Prefinished vs unfinished hardwood flooring

Prefinished vs unfinished hardwood flooring

A+ Hardwood Floors Helps You Choose the Best Option

Hardwood flooring is incredibly popular flooring option due to its beauty, durability, and natural aesthetic. And the best part is hardwood flooring still offers you a variety of options, which means you still have the freedom to make it your own and match it to any décor. A+ Hardwood Floors is your source for beautiful hardwood flooring in Denver, CO, offering customers a variety of options. You can choose to have your flooring prefinished or unfinished depending on your preferences. Each option will come with its own unique benefits, and our team can also help you choose which is best for your needs. Read on to learn more about the aspects of each flooring type and be sure to reach out to us if you have any questions.

What’s the Difference Between Pre-finished & Unfinished?

The difference between prefinished and unfinished floors is in the name. Prefinished floors are finished before installation, while unfinished floors must be finished after installation. When we say that prefinished floors are finished before installation, we mean that they are sanded, stained, and coated with polyurethane in a factory. The planks simply need to be cut and nailed to complete installation. After that, they’re ready to go. On the other hand, unfinished floors are raw hardwood that has been cut into planks, but must first be installed and then sanded and refinished on site.

Let’s Compare the Pros of Each Flooring Type

Now that we know the difference between the two, let’s discuss the pros of prefinished and unfinished floors. Many homeowners go back and forth about which option to choose. The truth is, both are excellent options with plenty of benefits. The decision really comes down to the look you want to achieve, the amount of time you want to spend on installation, and the cost. When you take these into consideration, you’ll be able to make the best decision for you. We’ll go over the benefits of each option below, and our team is always here to answer any additional questions you have or to provide you with recommendations.

Benefits of Pre-finished Flooring

Prefinished hardwood flooring is factory-finished, with each board being individually sprayed with a coat of polyurethane and then baked in an oven with aluminum oxide. This process creates an extremely hard and lasting acrylic finish. Prefinished hardwood flooring options are often chosen by homeowners due to their quick installation and incredible durability. Some of the primary benefits of prefinished hardwood flooring include:

  • Ready for Immediate Use: Once your prefinished floors are installed, they are immediately ready to be walked on and enjoyed by your family. There will be no down time as you won’t have to wait for them to be finished on site and cured before moving your items back into the space.
  • Fewer VOCs: Because unfinished floors are finished on site, the vapors from the polyurethane resins and solvents will hang in the air for days. When you choose prefinished flooring, you won’t have to worry about smelling the fumes for days or exposing your family to harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) because the flooring will have already gone through the finishing process in a factory.
  • No Dust: Again, because prefinished floors are completely ready for use, no sanding will have to take place in your home. This means you won’t have to worry about all the dust that is created by sanding, which will keep your home cleaner.
  • Quick Installation: Prefinished hardwood can be installed very quickly. Depending on the size of the space, installation can often be completed in a single day, allowing you to get back to daily life.
  • Nearly Flawless Finish: Factory-applied finishes look beautiful and are also very durable. Most even come with a lifetime warranty, making pre-finished floors a smart investment.
  • Lower Cost: Though the initial cost of prefinished floors may appear higher than unfinished, they will end up costing less in the end. By the time you factor in finishing costs, the final price is higher than prefinished hardwood.

Benefits of Unfinished Flooring

While many people prefer the easy installation of prefinished floors, others believe unfinished floors are the better option. The final decision will depend on what features are most important to you. There are many benefits to installing raw wood floors that are finished onsite. A+ Hardwood Floors is here to help you understand these benefits and determine which option is best for you. Be sure to consider all the following benefits of unfinished floors when making your decision:

  • Retains Natural Characteristics: Even though both prefinished and unfinished hardwood floors are made from real hardwood, unfinished floors retain more of the wood’s natural characteristics, like the grain pattern. This is because prefinished flooring goes through many coats of polyurethane and stain, which can remove some of the natural wood look, making them appear factory-made.
  • Best for New Construction or Large Renovations: In order to avoid accidental scratches and other damage, many contractors prefer unfinished floors for new construction homes and large renovations. When the floors are finished at the end, you don’t have to worry about any accidents damaging the floor.
  • More Finish Options: Your creative possibilities are nearly endless when it comes to the finish options you can choose for your unfinished hardwood floors. You’ll have numerous color options to choose from, ensuring your new floors will match the rest of your home perfectly.
  • Easier to Clean: Prefinished hardwood floors develop a beveled edge from the layers of stain and coatings, making it easier for dust, dirt, and grime to gather between boards. Unfinished floors that are stained on site will not develop this beveled edge and will instead be completely flat. This makes it much easier to clean the flooring.
  • Refinishing: Repairs are much easier on unfinished floors because a scratched or damaged board can be individually sanded and refinished. Prefinished floors do not allow for spot repairs, and instead a whole section of the floor may have to be replaced, or the entire floor may need to be refinished.

Contact Us for More Information about Hardwood Options

If you are planning to install new hardwood floors at your home in Denver, CO, you have many things to take into consideration. Our team is here to help you decide which flooring option will work best for your home and lifestyle. If you have any questions about prefinished are unfinished flooring, we encourage you to reach out to our team today. We’ll be happy to help you find the perfect flooring to update your space.