Solid hardwood floors can give any room or home an instantly elevated look and feel, and can last for many, many years with proper care and maintenance. Maple hardwood flooring is one of the most common types of hardwood across Canada and the United States, as it’s easy to find, easy to maintain, and incredibly durable. So, if a client is looking to install hardwood floors in their home or office, here’s what they need to know before making the final decision.
Pros of maple hardwood flooring
Maple hardwood floors are some of the most commonly used hardwood types in the country. That’s because they’re domestically grown in the forests of northern U.S. and Canada, and very easy to get a hold of. Maple is also a very fast-growing type of wood, which makes it a sustainable and eco-friendly option for many homes.
The main benefit of maple hardwood floors is durability. Maple is a highly dense and hard type of wood, harder than oak or ash. In fact, it’s one of the hardest types of wood around, with a 1450 rating on the Janka hardness scale, compared to 1,360 for white oak, 1,320 for ash, 1,290 for red oak, and 995 for cherry. Its high density and hardness make it an extremely durable type of hardwood, and a great choice for high-traffic areas. Solid or engineered maple flooring is actually used in offices, gyms, or coffee shops, due to its high resistance to intense daily use.
Another advantage of maple hardwood floors is pricing. Maple tends to be more affordable than cherry, ash, or oak, because it’s much easier to grow and source. Solid hardwood or engineered maple flooring costs roughly $5 up to $8 per square foot, while factory-stained options tend to be slightly pricier, at up to $12 per square foot. This is because maple hardwood does not stain as well as other types of wood, so stained options are harder to come by.
Maple hardwood is the ideal choice for a homeowner who values minimalism and openness, as the light color and fine grain of the wood means it will never go out of style, and go with any type of interior design and decor. While oak or cherry hardwood tends to exude elegance, timelessness, and luxury, maple exudes youth, freshness, and is ideal for owners who prefer modern designs and airyness.
Cons of maple hardwood flooring
While it’s true that maple hardwood flooring is a great choice for nearly everyone, it does have a few downsides that clients should be aware of right off the bat. Maple is indeed a very dense, very hard type of hardwood, however, its biggest downside is that it’s not very scratch-resistant.
Due to its light color, which ranges from creamy white to a light brown, maple does not handle scratches very well. Any slight scratch or dent will be immediately visible, given the wood’s fine grain and light color. That’s why we recommend using carpets or rugs to protect the wood, especially if the area is heavily trafficked. We also recommend removing shoes, especially high heels, and being extra careful when playing with children’s toys or pets. Additionally, dirt and debris will be very visible due to the wood’s light color, so you might find yourself cleaning the floors a lot more often than you’d like.
Another downside to maple hardwood is the fact that it does not stain very well. We recommend installing natural maple hardwood flooring, and going for a simple, clear coat to keep it shiny and protected. Sanding is also not recommended for maple hardwood, but if you need to do it, it’s best to leave it to a professional, otherwise you might run the risk of damaging the wood or ending up with an uneven result.
Finally, an important aspect to consider is the fact that maple hardwood floors are extremely susceptible to changes in humidity. That’s why we recommend using either a humidifier or dehumidifier to maintain a proper level of humidity year-round. Otherwise, in time, the maple hardwood floors might warp, shrink, bend, or even crack and split. Humidity is something that you should consider even before installation. Maple hardwood or engineered strips should be left in the room they will be installed in for 48 to 72 hours, out of the box and stacked to allow proper airflow.
Because maple hardwood is sensitive to changes in humidity, it’s not recommended that you use a wet mop to clean maple floors. Instead, it’s best to use a soft broom or a soft rag to keep maple hardwood clean and in pristine condition for many years.
Conclusion – the best option for most households
Maple hardwood flooring might be a bit tricky to maintain and clean, due to its sensitivity to changes in humidity. However, with proper care and attention, it can last for many, many years. Its light, creamy color, fine grain pattern, density, and hardness make it a great choice for most households, and it will not go out of style anytime soon. While it does not have the same luxurious look and feel of darker hardwood types, like cherry or red oak, it’s a much more affordable and more sustainable option, which is why it’s one of the most commonly used types of wood across the U.S. Your clients will certainly not be disappointed in their choice.
Are you a professional looking to buy maple hardwood or engineered maple strips in bulk? Make sure to check out our offerings on our website, and if you need any assistance or a special and personalized order, please don’t hesitate to reach out.