Choosing the right hardwood for your St. Charles home can feel a bit daunting with the wide variety of colors, textures, and species available. But besides these features, it’s also important to consider plank width. Different plank widths can alter the look and feel of your space and change the product price and installation cost. Learn more from the team at Floor Coverings International West County, MO about the different widths available and how they affect cost and design.
Narrow wood planks are commonly referred to as strips. These pieces have widths of less than 3” with their standard width being 2 ¼”. Strip flooring provides a feeling of sophistication to a space. However, care should be taken when selecting these sizes, since they can also make rooms look smaller or too busy, particularly if dark hued strips are used. Also keep in mind that strip flooring has a higher installation cost, since it takes longer to cover the entire area with such narrow pieces.
Standard plank sizes come in widths from 3–4 ¾”. Wide plank sizes come in widths of 5” or wider, with the largest pieces being 10–12” wide. These wide plank sizes were primarily used during the colonial era in North America, because their size made it easier and faster to build houses. Smaller plank sizes were used as a symbol of status.
Today, wide planks are generally associated with a rustic feel. However, formal looks can be obtained with wide plank flooring when darker wood is used, like red cedar or mahogany. Recently, wide plank flooring has seen a rise in popularity, because the larger sizes provide a better visual of the wood grain and other unique characteristics in a species.
One disadvantage to wide plank flooring is the potential for warping, or more specifically cupping, where the center of the board sinks and the edges rise. Because of this, it’s best not to use wide planks in bathrooms, kitchens, and other high-humidity areas. Also avoid wood types that are prone to warping, such as hickory or cherry. Alternatively, species like cedar and redwood work better for this application.
The final choice to consider is mixed-width flooring. This option is the most affordable, since the manufacturer does not need to sort through and organize planks according to their size. Mixed flooring often comes with widths of 2 ¼”, 3 ¼”, and 5”. Historically, this flooring option was once again used for building efficiency, because it utilized as much of the tree as possible. Thus, using it in your home provides a unique, traditional look.
If you are looking to install new hardwood in your St. Charles home, call the experts at Floor Coverings International West County, MO. We offer free, in-home design consultations and estimates. Using our mobile flooring showroom, we bring all our hardwood samples to you.
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