Tag Archives: Hardwood floors

Hire a pro, it’s worth it!

Why you need to hire a pro

Just imagine that you have decided to rip out the old carpet or laminate in your home and install some nice hardwood floors.  You go through the process of finding and choosing a floor that you like.  Then you go through another process of choosing someone to install the floor.  Now you are really looking forward to the finished product!

hardwood flooring
What you expect

But you look around and notice a few mistakes in the install, some attempts to hide them, and then a few more and what is with that big hump in the middle of the living room! Uh oh!

Recently I had the (dis)pleaseasure of taking a look at a floor just like I’m describing,  it was clearly not done by professionals.

I’ll show you some pictures from the floor and describe what you are seeing.

Here they used filler to “hide” some gaps. Hardwood floors need expansion gaps all around the walls as the hardwood will move.  It expands and contracts as it takes in and releases moisture.  Not enough gaps will cause problems.

BUT these gaps should be covered by baseboard or mouldings.  This was not done here. They should have taken the extra time to remove the baseboards and undercut the doorway.  This would hide the needed expansion gaps and leave a clean install.

oak hardwood floors
Filler is not a substitute for craftsmanship
oak hardwood floors
oak hardwood floors
Again, filler is used instead of doing a proper install

Some don’t remove the baseboards and this is perfectly fine if the flooring is installed properly.  Then the EVEN gaps are covered by a moulding.

hardwood floors
Using moulding to cover bad cuts

They tried to do that here BUT just on this one wall.  This must be done throughout the house, and the expansion gaps should be fairly even,  usually around 1/4″,  for it too look good.   What was done here was to hide some imperfections with moulding and then some with filler.  So this one wall with a shoe moulding really stood out, in a bad way.


A hardwood flooring install should be seamless.  Meaning there is no need for transitions, unless the hardwood is meeting another material, such as tile or carpet.  The flooring should have just continued on here, through the doorway.  Perhaps they added hardwood to this bedroom at a later date.  The solution for this would be to lace in new flooring into the existing, leaving a seamless transition. To be honest, I have no idea what anyone was thinking in the picture below.

hardwood floors

While it is hard to see in the picture, there was a very noticeable hump in this living room.  You may be able to tell with the light and shadows.

hardwood floors
Hump in the floor

This was due to not doing any sub floor prep. That would mean making sure the sub floor is flat and clean. Sub floor prep can make a huge improvement to any flooring installation.  Imagine walking over your newly installed floor and drastically dips into the corner of a room.  We would discuss any needed sub floor prep with you, and go over your options.

So while these examples are some of the worst work I’ve ever seen, it does highlight that fact that it is always good value to hire a pro.  Make sure that anyone you are hiring is a professional at what they do.  Flooring seems to get lumped in to a “so easy anyone can do it” category, but this post and other installs I’ve seen prove that having a professional handling your hardwood flooring project is well worth it.

So how do you do find a reputable professional?  Search online for reviews, pictures of their work, and meet with them.  Ask questions, they should be happy to answer questions you may have.

This will ensure that the work is done properly, and that it will look good for a long time.  Your floors should last as long as your home is standing.


Disposable floors?!

Your hardwood floors should not be disposable!

We here at Evergreen Hardwood Floors are focused on a quality first approach. For the work that we do and the flooring we install. Unfortunately we are noticing an unfortunate trend around our area. Still perfectly good hardwood floors are being ripped out, then installing lesser quality hardwood flooring or even laminate.

There seems to be a lot of misinformation out there regarding the life expectancy of hardwood floors. Good quality hardwood floors should last as long as your home is standing.

The waste and environmental impact is enormous from this practice. The still useful flooring is just thrown into the landfill, where it sits and adds to the pile of garbage. Some of the new flooring installed, it may be hard to tell where your hardwood floors come from, without a lot of research.  Some overseas manufacturers have much lower environmental standards and sustainable logging practices are not a concern.
While this may help lower the price, this has a major impact on the worldwide environment but also the environment of your own home. We know you are concerned about the environment now and for future generations, so why not extend that to what goes in your own home!

Loba Impact Oils – 0% VOC

So what do you do if you have hardwood floors that are worn or out of date? We offer the option of refinishing your hardwood floors. With this practice, the environmental impact is much less. We remove as little as possible of your existing hardwood floors and then we build it up through the use of low VOC stain and finish coats. We are committed to always offering you the best options for your health that also have great durability and longevity for your hardwood floors.

The bonus of the refinishing process is that you can have a direct impact on how your flooring looks. The choices that you can make for regarding the colour of your floor are almost endless so we can really tap into what you want your home to look like!
So if your hardwood floors are looking out of date, within a few days we can get them looking modern again, and you can have a hand in the finished product.

Stain samples

Also, if you need to install new hardwood floors we can help you choose the best option for your home. We do our best to offer flooring from mills that are conscious of their environmental impact. Whether that’s an engineered or solid hardwood floor, we want you to love your floors for decades! We would not want you to go through all the inconvenience that come with a renovation, and then have to go through it again with ripping up your floors every few years. I know that may seem far off, but the years seem to fly by.

Contact us today, about your hardwood flooring project, and you may be surprised by the options available to you.

Moisture & your hardwood floors

Crowns are for your head, not your floors.

Recently I refinished a hardwood floor that previously had moisture issues that were not corrected properly, and it got me thinking about this subject.

The floor in question was crowned, where the center of every board bulges up.

hardwood floors

When the house was first built there was a moisture issue of some kind.  The floor then cupped, because the boards would swell from the intake of moisture, and then edges push against each other.  So the builder fixed the moisture issue and got the floor refinished, soon after.

Where I believe the issue happened was that the floor was refinished too soon.  The floor didn’t have time to stabilize the moisture content and lay back down.  So when they sanded it, it looked flat, but when the moisture stabilized later, the process of sanding had taken too much wood off the edges, so now the centers of the hardwood floor had more material and was crowned.

If they had left it longer and let the wood stabilize more, then refinished it, it would have been a flat floor.

This is not the only way your hardwood floor can get crowned.  If there is a difference in moisture within the board, this can happen as well.

Since this moisture issue was well in the past and the it had been stable for a long time, with our refinishing we were able to get the floor nice and flat.

Before&After maple hardwood floor

This was not the only reason the homeowner decided to get their floors refinished, as it was worn and due for an update.  We were  able to get a nice bright custom stain colour that opened up the space and that homeowners were very happy with.

The proper steps must be followed so the issues can be corrected once and for all.  This starts even before install, with proper moisture readings of the space and of the wood.  Allowing the floor to acclimate to the new environment is key.  Proper moisture control during and after install is very important as well.

So this was a good reminder that care needs to be taken with all aspects of a hardwood floor install and refinish.  From proper acclimatization,  and knowing the full history of the floor.

If you want anymore info on our services, contact Evergreen Hardwood Floors today.

10 Differences between Solid, Engineered and Laminate

One of the most important parts of flooring installation is deciding what type of hardwood is right for you. Before choosing solid wood, engineered wood, or laminate flooring it’s crucial to look at all the facts, so I have compiled the following list showing 10 differences in types of hardwood.

Click to navigate to a specific section:

Solid Hardwood

Engineered Hardwood

Laminate Hardwood


Continue reading 10 Differences between Solid, Engineered and Laminate

Tools of the hardwood flooring professional

Tools of the hardwood flooring trade

I wanted to provide a little insight into my trade after going to see a client who tried to refinish his own floors with some rented equipment.  Some things are fairly DIY safe but some are a little more complicated.  I liken it to car maintenance.  I have no formal training, but I do have wrenches, screwdrivers, and Youtube, so I can do oil changes and basic maintenance but should I take apart my transmission? That is a recipe for disaster, trust me.

Continue reading Tools of the hardwood flooring professional