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Hardwood Flooring Problems (During And After Install)

It doesn’t matter what type of DIY project you are doing, there are going to be some problems associated with doing it. This includes installing (and living on) hardwood floors.

The most common issue associated with hardwood floors is cupping. It can be a problem anywhere but it is especially an issue when you live in an area with high moisture. As the floor picks up the moisture, it gets into the natural grain of the wood and causes inconsistencies in the floor. This often makes the middle of the plank raise, which is known as cupping.

Living room hardwood floor

This is one of the many problems associated with hardwood floors. Still, you have to ask yourself, if there are so many problems with hardwood, why is it such a popular choice?

This is due to the fact that you can often overcome the problems with a hardwood floor by installing it properly. When you don’t have issues from the start, they are far less likely to happen.

In addition, caring for the floor properly is going to make a difference in how long the floor lasts and how many problems you might have with it. Quite honestly, most people don’t know how to care for a hardwood floor, aside from running a dust mop over it on occasion.

In this article, we are going to dig into some of the biggest problems you are likely to face when you choose hardwood for your home floors. Knowing the problems in advance can help you to make an informed and wise decision.

In addition, you will be able to know some of the bigger problems that can be avoided. For example, we discussed how cupping is a common issue with hardwood floors. Knowing this can help you to avoid the moisture and, in turn, avoid the cupping

You will also learn that with every problem that you have with a hardwood floor, there is likely to be a solution. This is good to know, because it can help you make the right choices along the way.

Hardwood Flooring Problems

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First of all, let me congratulate you on your choice of hardwood flooring. It is one of the most popular types of floor for a reason; it is beautiful and durable. Once you have the floor in place, you are highly unlikely to regret it.

When you look down through the information we have here, we want you to understand the spirit behind it. We are not trying to talk you out of choosing a hardwood floor. Quite the contrary, we love hardwood and would be happy to have it in ours or anyone else’s home.

The reason why we are discussing the problems that can happen with hardwood is simply to inform you of them in advance. When you stop to think about it, hardwood is far less likely to have problems than many of the other types of flooring, from tile to laminate.

You should also understand that problems with a hardwood floor can exist in many different areas. For some DIY enthusiasts, it is going to show up during the installation process and for others, it is going to be during the day-to-day use of the floor.

Hardwood flooring problems that happen during installation are often due to inexperience on the part of the person doing the work. Since you are likely to be doing the work on your own, you are going to have to learn as much as you can about the process and do things the right way from the start.

In addition, you have to be cautious when it comes to choosing the floor you are going to put in your home. Many homeowners are quite surprised with the number of options they have and exactly what their choice will mean to the finished job.

When you are discussing the problems with a hardwood floor after installation, you are likely experiencing them because you aren’t aware of how to care for a floor properly. This would include how you clean it and how you live on it from day to day. It really does make a difference when all is said and done.

For now, let’s dig into the biggest issues you can face. Know that you may or may not experience these problems. Knowing about them in advance, however, can help you to avoid problems whenever possible.

Top 6 Problems During Hardwood Flooring Installation

Man fixing the floor

Most of the hardwood installation problems are directly tied to the experience of the person doing the work. Knowing this can help you to get familiar with the project and do a better job from the start.

The biggest problem that most people experience with hardwood floor installation is selecting the proper hardwood. There are so many different options and at times, you may make the wrong choice that will not quite be right for your living style. Choose the type that fits in well with your decor as well as with the durability you need from a floor in your home.

Of course, choosing the right hardwood floor is only one of the many mistakes that can be made during the installation process. Here are a few others that you may want to consider:

1. Subfloor

You should give careful consideration to the floor that is under the floor in your home. The successful installation of the hardwood floor is going to depend on quality, sturdy subfloor being underneath it. If it is not prepared properly, the boards could shift and you may end up with squeaky floors or perhaps even a floor that separates over time.

2. Cupping

We discussed cupping briefly earlier because it is one of the more common problems that occur with a hardwood floor. The warping of the floor that leads to cupping is often traced back to the installation.

Make sure that you have the air conditioning or heating on in the home when you install the hardwood floor. You should also avoid having high moisture levels in the area, even if it is only for a few days during the installation. Since more of the floor is exposed during the installation, it makes it more likely to have problems with cupping.

3. Gaps

There is going to be some degree of shifting and expanding in the hardwood planks over the course of time. As the humidity changes in the room, along with the temperature, the process may be accelerated. Gaps can form in the subfloor around the edges or even between the boards, leading to some unsightly issues.

4. Shortcuts

Under no circumstances should you take shortcuts during the installation process. You may think that it is saving you time or money but in the long run, it will cost you both time and money.

5. Cleaning

The process of installing a hardwood floor is dirty by nature. There will be plenty of dust to go around, but you should still continue to work on keeping the area clean during the process. You don’t want too much dust to get under the floor and you don’t want to end up with dust-filled gaps between the planks.

6. Inexperience

Not every DIY expert is going to be fully experienced when it comes to installing a hardwood floor. You should at least take the time to learn as much as possible, however, regardless of whether it is watching a friend install the floor or watching videos on YouTube.

Top 3-10 Problems After Hardwood Flooring Installation

Man fixing the floor

Like any type of flooring, hardwood floors are prone to a variety of issues. Some are easy to overcome and others aren’t.

The biggest problem with hardwood flooring is wear and tear on the finish. This can really cause problems, as the traveled areas of the floor are likely to begin showing issues long before the other areas. Something similar can be said about areas of the floor in direct sunlight.

Proper care of the floor can help you overcome some of the bigger problems with the floor. This would include wear and tear, as you can keep the finish in good condition for longer by caring for the floor properly.

Here are some other problems that can happen with hardwood floors after installation.

1. Finish Peeling

This is an issue that can cause the floor to look worn and old long before its time. It is a problem that can also be avoided if you care for the floor properly.

When the finish starts to chip and peel, it is usually because the wood was not properly prepared before the finish was applied. This is not typically a problem from the factory but it does happen when homeowners rush to refinish the floor.

2. Gaps

Since wood is a natural product, it is going to expand and contract as the humidity level and temperature change in the room. This can leave large, unsightly gaps in the floor.

Keeping the room at even humidity and temperature can help to rectify this situation. You should also ensure that the floor was properly acclimated before installation.

3. Stains

The finish on the floor should help it to resist stains but if moisture is allowed to stay on the floor for a long time, it can stain it. This is a problem when something is spilled or if an animal urinates on the floor and it isn’t cleaned up. Wet towels left on the floor can also cause this issue.

4. Buckling

Due to excessive moisture in the room, buckling may be a problem. It is also an issue that can cause permanent damage to the floor. It is typically a problem when moisture is at high levels or if the boards were not attached to the subfloor properly.

5. Cupping

The edges of the board might expand and cause a cupping effect if it is exposed to water. If you keep the room dry after cupping occurs, it can sometimes correct itself.

6. Scratches

Although a hardwood floor is very strong by nature, it is also prone to scratches if you move something across it carelessly. Smaller scratches on the floor may also be evident if the floorboards were not sanded properly before finishing.

Copyright protected content owner: and was initially posted on December 25, 2021.

Those are the primary problems associated with hardwood floors but let’s take a close look at both the pros and cons. Knowing these can help you to choose the floor that’s right for your family.

Hardwood Flooring: Pros And Cons

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Like any type of flooring, there are going to be both pros and cons when it comes to hardwood flooring. Knowing this can help you to make the best choice possible.

The main benefit to hardwood flooring is the cost. Even though it isn’t the cheapest floor in existence, it will last for a long time and maintain its beauty for years. It’s an investment that you can live with and live on without having to worry about replacing it or refinishing it on a regular basis.

You might also be surprised to learn that the cost of hardwood flooring is not always a positive feature. Some people have a difficult time affording hardwood flooring so another type of flooring that is more cost-effective may be of benefit.

Let’s consider all of the pros for hardwood flooring first:

Options – When it comes to options, you are going to have a wide variety available with hardwood flooring. Some hardwood is deep, dark, and rich and others are bright and cheery. It’s a good idea to become familiar with the different choices before you jump headlong into the decision.

Maintenance – Many types of floors require routine maintenance and hardwood flooring is no different. The real difference is that you won’t have to do much more than dust mopping the floor on a regular basis to keep it free of debris. You may have to refinish it but that is going to be a rare occasion.

Beauty – Undoubtedly, the beauty of a hardwood floor is well known. It will provide you with years of service and is something you can be proud of each and every day.

Trend – Many types of floors follow a trend. This could be in the color, style, or even material that is used. Hardwood floors, on the other hand, have been around for many decades and are not likely to go anywhere soon.

Health – Have you considered the health of your family? Many types of floors can attract parasites and some will off-gas for a considerable amount of time. Hardwood floor is a natural product that is a very healthy choice for your home. Considering the fact that many of us live on our floors, it’s a good idea to make them as healthy as possible.

Copyright article owner is for this article. This post was first published on December 25, 2021.

Curb Appeal – You really can’t beat the curb appeal of hardwood. It increases the value of your home and you often get much more out of it than you put into it.

Installation – It does take some work to install a hardwood floor but if you come prepared, it will generally go smoothly for you.

And now let’s take a look at some of the cons associated with hardwood:

Termites – If you have termites in your home, the hardwood floor is going to be an obvious area of attack. Of course, any type of flooring can be problematic but this is rather unique to hardwood.

Cost – Although we discussed the cost-effective nature of hardwood flooring, it is still an expensive option. As long as it fits within your budget, however, it’s still a good idea.

Damage – The types of damage that can occur with hardwood floors are difficult to fix. This can include cupping, water stains, fading from the sun, and similar problems.

Noise – It is difficult to sneak around when you are living on hardwood. It’s great for acoustics, but not very good for tiptoeing and trying to walk quietly.

How Long Do Hardwood Floors Last?

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One of the most common questions that people have about hardwood flooring is how long it will last. It really depends, but here is something to consider.

The average hardwood floor will last anywhere from 10 to 20 years. That is, of course, provided you maintain it properly and care for it in the way that the manufacturer dictates. Some floors have been down for decades and are still providing a quality walking surface for the family.

Hardwood floors do not have to be torn up or even refinished after a decade or two. Some floors have been down for a lot longer and still have the beauty that they had at first. In fact, some hardwood floors even get more beautiful as time goes by.

The biggest factor to consider is caring for the floor properly. This would include running a dust mop over it on occasion and making sure that you do not expose it to any temperature or moisture extremes.

Is It Worth It To Install Hardwood Floors?

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Installing hardwood floors is always a personal decision. There are some reasons, however, why you should carefully consider it.

The cost of hardwood flooring is the most important factor to consider when it comes to installing it in your house. Hardwood flooring can be a fantastic addition to any home but if you are straining your budget to afford it, you may want to make a different decision.

Just because hardwood floor is more expensive does not mean that it is any less prone to damage. Just as you can damage tile, marble, linoleum, or peel and stick tiles, you can damage hardwood.

The main difference is the fact that when you do damage hardwood floors, the cost to fix or repair them is considerably higher.

There are always going to be hardwood flooring problems to consider in the installation process and after it is installed. One important factor to consider is damage due to moisture. Regardless of whether it is a spilled drink or pet urine, if it isn’t cleaned up quickly, it can stain the floor and damage it permanently.

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ReadyToDIY is the owner of this article. This post was published on December 25, 2021.

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