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Hardwood flooring can come in lots of different wood species.  The species of wood is determined by the tree that it is from, for example, Oak or Walnut.  Different species of wood have different characteristics, such as, grain pattern, colour, tone and hardness.

Choosing the correct species of wood for your flooring is essential.  You will want to think about the colour scheme of your room and how busy the room is likely to be.  Wood is a natural product so even within the same species, you are likely to get some variations of colour and gain pattern.  We would always recommend that you order free flooring samples from us.  This allows you to look at the colour of the flooring species in your own home.

 

What are the main wood flooring species?

The three most popular species for wood flooring are the following:

 Oak

Oak is by far the most popular choice of flooring species.  In its natural state it has pale cream and golden tones with a unique grain pattern. It is a timeless and traditional choice of flooring and will suit any style and size of room.  Oak is a relatively hard and durable floor covering and can last for decades if looked after properly.  As Oak is so popular, there are many different variations, so be sure to have a look at our full range of Solid Oak, Engineered Oak, and Parquet Block OakYou can even find Oak flooring with colour stains added to slightly change the colour and tone of the floor.  Also, look out for different surface finishes, these can really make a difference to the appearance and feel of the floor.

Oiled Engineered Rustic Oak Flooring
Walnut

Walnut is a beautiful, dark coloured species of wood. It has deep rich brown tones with a contrasting pale pattern running throughout.  As a result, you get a unique and very distinctive grain pattern. Walnut is one of the more delicate species of hardwood.  Consequently, it does take a bit more looking after.  It can dent and scratch fairly easily, so it is always best to remove outdoor footwear and sweep the floor on a regular basis.  Walnut is rarer than Oak, so as a result can be slightly more expensive.

Oiled Engineered Walnut Wood Flooring
Hickory

Hickory flooring is again a darker species of wood.  It has distinctive caramel and golden tomes running throughout, which makes it easy to match up to most interior decors.  Hickory is a beautiful and luxurious floor, but what is especially relevant is its strength and durability.  It is one of the hardest species of wood for wooden floors, so perfect for any busy areas.

Saw Cut Solid Hickory Wood Flooring
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Sunshine and Ultra Violet (UV) rays can cause outdoor wood to become faded and grey.  If you have wooden window frames, doors, cladding or fencing then you will probably need to think about how to protect your wood from the sun.  A UV protection oil is the perfect choice.  Outdoor woodwork looks and feels so much better once it has been sufficiently protected.

 

Which UV protection oil should I use?

If you want to protect your wood from the sun, we would highly recommend Osmo UV Protection Oil.  It is a clear oil that maintains the wood’s natural colour and slows down the greying process (from UV) by up to 12 times.  It is perfect for any vertical surface or structure such as windows, fences and sheds.  It is not recommended to use on flat surfaces like decking.  Osmo UV Protection Oil does not only protect your wood from the sunlight, it is also very water and dirt resistant.  The oil allows the wood to breathe and reduces the amount of swelling or shrinking.

Alternatively, if you are looking for a product with an added colour stain, then we would recommend Osmo UV Protection Oil Tints.  There are colours including, Oak, Spruce and Cedar.

Osmo UV-Protection Oil Tint Shades
How do I use Osmo UV Protection Oil to protect my wood from the sun?
  • Always prepare your surfaces fully. They need to be clean, dry and smooth.  Any old paint or lacquer must be removed first.
  • Stir the tin of Osmo UV Protection Oil. The oil is ready to use, so there is no need to add or mix anything with it.
  • Use a flat brush or Osmo Small  Roller and Brush Set to apply a thin layer along the wood grain.
  • Allow to dry for approximately 12 hours (weather dependant).
  • Apply the second coat in the same way.
Osmo Small Roller and Brush Set

Always read the manufacturer’s instructions and product information fully before use.

 

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If you want to keep your wooden floor looking fresh and new, then felt protector pads are a fantastic product.  They can help to prevent unwanted scratches and dents caused by furniture and other heavy objects.

 

What are felt protector pads?

First of all, Felt protector pads are small anti-scratch pads with a soft felt surface.  They are designed to be used on the bottom of furniture.  Most of all, when applied correctly they create a cushion between the furniture and your wooden floor.  There are a range of different felt protector pads to choose from.  Some have a self-adhesive back for easy application, whereas others can be screwed in for a more secure fit.

Screw in Felt Protector Pads
Why should I use them?

We believe that felt protector pads are an essential part of caring for your hardwood floor.  Since they have been designed to prevent unwanted dents and scratches you should apply them to the bottom of furniture or heavy items, especially anything that is regularly moved, like chair legs.  The pad itself acts as a soft (anti-scratch) cushion so when the furniture is moved, it will not scratch or mark your floor.

For a more secure fit we would recommend the screw-in pads, which are much better for items that are moved regularly as they stay in place firmly.

In addition, we also have a multipack of self-adhesive pads, which are great if you have a lot of furniture that is only moved every now and again (e.g. to clean underneath).

Self Adhesive Felt Pads - Assorted Sizes

To protect your floor, use felt protector pads on the following items:

  • Chair legs
  • Table legs
  • Coffee tables
  • Desks
  • Television cabinets
  • Bed legs
  • Heavy toys

For more advice and information about looking after your floor, have a look at the following: How to prevent scratches on hardwood floors.

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Giving your decking an anti-slip surface is a great idea, especially if your have children, pets or anyone who may be unsteady on their feet.  Wooden decking can become slippery when it is wet, or if it hasn’t been cleaned properly.  Making your decking slip resistant is easy.

 

Which is the best product use?

We think that the best product to use is Osmo Anti-Slip Decking Oil.  It is a clear oil top coat, which maintains the beauty of your wooden decking whilst giving you a slip resistant and safer surface.  When using Osmo Anti-Slip Decking Oil you will get a slip resistant surface along with a water and dirt resistance.  The character of the natural wood remains visible and the surface will not crack, flake or peel.  This particular oil allows the decking to breathe, which helps to reduce the swelling and shrinking of the wood.  It also protects your decking against algae and fungal decay.

Osmo Anti-slip Decking Oil
How do I make my decking anti-slip?

Follow these simple steps:

  • Remove any objects or furniture from your decking area
  • Make sure the surface of your decking is dry and frost free
  • Clean your decking to remove any dirt or grit from the surface
  • Apply a thin and even coat of Osmo Decking Oil along the wood grain
  • Use a natural bristle brush to apply the oil
  • You may want to use an Osmo Decking Brush Kit
  • Leave to dry for approximately 12 hours.
  • Actual drying time depends on weather and outside conditions
  • Apply a layer of Osmo Anti-Slip Decking Oil, thinly and evenly along the wood grain
  • Allow to dry for approximately 12 hours
  • Ensure your decking is fully dry before walking on it or place object or furniture on the surface.
Osmo Decking Brush Kit

Always read the manufacturer’s instructions and product information fully before use.

 

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Wooden decking is a great addition to any garden or outdoor space.  Looking after your decking is essential if you want to maintain the beauty of the wood. Depending on the climate and how much sun your decking receives, you may want to protect it annually.

Which product is best for protecting my decking?

We would recommend using Osmo Decking Oil.  It gives a slight satin finish that is water and dirt resistant.  The wood is able to breathe, while being fully protected.  Here are some of the advantages of using Osmo Decking Oil:

  • A range of colours to choose from to match your existing decking
  • It is safe for animals and plants once it is fully dried
  • Water and dirt resistant
  • It reduces the chance of the wooden decking swelling or shrinking
  • The surface will not crack, flake or peel
  • There is no need to sand your decking for future applications
Osmo Decking Oil - range of colours to choose from
How do I protect my decking?

Firstly, you need to prepare the decking surface.  Remove any furniture, toys, plant pots, etc from the decking.  The decking should be clean and dry before you start oiling the surface.  Stir the tin of oil well before use.  Osmo Decking Oil is ready to use straight from the tin so there is no need to mix or add anything to it.  Start to apply the first coat with a brush.  You may want to use our Osmo Decking Brush Set.  Once the first coat has been applied evenly, allow it to dry.  This will take approximately 12 hours (depending on outside temperature and conditions).  Once dry, you can apply a second coat.  Make sure the second coat is fully dry before replacing garden furniture or plant pots to your decking.

If you wanted a slip resistant finish to your decking, you could use Osmo Anti-Slip Decking Oil for the second coat.

Osmo Decking Brush Set

Always read the manufacturer’s instructions and product information fully before use.

 

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First of all, parquet block flooring can transform and instantly update any tired or shabby looking room. The beautiful patterns that can be created with the blocks of flooring will add character and sophistication to any style or size of property.

Oiled Oak Parquet Block Flooring
What is parquet block flooring?

Parquet block flooring is a wooden floor that has been made into smaller blocks, rather than the typical longer planks. As a result, you are able to create beautiful geometric patterns with these smaller shaped and sizes of blocks,. The most popular way to fit the parquet blocks is in a herringbone pattern.

The blocks can be found in different species of wood, and you have the option of either solid or engineered parquet blocks.  The final colour and gain pattern of the parquet blocks will depend upon which species of wood, colour stain and surface finish you choose.

If you would like more detailed information about parquet block flooring, have a look at the following article: What is parquet block flooring?

Cross section of parquet blocks
Why should I choose parquet block flooring?

There are many reasons why we think you should choose parquet block flooring.  Here are just some of them:

  • Firstly, different geometric patterns can be created. These include basket weave, brick bond and herringbone.  They all look beautiful and will add an air of luxury to any space.
  • Any type of hardwood floor is an investment for the future, and parquet block is no different. If looked after it can last a lifetime.
  • It will look amazing in any style of property. Its traditional roots mean that it will sit perfectly in a rustic or older property.  While, its sophistication allows it to add a stand-out feature to a modern or minimalist home.
  • Furthermore, engineered parquet block flooring can be used with underfloor heating.
  • Finally, you can find parquet block flooring in different species of wood and styles, including Unfinished Oak Parquet, Cappuccino Oak Parquet and even Bamboo Parquet Flooring. With such a range of choice, there is sure to be something to suit your needs.
Woodland Brown Oak Parquet Block Flooring
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Acclimatising your wooden floor should really be seen as part of the installation process.  It is really important that you let your new floor acclimatise and adapt to its new surroundings.

Why should I acclimatise my wooden floor?

Wood is a natural product so will naturally adapt to its surroundings.  By this, we mean that your wooden flooring with slightly expand and contract with changes in the atmosphere.  If the air is humid, your floor will absorb some of this moisture and slightly expand.  If the air is dry, the opposite will happen, and your floor will slightly shrink.  These changes are minimal and completely natural, but can cause damage to your floor, once installed, if the floor is not acclimatised properly.

By allowing your wooden floor to properly acclimatise, you are reducing the risk of it moving and becoming damaged once installed.

 

How do I acclimatise my wooden floor?

Both solid and engineered wooden floors need to be sufficiently acclimatised. Follow these simple steps:

  • Make sure that your wooden flooring is delivered to your property in plenty of time to allow for it to adjust to the surroundings before you start the installation process.
  • All types of solid hardwood flooring should be left to acclimatise for at least 7 days.
  • All types of engineered hardwood flooring should be left to acclimatise for at least 72 hours.
  • Leave the wooden flooring, in the unopened boxes, in the room where it will be installed.
  • The existing floor in this room must be dry. Do not leave the boxes of your new wooden flooring on a wet or damp floor.
  • Any new plaster on the walls should also be thoroughly dry before leaving your new floor to acclimatise in this room.
  • Finally, leave your new wooden flooring for the recommended amount of time before you start the installation process.
Acclimatising wooden flooring correctly

Acclimatising your wooden floor is an essential part of installation, so is preparing your subfloor.  Have a look at the following article for more information on this: How to prepare my subfloor before installing hardwood flooring.

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Grey engineered hardwood flooring is becoming one of the most popular types of wooden floor.  In recent years, more and more shades of grey flooring have become available.  From a dark, slate grey, right through to pale grey tones.

What is engineered hardwood flooring?

Engineered wood flooring has been constructed in such a way to give it additional stability and versatility.  The surface of the flooring is real wood, and then underneath is base layers which give dimensional stability.  Engineered wood flooring looks just the same as solid wood flooring once it has been installed.  However, it is much more versatile and has some great benefits:

  • It can be used with underfloor heating
  • Wider planks can be created as the base layers give extra strength
  • You can use it in rooms where temperature changes, e.g. conservatories
  • It can either be floated over an underlay or fixed into position
  • Usually you will find engineered wood flooring at a lower price than solid wood flooring.

If you are still unsure about engineered wood flooring, have a read through our article: Engineered Wood Flooring Benefits.

Engineered Deep Night Grey Oak Flooring
Why should I choose Grey engineered hardwood flooring?

Grey wood flooring tends to match most interior decors, furnishing and styles of home.  It looks clean and fresh and adds character and depth.  The beauty of grey engineered wood flooring is that you have the versatility of an engineered floor with the stunning and popular tones of grey.

Engineered grey wood flooring can be installed in almost any room in your home.  It is easy to look after, and you have the choice of either plank flooring or parquet blocks.  By choosing a grey parquet block floor, you will really be able to create a sophisticated and stand-out feature for any room.

For more information on grey coloured floors, have a look at the following: Grey Wood Flooring.

Coal Grey Oak Engineered Parquet Block Flooring
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Luxury Vinyl Tiles (LVT) are an excellent choice if you want a hard wearing, durable and easy to look after floor.  LVT is designed to mimic the look of wood, stone or ceramic tiles.  It is easy to install and straight forward to look after. To keep you LVT looking fresh and new, we would recommend the following:

  • Sweep everyday to remove any dust or dirt from the surface.
  • Clean with a cleaning product once a week (or as needed), to remove more stubborn stains and marks.

It is essential that you choose the correct product to clean your LVT if you want it to look its best.

Our product recommendation for cleaning Luxury Vinyl Tiles

We feel that the best product to clean LVT flooring is Bona Tile & Laminate Spray Mop.

This mop is suitable to use on vinyl, tiles, laminate, ceramic, linoleum, granite and other hard surfaces. It has everything you need to clean you LVT effectively.

  • The cleaning solution is built into the handle allowing you to spray and clean in one easy motion.
  • It has a refillable cleaning solution The cleaning solution is gentle yet effective on stubborn stains.
  • The microfibre pad is soft and gentle on your floor. Furthermore, it is removable and machine washable, allowing you to reuse it over and over again
  • It has a rotating mop head. This allows you to reach into difficult areas and corners with ease.
Bona Tile and Laminate Spray Mop
Are there any products I should avoid using?

Although Luxury Vinyl Tiles are extremely durable and mostly waterproof you will still need to choose your cleaning products carefully.  We would advise that you always check the details and suitability of any cleaning products before using them.  Some harsh, abrasive or acidic products can cause irreparable damage to your LVT flooring.  Although steam mops are great for cleaning ceramic tiles, you should never use one on LVT.

 

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Laminate floors are relatively hard wearing and extremely easy to clean.  You will want to keep your laminate floor looking its best at all times. In order to do this, you should keep a simple but effective cleaning routine. Firstly, you should sweep your laminate floor everyday to remove dust and dirt from the surface.  This will help to prevent unnecessary damage to your laminate floor.  Secondly, you should use a cleaning product to actually clean and refresh your floor.  Using the correct cleaning product can really help to keep your laminate floor looking its best.

Our product recommendation for cleaning your laminate floor

The cleaning product that we would recommend to clean your laminate floor is:

Bona Tile and Laminate Spray Mop.

This amazing mop enables you to clean and maintain your laminate floors in a sweep. It is ergonomic and simple to use.  The refillable cleaning solution is built into the mop handle, making it easy to spray and clean. This also makes is easy to refill and replace – all you will need is Bona Tile & Laminate cleaner refill. The mop also has a microfibre pad which is removable and machine washable.  Finally, and most importantly, the mop has an ergonomically rotating head to ensure you can easily reach into corners and difficult areas. Furthermore, you can use this cleaner on tile, laminate, and other hard surfaces such as ceramic, linoleum, vinyl, granite and more.

Bona Tile and Laminate Spray Mop
Are there any products I should avoid using?

Although laminate flooring can be hard wearing and sometimes even waterproof, you need to be careful which products you use. Always check the details of any cleaning products you want to use to check their suitability for your floor.  You should never use a steam mop as this can damage laminate flooring.  Most of all, avoid any acidic or abrasive cleaning products.

 

 

 

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