Hardwood Flooring Installation Systems
The popular image that exists concerning hardwood floors is that they are made of flat planks with completely straight sides. While this was predominantly true up until the 20th century, it is no longer the case in the majority of installations. Most manufactured hardwood flooring since that time has adhered to one system or another that allows for more ease of installation than did the traditional plank flooring approach. In addition, newer systems of installation tend to help the finished product look a great deal more uniform and professional.
Tongue and groove flooring, for example, has a protruding edge along one side of each plank and a corresponding groove along the opposite edge. By placing a tongue into a groove, the boards become “locked” together, which causes them to lie flat in the same plane. Plank systems could have problems with boards riding up above the floor surface – since hardwood planks, of course, are a natural product with some variation. The only certain way to prevent this was to attach them to the subfloor at frequent intervals, a strategy that could look a bit unsightly. Most people admiring their expensive hardwood floors want to see vast expanses of wood, not row upon row of nails or screws.
Other hardwood flooring systems include “click” systems that are quite like tongue and groove, but feature a firmer connection that must be gently tapped in until it “clicks” into place. Floor connection systems that are specific to individual manufacturers also exist.
What all systems have in common, however, is the fact that in time the surfaces will need regular maintenance in the form of hardwood floor sanding and finishing.