The Flack’s Guide to Different Hardwood Species

Imagine – it is your first time getting new hardwood floors in your home. The overwhelming amount of choices, stains, and species is prolonging your renovation, and you have no idea what the difference is between cherry wood or oak wood. We want to ease your mind at Flack’s by providing you with a comprehensive list of popular wood choices and the pros and cons to each, so you can make a more informed decision!

  1. Cherry  – One of the more popular woods, Cherry can be expensive but beautiful. Despite being a softer hardwood, it has great durability and comes in a variety of types. The most popular is American Cherry due to its red undertone and tight wavy grain. 

  2. Oak – This wood is a more old-fashioned appeal and is perfect in a more traditional home. It generally costs a little less than Cherry woods and has a mid-range hardness that can withstand heavy impacts. Just be aware of potential scratches if you are going to place heavy furniture on top of it. 

  3. Hickory – There are few species stronger than Hickory, and it is considered one of the most strong and long-lasting hardwoods on the market. Because of its pronounced grain and rustic appeal, it goes great with the modern farmhouse or cabin style decor. However, its strength makes it very hard to cut, and it can really run up the installation costs. 

  4. Maple – This species is one of the most uniform in terms of texture and grain. It doesn’t scratch easily and it is affordable. Plus, if you don’t purchase engineered floors, Maple takes in stain and color incredibly well. Be sure to properly seal it though, or it can look patchy. 

  5. Birch – In terms of appearance, Birch is very easy on the eyes. It has a creamy white or tan color to it when finished, as well as clear and simple wood grain. However, Birch is very soft and is susceptible to dents and scratches, as well as moisture and humidity. Be sure to place Birch floors in areas that will take in minimal moisture like a bedroom or living room. 

  6. Walnut – This soft hardwood species is both lightweight and light-resistant. Its dark hue and swirling grain will look wonderful in any home, and can actually be placed upstairs due to its weight. Walnut can run a high price but is sure to add value to your home.

  7. Pine – Just like Cherry, Pine hardwoods are very traditional in style. It has a brown-orange color that pairs with classic home decor, and distinctive wood grain with knots and swirls throughout. Pine also ages over the years, and will actually look better over time. Although one of the most affordable options on the market, it can be scratched and dented easily due to its softness. 

There are many more hardwood options available out there, including more exotic woods like Mahogany or Tigerwood, and all of these choices can be difficult to pick from. However, with the proper research and help, you can pick a wood that is stunning, affordable, and reliable. Come to Flack’s Flooring to start your hardwood journey today, and take a look at all the amazing engineered floors we have in our showroom. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Every brand Flack’s carries a wide variety of hardwood flooring options. Some of our most reputable brands include Mohawk, Shaw, Hallmark Floors, and Anderson Tuftex.

  • With new modern technology, installing hardwood floors is no longer labor-intensive process involving harmful glues and adhesives. We recommend purchasing floating or “click” hardwood floors to prevent moisture build-up.

  • Hickory is considered the hardest, most durable wood species. However, with new technology Engineered Hardwood floors are manufactured for optimum durability despite the wood species.