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A Finish That Lasts

Written by Jane Trabert Schmit
Imagery by Courtesy of M P Caroll Hardwood

If you’ve been dreaming of hardwood flooring in your home, now is the time to make it happen. Then sit back and enjoy the natural beauty of that floor for many years to come.

Here’s why: Extra-durable finishes ensure a longer life, minimal maintenance and less wear-through than ever before. Indeed, the resiliency that has always made
wood flooring a top choice among homeowners is better than ever, thanks to industry advancements in products and technologies.
    It’s an exciting time, according to the National Wood Flooring Association and professionals such as
Mike Caroll of M P Caroll Hardwood in Cheektowaga, New York. He’s seeing longer-term manufacturer warranties for pre-finished products that can literally last a lifetime.
    “The wood is stained and finished at the factory. The surface is extremely hard so it can last much longer without even thinking about it,”  he said.  “The extra-durable finishes being applied now enable these floors to last hundreds of years because they don’t need to be refinished as often ... Today there aren’t too many floors offered this way that don’t come with a manufacturer’s warranty of 30, 40, even 50 years (against) wear-through. In other words, the manufacturers guarantee that you can walk on these floors and not wear through the finish for this number of years.”
    Caroll estimates that 95 percent of the flooring installed by his company is pre-finished.
    “Just about every wood floor out there is being made with this type of finish. It’s taken over the market. It’s very seldom that we put in raw wood and then sand and finish on site anymore,”  he said.  “Fifteen years ago, you couldn’t find a manufacturer who would put a 30- or 40- or 50-year warranty on the finish but nowadays it’s commonplace. Just about every brand out there has a long-term
wear warranty.”
    As for industry trends, the flooring association’s 2018 outlook reports the following:
•  There is a strong demand for white oak, hickory and ash.
•  Homeowners are favoring wider, longer wood planks.
•  Brushed and gray finishes are in vogue, a trend in line with growing consumer preference for rustic, authentic and organic looks.
•  Low-gloss finishes are in demand. 

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