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What Are Prefinished Hardwood Floors?

Installing hardwood floors may help add value to a home.
Some homeowners prefer prefinished hardwood floors because they are more durable than unfinished hardwood.
A house with hardwood flooring.
Prefinished hardwood floors are more durable and easier to install than unfinished hardwood floors.
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  • Written By: Luke Arthur
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 16 December 2014
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Prefinished hardwood floors are a type of flooring that is finished in a factory setting and then distributed to customers ready to install. Prefinished hardwood floors have been growing in popularity and have several advantages over their unfinished counterparts. Prefinished hardwood floors are more durable, are easier to install, and produce a better look than unfinished hardwood.

One of the primary advantages of prefinished hardwood floors is that they are more durable than unfinished hardwood. With unfinished hardwood, the wood is installed and then it is finished on-site. Installers will use a polyurethane finish to coat the top of the wood. With most prefinished floors, a substance called aluminum oxide is used to finish the flooring. Aluminum oxide is much harder than polyurethane finish.

By using aluminum oxide in the finish, the wood will be much less likely to scratch or dent. This will keep the wood looking good for many years. With a polyurethane finish, the homeowner may have to refinish the wood every few years to keep it looking like new.

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Another advantage of using prefinished hardwood floors is that it is very simple to install compared to unfinished wood. When an individual purchases unfinished wood, he or she has to allow the wood to acclimate, take everything out of the room, and then install the wood. Then the installer has to stain the wood, allow the stain to dry, and then finish it with polyurethane. In most cases, this process will take several days and the homeowners will have to be inconvenienced during this period.

With prefinished hardwood floors, the wood can simply be installed and then used the same day. There is no need for the homeowners to be out of the house and this type of wood can be installed very quickly. This allows the homeowners to use the space much more quickly than they will be able to with unfinished wood.

Using prefinished wood also provides the homeowner with a beautiful look. Prefinished wood comes in a variety of textures, sizes, styles, and colors. This allows the homeowners to choose a look that is unique and right for them. The finish on a prefinished wood floor generally looks much cleaner and better than wood that is finished on-site. With this type of wood, the finishing is done in a controlled environment in a factory without any dust, instead of doing it inside a dusty house.

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