Wood flooring in the kitchen, a good idea?

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Either throughout the everyday life or the most exciting parties, the kitchen is the heart of the house and brings comfort, experimentation, enjoyment and much more.

For many years, our first reaction when designing a kitchen has been to lay ceramics on the floor to protect ourselves against potential water damage.  However in recent years, the current traditions are fading away and clients want to have wood in the kitchen also.  The idea is simple, we want to uniformize the floor with the rest of the house so it gives a great size effect.

Pre-finish floors in the kitchen

The pre-finish floors offer great protection against liquids.  It is a surface sealed like a glass on a dining table.  If liquids are spilled, it stays on the surface and is not absorbed by the wood.  However, there is still a vulnerable section in the joints which doesn’t have protections against liquids.  In the kitchen like in the rest of the house, if a pre-finish floor is scratched or has a dent, it cannot be repaired until we pull the big guns out and sand the entire surface to re-finish it.

Hand rubbed oil floors in the kitchen

The hand rubbed oil floors is not sealed which breath better.  The grain of the wood is filled with oil stopping any exterior agents to penetrate.  The longer we let time between each refreshing of the floor,  the more your floors will dry up and absorb any liquids.  That is the reason why it is more dangerous if we drop oily products on the floor.  Also, leaving water on an oiled floor can leave water marks.  So we need to be mindful and have a dry cloth handy.  The best advantage with an oiled floor is its reparability.  It is always good to have a liter of the stained oil used for your floor so you can fix dents and scratches overtime.  Therefore, to repair a small scratch, one can always use a fine grit sand paper then apply the coloured oil and it will hide beautifully.

Both type of finish in a kitchen cannot prevent a scratch or a dent when a heavy or sharp object is dropped.  Also, take into consideration the possibility of water damage if your sink or dishwasher ruptures.  If it happens, you wood floors may swell and not get back into place once dry.

In summary, a wood floor in the kitchen is a big yes design wise.  However, always pay attention and a quick reaction is always required!

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