Hardwood floors have many benefits. Hardwood floors are beautiful and easy to maintain. Carpets can aggravate allergies, so they are an excellent choice. Hardwood flooring is suitable for homeowners with allergies. However, water can damage and warp certain types of materials. Is it wise to have hardwood floors in bathrooms and kitchens? Freshome asked several experts including realtors, designers, and experts in water damage restoration to comment on the topic.
The pros and cons of hardwood floors
Hardwood wooden flooring Wirral is a great choice for the kitchen. He says that hardwood flooring is fashionable and durable, can be purchased in a range of natural colors, and is easy to maintain. Murphy states that hardwood flooring is a great choice for kitchens because it can be replaced very rarely. He notes that most repairs can be easily done by professionals.
Mosaik Design and Remodeling, Portland Oregon’s Erin Davis, states that hardwood is a popular choice for kitchens. Davis states that hardwood is more comfortable than tile underfoot and appears more luxurious than vinyl or laminate floor. Wood floors are also more livable due to their natural essence and warmer colors. Davis warns that wood floors can become stained if left unattended.
Susan Serra, a certified kitchen designer at Susan Serra Associates believes hardwood floors are a great choice for the kitchen if they are properly finished. Davis agrees that spillages should be cleaned up immediately. Serra says that small spillages if they are not noticed sooner, won’t cause damage to a wood floor. However, larger spillages, like a leaking refrigerator or dishwasher, can cause damage. They add warmth to the kitchen and are especially attractive when connected to other rooms.
Hardwood floors can be protected with sealants. However, there are some limitations, says Joan Slaughterbeck, Slaughterbeck Floors, Campbell, CA. Slaughterbeck states that sealants for hardwood floors – engineered or solid – can only be applied to the top of the floor as a protective layer. Wood and water are not compatible, so wood flooring can’t be sealed 100%. It expands and contracts with heat humidity and moisture. Slaughterbeck states that if you live in a home with a wooden frame, there would be a problem. She says that water from these types of appliances or fixtures can often get under the wood, and is usually not detected until the flooring has bucked, or swollen.
The benefits of hardwood floors
John Manning is a managing broker at RE/MAX market in Seattle. He advises against hardwood and engineered wood flooring products. Manning states that hardwood floors are susceptible to warping and buckling when they are exposed to moisture. Manning also said that even the most well-finished floors can be damaged by spills or drips, especially in the vicinity of the dishwasher. Kitchens and bathrooms have high foot traffic and water can seep under the hardwoods, creating unsightly stains in their grain.
Tanya O’Coyne is the owner of TSC Recovery, which is a San Diego water damage restoration company. She strongly opposes hardwood floors in the bathroom or kitchen. She explains that the flooring you choose can make a big difference in the extent of damage to your sink, dishwasher, fridge, sink, or plumbing pipes. Wood floors can allow water to seep through their cracks, hide mold growth and warp after only a small amount of exposure to water. “We had to tear out many rooms of interlocking hardwood flooring because of damage to a small bathroom. It was impossible to replace all of the hardwood planks.”
Hardwood floors are recommended for the kitchen by Davis and Serra, but they are not recommended for bathrooms. Serra says that hardwood floors can still be used in bathrooms. However, considering the amount of water we use in such a small space, it’s best to avoid using them. She recommends porcelain or ceramic tiles. They can be made to look, but not feel, exactly like wood.
Davis doesn’t recommend wood flooring for bathrooms with bathtubs or showers. However, he says that they are fine for powder rooms. Slaughterbeck suggests waterproof flooring for homeowners who desire a wood look without moisture concerns. She says that she has installed many hardwood floors from the hybrid fusion line and other noteworthy brands that are waterproof. We’d love to hear from you in the comments.