardwood, it is quite resistant to damage. The natural charm and sturdiness of this type of wood can definitely add coziness and warmth to your home.

The beauty of softwood is, dents or scratches that appear naturally can actually enhance the look of the wood. Putting differently, this type of wood becomes better looking as it ages. Using it is also a great way to save on renovation or construction costs. By choosing softwood over hardwood, you get real wood floor with some money left for other house improvements you need to do.

Processed or manufactured wood is real wood, but instead of one solid piece, it consists of 3 to 10 thin layers of wood called plies which are assembled and glued in cross-ply construction. The top layer of wood can range from 1/16" to 1/6" thick. Overall board thickness ranges from 1/4" to 3/4". Due to its multi-ply structure, manufactured wood is much more stable than solid wood and is less susceptible to shrinking and expanding due to changes in temperature and humidity.

Compared to other types of wood flooring, this type can actually hold up better in humid areas. Installation of this type can be done on wood sub floors or dry concrete floors nad it is more dimensionally stable because of its layered construction. This type is installed using a staple gun, thus handling them is easier and faster. They also come in a wide range of styles, colors, and sizes. This type of wood just like hardwood and softwood is hypo allergenic, thus it increases the value of your home.

Always keep in mind that whether you choose hardwood, softwood or manufactured wood, making your flooring fit with the rest of your interior design will make a truly dramatic improvement in your home.

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