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Top 4 Wooden Floorings In India: Their Types, Textures, Pros and Cons

Are you wondering what this is all about? Well, in literal terms, texture means the feel of a material on touch. And it is the same about wood too. Wood - be it hardwood or any other type, before being available to use in making furniture or flooring undergoes sanding and other operations to bring character and texture to it.

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7 Top Home Improvement Ideas To Spruce Up Your Interiors

There are many home renovators in the country today, who with their expertise will work smart and hard to give you amazing ideas and designs to creatively jazz up your chosen room or entire house within a set time. On the other hand, if you are looking for DIY type of remodeling ideas and work within a limited budget, then you can do that too.

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Prolong the Life of Your Wooden and Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors have long been a coveted house feature because they positively radiate a sense of classic warmth and tradition. Because hardwood flooring has literally been around for centuries and many of the floors found in historic homes are still the originals, it is easy to think of them as being impervious to damage.

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Top 4 Wooden Floorings In India: Their Types, Textures, Pros and Cons

Are you interested in wood as flooring material for your home?

Though the concept of having wood as flooring material was not new to the western world, it has become a hot trend in Indian homes now. Its striking look, its elegance, the luxurious feel and the warmth that wooden floorings offer are a few reasons why they are one of the smartest and practical home improvement ideas that one can go for.

Despite all the positives that wood flooring offers to a house through its striking and stylish looks, its appearance should not however be the sole reason why one should seek it as a flooring material. As a homeowner or proprietor of a commercial place, it is critical that one makes an informed decision about the types of wood available for flooring in the market, their durability, their practicality and their distinct features before making their pick.

To know more about all the points mentioned above and to understand if wood is really a good choice for your indoor flooring needs, keep reading.

Popular Types of Wooden Flooring Available in India:

When it comes to availability of wooden flooring types, then there are four popular kinds obtainable in India. Each of these wooden floorings have their distinct features and bring their own pluses and minuses to the table.

1. Hardwood:

The feel of solid wood or hardwood is just unmatched when compared to any type of wood. Their sturdiness and high aesthetic appeal makes them a popular choice among homeowners. When shopping for hardwood flooring in India, you will be pleasantly surprised to find them in different variants i.e. in planks, strips and parquet patterns. They also come in a number of natural shades (the most popular being cherry and walnut), which can go very well with other furniture and decor items in your home.

Durability & Sustainability: Hardwood is an extremely durable and wear-resistant wood option for flooring purpose. Though they are not that easy to install, when installed and maintained properly, hardwood flooring can last for decades. In addition to this, hardwood flooring can also be refinished many times over its lifetime, to restore lost luster. Compared to other wood types though hardwood floorings are relatively expensive but completely worth your money.

Regarding sustainability, hardwood floorings are most conducive for places that enjoy moderate or warm climate. If you live in an area that rains frequently or experiences hot weather throughout the year, then it is more suitable to look for other wood options. Additionally, the ideal areas to install hardwood flooring in your house are living room, hallways, dining rooms, bedrooms and/or any guest rooms.

2. Laminates:

For many who love the feel of hardwood but are on a limited budget, laminate flooring is the one to look out for. And why shouldn’t it be. Really good in quality, highly durable, fairly water and stain resistant and at a comparatively lesser cost than hardwood, laminates have come a long way from being called ‘fake’ wood to quality hardwood alternative. Offered in a variety of finishes and wood designs, laminate floorings have now become one of the topmost choices for flooring materials.

Durability & Sustainability: One of the biggest advantages of laminate flooring is its easy installation. As mentioned before, wood flooring laminate are reasonably water resistant but can get a bit slippery. To avoid this, when wet-mopping your laminated flooring, care should be taken to use a barely wettish mop (squeeze out all the water). Also if possible look for slip resistant laminated wood when you go shopping for them. That would serve you well for long.

Regarding sustainability, wood flooring laminate typically feel cool under your feet. Hence these types of wood flooring are most suitable for places that experience warm and humid climate. Additionally, laminate flooring are great for any area of the house, including the basement and kitchen.

3. Engineered Wood:

Engineered wood is now found everywhere - be it for making a variety of furniture or for flooring. Engineered wood flooring when compared to hardwood and laminate is also a cheaper option. This is definitely a pro. Again, engineered wood offers very good stability over a period of time, which makes it a good flooring choice for any area of your home.

Durability & Stability: As said before, engineered wood flooring is durable and is relatively better than hardwood flooring in relation to holding up moisture. This is the reason, why engineered wood flooring is ideal for places that is warm and/or humid. On the downside, engineered wood flooring is not as long lasting as engineered wood. This is because the veneer used in making engineered wood is generally found to be very thin. This makes it nearly impossible for it to get sanded or refinished, thereby reducing its longevity when compared to traditional hardwood floorings.

4. Bamboo Wood:

An environment-friendly and renewable flooring option, bamboo wood is a great choice for those who are looking for nature-friendly wood flooring. Some of the advantages that bamboo flooring offers to its users are that they are extremely durable, easy to install, termite resistant and far more moisture resistant than hardwood. Additionally, if maintained properly bamboo wood flooring can last you more than 40 years, despite its average lifespan being around 25 years under normal wear and tear.

Durability & Sustainability: Taking care of bamboo flooring on a regular basis is not that difficult. Just keep the flooring clean by regular sweeping, wet mopping (squeeze out all water) once or twice a week and they are good to go. On the downside, in India there is no proper grading system in place when it comes to knowing the quality of bamboo used for flooring. This makes it difficult to pick a good quality or branded bamboo wood flooring for your house.

Regarding sustainability, bamboo floorings are climate friendly. They are appropriate for nearly every climate, except for places that are too hot or warm. Regarding using bamboo flooring, they can be used anywhere in the house, except for wet areas like bathroom.

Wood Flooring Textures:

Are you wondering what this is all about? Well, in literal terms, texture means the feel of a material on touch. And it is the same about wood too. Wood - be it hardwood or any other type, before being available to use in making furniture or flooring undergoes sanding and other operations to bring character and texture to it. Additionally the uniformity of the wood is also taken into account when considering wood texture. The grain distribution and its size is also considered, as they also affect the evenness or unevenness of wood texture.

Hence some wood types might feel rough or coarse on touch, some smooth while some super smooth or fine textured. After choosing the type of wood for flooring, look into wood flooring textures too. These will actually give the desired look and character to your room.

Now that you know the types of wood flooring and wood flooring textures, I am sure you will be more informed before getting your flooring installed from the wood of your choice.

7 Top Home Improvement Ideas To Spruce Up Your Interiors

Are you planning to renovate your house?

There are many home renovators in the country today, who with their expertise will work smart and hard to give you amazing ideas and designs to creatively jazz up your chosen room or entire house within a set time. On the other hand, if you are looking for DIY type of remodeling ideas and work within a limited budget, then you can do that too. After all, the end result for undertaking any home renovation process is to make the house look more beautiful, organized and clutter less.

To help you with this, I thought of bringing together some basic home improvement ideas, which when imaginatively done can perk up the interiors of your chosen room instantaneously.

1. Focus on Your Walls:

One of the easiest ways to renovate your interiors is by changing the colour or texture of one or two walls of a room. Cut the monotony of your walls, by painting one wall of your chosen room with a bright paint or designer wallpaper of your choice.

Even better is to go for stone cladding. Mosaic tiles and stone cladding have a very good ability to blend beautifully with painted walls of a room and give the entire room an uber stylish and cosy feel. Not to forget, these textured walls will bring about the feeling of warmth and that much needed character to your interior space that you were so looking to bring in a room.

2. Look at Your Room’s Flooring:

If you are planning to make some real, long-term changes in terms of replacing your flooring, then be prepared to know the pros and cons of the flooring material you are looking at and the time and money that you are going to invest. Though changing indoor flooring is not a day-to-day task, you can get things simplified if you hire a professional home renovator for the job.

Currently, wooden flooring is very much in trend. If you want to know more about the top wooden floorings in India and their pros and cons, then do read the following post.

On the other hand, if you are simply bored of your current flooring but do not want to make some drastic floor renovations, then try cheating a bit. Yes. Leave your floorings as is. But try covering them up with some intricately designed or bright coloured carpets and rugs. No need to go all out with these. If you place a big carpet or rug over a particular section of the room, then it is sufficient to make a wonderful visual difference.

3. Furniture - Revive or Replace:

If you are not planning to splurge money on replacing furniture, then try reviving your existing ones. For example, if your wooden shoe rack or sofa or any other furniture with rough ends need polishing or repair, then see to it that it is done. Rearranging furniture in a room, using bright coloured coverings for pillows, changing dull looking curtains with new ones are small but noticeable home improvement tips.

However, if you are looking to change your sofa set or TV cabinet, then by all means go for it. There are many offline and online home improvement stores in the country today that offer a wide range of sophisticated and quirky furniture in various designs, shapes and colours. These functional yet unique looking furniture, often make the best statement in an interior space.

4. Lighting Tricks:

Interior lighting can play an important role in brightening your interior space, as well as enhancing the decor of the room. In fact, you can manipulate the mood and atmosphere of your house by simply installing different lighting fixtures and altering their positioning in a given room.

For example, when considering home improvement for living rooms and dining rooms, beautiful looking chandeliers, pendant lighting and statement light fixtures can be taken into account. Similarly, back-lighting with the help of recessed LED lights and installed in in-built furniture like bathroom and kitchen storage units, kitchen cabinets, wall shelves, beds, etc. are very much in trend now. When illuminated, they make even the simplest of your rooms look stylish and modern.

5. Beautify Your Room’s Ceiling:

Walls and flooring are not the only ones that can change the look of a room. You can get your room upgraded by going for a beautiful looking POP or gypsum false ceiling too. To get things moving, fix a budget, hire a professional home renovator and select a design of your choice to get a striking looking false ceiling installed in a week.

Are you having second thoughts about false ceiling installation? Then check this post, False Ceiling Designs for Bedroom: POP Vs Gypsum and clarify all your doubts about POP and Gypsum ceiling. Meanwhile, if you are looking for cost-effective home improvement tip to beautify your ceiling, then how about painting your ceiling or getting a designer wallpaper up there.

6. Get the Greenery In:

A rather budget-friendly way of adding colour and life back to a room is by accommodating plants in it. Try arranging a couple of small indoor plants on a wall shelf or an open cabinet or a ladder in your chosen room. A big potted plant placed at an unused corner of a room is a simple way of nurturing greenery indoors.

If maintaining real plants is a problem, then consider getting artificial plants. Nowadays, there are many home improvement stores selling different varieties of indoor plants and flowers. They look just like real plants, so you don’t have to worry about them looking fake. Check some of the vegetal frames and artificial plants here to see for yourself.

7. Jazz Up with Art & Home Decor Items:

If you are not planning on buying furniture, changing your flooring, painting your wall or upgrading your ceiling, then consider jazzing up the room with home decor items. You can consider a focal wall to put up your framed personal photos and/or an inspiring piece of art. If you love sculptures and small decor items then you can showcase them on a wall shelf. A funky poster on a wall or a bright coloured art and craft item made by you or an antique clock are other items to think about.

A word of advice - Be imaginative. But, do not rush when perking up your room. Take your own sweet time, in picking up decor elements that you truly love and would make a house your home.

Prolong the Life of Your Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors have long been a coveted house feature because they positively radiate a sense of classic warmth and tradition. Because hardwood flooring has literally been around for centuries and many of the floors found in historic homes are still the originals, it is easy to think of them as being impervious to damage.

But like any house element, hardwood floors are prone to damage from accumulated wear and tear as well as unexpected events such as flooding. The potential for damage is magnified by the fact that, unlike ceramic or vinyl flooring, hardwood is an organic material. Wood’s cellular structure will break down more easily than ceramic’s minerals or vinyl’s polymers, especially when subjected to moisture.

However, with proper care and maintenance, your hardwood floors can retain their beauty and last for decades to come.

Overview of Hardwood Floors

Lines tend to blur when it comes to categorizing hardwood flooring. With technological innovations in floor manufacturing in the last couple of decades, these lines have become even blurrier. Basically, though, it comes down to three areas:

Solid Hardwood

Solid hardwood flooring is 100 percent natural wood from top to bottom, no additives or changes except in the case of prefinished flooring, which comes with a factory-applied urethane-based top coating. Even so, this is just a surface coating, and all material below the coating is natural wood sawn directly from hardwoods such as ash, cherry, maple, or oak.

  • Pro: Provides fantastic resale value since home buyers place great emphasis on real, solid hardwood flooring.
  • Con: Solid hardwood can be damaged when subjected to long periods of moisture.
  • Engineered Wood

    Compared to solid hardwood’s deep history, engineered wood is a baby. In the mid-20th century, flooring manufacturers began to laminate thin veneers of real hardwood on top of thicker layers of plywood. Thus, well over 95 percent of this flooring is plywood. However, the top – the part that is visible – is 100 percent real wood.

  • Pro: Engineered wood flooring is considered to be dimensionally stable, since the plywood base is relatively unaffected by climatic changes and even minor flooding.
  • Con: Engineered wood flooring can only be lightly sanded down a couple of times in its lifetime.
  • Engineered Wood

    Laminate flooring looks like hardwood because its top layer is a photographic image of real hardwood. Atop that is a transparent wear layer that protects the flooring. Below the photographic layer is the majority of the product – a fiberboard composed of wood pulp and resins.

  • Pro: Laminate flooring can be quite cost-effective, especially because it can be self-installed.
  • Con: While today’s laminate looks better than ever, many home buyers still view laminate negatively. Thus, resale value for laminate will be lower than with solid hardwood or engineered wood.
  • Protecting and Maintaining Your Hardwood Floors

    Solid hardwood flooring, when protected and well maintained, will easily last for the length of your home ownership.

    Protect from Moisture

    You are already protecting your solid hardwood floor from destructive water by not installing it in moisture-heavy areas such as full bathrooms, basements, and laundry rooms. But what about the rest of the house?

    Solid hardwood is often installed in kitchens, and here you may find excess water from the sink, dishwasher overflow, and water seeping from the refrigerator. Soft natural rubber mats are a favorite of many chefs chiefly because they make it easier to stand for long periods of time. But they are also great because they protect the floor from water.

    Water can form under open windows in the event of a flash rainstorm. If water forms, mop it up immediately.

    The same holds true even for spilled water glasses and other small splashes of water. Wipe them up right away to keep the water from seeping in between the floorboards.

    Water is tracked in at entryways such as front and back doors. Put down mats in these places and enforce a shoe-free home policy.

    Keep the Coating in Good Shape

    Your hardwood floor is only as good as its top coating. No wood floor should ever be uncoated for more than a few days.

    Coatings range from the thick, shell-like factory-applied coating of prefinished floors to site-applied sealers and stains.

    Coatings will wear down in certain high-traffic areas (entries, near kitchens and interior doors, tops of stairs, hallways, pivot points like sinks and fridges, and living rooms).

    Both prefinished and site-finished (the term for unfinished flooring that receives stains and sealers on site) flooring can be refinished. Solid hardwood floors can receive several hard sandings with a drum sander during their lifetime prior to resealing. Engineered wood can, at best, receive two or three light sandings with a rotary sander before resealing.

    Minimize Daily Wear

    Copious use of area rugs is the absolute best way to mitigate daily wear and tear on your hardwood flooring. Major hardwood floor manufacturer Bruce recommends a breathable rug underlay. Avoid mats or underlays composed of latex, synthetic rubber, or vinyl, as they may discolor the floor. Choose natural rubber, felt plus natural rubber, or 100 percent felt backings instead.

    Take care when moving heavy objects, and be sure not to slide items across the floor. Place soft floor protectors under stationary furniture such as sofas and easy chairs.

    Of all the animals present in your home – human or otherwise – dogs and their claws represent the greatest danger to your hardwood floor. Keep dog claws trimmed as far back as safely possible. Provide area rugs in places where dogs tend to lie, because these are also places where dogs can spring to action and take off running.

    Cleaning Hardwood Floors

    Never wet-mop a hardwood floor. Instead, follow a multistep process that begins with dry cleaning and culminates in a light damp mopping:

  • Roll up accessible area rugs and shake them outdoors.
  • Sweep with a soft bristled broom in key traffic areas every couple of days. Every week, sweep the rest of the floor.
  • Use a dry electrostatic mop to pick up lighter dust that remains after sweeping. This type of mop will cause the dust to cling to the dust head.
  • Vacuum the floor, especially along baseboards, behind doors, and in corners. Do not use a vacuum designed for carpeting (unless it has a mode for hard floors) as its beater bar will damage the flooring.
  • Damp mop with a Swiffer WetJet or with a mop whose head has been thoroughly wrung out. Add a special hardwood cleaner to the water, such as Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner or Murphy Oil Soap. Avoid steam or wet cleaners, as they produce too much water and can damage floors. Never use vinegar or any floor cleaner that is not designed for hardwood flooring.
  • Fixing Scratches in Hardwood Floors

    One benefit of real hardwood flooring is that damage such as scratches and dents can be fixed relatively easily. By contrast, scratches in engineered wood flooring are more difficult to fix, and laminate flooring is impossible to fix (board replacement is the only “fix”).

    Surface Scratches

    Scratches that only affect the protective coating can be fixed by lightly hand-sanding with a fine grit sandpaper in the #180-#100 range. Follow this with application of polyurethane sealer with a soft cloth. Do not apply too thickly.

    Deeper Scratches

    For numerous scratches that penetrate both the coating and the top of the wood, machine-sand with a rotary floor sander, followed by application of a clear coat. If the scratches are more localized, you may be able to hand-sand with an oscillating electric hand sander, followed with clear coating.

    Dents and Gouges

    Do not try to sand out deep gouges and dents; doing so will produce dips in the floor. Purchase a matching color wax filler available at flooring stores. This crayon-like stick rubs into and fills the gouge/dent. When the wax is flat with the flooring surface, rub with a soft cloth to remove excess.

    Alternatively, for a longer-lasting fix, fill with wood putty that is colored to match the color of your flooring. After the putty is dry, lightly sand down until it reaches the surface of the floor. Be careful not to sand off coating from peripheral areas. Clean with a tack cloth, then cover with clear coating.

    Hardwood floors are a beautiful, though expensive, investment. This guide helps you protect, clean, and repair your flooring so you can prolong its life and great looks for decades to come.