If you are considering to purchase a hardwood flooring, besides the fact that you have a great choice between styles, patterns, wood species, prices, grades, textures, colors and everything else the diverse and exciting wood flooring market can offer, you can also choose between prefinished and unfinished wood flooring, which is a common question for mostly clients, purchasing an oak wood flooring.
What is the main difference?
Prefinished oak flooring leaves the factory with already applied finish, which in the most cases is very hard-wearing, often has an UV filter and it is overall shock – and frequent traffic-resistant. In addition, prefinished wood floors take way too less time to be installed, because they don’t need additional services such as sanding, in order the timber to be prepared for the next sealing and application of protective layer. In addition, with prefinished floors, you already know the way your floor will look when installed and you can see their color and texture. Prefinished wood floors are most commonly finished with the use of hard wax oils or lacquers.
Unfinished oak flooring leave the factory “bare”, or without any finished previously applied. Prefinished floors are also pretty cheaper, however they require some additional services like sanding and sealing after installation. Floor sanding is recommended for removing all the possible smaller imperfections and making the surface of the installed floor completely uniform and even. By opening the pores of the wood, sanding is required right before sealing, because that way the protective products penetrate the bare wood and add durability and solidness to the whole structure.
While unfinished floors take more time for them to be ready to use and enjoy, they are a great option for people that want to customise the look of their wooden flooring. Because of the fact that wooden planks and timbers come completely “naked”, you can finish and stain them in the desired look. In addition, unfinished wooden floors can be finished with practically any finish available on the market!
When deciding whether to purchase unfinished or prefinished wood flooring, the maintenance aspect is something you also have to consider. As it comes with every type of wood flooring, the top protective layer gets worn out and distressed with time and due to everyday use and frequent traffic. However, this is not something that have to make you worry, because there are many services available for re-application and they are not time-consuming and complex at all. However, in case with prefinished wood flooring there may be some concerns and issues, if you don’t know what the original finish used is, because the re-coating service require the same finish re-applied. As far with unfinished floors, you have chosen the finish on your own and you know exactly what kind it is.
Both prefinished and unfinished floors require a simple, easy and quick cleaning routine. The things recommended to do are sweeping with a soft-bristled broom, or vacuuming regularly in order to remove dust and debris and prevent some issues. That way you also will ensure longer life for your flooring and a tip-top shape and look for you to enjoy!