What Hardwood Floor Scratches the Least?

In general, wooden floors are susceptible to wear and tear over the years. Some scratch due to pets, children, or heavy traffic. Soft woods are more susceptible than hardwood thus, hardwood is better for flooring in high traffic areas such as the family room and corridors. You knew that already didn’t you? The harder the wood the less it is prone to scratching. However, this does not solve your problem of which hardwood is best for least scratches.

Before You Start

It is important to list down your needs for the wooden floor. This makes it easier to choose which type of wood is best suited for you. For example, the needs of a single person will differ from a large family. Here are some questions that can help guide you:

  • Do you have pets or children? They will be a huge influence on your decision because they tend to be the cause for most of the damage that a wooden floor sustains. Therefore, if you have children and/or pets, you need a good quality hardwood that can resist the most scratching.
  • Where do you want it? Bedrooms tend to have less traffic than common areas such as the living room. Therefore, you will not need extremely hard wood for such areas.
  • What area size do you want the flooring to cover? Hardwood tends to be expensive; if you are restricted by your budget, you may opt to use it only in relevant areas and alternatives in other areas.

How to Determine The “Hardness”

Sadly, it’s not that simple to determine how hard the wood is by simply looking at it. One way you can gauge the hardness is by doing the Janka hardness test. This test allows you to see which species of wood is suitable for flooring. The harder the wood, the less it’s prone to denting and other damages. You cannot do this test on your own but the information is widely available.

Types of Hardwood

The list below is not in any appropriate order of hardness. They range from very hard to moderately hard. Some of you may have heard of before, while some may be new to you. The list is far from absolute and should only be used as a starting point:

  • Australian buloke – it is rated as the hardest wood.
  • Brazilian Olive wood
  • Southern Chestnut
  • Red Mahogany – mahogany in general is averagely hard. It is widely liked for its aesthetics and grain.
  • Hard Maple – be sure not to confuse this with its counterpart soft maple.
  • Oak – it comes in either red or white. It is very commonly used for flooring.
  • Walnut – it comes in a very warm brown.

When it comes down to it, it’s not enough to just buy hardwood. Maintenance is key for durability regardless of the type of wood you choose. It’s important to seal it well and polish it regularly. If you notice that the floor is slightly damaged, you can simply sand it down until its nice and smooth, put a new coat of varnish and it will be as good as new.

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