If you have an older home that’s had an early hardwood for many decades, and it now looks tired and worn, one of today’s bright, durable new hardwood floors will definitely breathe new life into that room. Even though 20th Century hardwood floors have withstood the test of time, continued traffic or even neglect may have taken their toll. After decades of durable use, the existing floor may require replacement. If you are set on remodeling, you be wondering about how 21st Century hardwood flooring will look in your 20th Century home. You’ll probably be pleased to find out that new hardwood floors can look great and even enhance the interior décor of older homes.
What are today’s best hardwood choices for older homes?When choosing new hardwood flooring for your older home, there are two types to consider, wide-plank hardwood and narrow strip hardwood. Most flooring retailers can show you samples of each and give you all the details. Wide-plank boards that measure 5-inches wide or more, were the earliest kind of wood floors used in American homes. These are usually found in kitchens, bedrooms, dens and other less formal rooms. Around 1875, when machinery made the sawing of wood both easier and more consistent, narrow strip floors measuring less than 3-inches wide began appearing in rooms like the now old fashioned parlors.
Eventually, these hardwood floors were priced low enough to become common in most rooms in the home. Hardwood in those days depended on which wood species were locally available, could be had in abundance, and were also attractive and usually were either red oak or maple. Today’s hardwood choices still include red oak and maple, but now include walnut, cherry, pecan, hickory, and many other species which can be had in both wide-plank and narrow-strip sizes. However, there has been one more recent addition that makes new hardwoods stunning, a coating of polyurethane that delivers far more durability plus a bright shine.
Fortunately, you can now install exotic hardwood flooring in older homes and still obtain a harmonious interior style. This is doable because some exotic wood species feature stand-out grain patterns along with rich colors that will enhance your older home’s ‘look’. If you want a floor that simulates being gently worn, think about installing distressed hardwood. The application of special stains and distressing methods will now give you a rustic, weathered ‘look’ of naturally-aged hardwood that tells you that it’s been walked on for generations, yet distressed hardwood flooring will still have charm, warmth and will retain its value for a long time.