Solid wood flooring is laid with planks or blocks which are milled from a single piece of timber, usually a hardwood, although pine is also often available. The process is relatively simple. In Europe, where almost all of our solid wood flooring is milled, the log is usually live sawn, which means that it is cut straight across to ensure a nice variety of grain. It is then planed, profiled and sanded and may be bought unfinished, for completion on site, or pre-finished with either an oil or lacquer.
Why real wood makes a great floor
Real wood floors are highly prized for both their good looks and their longevity, and research confirms that, in the home, real wood flooring has a positive influence on both the value and saleability of a property. Wooden floors are also easy to clean and, since they cannot harbour pollen, pet dander or other allergens, they also provides significant health benefits.
Until around 30 years ago, almost all wooden floors were made from solid timber. It was originally used for structural purposes, being installed perpendicular to the wooden support beams of a building (the joists or bearers), and solid timber is still often used for sports floors as well as in many traditional wood blocks, mosaics and parquetry.
Solid wood flooring and its alternatives
In recent years floors made from engineered wood have overtaken traditional solid timber in popularity. Both are real wood, both are equally solid, but whilst the latter is made from a single piece of wood, the former is multi-layered, making it inherently more stable. This offers a number of advantages, including the availability of longer, wider planks and blocks. On the plus side, solid hardwood is usually cheaper and damaged areas can be sanded down and refinished repeatedly, the number of times being limited only by the thickness of wood above the tongue.
Havwoods solid wood flooring is selected specifically for its quality and consistency from the very best mills in Europe and North America. Unless otherwise stated in the Technical Data Sheet we do not recommend that solid timber floors be installed over underfloor heating.
Installing and maintaining solid wood flooring
At Havwoods we offer oak flooring, as well as beech, maple and hevea. Some of these are structural for nailing down, others may be glued down, a process sometimes know as fully bonded. You will find comprehensive installation instructions for both under 'information'. And, if you don't have a fitter in mind, under 'installers' you will also find a list of the experienced installers who have attended Havwoods' refresher courses and work with wood the Havwoods way.
Maintaining any real wood floor depends upon the type of surface finish you choose. Detailed cleaning and maintenance regimes for lacquered, oiled and UV oiled wooden flooring can also be found under '"information".