Hardwood flooring is typically installed as unfinished planks that are then stained and finished on-site. Recently, manufacturers have started offering prefinished hardwood flooring options. These products offer treatments, along with finishing options that may be considered trendy versus the traditional options.There are advantages to this type of flooring option and knowing the pros/cons of prefinished flooring will help in your decision making process.
Pros of prefinished flooring
- Durability – Aluminum oxide crystals embedded in a UV-cured urethane coat
- Warranty – Related to durability; longer lasting floors are warrantied longer
- Easy Install – No sanding or finishing required
- Can be Refinished
- Less Likely to Dent/Scratch – Also related to durability
- Style Options – Beveled edges, scraped and chattering effects are possible
- No fumes, dust, etc.
- Not sanded during install – subfloor must be more level because of this
- Refinishing is more challenging, albeit less likely
The advantages of prefinished hardwood usually outweighs the cons. The installation is easier and the durability is a huge benefit. The install cost is definitely better than hiring someone to install, then sand and finish your flooring.
Overall, the advantages of prefinished solid hardwood flooring will outweigh the drawbacks for most homeowners. Many dozens of wood species and colors are now available, and for DIYers, the installation will be far easier than it is with unfinished hardwood, and far less expensive if you are hiring contractors to install your flooring.