Using Hardwood Floors in the Kitchen Does it make sense

Using Hardwood Floors in the Kitchen  Does it make sense

Using Hardwood Floors in the Kitchen Does it make sense?

September 26, 2010 By Tim Layton

Do you think hardwood flooring is good for kitchens?

A mystery reader with the initials TS left a comment on the last post asking if hardwood floors really worked in kitchens. NOT the first time Ive heard that question!

Some people might say its a matter of opinion. I say its not. To me its a fact. Hardwood floors are great anywhere, everywhere, anytime, for any occasion. Including the kitchen.

However, Ive found it necessary at times to grab a podium and become an evangelist for my beliefs on this highly important, nay life altering. matter. Heres the two most common objections and my response:

    Using Hardwood Floors in the Kitchen  Does it make sense
  1. Water! What if there is a leak, or a spill?
    • There is one floor that will do better in a flood scenario tile and even that does not always survive a flood (by this I mean a broken pipe) but tile is cold and hard.
    • With less severe water, wood generally does pretty well. Especially if its cleaned-up quickly.
    • Solid wood floors can generally withstand more than manufactured wood.
    • Solid wood floors are easier to repair.
    • Engineered or manufactured wood flooring (plys with a hardwood top) generally do better with water than laminate flooring (which isnt really wood at all).
    • How often do you really get serious water on the floor anyway? Is it a common enough occurrence to make a decision based upon?
  2. Wear & Tear! Can hardwood stand-up to the heavy use in the kitchen?
    • Hardwood floors (solid or engineered) will show some wear in areas that get constant traffic. So if you are an intense cook, hand wash dishes three times a day, or have a herd of teenagers stampede to the refrigerator on an hourly basis you should be prepared for wear and tear.
    • Is wear and tear a bad thing? Or do you LOVE the way a hardwood floor looks when is has a worn spot near the sink, or where your husband stands at the end of the bar? Doesnt it add character when your floor is worn out in front of the fridge?
    • So is that a drawback, or a benefit? It depends on the quality of your floor and this is one of my biggest reasons for using a solid hardwood floor. Wood that is 3/4 thick wears differently (better) than wood that is only a few millimeters thick.

The Good Stuff!

  • Hardwood is beautiful!
  • Hardwood feels fantastic under your feet!
  • Hardwood is universal it goes with any decor. (almost)
  • Hardwood is natural and one of the most authentic floors you can get.
  • Hardwood is temperate, feeling warm in winter and cool in summer, but never cold.
  • Natural wear and tear can make it look more beautiful.
  • A quality wood floor can last many lifetimes. Literally hundreds of years and still look great!
  • Oh and dishes that fall on it only break, rather than shatter in a zillion pieces.

Did I miss anything other arguments for or against? Anyone care to share personal experience with this? ( I had natural clay Mexican tile in our last kitchen and have ceramic tile in this one to be replaced with wood ASAP!)


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