How to choose the right timber floor finish
You’ve made the decision to get rid of the carpets and go ‘au naturelle’ – it’s time to revive the timber floor lurking underneath the shag pile. But before you go all out on your new interior, you need to have a clear idea of what you want to achieve with the finished look. So here are five top tips on how to choose the perfect wooden floor finish.
#1 – work with what you’ve got
Once your floor sanding experts have pulled back the carpets, your basic wooden floor will be revealed. Depending on the type of property you live in, that could be anything from pretty basic pine floor boards through to exquisite parquet flooring that’s been hidden for years under dusty old carpets. Unless you’re prepared to pay out a huge amount of money to rip up your existing floor and completely replace it, you’re going to need to work with what you’ve got. The best way to ensure that the finished result is as good as it possibly can be is to call in the expert services of a professional floor sanding company. Not only will they be able to use specialist equipment to bring out the best in any wooden flooring, but you will be surprised at the sheer range of results their specialist techniques will be able to produce.
#2 – Traffic flow
While far more robust and capable of withstanding heavy traffic flow, even the toughest wooden floors will eventually be impacted by continuous use. Again, discussing your needs with a professional floor sanding and polishing expert will mean that you choose the right finish that is durable without compromising on looks. While waxing may bring out the deeper tones of the wood grain, a varnish will ensure that the delicate surface of the wood is better protected in the long term.
#3 – Changing your mind…
If you love playing about with interior design then you’ll know how easy it is to paint a room a totally different colour on a whim, or go ‘retro’ with new wallpaper. But while coloured staining is incredibly popular for wooden flooring at the moment, remember that it is much harder to change should you decide that ‘petrol blue’ boards no longer suit your décor. Think carefully what you want out of your overall look, and ensure that the finish you choose is not only complementary to your current décor, but will also fit in with any future new look should you change your mind.
#4 – Family friendly
Kids and pets can be tough on interiors, so ensure that the wooden floor finish you choose is family friendly. Staining may be sophisticated and very modern, but a varnish offers a more impermeable seal over the top layers of the wood and ensures that spills (and even the occasional pet ‘accident’!) are easy to clean and doesn’t mark the surface of the wood. Remember also that pet’s claws may put scratches on the surface of the floor, so choosing a finish that can be polished easily will ensure that your flooring can be brought back to pristine condition effortlessly.
#5 – the ‘look’
Modern or traditional? Trendy or classic? The finish you choose will depend on the effect or ‘look’ you are trying to achieve. Deeper, richer tones are associated with more traditional styles, while lighter, blonder effects are far more modern in their overall effect. For small rooms that have limited amounts of light it may be wiser to go for a lighter, brighter finish to promote a feeling of space. Larger rooms can carry off the darker teak style finishes, but again be careful not to overdo it. If you’re still not too sure as to what look you are trying to achieve, talk to an expert who will be able to explain what your options are, and what finish will best suit your room.