It always seems as though old styles come back in fashion, and a perfect example of the vintage becoming the modern is reclaimed wood floors. This floor trend repurposes old wood into beautiful, unique floors that hold stories of days of old and add an undeniable character to any home.
Reclaimed wood floors come from a variety of sources, each giving the floor a distinctive effect. Generally, the most common sources are old factories, warehouses, barns, churches and other demolished buildings. However, because there is a finite number of these old buildings and the popularity of reclaimed wood floors has increased, unlikely sources are also being used. Some examples include logs recovered from river beds, docks and piers, railroad ties and cars, water towers, shipwrecks, wine barrels and beer vats.
Not all wood is suitable for repurposing, however. Floors used in chemical plants, for example, could not be used for reclaimed wood flooring in a home. Using unsuitable wood can pose both safety and health risks, so it is essential that homeowners do their research to ensure they’re working with a reputable dealer that has an established method for processing reclaimed wood.
Though usually more expensive than traditional flooring, reclaimed wood floors offer several benefits that are hard to find in other options. One obvious benefit is the unique look of reclaimed wood floors. The aesthetic quality of reclaimed floors is without compare, as they showcase the unique character of the original wood. Though some traditional flooring, such as vinyl and laminate, recreate the look of reclaimed hardwood, it’s certainly tough to completely recreate the uniqueness of original wood.
Reclaimed wood floors are unique because of both their aesthetics and their history. If the homeowners know the original source of their reclaimed wood, it serves as not only an interesting conversation piece, but also a point of pride in a home.
Another huge benefit of using reclaimed wood is its eco-friendly nature. This benefit is two-fold – first, homeowners that opt for reclaimed wood floors are using wood that might otherwise be sitting in landfills and going to waste. Second, using reclaimed floors is essentially a type of recycling. The result is that “new wood” produced from deforestation is not used, thus supporting the environment.
Finally, reclaimed wood is clearly durable, and oftentimes more durable than new wood. Because of its quality, reclaimed wood measures up to forty points harder than new wood on the Janka hardness sale, the standard test used to measure the resistance of wood.
While reclaimed wood floors are beautiful on their own, homeowners installing them may want to consider wood finishes. There are several options for finishes – including wax, oil and polyurethane – but all finishes can protect reclaimed wood floors from dirt, moisture and wear, ensuring their beauty remains intact.
If exceptional character is the goal for homeowners considering new flooring, then reclaimed wood floors can’t be beat. Bringing a piece of the past to the present benefits homeowners by not only increasing the aesthetic appeal of their home, but by supporting the environment in a unique way.