hardwood flooring waukesha

One of the many benefits of hardwood flooring—and challenges—is its huge variety. With hundreds of colors, finishes, and stains to choose from, it’s no wonder that hardwood is the most popular flooring option in the greater Waukesha, Brookfield, Milwaukee area!

The most important attribute to consider when purchasing a hardwood is its species because this determines many of its other qualities, including coloration, wood grain, and, most importantly, strength. How the folks in the flooring business gauge hardwood strength can be a bit confusing, so read on for our guide to the Janka hardness scale from the flooring experts at Floor Coverings International Waukesha.

What is the Janka Hardness Scale?

The Janka hardness scale is a measurement of the strength of a species of hardwood. It’s taken by determining the pounds of force required to embed a steel ball into a piece of wood. The resulting number is a great way to gauge the general durability of a species and decide whether or not it’s right for your family or lifestyle. The scale ranges from Balsa wood (70 lbf) to the hardest wood ever measured: Australian bull oak (5,060 lbf).

0–1,200: the Softwoods

At the low end of the Janka hardness scale are the softer “hardwoods” and the softwoods, such as pine (around 800 lbf). Some of the most gorgeous hardwoods may be considered soft in terms of the Janka hardness scale, but they can work in homes without pets or in rooms with low foot traffic. Some other softer hardwoods include American cherry (995 lbf) and teak (1,155 lbf)

1,200–2,000: the Tough Domestics

The hardwoods most commonly found in Waukesha homes fall into this category. Hardwoods like white oak (1,360 lbf), red oak (1,290 lbf), ash (1,320 lbf) and hickory (1,820 lbf) are strong and sturdy: perfect for most families. They are also affordable and come in a large variety of styles and finishes.

2,000: the Exotics

Most of the hardwoods that are tougher than hickory are not indigenous to the United States. These exotic hardwood species are pricier but great options for homeowners that require tough, dependable hardwood floors. Some of the most popular exotic options include Brazilian cherry, or Jatoba (2,350 lbf), Brazilian walnut, or Îpe (3,684 lbf), and mahogany (2,200 lbf).

Learn More Today!

For more information about these and many other flooring options, give the folks at Floor Coverings International Waukesha a call. We proudly serve the greater Waukesha, Brookfield, Milwaukee area.

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