Choosing hardwood floors for your home is a step in the right direction, but the direction of your hardwood floors are important in the overall feel and look of your home. Installing your floors in the wrong direction will make your home feel awkward, and it could also shorten the lifespan of your floors. Hardwood floors, if installed right, should last a lifetime with minimum maintenance.
Strengthening your hardwood floors
When we look at a home to help a client design and install their dream hardwood floors, we have to take a look at the subfloor and the joists that will be supporting their flooring. Hardwood floors should always run perpendicular to the joists so that each board is supported by several joists, which will help strengthen them as you are walking across. If you run your boards parallel to the joists, many boards will be essentially free-floating and will start to bend and flex with the weight of furniture and people. Over time, this will start to show with a big dip and gap where there is the least amount of support.
The direction should be aesthetically pleasing
Now for the aesthetic portion of choosing a direction for your flooring. The direction can make a room seem bigger or smaller depending on the direction the boards are installed. If you are laying hardwood floors in a living room, dining room, or bedroom, the floors will typically look the most pleasing if they are running perpendicular to the main view direction of your home. Look to see which direction is the most natural way to face when you are in the room – whether it’s having the main focal point be towards the windows, the fireplace, or wherever – and then lay the boards running from side to side, and not back to front.
Many times, it will be obvious which direction you should lay your boards, but if you are remodeling or renovating a home and you don’t yet have the furniture design in mind, look for the longest direction of the room and run the boards parallel. This will keep the flow of the room natural and pleasant. Think about a long, skinny hallway. If you run the boards parallel to the shortest length of the hallway, you are going to feel like it has been chopped off and doesn’t have an aesthetic and harmonious flow.
Hardwood flooring design and installation experts
T&G Flooring is one of Colorado’s largest hardwood flooring retailers. Our skilled craftsmen can help you decide on the best options, taking practicality and personal style into consideration. Stop by our showrooms in Denver and Evergreen to find hardwood flooring inspiration and talk to an expert about your next hardwood flooring project.