The Complete Guide to Hardwood Flooring: Types, Maintenance, and Installation Tips

Hardwood flooring is renowned for its timeless appeal and long-lasting durability, adding warmth and elegance to any home. As a family-owned and operated business in Sioux City, IA, Lemus Floors is committed to helping customers select and install the hardwood flooring solution that best suits their unique preferences and needs. With a focus on delivering exceptional customer service, superior workmanship, and competitive pricing, we strive to ensure a seamless and satisfying hardwood flooring experience.

In this detailed and informative blog article, we will discuss the various aspects of hardwood flooring, including wood species, finishes, maintenance, and installation tips. Our goal is to provide comprehensive insights, empowering you to make well-informed decisions when considering hardwood flooring for your home. By understanding the essential factors associated with hardwood flooring, you will be better equipped to choose the flooring solution that aligns with your design preferences, lifestyle needs, and budget constraints.

Whether you are constructing a new home, renovating your existing space, or simply looking to refresh your flooring, hardwood flooring offers an enticing blend of beauty and longevity that enhances your living environment. Trust the expertise of Lemus Floors in guiding you through every stage of your hardwood flooring journey, from initial consultation to professional installation and maintenance.

Embrace the classic charm, unparalleled aesthetics, and enduring quality of hardwood flooring in your home and explore the diverse range of options available to you. Let Lemus Floors be your partner in creating a stunning living space that reflects your style and enriches your quality of life.

1. Types of Hardwood Flooring: A Diverse Range of Wood Species

Hardwood flooring is available in a wide variety of wood species, each offering unique characteristics in terms of color, grain patterns, and hardness. Some popular hardwood flooring types include:

- Oak: Renowned for its strength and durability, oak flooring offers a wide range of color options and attractive grain patterns. Both red oak and white oak are popular choices, with white oak being slightly harder and more resistant to moisture.

- Maple: Valued for its light color and subtle grain patterns, maple flooring is a versatile choice that fits seamlessly into most contemporary home designs. Its hardness makes it exceptionally durable and resistant to wear.

- Hickory: Known for its rustic appearance and striking color variations, hickory flooring is highly durable and suitable for high-traffic areas. Its unique grain patterns add a natural, earthy feel to living spaces.

- Exotic Woods: Species such as Brazilian cherry, tigerwood, and acacia offer distinctive colorations and eye-catching grain patterns, providing a sense of luxury and uniqueness to your hardwood flooring.

2. Hardwood Flooring Finishes: Protecting and Enhancing Your Investment

The finish applied to hardwood flooring not only contributes to its aesthetics but also plays a critical role in protecting the wood. There are two main types of finishes:

- Pre-finished Hardwood: Factory-applied finishes offer a consistent appearance with enhanced durability and scratch resistance. These finishes typically utilize multiple layers of aluminum oxide, providing long-lasting protection and minimal maintenance requirements.

- Site-finished Hardwood: Site-finished floors are sanded and coated with your choice of finish during installation. This allows for greater customization but may require more maintenance and refinishing over time. Options include oil-based polyurethane, water-based polyurethane, and penetrating oils.

3. Hardwood Flooring Maintenance: Preserving Beauty and Durability

Proper maintenance is crucial to ensure the longevity and appeal of your hardwood flooring. Here are some essential maintenance tips:

- Regular Cleaning: Sweep or vacuum your hardwood floors regularly to remove dirt and dust. When necessary, use a damp mop with a hardwood-specific cleaning solution to clean the surface without causing damage.

- Preventative Measures: Utilize felt pads underneath furniture legs, place rugs in high-traffic areas, and trim pet nails to protect your hardwood floors from scratches and scuffs.

- Humidity Control: Monitor and maintain humidity levels in your home to prevent warping, buckling, or unwanted expansion and contraction of your hardwood floors.

- Refinishing: Depending on the thickness and type of hardwood flooring, occasional refinishing may be necessary to restore the surface and prolong the life of your investment.

4. Hardwood Flooring Installation Tips: Ensuring a Successful Experience

Proper installation techniques play a vital role in the performance and longevity of your hardwood flooring. Here are some tips to consider:

- Hire Professionals: Engaging experienced professionals like Lemus Floors for your hardwood flooring installation guarantees the use of best practices and ensures a seamless, well-executed result.

- Acclimate the Wood: Before installation, allow your hardwood flooring to acclimate to the environment of your home, which helps prevent issues such as expansion or contraction after installation.

- Subfloor Preparation: Ensure your subfloor is clean, dry, and level to provide a strong foundation for your hardwood flooring and prevent future issues.

- Expansion Gaps: During installation, leave a small expansion gap around the perimeter of the room to allow for natural wood movement due to changes in temperature and humidity.


Hardwood flooring offers a perfect blend of beauty, durability, and timeless appeal, making it an excellent choice for any home. By understanding the various types of hardwood flooring, finishes, maintenance requirements, and installation tips, you can make well-informed decisions to create the ideal living space that reflects your personal style and enhances your quality of life.

Lemus Floors is dedicated to guiding you in selecting and installing the perfect hardwood flooring solution for your needs, offering expert advice, personalized service, and quality workmanship. Contact us today to discuss your hardwood flooring project, and trust our experienced team to create the stunning and enduring living space you desire.