Asked on Jul 10, 2014

Hardwood Floors

by Betty
We have hardwoods down already in the house we bought. We are now getting ready to pull some carpet up and add more. We're putting hardwoods down, what questions should I ask? I know different stains, but what about finishes? (We have two beagles).
q hardwood floors, flooring, hardwood floors
This is the floor we have now
q hardwood floors, flooring, hardwood floors
Same floors just in different lighting
q hardwood floors, flooring, hardwood floors
These are 3 inches wide. The ones we are looking at are 2 1/4 they and are not on the same floor. Will this make that big of a difference?
  20 answers
  • Darla Darla on Jul 10, 2014
    I think with dogs, you should get the hardest finish available. That would be prefinished aluminum oxide coating.

  • Donna Byram Donna Byram on Jul 10, 2014
    Bruce makes a 3 inch hardwood flooring. Do you have a Lowe's or a flooring company that handles Bruce Hardwood? I personally think it would be better to do the same throughout. We laid a 3"-5"-7" pattern in a previous home with Bruce Hardwood pre-finished floors and we had a lab-rottweiler and she didn't hurt them. Be sure and let them acclimate first before installing.

  • Roberta Eagleston Roberta Eagleston on Jul 12, 2014
    If you are installing on another floor, I don't think the 3/4 will make any difference.

  • Barbara Aragon Barbara Aragon on Jul 12, 2014
    I, too, have hardwood floors and 3 Golden Retrievers. When I decided to replace a carpeted area, I wanted hardwood to match the other area. A flooring dealer asked me how bad my existing hardwood looks from the dogs, and convinced me to consider laminate. Although I was skeptical, I agreed, and he showed me laminate that LOOKS just like hardwood. It is a higher end, expensive laminate (mine is by Tarkett). Best thing I ever did was purchase it. After 5 years, the laminate looks like new, the hardwood...time to refinish it again. (Sigh.) Check out the high end laminates.

  • Kelly S Kelly S on Jul 12, 2014
    Try Lumber Liquidators. They have a wide variety of wood species, finishes and widths. Another option I've seen is ceramic tiles that look like wood. If the areas are to remain delineated then you could use a different wood. We eventually replaced the carpet in the entire house using Bella Wood from Lumber Liquidators.

  • Holly Bracy Holly Bracy on Jul 12, 2014
    Use a low gloss top coat, high gloss needs constant maintenance to keep it looking good. I have it in one room, chosen by past owner and my dog tracks stuff in and it never looks good unless I am mopping and polishing very frequently.

  • Penny Penny on Jul 12, 2014
    I'm having my disgusting wall to wall carpeting replaced with Kahr's Oak Reef flooring. It has a wider plank (not sure if it comes in a narrow one) and is grooved so that scratches and nicks won't show up. Re. maintenance- a friend put in dark floors several years ago and cleans them every single day! Every speck of dust shows up- not for me, thus I chose the oak.

  • Jeanette S Jeanette S on Jul 12, 2014
    If you run into trouble with an exact blend of stain or finish when you come to thresholds, you can put down a decorative border tile instead of one of those raised pieces which I HATE! This is probably not for the floor, but it has been down for 5 years and it works great. (They have many beautiful styles). We have real wood oak in our dining room and front foyer that meets our kitchen...we put Laminate in our kitchen because I did not want to worry about drops of water making a mess...our Lab dribbles water across the floor!

    • See 3 previous
    • Jeanette S Jeanette S on Jul 13, 2014
      @Kelly S It is never too late. I had to leave the house and one section was put in like the floor man wanted...not what I wanted! I was furious but did not demand it be taken up and changed. HATED IT FOR YEARS! When we went further with the floor, I insisted that about 100 sq. ft. be taken up, the underlay be removed and the floor made level. We then measured the area, and then with a Dremmel tool cut the edges straight and put in this threshold! My guy and son were putting down the floor...I told them either do it my way or don't do it and I would hire it done like I wanted. I got it my way. I can accept some things, but JUST HATED THAT RISER!

  • Pete Wells Pete Wells on Jul 12, 2014
    You will regret it if you use laminate, they can't take moisture, look fake, dent easily and last 5 years, maximum, if that...there are no "High-end" laminates..a low-gloss polyurethane on solid oak will provide a tough finish..

    • See 3 previous
    • Barbara Aragon Barbara Aragon on Jul 13, 2014
      @Pete Wells I disagree that laminates look fake and get ruined by dents/moisture. It depends on your laminate. I, too, thought that I would never get a laminate. But when a dealer showed me several samples of hardwood with a few high end (one by Tarkett) laminates mixed in, I couldn't tell the difference. I bought the laminate, have it in my entry hall for 5 years now with three 70+ lb dogs, there are no dents, no scratches, and it looks way better than the rest of my house that has oak hardwood floors. I paid $6+ per sq foot (not including installation). You get what you pay for.

  • Liliana Wells Liliana Wells on Jul 12, 2014
    Betty – do you have your heart set on hardwood floors? After reading the comments above, I would reconsider. Iagree with Jeannette on the laminate. Whenit comes to laminate, you get what you pay for. We put down a quality laminated over 15 years ago in the living/diningroom combination, hallway and one bedroom of one of our houses. We lived with that floor for at least 13years. It is now rented and stilllooking good. Any time we consider new flooring, I opt for tile if thesub-floor is concrete (you can get wood-looking tile) or high-end laminate ifthe sub-floor is plywood. Tile andlaminate are so much easier to clean.

  • Patty Tyson Patty Tyson on Jul 12, 2014
    I have wood laminate in a sunroom and love it, we have a dog and 7 grandkids running all over it with toys etc. I have had it down for about 4 tears now, not a scratch or dent and it ha floor to ceiling windows on 3 sides and it has nor faded a bit!! Love love love it

  • Dee Dee on Jul 12, 2014
    I have hand scraped look laminate and it looks exactly like real wood. My dog has not made any scratches on it, there are no dents and it looks as good as the day we had it put down. I would put it in my hallway but my dog loves to play and run down the 19 foot hall way and it is slippery for her to really get a good run in. I may try it in the kitchen next year. Jeanette that tile transition looks gorgeous. You are absolute right that the higher end laminates work beautifully with active families. Mine is 12 mm.

  • Gerri Gerri on Jul 12, 2014
    If you have your heart set on hardwood, I would look at hand rubbed hardwood (the scratches don't show) if I did it again. I loved our Beagle (may he rest in doggie heaven) but he did a number on my floors. We have laminate in the lower area, my husband said he'd do it in all in laminate-no I wouldn't. Laminate was slippery for Bleu downstairs. I'm more concerned of what you have on your stairs? We had beautiful stained stairs, but I was terrified the dog would slip and break a leg so we had a runner put down. And we put up more scatter rugs for when he tore around the house.

  • Sherleen Z Sherleen Z on Jul 12, 2014
    I have had three active dogs on our oak floors for 15 yrs and the worst Knicks and bumps have been from my dropping stuff on it! Do your hardwoods floors and relish the years of love and memories of the dogs sliding to the front door to greet the mailman!

  • Dawn D Dawn D on Jul 13, 2014
    I like the look of hardwood but I love the ease of ceramic tile. I recently learned they have wood-look ceramic and I'm excited to investigate that for the areas that are now carpeted.

    • Kelly S Kelly S on Jul 13, 2014
      @Dawn D , they do and they are beautiful. Spendy but should last a lifetime.

  • Dee Dee on Jul 13, 2014
    The ceramic or porcelain wood look tiles are beautiful. BUT the 12x24 size are hard to level. They are very heavy and tend to sink in spots. I have 12x24 in both my bathrooms [not wood like] and they look beautiful, but were a pain in the rear end to install. If you want the wood look tile, I personally would buy porcelain, it is a little more expansive but in the end it last longer, with no chips etc.

  • Darla Darla on Jul 14, 2014
    You might consider the luxury vinyl snap-together planks. They are durable, easy to install and look surprisingly good.

  • Brenda Brenda on Jul 14, 2014
    We installed cork flooring and love it. We have a dog and our kids bring their dogs over and it has held up well. We are surrounded by sand and have lots of sand burs, and they haven't scratched it yet.

  • Kate Chatterton Kate Chatterton on Jul 18, 2014
    Our Pergo brand laminate floor in the dining room and entry look brand new and they are 15 years old. There is one small area of cupping in the bathroom, that you have to look for in order to see. It all comes down to personal taste. I wanted easy maintanence and have been happy with the laminate. I grew up with hardwood floors and remember how hard my mother worked to maintain them. I'm sure it is easier now with new sealers, but didn't want to take the chance.

  • Debbie Gartner Debbie Gartner on Dec 13, 2016
    If you have beautiful hardwood floors, leverage them. If your key priority is hiding scratches, I'd go light and a satin finish. Make sure you have 3 coats poly. Either do high grade oil based poly (Duraseal) or highest grade water (Bona Traffic).

    I think you'll find these articles helpful: