Professional Advice: How Long Does Hardwood Flooring Last?

January 27, 2023

Are you a homeowner asking, how long does hardwood flooring last? This is an excellent question, as new flooring can be a costly investment. In turn, you want it to last as long as possible! No homeowner wants to spend thousands on new flooring only to see it worn out after just a few years.

The good news is that hardwood floors are known for their durability and longevity. However, your initial investment and how you treat those floors affect their lifespan. Consequently, you would do well to consider these details before investing in hardwoods! Knowing more about how to make those floors last can ensure the most “bang for your buck” over the years.

how long does hardwood flooring last

How Long Does Hardwood Flooring Last on Average?

When maintained properly, high-quality hardwood flooring can last 20 to 30 years or more. Hardwood floors are known for their durability and longevity, which makes them a great investment for all homes. Every 7-10 years, the floors should be refinished to increase their lifespan and protect the wood properly.

To understand how long your floors might last, note some details about hardwood floor varieties and how to protect the flooring.

How often does hardwood floor need to be refinished?

A contractor might recommend sanding hardwood floors every 7 to 10 years. However, how you treat those floors affects this schedule immensely! For instance, sanding and refinishing hides scratches and can remove dents. The more wear and tear those floors suffer, the more often they need refinishing.

Also, note that harsh sunlight can fade wood stains and finishes. Consequently, homes in the tropics often need floor refinishing more frequently than others. Additionally, some homeowners might want to change their home’s appearance often over the years. As such, they might sand and refinish those floors just to give them a new color!

What are engineered floors versus solid wood?

First, note the difference between engineered wood floors versus solid hardwood. A solid wood plank, as the name implies, is one piece of wood. Engineered floors include a thin wood layer attached to a plywood base.

This manufacturing difference is why engineered wood is often far cheaper than solid wood. The thin top layer offers the look and feel of your chosen wood species. However, a contractor can only sand and refinish that thin top layer so many times! In many cases, a contractor might refinish engineered floors just once.

On the other hand, a flooring contractor might sand and refinish solid wood several times before they need replacing. For many flooring varieties, a contractor might sand them 4 to 10 times before they become overly thin. Solid wood floors typically last many years longer than engineered flooring!

hardwood flooring installation Bradenton

Signs Your Hardwood Floors Need Replacing

Homeowners might refinish solid hardwood floors in good condition if they want a new style for their home. Sanding down those floors allows you to paint or stain them an entirely new color. In turn, those floors can look just like new!

In addition to changing floors just for appearance’s sake, note when a floor’s condition signals needed replacing. First, note that severe damage, such as chips and deep dents, aren’t going to just go away! Second, sagging floorboards and huge gaps between them might indicate subflooring damage. You must schedule structural repairs along with new floor installation.

Also, remember that a contractor can sand down solid wood only so many times before it becomes overly thin. Once that happens, you might notice nails, grooves in the planks, and other details. A contractor can’t hide these features with new paint or coatings! Instead, this typically signals that it’s time for new flooring.

Above all, always replace floors if they’re unsafe. For instance, dents or large gaps between boards might create a tripping hazard. Exposed nails can also risk tripping or scrapes, especially for children playing on those floors! Ensure your family’s safety by replacing wood floors in these cases.

Are Laminate Floors the Same as Wood Flooring?

Laminate floors offer the look of wood flooring but are not the same! The term “laminate” means to cover something with a thin layer of a protective coating. In turn, a laminate floor includes an underlayment, a high-definition photograph, and then a protective top layer.

That photograph under the top laminate layer mimics the look of wood, stone, or another flooring material. However, the top protective layer is typically more durable than genuine wood. It rarely suffers scratching, dents, and other common damage. It’s also easy to clean, often with nothing more than a damp mop.

On the other hand, a contractor cannot refinish a laminate floor. Once that top layer gets worn down, the floor needs replacing. Many laminate floor brands last some 15 years or more before they become overly worn.

 

Which Is Better, Vinyl Plank or Wood Flooring?

Vinyl plank flooring is a great alternative to solid wood floors. Manufacturers make these planks by printing a wood look along a vinyl floor surface. Luxury vinyl plank offers a rigid feeling that also mimics wood.

Regarding durability, vinyl plank might resist scratches more readily than hardwood. On the other hand, it’s often easier to dent vinyl than genuine wood! Also, note that vinyl plank flooring resists water damage and moisture more readily than genuine hardwood flooring. It isn’t likely to swell and then shrink over the seasons.

Lastly, note that contractors also can’t sand and refinish vinyl plank! In turn, you can’t change their appearance by doing anything other than replacing those floors. If you’re likely to want a new floor appearance over the years, choose hardwood. Your flooring installation contractor can also advise the best choice for your home.

Bradenton Flooring Pros is happy to help answer the question about how long hardwood floors last. Hopefully, you’ve found this information useful for your own flooring needs. If you’re ready for expert care, call our Bradenton flooring installation contractors. We’ll help you choose the right carpet, hardwood, or tile for every room of your home. We ensure quality installations backed by a full warranty in writing. Moreover, we start every project with a free price estimate. For more information or to browse our catalog of stunning flooring, contact our crew today.

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