Prefinished Frequently Asked Questions | By Real Wood Floors


Frequently Asks Questions

  • Choosing a floor Prefinished Installation
    Is hardwood flooring suitable for a kitchen, bathroom or workspace?

    Yes. Wood flooring can handle heavy traffic and the occasional spill while retaining its luster and beauty. Our finishes are designed to more than hold their own against heavy residential and commercial foot traffic. We do suggest using mats in the kitchen, bathroom and laundry room, and walk-off mats at all home entrances to protect against spills and tracking in dirt or other objects that could scratch the floor. If spills do occur, do not let them remain on your floor—just wipe up with a clean cloth or drymop.

  • Prefinished Installation
    What is "underlayment"?

    Underlayment refers to the material placed between the subfloor and new flooring.

    It serves many purposes depending on the quality of the material. The primary purpose is to provide a moisture barrier. Some underlayments can also provide an acoustical barrier to make the new floor quieter when walked on—especially in multi-level homes. Underlayment should be used with every floor, and always according to installation instructions.

  • Prefinished Installation
    What is a floating floor?

    A prefinished floating floor isn’t directly attached to the subfloor. It has a foam underlayment on top of the subfloor to absorb sound and protect against moisture; the hardwood strips or planks are then laid on top. The flooring is glued together with tongue and groove glue and the entire floor “floats” above the subfloor. It’s easy to install on nearly any surface. The “cushy” feeling you may sometimes feel with floating floors can be reduced or eliminated by ensuring your subfloor is as flat as possible—using floor leveling products—and a quality underlayment.

    Since wood flooring expands and contracts seasonally, be sure to always leave an expansion gap around the perimeter of the floor—following our installation instructions. (This gap is hidden by baseboard and base shoe and allows the floor to move without creating high spots or buckling).

  • Choosing a floor Prefinished Unfinished
    What's the difference between prefinished and unfinished flooring?

    Prefinished: advantages are faster and easier installation, minimal disruption to your home, fast cleanup time and usually less expensive labor costs because sanding, staining, and coating are performed in the factory. Also, you usually get an extended warranty with prefinished flooring and finish that is very scratch resistant.

    Unfinished: Advantages are the availability of more wood species, widths, and cuts that can be matched to existing wood floors. Also, unfinished flooring allows for custom onsite sanding, staining, and coating with a protective sealant after installation to achieve a beautiful unique floor.

  • Choosing a floor Prefinished Installation
    Why doesn't my floor look the same as the sample in the showroom?

    Although it should look similar, each hardwood tree differs from others and even wood from the same tree can show variance. Wood is a 100% organic material shaped by nature. No trees or boards are alike, and variation should be expected and appreciated as nature’s unique signature.